Chelsea Woodard might not be the next Dorothy, but she will never forget her experience competing in “Over the Rainbow”.
In late June, potential Dorothys from around Canada followed the yellow brick road to Toronto for callbacks, including Chelsea. After a long day of vocal exercises, press interviews and auditions, the Top 20 were announced for the reality show to be aired on CBC this fall.
“There was a lot of people to meet, and learn their story and what they want to do. It was really cool to meet people from across Canada,” said Woodard.
During the audition, each contestant performed “Over the Rainbow” for three judges, vocal coach Jeannie Wyse, choreographer Sean Cheesman and casting director Stephanie Gorin. Chelsea noted that contestants were also asked to prepare other pieces, but they weren’t asked to sing any of those songs.
All the contestants performed at the Glenn Gould Studio. “It is a beautiful little theatre,” said Woodard. “With what they had set up for the lights and the stage, and everything, it was very TV.”
Chelsea was actually one of the first competitors to perform, and waited a long time to find out the results. “They had three groups during the day, I was in group one and was number three. I was third to go up and had the whole rest of the day to think about my performance.”
“The more I went through the day, I thought that they were going for more of a ‘pop’ sound based on who was there, what kind of voices they had and what kind of shows they were interested in.”
“I am kind of the complete opposite,” said Woodard. Chelsea wanted her Dorothy to have a deeper meaning and expressed that in her songs.
“At the end of ‘Over the Rainbow’, I think it is very sad. The lyrics have hope in them, but it is not like there is a lot of hope either,” added Chelsea.
After competing for the TV show, Chelsea feels that she did learn a lot. “Reality TV is not real at all. It was very strange and not what I was expecting. The TV crew was full of wonderful people, who made the show.”
Another unforgettable experience for Chelsea during her time in Toronto was getting to see the Broadway show of “War Horse”.
“It was one of the best plays that I have ever seen,” said Chelsea. She raved about the mechanical horse-puppets in the Broadway play, and the artistic feel to the whole performance.