Here are some great tips to make sure you nail your audition!
Do’s & Don’ts
1) “I’m here for a casting…?”
Arriving to the casting not knowing the title of the project or why you are there is going to hinder you immensely. Be professional, prompt & prepared. It’s okay to ask questions, but only if you need to. Avoid emailing or calling with questions that have already been addressed in the casting notice.
2) Showing up too early or late.
Yes there is such a thing as being too early. 10-15 minutes early is perfect. When you’re given a specific time for your audition it is usually for a reason, such as group placement. If you show up significantly late you are disrupting the flow of the session. Of course things happen but even if it “wasn't your fault”, an apology is still necessary and understand that you may not be able to audition even if it “wasn't your fault”.
On the flip side, when you are too early, you may be there during a time when staff is setting up or reviewing materials for which your presence can be disruptive or distracting.
3) Not respecting other people’s time.
Demanding to go in right away is never ok. It’s understandable if you have a busy day but you also need to respect the other people auditioning and the casting director’s schedule. It is okay to ask if it is possible to move up your audition slot but know that if you cannot wait patiently for your audition you are not right for this business. Chances are you will be waiting far longer on set with nothing to do, so if you have to wait a bit for your audition, use the time wisely to focus and prep. Welcome to the business of “hurry up and wait”.
4) Apologizing for a bad audition,
You may think it's bad, but your casting agent might see something great. Give it your best, thank her/him for bringing you in, leave the audition, and then forget it ever happened. Many times you have no control over whether you are picked for a role and there is nothing you could have done differently that would change that. But if you audition well, you will likely be remembered and brought in for future auditions.
5) Don't worry about the words
Don’t stress over memorizing lines. While being off book is impressive, during a first audition, your agent or casting director is expecting that you show the personality and bones of the character, even if you have to read off the paper. Don’t beat yourself up if you mess up. Recovering quickly and finishing strong is a better look than continually asking to start over.
6) Audition/Accept roles for dates you are not available
Actors sometimes feel like all they need to do is get in the door and will audition for a role even though they know they are unable to accept. NOT a good rule of thumb. Keep in mind that your agent is working closely with producers and directors advocating on your behalf and if you are selected for a role and subsequently decline, it puts the casting agent in a very difficult spot while creating extra work on an already stressed situation. This will more than likely piss him/her off. Same applies if you accept a role and then later bail out. You may unknowingly have increased your chances of never being called in again. However, if you must cancel an assignment, please do so promptly.
The short list:
--Be nice to everyone -- the receptionist might be the casting director's sister. The director might look like an intern.
--Don’t blame or complain -- the person that didn't give you the script ahead of time might be the person hiring you.
-Don't schmooze – the audition room is not the place for that.
-Try to relax – remember the casting director is rooting for you and want you to do well.
-Don’t turn the lobby/waiting room into a social hour. Loud talking and laughing is rude to the actors in the auditioning room
-Don’t follow up your audition with a barrage of emails. If you are selected you will be contacted.
-A follow-up thank you note is always appreciative.