Audition Advice For Actors
Having worked with actors for decades, I always emphasize the importance of making a great first impression, and I often share share audition advice for actors with my students. Auditions provide wonderful opportunities for you to connect with casting directors, producers, directors and to forge long-lasting business relationships.
As I teach in my classes at 3-2-1- Acting Studios in Los Angeles, your audition starts the moment you walk into the casting studio. There are many things that you can do so that you make the best first impression possible! Do you want to be a casting director’s dream? Here is some audition advice for actors:
Of course, the best way to prepare for auditions is to enroll in an ongoing acting class! And if you can’t get into an in-person acting class, there are plenty of online tools, such as this online acting course. Beyond this, though, there are many things you can do before an audition.
Do your character homework first — before learning your lines. Whatever this process is for you, be sure to have fun with it. If you have preparing, you will have fun in the room.
In Los Angeles, most casting directors do not expect you to be off book, especially if you are preparing several pages of text in a short amount of time. However, if you are the type of actor that feels free only when you are off book, then do your best to get off book! Run lines with a friend, family member, or classmate.
I would recommend practicing in different parts of your home. Practice by pretending that the camera will be on one side of the room — and then the other. Practice with your friend standing in different parts of the room. Be flexible, and get yourself ready for multiple possibilities in terms of room setup.
You can also practice with an audience of multiple friends, peers, or family members — and even work on your audition in your acting class.
Since you are reading this, I already know that you care a great deal about your career! You are dedicating your time to pursue something that you love doing. Remember that you are here to have fun. This is the best audition advice that I can give to actors: have fun.
So, when you enter the casting office, no matter how stressful the heavy traffic may have been, or how concerned you may be that you will do everything that you practiced at home, be sure to let go, and tell the story. Allow your creativity to flow!
And if you are late to the audition, don’t freak out. This just creates more stress. Instead, wait calmly in the waiting room until you are called, and perhaps explain briefly to the casting director that there was a road blockage, etc. only if you feel it’s necessary. Often, especially for commercial auditions, the casting directors are so busy that they don’t realize if someone has arrived, say, ten minutes late. That said:
Be on time.
Do your best to be on time. Better yet — be early! Especially when you are being paired with another actor at a callback and/or is up for a network TV or feature film role (there are less time slots for these auditions, and so it really can impact the casting director’s schedule if you are 10+ minutes late). Allow time for the worst traffic ever. It’s better to be early and safe.
Read the signs in the casting studio, and then ask questions if necessary.
As soon as you walk into the casting office, you will see lots of instructional signs regarding where to sit, where to sign in, where to use the bathroom, and where to find sides. Read them all carefully. Read them twice, perhaps three times. Then, and only then, if you have a question, approach the person at the front desk with kindness. Again, a big piece of audition advice for actors: your audition starts the moment you walk into the office (and in some cases, the moment you park your car, as you could be seen from the window).
Be easy to find.
Sometimes, wait times can be long; however, it’s important that you are easy to find when your name is called. So be sure to wait near the door of the room, within earshot of the casting director. This sounds simple, but often actors will wander out of the waiting room just before their turn.
Learn from every audition.
When you are finished with your audition, take note of what went really well. Applaud yourself for this. Also take note of something you might be able to improve next time around. We are artists who are constantly growing and changing, and every audition is a learning opportunity.
And as always, remember to have fun!