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Sun Tzu said, “On the battlefield, victory depends on planning.” When thinking about how to prepare for an audition, this quote is just as true. Intimidating as they may seem, acting auditions are an essential part of your acting career. They are the first steps towards realizing your dream as an actor and thus need navigating with care.
Whether you’re a newbie to the performing arts or a seasoned pro, your job will inevitably involve showing your skills to the producers and the directors. What separates professionals from wannabe artists isn’t inspiration. It’s preparation and execution, especially when they have to deliver. You, too, can take control of your acting auditions and deliver a strong performance with these helpful tips. Here’s how to prepare for an audition.
Familiarize Yourself With the Audition Play
Research the play you are auditioning for and read up on it as much as possible. Preparing yourself for the audition is the most important of the acting exercises. Knowing everything about the character and the plot will help you perform better.
Understand the Character
Research your character thoroughly. It will help you get into the mindset of your role long before you begin rehearsing your lines.
Learn About the Director and the Casting Agent
Look into the people you are auditioning for and get acquainted with their work. You will feel more at ease if you can put a face to a name.
Memorize Your Lines
The best way to memorize your lines is to start right away, then practice until you can say them without thinking.
Rehearse your lines until they feel natural. It is one of the most important acting exercises. The more you rehearse, the more confidence you will have during your performance.
Get Into Character
Acting auditions are all about selling yourself as a character. Put your own spin on the role or even use props to help you out if you need to. You can take personalized acting lessons if you are struggling with grasping your role.
Sight-reading, also known as “cold reading,” is reading material that requires little or no preparation ahead of time. Some acting auditions require you to recite lines without reviewing them first. To become comfortable with sight-reading during your audition, practice auditioning with unfamiliar work. This is one of the must-do acting exercises before auditioning.
Get At Least 8 Hours of Sleep the Night Before
Get at least 8 hours of sleep every night so that you can wake up feeling relaxed and alert on the day of the audition. All the acting exercises that went into preparing for your audition will go in vain if you are not in the best of your health.
Avoid Consuming Dairy and Milk Products Before Singing Auditions
Foods with dairy thicken the mucus present in your throat and it can change how your voice sounds.
Wear something that makes you feel good and doesn’t draw too much attention to yourself. Avoid wearing a costume on your own unless you absolutely need to. Look professional and dress to blend in.
Show up 15 minutes early to your audition. Producers love punctual people. Besides, being on time has its rewards.
Clear Your Schedule
If you can help it, plan nothing else that day. No last-minute acting lessons, nothing! Clear your head of additional clutter. You need to arrive early and be prepared to stay late and read several times if necessary.
If you forget a line, just ad-lib. Ad-libbing shows the casting director you are adaptable and spontaneous. Most people won’t even notice. If they do, they will surely admire your creativity and ability to think on your feet.
Act and Speak With Confidence in Yourself
You’ve practiced your part and done your research. Now it’s time to show what you can do! When you get to the audition, be confident! And you’ll surely do your best.
Be Patient When Waiting for a Decision
You never know what’s going in the director’s mind. You might get a call back the same day or it could take weeks or sometimes, even months. Don’t worry if you don’t get an answer right away. Just be patient.
You decide to take the stage. Spotlights! Your pulse is racing. You want to hit your lines perfectly, but as you start, something isn’t clicking.
“What is it? I’ve been preparing for this for months. How can I be so nervous?” Laura Mac, a New York-based award-winning mentor and founder of The Laura Mac Method understands quite well the stage fright new actors face during auditions. “Even though you might have spent hours preparing for the audition, it’s common to feel frozen on stage when facing the casting directors.”
After conducting hundreds of workshops for acting, Laura knows all the tricks of the trade to break the auditions and get your first acting gig. Her online acting lessons have helped hundreds of actors land roles in film, television, commercials, and more. She makes sure all her students are prepared for every casting call — often deriving personal lessons from her two-decades-long acting career.
If you’re looking for a way to get started in the industry, Laura’s online acting classes offer the tools and resources you will need to prepare and excel in your first audition and bag the role of a lifetime. Apply for the program here.