Resource Article for Wannabe Actors – Seven Tips on How to Survive Your First Audition

Congratulations on heading to your first audition! May it be the first step in a long and successful performing career. The following are a few tips to get you through that first audition and make you look like a seasoned pro instead of a rookie. Break a leg!

Read the BREAKDOWN – the Breakdown has nothing to do with rap, so please do not “bust a rhyme” at your audition. The Breakdown is the information about the project and characters. Be sure to read all of the information that is provided so you are as prepared as possible and so you can determine if you are right for the part. If you are 5’3”, please do not try out for the stage version of Avatar. If you aren’t a good fit for the part, you’re just setting yourself up for rejection.

Don’t Forget the SIDES- If possible, ask for SIDES, and I don’t mean fries and cole slaw. Sides are the dialogue that you will read during the audition. Politely requesting the sides will make you look like a professional.

Be Timely – Arrive at least 20 minutes before your audition so you have time to fill out any audition sheets and read over any addition information you may be given.

Dress the Part – Be professional! Don’t dress in ripped jeans and a sideways baseball hat unless you are auditioning for the lead in Kevin Federline’s life story. Dress as you imagine the character would dress. If you really have no idea what he/she would wear, neutral or dark colors work best. Your clothing should not detract from your facial expressions and performance.

Be Comfortable With Yourself – Get out there and do what you came to do. Lose yourself in the part. Trust yourself. Don’t keep looking around to gauge the reaction you’re getting. You’ll only end up trying to change what you’re doing to try to please those who are watching you. Don’t second guess yourself, especially in the middle of a performance. You’re likely to misread the casting agent’s face anyway. She could look bored during your performance, but actually love what you’re doing.

Use Your Moment – Try not to worry about whether or not you will get the part. During your audition, the role is YOURS and yours alone. View each audition as a chance to perform in front of others, no matter what the outcome. After all, performing is what you love to do, right? Enjoy the opportunity NOW. Don’t wait for a phone call to get excited about your acting career.

Don’t Be Discouraged – This is easier said than done, but don’t feel too down if you don’t get that callback you’d hoped for. Sometimes you just aren’t right for a part, no matter how talented you are. Be proud that you made it through your very first audition. You had the courage to get up and perform, which is far more than most people do.

Many thanks to Professors Celia Madeoy and Michael Tolaydo for their expert advice.