Audition Tips

So, you wanna be an actor. That’s fantastic! Even if you are not entirely sure, it’s great to always try new things. Let me tell you the worst part of acting: the audition. I have yet to meet an actor that enjoys the audition process. Although it is the worst, it does not make it any less essential. Having been on both sides of the table during the audition, I have both seen and done many mistakes - mistakes I can hopefully help you avoid or at least be aware of. If you are wondering what gives me the authority to give you these tips: nothing. Sure, I have training. I graduated from the theatre magnet at Patapsco High School and Center for the Arts, I have been to numerous camps and workshops, I am currently in the beginning stages of getting my degree in theatre, and my resume is not something to be laughed upon. That being said I’m still learning and bettering each and every day. These are just some things I wish I knew earlier in the creative process:

Use the nerves. People don’t understand this originally or in the moment, but nerves are good. If you hone them correctly nerves keep you on the balls of your feet. They keep you moving and ready to take on mistakes and try something new. So again, I say USE the nerves. If you are nervous, you care and if you care you are bound to give it your all. Plus, everyone is in the same boat you are, so just be yourself.

Be yourself but also be friendly. You only have a small time slot to prove that you are someone the director wants to work with. Treat everyone - and I mean everyone - with respect, because there are eyes everywhere. One of the women I know that does casting informed me of a story where she was behind the desk and an actor came in and gave her the rudest, snobbiest comments. The director waited for the actor to come audition and before they started, she told them that they could go home. She knew she didn’t want anyone that would treat her employees with disrespect to work with the company. Actors are a dime a dozen; they are replaceable so prove you are the best to have there. And for the love of God smile, it will make you automatically easier to talk to.

Make choices. Take risks. Directors have seen the same thing all day. If you can catch their eye, make them remember you, you are already a head above the competition. And if it doesn’t work that is okay.

Rejection is okay. Guess what? You’re leaving with what you started with: nothing. You have nothing to lose besides the chance. DON’T LET AN OPPORTUNITY PASS YOU BY. It’ll be your only regret. You forget the bad auditions because they happen to everyone and no one cares. But what if you could have had an amazing role, an amazing chance, and never went for it? Yeah, it's not a good feeling.

Cheat! No not cheat your way, cheat out. Show your face because that’s your money maker. 

Do not focus on the faces. The thinking face people make is scary, not to mention RBF, so do not pay attention to it. No, they don’t hate you. The director has a job to get done as well and they are thinking of all the roles they still have to cast and where you could fit into that.

Not every role is the lead or even what you planned. Never say no. (Unless there is a personal reason. YOUR SAFETY AND WELL BEING COME FIRST.) All opportunities are good ones. Don’t be the person that says no because they got an ensemble role. Hello, an ensemble can make a show. I’ve had shows on multiple occasions where I performed my ass off in the ensemble and people have noticed. They came up to me telling me how I stole the show. Yes, STOLE THE SHOW as a drunk wedding guest or castle patron. Your performance is what you make of it so make it the best you can.

All of this should help but know that training is very beneficial. People think acting is easy but that is only because if it is done right it seems real. Acting takes time, patience, and practice. The more you audition the more experience you will have under your belt. Also, be open to all aspects of theatre. I would not trade my stage management and directing experience for anything. It is an entirely different creative experience but still rewarding. Go be free and if you fail, try and try again.

 I wish you the best of luck and every broken limb possible. Now go out there and steal the show of life.