Sunday, February 3, 2019

Audition by Saïd Sayrafiezadeh Review

The short story "Audition" by Saïd Sayrafiezadeh was published in the 2018th issue of the magazine "The New Yorker". The story was written from the first side; the narrator told them about his experience of working in the subdivision of the construction company where his father was a vice-president.

The narrator was nineteen, he dreamt about becoming an actor. He pretended to play a role of a simple employee in the company. He kept secret who his father was. He tried to approximate the speech patterns of his co-workers—the softened consonants and the dropped articles, not pronouncing hard “k”s, “x”s, or “f ”s.

The narrator worked with a guy named Duncan Dioguardi, who was his age but looked ten years older, and who liked to order the narrator like "put this here, put that there". The narrator imagined that one day in the future he would be performing some version of this role with nuance and veracity, out of shape or not. “What did you draw from to create the character?” the critics would ask him. “Why, from real life,” he would say.

Once Duncan's car had broken down and he had to ask the narrator to give him a lift to his house. There were no reasons to refuse, the narrator had to invite Duncan into his car. It was four o'clock on Saturday. They rode through the heavy traffic jam and they had a lot of time to speak. Duncan told about his experience on the previous jobs, he worked hard, he wanted to achieve success. In exchange, the narrator told about his dream to be an actor.

The author described a very common situation when people being in a restricted area tell about themselves more than they would say in a usual circumstance. The interaction of two people with different worldviews is a very important part of the story. As it became clear after not being successful for the narrator cast (audition), his future and his career were far apart from his expectations. The ordinary life was ahead.

Here is the link to the text of the story:

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