An audition for an actor can be the first step to getting that dream job or role. There are often nerves, anticipation, that knot in the stomach and the lying in bed the night before wondering if this is going to be their big break. Whether it’s an audition to get into that prestigious theatre school, for a commercial, a speaking line in a TV show or as an extra in a movie, here are our 7 tips for actors going to an audition.
Always take your picture and CV
That photo could be what makes them remember you amongst all the other auditionees. You don’t want the producer racking his brain to remember your name and not having a photo to jog his memory. Even if your CV only includes school plays get it on there. Any experience is good experience in the acting world especially when you are trying to get into theatre school with view to making a career from acting.
Don’t make excuses
Producers don’t care if you’ve got cold, have a hangover or your dog has died. You will be expected to be on set or on stage whatever life throws at you; the show must go on in its most literal form. Turning up looking as if you have just rolled out of bed is an instant black mark, whatever the reason they don’t want to know it so make an effort.
Bring the 3 C’s along
Charisma, comfort and confidence. As an actor you must command attention. You must be the most important person in a 1000 seat theatre; the one nobody can drag their eyes away from. You have to also be somebody that we all want to get to know better. If you are able to do that as a person you will also be capable of doing it as a character.
Make a choice when asked to make one
Many producers will ask an actor to choose from a choice of 2 or 3 monologues, or from 2 or 3 songs. Do not give a cheeky smile and respond with “surprise me”. The producer wants to see that you can make decisions and have reasoning behind it. Imagine it in this scenario. You choose to portray a character in a certain way and the producer wants to know what has driven you to make that decision, what has attracted you to playing that way. An insight into your character gives a producer an insight into what type of actor you are.
The early bird catches the worm
Never ask for the last audition spot of the day under the misapprehension that the last is the most memorable. By this time the entire team will be tired, grumpy and looking forward to going home. Stats from any of the London school of musical theatre courses we asked suggests that it is the earliest that get the call back as they make their impression when the producer is at his or her most receptive. Roll in at the end of the day and they will barely even acknowledge you are there.
Up to date contact details
Even if you are lucky enough to have an agent make sure you have personal contact details on your CV. Agents are busy people, and if that email inviting you back for a second audition the next morning lands in their inbox after they have left the office and are halfway through their second bottle of wine you could have missed out on your big chance. All actors are recommended to have a separate phone number and email address for work purposes.
Audition for everything
Do not be precious and think anything is beneath you. The more you audition the better you manage to control those nerves, train your mind to memorise lines and build your confidence.