Today I auditioned for "Jeopardy!" The auditions take place in several cities throughout the country, and it was New York's turn. Two teams of contestant staff scour the country looking for good players with awesome knowledge. Today's auditions were run by Senior Contestant Coordinator Glenn Kagan, who's been working on game shows for over 35 years, the last 25 with the current version of "Jeopardy!", which will enter its 29th season this fall. We were one of the first audition groups for the new season, which begins taping July 24 at the Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City, CA.
Kagan and his associates Corinne and Kenny were all friendly types in spite of jet lag from flying in the day before. There were nineteen of us in the audition room; sixteen men, three women. We started with a fifty-question written quiz. As the same quiz is used in future auditions I cannot spoil any of the material, sorry. I think I got about 42 of the fifty correct including some lucky guesses and in spite of a few brain farts.
After scoring the quizzes, we each played a mock game of "Jeopardy!" using the familiar handheld buzzers and a truncated board showing only three questions in each category. As each category is used up a new one replaces it. If I could figure out a way to reprogram the pages on J! Archive (www.j-archive.com) to do that, it would be just so sweet as a training aid. I was in the sixth and final trio of contestants. Afterwards I gave Glenn and Corinne the story of my life, then made way for the 19th and final contestant.
My morning was over with a quick 20-block walk back to Penn Station to catch the train into Metropark (with a stop at Ray's Famous Original Pizza - good slices), and the drive home from there. (The commute to and fro was routine and uneventful, unlike my drive into NYC for "Millionaire.")
So now begins 18 months of waiting for a phone call telling me to pack my bags for LA, which I haven't visited since 1989. Looking forward to finally getting a chance to be on a show that I watched as a wee child with Art Fleming on NBC, and one I first auditioned for sometime in the early 1990's with a 50-question test at what was then known as Merv Griffin's Resorts. (Needless to say I didn't do well on that one.)
Will update you if I get a tape date. After that, I must remain mum until the show (hopefully, shows) air.
OUR LONG NATIONAL NIGHTMARE IS OVER
2 hours ago