How to Give a Memorable Audition

by Mike Parker
In some auditions, it's just you and the stage in front of the casting director.

In some auditions, it's just you and the stage in front of the casting director.

All the world may be a stage, at least according to the Immortal Bard, but in the entertainment world not everyone who auditions is cast. Few performers have the star power to claim a role just because of who they are. Most actors, singers, dancers and other performers have to audition, and while that can be an intimidating experience there are things you can do to make it memorable.

Pre-Audition Prep

Delivering a memorable audition starts before you walk onto the stage, or into the casting director's office, with your pre-audition preparation. This includes presenting a package of marketing materials, such as your headshot and performance resume. Make sure both are up-to-date and appropriate for the medium that you will be auditioning for. Make sure you still look like your headshot. Everything about your marketing materials should make it easy for the casting director to identify you.

Be Time Conscious

In the entertainment industry, time is money. That applies to your time, the casting director's time and your fellow performers' time. In some cases you might attend a "cattle call" audition on a first come, first served basis. In other cases you'll have a scheduled audition time. Being on time won't necessarily make you stand out in the casting director's mind, but being late will - and not in a good way. Being too early doesn't help either. It wastes your time, takes up space in the waiting area and gives you more time to get nervous while you're waiting for your turn to audition.

Audition Preparation

Your agent, or the audition notice, should tell you what type of material the casting director is looking for and what the audition will consist of. You might be asked to do a cold reading from the script, to present a prepared monologue or song, or to memorize a set of prepared movie sides. It is your responsibility to understand the role you are auditioning for, and to prepare for it before you get up in front of the casting director.

Build Relationships

Auditioning is a fact of life for performers, so you might as well have fun with it. Be confident, be polite, be professional. Make eye contact with each person in the room, and be entertaining. Treat each audition as an opportunity to build relationships for future roles, rather than simply as a job interview for this role. The performing community really is a small world, so even if you're not a match for this role, the casting director might have another project right around the corner that you would be perfect for.

About the Author

Mike Parker is a full-time writer, publisher and independent businessman. His background includes a career as an investments broker with such NYSE member firms as Edward Jones & Company, AG Edwards & Sons and Dean Witter. He helped launch DiscoverCard as one of the company's first merchant sales reps.

Photo Credits

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