The Ultimate Audition Preparation Checklist
Are you fully prepared for your upcoming audition?
(by Jim Webb)
(Photo: Andrea Piacquadio | Pexels)
You were just going about your day, minding your own business. You felt your phone vibrate. You picked it up, saw a notification and BOOM! “You’ve got mail.” AOL! And, LOL!
(Please excuse the outdated AOL reference:)
It’s time to prepare for your audition. You’ve got plenty to do.
But fortunately, I’ve got you covered. Here’s a list of things you need to check for when you receive the “deets” for your audition.
√#1: Make sure you have everything
When you first receive the details for your audition, first check to make sure you have everything. Attachments, for example, might have accidentally been left off the email. Instructions, too!
Check to see if you, indeed, have all your sides, instructions and anything else that should have been included.
√#2: Read everything carefully
(Photo: Andrea Piacquadio | Pexels)
Read all the details carefully and thoroughly. This is so common-sensical that it’s easy to take it for granted. It’s easy to gloss over the details.
But there are lots of little nuggets of information packed in there that can help you succeed. It is vital that you read every little thing.
√#3: Understand everything
If there is something in your audition details that you do not understand, ask for more information. Have your representative contact the casting office for more details. Better to do it now, rather than to be surprised later.
If there is something in your audition details that you do not understand, ask for more information.
√#4: Confirm your audition
Once you’ve read your details, and fully understand what’s required, immediately confirm your audition.
Never delay confirming your audition. The casting office might be waiting to see who they can expect to see for the role. They might also need to replace you with another actor, if you cannot make it to the audition.
√#5: Plan your arrival and outfit
(Photo: Liza Summer | Pexels)
Now that you’ve confirmed your audition, you should immediately plan your arrival.
Use GPS to get a firm idea of how long it will take to arrive at the audition location.
If it’s a self-tape, check for the deadline. Plan to do your audition well ahead of time. That will allow you to comfortably meet the deadline for sending in your self-tape.
Also, plan your outfit. What can you wear that suggests the role you’re auditioning for?
√#6: Read (and research) the role
Now that you’ve gotten all the logistics out of the way, it’s time to read over your sides. Don’t just read your lines. Read the lines for all the characters.
Clues about your character can be found in your lines. But they can also be found in the lines of the other characters, as well as the writer’s notes. So, read everything!
Clues can also be found outside the text. Researching your character and your character’s given circumstances can give you better insight into how you should approach the character.
√#7: Do research on the production
While you’re in research mode, don’t forget to research the show, the casting director, the director, the producer and anyone else who may be involved. It’s easier to make a connection with the decision makers when you know who they are and you know a little bit about their background.
√#8: Learn your lines
Even if you plan to hold your script or sides in your hand during the audition, it’s still a good idea to be fully off-book. Being off-book gives you more freedom to be spontaneous.
Use your audition sides as a luxury, not a necessity. Know your lines well enough that having your sides handy becomes a helpful reminder, not a necessary appendage.
√#9: Prepare your character
(Photo: Cottonbro | Pexels)
Now that you know your lines and have fully read the script, it’s time to prepare your character. That means analyzing the script, creating your character’s backstory and understanding your character’s objectives in the scene.
That means understanding your relationship to the other characters and your character’s arc relative to the overall story.
In essence, it’s your job to create a fully functional human being, given the limited information you have about your character.
√#10: Don’t forget to have fun
Lastly, have fun. Never forget to have fun!
If you approach an audition like your life depends on it, you are only adding unnecessary pressure on yourself.
There are a million and one reasons why you might not get cast, despite your best efforts. And most of those reasons will have NOTHING to do with how you performed.
If you approach an audition like your life depends on it, you are only adding unnecessary pressure on yourself. It’s an audition, not the end of the world. Do your best and have fun doing it.
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The Self-Tape Checklist