I am constantly reminded of how important attitude is. It’s everything; the way we interact on a gig, in our professional and personal life. They all depends upon our attitude. And even when I think I’m easy going and positive, I find there’s always room for improvement.
A colleague made this abundantly clear to me by his example. This friend is upbeat and truly a positive person. In hindsight, I wonder if I appeared to be a grouse by comparison. He reminded me to see the positive, and I should hope to return the favor if ever he needs it.
The sobering reality in the performing arts is: anyone can do your job. In a city of millions, there are thousands who can dance, sing, act and play instruments in circles around you. At the end of the day, it’s not your playing that will get you the job, although you need to be excellent at that. Your attitude makes up the difference between you and the next person.
I’ve sat in theatre auditions, where the casting team discusses the actor’s attitude more than his audition. And whenever a role is between two actors it almost certainly goes to the person with a more agreeable attitude.
This does not suggest that you put on a fake grin, and start kissing everyone’s ass. The more genuine you can be, the more you can choose to make the positive choice in your outlook. This can have the ripple-effect in recommendations for gigs, auditions, and in general make you fun to be around. And that’s really what the work comes down to: working with a group of performers who are fun to be around. It’s not always the case, but I think for a lot of people that is the goal.