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'Take Me or Leave Me' Catawba College senior Candace Neal scores a Broadway 'Rent' audition through YouTube contest

November 2, 2007

Category: Students, Theatre Arts

By Katie Scarvey, Salisbury Post

Catawba College theatre arts major Candace Neal says most auditions last for about 90 seconds.

That's about the length of time it takes to talk to Candace to realize how smart and funny and down to earth she is. Complicated, too, especially for a 21-year-old.

This is someone who likes both humorist David Sedaris and the metaphysical poet John Donne, someone who plays piano by ear and eats liver mush for breakfast ("I had some this morning," she said). Someone who likes guys in suspenders, who has 382 friends on her MySpace page — at last count, anyway — and a dad who taught her to sing "Janie's Got a Gun" when she was 2 years old.

You get a sense of her take on life through her online journal entries, like this one, which explains why she loves the stage.

An old man in striped overalls, a red bandanna and a white fedora just walked into PCJ (Port City Java) slur-singing, "If you knew I was comin' you'da baked a cake" at the top of his lungs.

This is why I'm in theatre. To emulate the quirky little characters of my world.

And if that wasn't enough ... he just walked up to me and said, "Damn, you're pretty. If I was thirty years younger, I'd give you a run for your money."

Apparently, those thick little glasses atop his nose aren't quite strong enough to pick up the unwashed ball of mess that is my hair. I assure you, I am a walking catastrophe. Read more »


  • Full Story (;
  • VIDEO: Graduate Anthony Johnson's Audition ( ;
  • VIDEO: Student Candace Neal's Audition ( ;
  • "Rent" Website - Online Auditions   ;
  • Theatre Arts at Catawba ;
  • Theatre Productions

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