Whether you've been contacted by a casting professional and asked to attend an audition (yay!), or you're simply trying your luck at an open casting, here are some pearls of wisdom:
- Research the company in advance, so you know what they're about and the kind of person they're looking for. You'll come across as both professional and organised.
- Smile! You'll make a good first impression.
- Get a good night's sleep. Your eyes will be brighter and you'll be more alert for your audition.
- Be on time (or early) for everything. It sounds obvious, but some people find this a real challenge.
- Avoid stripy or boldly-patterned clothing – it'll be distracting on camera.
- You're likely to feel nervous if you're not used to auditioning, or if it's a part you really want – but try to relax in front of the camera (or, if appropriate, use your nerves for dramatic effect!).
- Believe in yourself. Your confidence will come through in your audition.
- You probably won't get every part you audition for, but you're gaining valuable experience along the way.
- Learn your lines back to front, and inside out. Practise with a friend, so you feel confident on the day and don't freeze up!
- Listen carefully and follow any instructions you're given, but also try and have an original take on the part so they remember your performance.
- Asking questions shows you're engaged and have initiative, but don't ask too many questions – casting directors don't have all day to chat.
- You don't need to be in character for the entire audition – the casting director needs to see the ‘real you', as well.
- Be co-operative: follow any instructions, ask for direction if you need it, and avoid any conflict or dramas.
- When attending meetings or castings, go for a fresh, natural look. Don't overdo the make-up or hair styling.
- Dress comfortably – don't be sloppy, but slim-fit jeans, boots, and a tailored jacket should work fine.
- Carry your portfolio with you (and your comp card, if you have one) in case anyone needs to see it.
- Pick an outfit that's appropriate for what you're presenting.
- Make eye contact during your audition – either with the camera, or with the person you're reading with.
- Practise speaking at the right pitch – not too loud (no yelling), and not too soft (they need to be able to hear you). Vary your pitch, so it doesn't sound like you're on auto-pilot.
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