Available Light will be holding auditions (info way down below) in a couple of weeks for our 2013-14 season. A lot of people call and/or email questions to us about auditioning, so here are a few tips from your friendly, neighborhood AVLT directors.
1. Show-up early. If someone else doesn’t show and you’re all ready to audition early, it makes a great impression. How responsible, how accommodating! Thanks so much.
2. Warm-up. ‘Nuff said?
3. Rehearse a lot. This is not the time to try out a brand-new monologue that you don’t know very well.
4. Don’t mime. Really, not even little bit. Find a piece that does not require you to mime.
5. Ideally, your contrasting monologues will contrast in more than one way. Check out this post for more on that.
6. Your audition should be one connected performance, not two disconnected pieces. It’s much more entertaining if you find a way to transition straight from your first monologue into the second rather than simply stopping and saying “now I’ll do Glass Menagerie” or whatever. You’re performing from the instant you enter, make the most of it. Put your creativity and personality into every moment.
7. Get your body involved. If you’re going to be still, really be still. Own the space. And when you move, show that you can do so with ease. Do it in your performance.
8. DO NOT look the directors in the eye while you’re acting. It’s creepy. We want to watch your scene, not be a part of it.
9. If there’s a time-limit, get under it. Not only will you perform better for yourself, you’ll impress the creative team with your preparedness and consideration.
10. When you have fun, it’s infectious. Find audition pieces that are fun for you to perform.
11. We can probably hear what’s going on outside audition the room. So don’t gossip about your fellow actors, or us, don’t yell about how badly your audition went, or complain that you got cut-off.
12. MOST IMPORTANTLY – We’re not just looking for good actors, we’re looking for good human beings, with whom we’ll enjoy spending hours upon hours in rehearsals. So don’t be a jerk at the audition, ok?
Finally, please do realize that we really want you to do well. We’re looking for good actors, so we really want you to be good. We’re on your side!
But wait, there’s more…
Don’t make excuses. We don’t want to hear that you have a cold, or that you have bed-head, or that your printer is broken. Do your best. I can’t tell you how many people come in complaining about the weather or how many auditions they’ve been on that day. People have bad days. I get it. But you’re an actor, so pretend that you’re having the best day ever . . . because no one wants to be around people that are sour-pusses.
Make your first 15 seconds count. When you meet someone for the first time, don’t you make a lot of suppositions? We do too.
Don’t take the last audition times of the day. Casting is not an easy process, and at the end of it, a creative team is grumpy, tired and wants to go home. The early actor gets the part.
Dress like you’re on a date. A first date that is. You want to treat your audition like a professional experience (see tip #1), but you don’t want to overdo it either. So dress to impress, but also make it look like you didn’t try too hard (see where the “first date” thing comes in?).
And here’s this tip on “slating,” which is simple but powerful…
There’s the good slate, and the bad slate.
The Bad Slate: “Hello, my name is so-and-so, and I’ll be doing Viola from Twelfth Night.”
Boring! Imagine how many times a day the auditors must hear that. It’ll go in one ear and right out the other.
The Good Slate: “Good evening, I’m so-and-so and this is Viola in the first act.”
That has class and distinction. Now they’re listening! (Just remember to keep it simple.)