How To Stand Out At Your Audition

You have done the work and prepared for your audition, now what? It is time to put it all into action. Here are 7 ways to stand out at your audition.

1) Bring a headshot and resume.
The main purpose of a headshot is to help the director to remember you. Even if you have auditioned, or worked with them in the past, providing a headshot and resume will make you stand out. And, it keeps you in front of the casting team longer.

If you don’t have professional headshots, grab a friend and take a snapshot. Your headshot should look like you. It should be a close up shot of your face from the shoulders up. Use a plain background, avoid anything that will draw attention away from you. Make sure you have good lighting on your face, remember we want to see you!

What about a resume? When you are just starting out, list anything you have done in front of an audience. Music and dance recitals, talent shows, school plays, these are great additions to your resume in the beginning. As you gain more experience you can replace these items with theater credits. Whatever you do, dont lie.

Tell us a little about you. What hobbies do you have? Do you play an instrument? What classes have you taken?

Put your contact information on your resume. List your phone number and email. Do not put your address. Especially if you are a minor. There is no reason anyone needs to know where you live.

Make sure your name is on your headshot and resume. Staple them together before you arrive.

2) Dress comfortably and in the essence of the character. Think about the shoes the character would wear? The shoes you are wearing will make you stand and walk differently. I personally always audition and rehearse in the style of shoes the character would wear. For example, for Charlie in Always a Bridesmaid, I wore birkenstocks, for CeCe in Red Velvet Cake War I wore cowboy boots, for Nora in A Doll’s House Part Two, I wore character shoes with a small heel.

3) Arrive early – give yourself plenty of time to get to your audition. You want to allow for traffic or getting lost. When you arrive, give yourself a few minutes to get in the right mindset. Review your material if you have it in advance. Review the notes you took during your research.

4) Warm up – on your way, do some vocal warmups in the car. Tongue twisters are great for this. Listen to music that helps you relax, get in character or get your energy up. Stretch a little before you go in.

5) Audition form – fill it out completely and legibly. There is a reason they ask for this information. Plus, the director can learn a lot about you by how you fill out this form. Do you pay attention to details and follow directions? If the form asks for information that you have on your resume, you can answer “see resume attached”.

Know your sizes and measurements.  This may be information requested on the audition form. 

Often you will be asked this question: “Will you accept any role?” Please be honest here. It is acceptable to say “no”. It is even acceptable to say “maybe”. Please do not say “yes” if you do not mean it.

Casting a play is like putting together a big puzzle. It takes a lot of time and energy for the director. When you remove one piece of that puzzle it changes the entire picture. If you answer that question with a “no” or “maybe” it lets the director know to discuss offers with you privately before finalizing the cast list and announcing it. Being selective of the roles you will consider does not reflect poorly on you. Turning down a role after answering yes on your audition form, will reflect poorly on you and could very well affect future opportunities.

6) Take direction
Once you are in front of the director, be prepared to take direction. If you are asked to do your audition piece again, this is usually a good sign. Most likely the director liked what you did and is looking to see if you can take direction.

A good exercise to practice “doing it differently” is one-liners. For example, use the line: “I did it.” Can you say it 10 different ways? Take a video of yourself saying this one line 10 different ways. Change your volume, emotion, energy, intention, speed. If you have your audition material in advance, rehearse it saying the lines differently.

7) Be kind
Be kind to everyone you come in contact with at the audition. Smile, be polite and professional. You never know who is watching. The person checking you in could be the director at your next audition.

Now that you are ready, check out the upcoming auditions at ActorsPLAYground!