Ah, the Audition. It deserves capitals, because it’s the one and only way that you’re going to get any work. Even the top actors have to audition for parts, so don’t feel like you’re alone in it. But how do you get past the crippling nerves; how do you audition really well so you’re guaranteed to get the part (disclaimer: there are no guarantees, ever). Let’s look into a few tips to help you.
- Be happy. Or if you aren’t, then fake it. No one’s going to hire a miserable, sombre looking actor who seems as if he’s heading for his execution rather than a doorway into his future.
- Ignore what you can’t control. There are some things in life we can control, others that we can’t. Try to keep a handle on the things you can control, and let go of what you can’t. In terms of auditioning, you can be the best that you can possibly be, learn your lines and arrive on time, but you can’t make the panel hire you.
- Hone your acting skills. Make sure your craft is solid - have you learned some good techniques? Is your voice trained? Does your body move the way you want it to? Are you constantly practising and rehearsing? Have you been reading plays, watching films, learning about directors? If the answer to any of these questions is No, then you need to get back to the drawing board. If you want to get hired, you have to be good!
- There will be other auditions. Try not to hang all your hopes and dreams on one particular audition for one particular part. Obviously you should give it your absolute all, but there’s no point chucking yourself off a bridge if you don’t get hired. If you do that there will be no more auditions and no more chances to make it!
- Own the room. I know auditions are not all about you, but you should make it as positive an experience as possible. Smile, welcome the casting directors, thank everyone at the end before you leg it from the stage. This will not only help you be remembered in a positive light, but it will make you more positive overall - which can only be a good thing.
- Be productive. Even if the audition absolutely stank, you can turn it around to make it a more positive experience. Look at what went wrong and decide how to do it better next time. Identify what you did well and focus on improving that even more. By being constructive with your self criticism, you can improve your chances of nailing the next audition that comes along.
- Knock show business off its pedestal. I know, I know, it’s the best thing in the world and you DESPERATELY want to be a part of it. But this job is just that - a job, the same as any other job that earns you money and pays your bills. It’s fine to love it and pine for it - but you also have to work towards it, and removing some of the starry-eyed romanticism is a great way to make it work for you, rather than the other way around.
- Allow yourself success. Whether or not you get the call back, you should give yourself credit for doing the job well. Enjoy it; live in the moment! As long as you are fully prepared and you give your all, you deserve a huge pat on the back.