I am excited to make the following two announcements:
1) the creation of LLOYD TEAMS at UCBeast
2) the possibility of auditioning as either an individual or a team at the upcoming Harold/Lloyd audition at the end of March.
Read on for more information.
What are Lloyd Teams?
- Lloyd Teams are resident UCBeast improv teams that perform Harolds. Starting in April, they will be performing every Wednesday at 7pm at UCBeast. There will be four teams total, with two teams performing each week, so each team will perform biweekly.
Why are Lloyd Teams being created?
- Lloyd Teams are being created to expand the number of opportunities available to students who complete the ever expanding UCB improv program. With this change, we will expand from 64 total positions in the current Harold Team system to 96 positions in the new Harold/Lloyd Team system.
Additionally, we hope that Lloyd Teams will serve as an additional training ground for future Harold Team performers, where teams work together to master the skills necessary to excel at Harold, so that when performers do enter Harold Night they are ready to hit the ground running.
Who is eligible to be on a Lloyd Team?
- The same eligibility requirements that apply to auditioning to be on a Harold Team apply (must be approved for advanced study and must have completed a multi-week UCB class since February 2011).
If you are currently on a UCBT Harold Team or weekend improv team, you are not eligible to be on a Lloyd Team.
How do I audition to be on a Lloyd Team?
- The currently scheduled Harold Auditions for the end of March will serve as both Harold Team and Lloyd Team auditions. So, based on your audition, you could be placed on either a Lloyd Team or a Harold Team.
As previously announced here, Harold/Lloyd Team audition sign-ups will begin Wednesday March 7th, auditions will take place on Friday March 23rd and Saturday March 24th, and callbacks will be Tuesday March 27th. You MUST be able to make those audition times to be eligible to audition for a team. No exceptions.
Once on a Lloyd Team, would it be possible to be moved to a Harold Team?
- Yes! Going forward, if/when there are positions to fill on Harold Night, performers will be drawn primarily from Lloyd Teams.
Going forward, the general progression through the UCB team system will be being placed on a Lloyd Team first and then being placed on a Harold Team based on performance on a Lloyd Team. Though it would be theoretically possible to be placed directly on a Harold Team in exceptional circumstances.
Could a Lloyd Team become a Harold Team?
- Yes! If a Lloyd Team was excelling as a team, at the discretion of the artistic director, an entire Lloyd Team could be made a Harold Team. I want Lloyd Teams to focus on being the best teams they can be. As with all good improv, the focus should be on the ensemble and on excelling as a team, not excelling as an individual.
Could a performer or team be moved from a Harold Team to a Lloyd Team?
- No! This is a one way system.
What else should I know about Lloyd Teams?
- Lloyd Team auditions will happen in some capacity every six months. Being on a Lloyd Team should be thought of as having a guaranteed six month run at the theatre (barring punching an audience member in the face or a similarly egregious offense). It is possible that team roster changes will happen before then, but if offered a slot, you can count on at least six months as a Lloyd Team performer.
Lloyd Teams will have the same requirements that Harold Team members have: practice at least 3 hours a week with an approved UCB coach, send weekly practice reports to the AD, etc.
Lloyd Team members will receive casting emails, getting into shows for free, and access to other benefits of being a UCBT performer, with the exception that Lloyd Team member bios will not appear on the performer page. This is subject to change, but at present we already are dealing with the reality that the more performers we add to the performer page, the less valuable it becomes for each performer on the page. With the addition of UCBeast, the NY performer page is already larger than it has ever been and we want to curb the expansion even further by not adding the influx of 32 bios that the Lloyd Team creation would entail. As stated, all other UCBT performer benefits apply.
How will team auditions work? (NOTE deadline to apply to submit as a team = Monday March 4th)
- To be eligible, your team must have 8 members and all 8 members must meet the individual eligibility requirements.
You must be approved to audition as a team. To be approved: send the artistic director Nate Dern (firstname.lastname@example.org) an email with "HAROLD/LLOYD TEAM AUDITION - TEAM NAME" in the subject line. Include your team name and the names of all eight members.
Upon being approved by the AD to audition as a team (meaning I verify that all of your members are eligible) you will be given instructions on how to sign up for a team audition slot. You MUST email the AD by Monday March 4th to be able to audition as a team.
You may NOT audition both on a team and as an individual. But if you do audition with a team you will still be considered on your individual merits.
Note that even though you audition as a team, it would theoretically be possible for only certain members (or all but one member, for example) of your team to be selected to be on a team.
Furthermore, once made a Lloyd Team or a Harold Team, your roster would be subject to the discretion of the UCBT artistic director, meaning that even though you formed the team yourself, once you accept the offer to be a Lloyd or Harold Team, the UCBT AD would have the sole discretion to make roster changes. Them is the breaks. If/when your team gets promoted to that Golden City in the sky known as a UCBT Weekend Team, then you will once again enjoy roster autonomy.
This is an experiment. It one year I will revisit the idea of auditioning as a team and decide if the pros outweigh the cons. As with everything, I welcome your thoughts.
Since this is a new system, I imagine that there might be questions and kinks to work out. In time, I am confident that this system will benefit more UCB improvisers overall and result in higher quality improv happening on the UCBT stages.
Yours in improv,
UCB Theatre NY
145 30th Street, 4th floor