Here we are, once again, doing one of my favorite things: sharing the success story of an artist that we at Capes Coaching truly adore. This time around we're talking with the fantastically larger-than-life Sheri Sanders, a musical theatre actress who's taken life by the reigns and made quite a splash as the go-to coach for rock musical auditions. If you've ever had the privilege of taking one of Sheri's classes, you know that she doesn't do anything by halves; she's fiery, passionate, and absolutely inspirational. Let's see how she's made it all happen.
1. When you first started working with Capes Coaching, what were your goals?
When I came to do the Path Class, I was looking to take this little class that I created on how to audition for rock musicals, and build it big enough to transform the entire musical theatre community into rockstars!
2. What have you accomplished since then?
My class, Rock The Audition, became a cult hit; I became the world's only rock music repertoire coach; I got a book deal with Hal Leonard as the first person in the history of theatre to write a book on auditioning for rock musicals; I signed with GERSH for booking; and now I am a pioneer, traveling around to all the musical theatre programs, incorporating popular music into their curriculums. Phew!
3. What has been your biggest career challenge and how did you overcome it?
When you are a pioneer, a trailblazer, or anyone who decides to do something no one's ever done before....no one has done it before!!! So there's no map, no guide, no one to tell you how to do it. No pointers, no tips. Everything I've done has been through trial and error. And there has been a lot of error! I overcame it when I realized that "error" isn't really error. If a bridge was burned, or a mistake was made, there is a lesson in that. You get to look at how you are being. You get to shift, and you get to try again, a little smarter, or in my case, a little calmer!
4. What do you know now that you wish you knew when you were first starting out?
That part of doing something big, successfully, requires down time. You need to refuel. You need to feed your heart and soul, take quiet time, get massages, stop working, connect with people and party. You need to stop in order to keep going. I collapsed from exhaustion and had to go to the hospital. They were like, "Sheri, for the love of god, you have to stop!"
5. What are you currently working on?
Well there are two things. One is a big secret. It's so big that it's going to make everyone's life in the musical theatre community easier. Teachers, students, performers, casting directors, creative teams, agents — everyone. When it comes out and you see it, you'll know why I have to keep it a secret. It's my best idea yet.
The second thing is I am working on reaching out to theatre sites to shoot my rock class and air it like a documentary-style web series. My class is so transformative, more people need to see that. The book is awesome, but the class is INSANE!!!!
6. Anything else you feel like sharing?
Yes. Don't do it on your own. Whatever it is. If I didn't have the Path Class, or my acting teachers, or my editor, or my therapist, I would not be where I am today. You need mirrors, other eyes, support. It's kind of like an actor directing themselves in a play they wrote. Spend the money that you convince yourself you don't have, and let yourself grow.