How to Enter and Exit Auditions (Video Acting Lesson)
Knowing how to enter and exit auditions will make a great first impression with casting directors! Entering and exiting properly says that you know what you’re doing, you pay attention to detail, and you’re easy to work with.
Having working credits looks great on an actor’s resume. Taking acting classes or having actor training on your resume says you’re serious about being a working actor. Showing that you know what to do and how to behave in and out of auditions is just as important.
An audition is more than what you do when you’re standing on your mark.
Casting and your acting peers are watching you before you go in and after you exit your audition. If you know how to enter and exit auditions, you greatly improve your chances of getting called back and cast.
Behave as if the camera is always on!
Most auditions are video recorded and shown to producers, directors, commercial clients or even studio executives long after your audition. When you self-record your audition, you control what ends up getting seen. When you audition in person, you’re freed up from managing the camera – and from editing any takes. So everything that gets recorded gets sent on for casting decisions.
Help casting choose you!
Light the room with your energy, smile and confidence. Whether you’re waiting, preparing, or getting a sip of water, remember that you were invited to be there. Casting wants you to be the one! If you’re the one, their search is done! Let that endorsement show in your good, confident posture and calm, friendly demeanor.
Audition success – every time!
Yes, you audition for a particular project or role(s). However, the people who cast those projects also cast other projects. The people who direct, produce, write and finance one project typically do so over and over again. Many, many actors land their best roles because they were remembered well from one or many previous auditions or jobs. Knowing how to enter and exit auditions ensures that all your auditions are successful investments in your acting career.
Make positive connections!
Going to auditions, you’ll get to know other actors who may be cast opposite you on different projects or even go out for the same role. Always be friendly. Let people know by your actions that you are a pleasant professional. They may be in a position to vouch for you one day and help you land the job!
Enter the room well.
Casting is always casting. Casting directors are constantly hosting auditions and searching for talents they can reliably cast again and again. Keep their audition (and day) moving smoothly by entering promptly, going right to your mark, and being ready for action. Practice this any time, at your acting school or acting class (in Los Angeles, or wherever you may be).
Smile and say hello!
Greet the casting staff. You might be surprised how much a nice smile and “hello” is appreciated. After all, casting directors and casting staff are people, not cameras, and people like to be noticed.
Leaving promptly has a bonus advantage of give casting the impression you have more auditions, appointments or meetings to get to. No matter how your audition went or how anxious you are for a casting director’s advice or feedback, an audition is only an audition. Save your in-depth questions for your peers, acting coach or kids acting class, and get a move on!
When your audition is done, finish well. Auditions are sometimes only a minute or two long. The casting staff has hours, days, sometimes weeks of work ahead of them before they get to call their job done. Leaving promptly shows casting that you understand their position and value their time (as well as your own).
Leave like you entered.
Keep your energy, confidence, posture and smile. Adding a friendly word to the casting staff as you exit is a nice touch. Be sincere and brief. Saying “thank you” makes the most of those last moments in the audition room. Show your personality and professionalism with a friendly dollop of gratitude, best wishes or a good bye as you exit.
Is there more?
Yes! Remember, your audition experience isn’t over until you’re long gone! Cameras are sometimes left running, and all kinds of things can end up recorded and watched later.
Like any profession, a big part of being a working actor is building good working relationships. Many of your working relationships will begin at auditions. Between where you parked and the audition room door, you may bump into a producer, a director, or another actor you may need (and want!) to work with sooner or later.
Many great talents and industry up-and-comers begin their careers as assistants, security guards, catering or valet workers. Once upon a time, you could have met director Steven Spielberg at the dawn of his career—while he was posing as a studio executive and secretly “borrowing” studio equipment to shoot Duel his 1971 directorial feature film debut). Mr. Spielberg knew how to enter and exit auditions—and studio lots—with confidence and a friendly demeanor that makes people want to see you again.
So, toss a quick thank you to the casting staff manning the sign-in sheet, or the security guard patrolling the studio, or whoever is manning the studio gate. Keep your positive attitude and smile handy all the way back to your car. You never know who might happen to see you in passing.
Heck, keep them handy all day long. You’ll have a better day! And so will everyone who happens your way.