Directed by award-winning filmmaker Susan Froemke, The Audition looks at the intense pressures young opera singers face as they struggle to succeed in one of the most difficult professions in the performing arts. The feature-length documentary takes viewers behind the scenes at the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions, where each year thousands of hopefuls compete for a cash prize, the chance to sing on the Met stage and the opportunity to launch a major operatic career. The film covers the dramatic week leading up to the finals of the 2007 auditions, focusing on three tenor contestants: Michael Fabiano, a fiery 22-year-old grappling with his inner demons; Alek Shrader, a 25-year-old who attempts to sing nine high Cs in the fiendishly difficult aria that made Pavarotti a star; and Ryan Smith, who at age 30 and with little formal training, is pursuing his dream of an operatic career. The Audition is both a suspenseful competition narrative and a revealing backstage look at what it takes to make it as an opera singer.
Visit the website at www.pbs.org/wnet/gperf.
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