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Auditioning 101

Auditioning 101

When auditioning for a play, most of the time you are expected to have a couple of monologues under your belt (prepared) that are in the style of the show. Usually, a director will expect the monologue to be “performance-ready” meaning the monologue is fully memorized and blocked with strong choices about the character and movement. Just think, you are the director, trying to figure out if this person in front of you is a good fit for a certain part in the play. How would you know, if that person doesn’t make strong choices? You want to put your best foot forward, always. Use a strong and distinct voice, good posture (move when you mean to move and hold still when you’re not moving) and a clear and steady gaze toward the person you are talking to in your monologue (not at the director, the floor, or to the side of you). If you are auditioning for a musical, instead of a monologue, you are asked to sing a 1-minute song selection from a Broadway musical that is in the same style as the musical you’re auditioning for. A minute of a song usually means about one verse and one chorus. Of course, if you think your voice sounds really spectacular on a certain section of the song, then you should absolutely sing to your strengths. Just do your best to make sure that you have prepared your sheet music for the piano player (if they are providing a live accompanist) and that you’ve marked your start and stop sections very clearly. Here are some other tips for a good audition!

  • Dress professionally. For women this means a skirt and blouse or dress that makes you look classy (not trashy). For men this means dress pants and dress shirt (suit and tie optional). For both, remember strong colors stand out. And, don’t ruin the whole look by wearing casual shoes. Wear shoes that complement your outfit, but are also practical for moving around.

  • Bring all paperwork that you might need: Headshot and resume (if you have them), audition form, sheet music, etc…

  • Always be polite and generous with everyone (Directors like to work with talented AND kind people who will work hard and keep the off-stage drama to a minimum).

  • Prepare as much as you can! (Don’t try to memorize something the day of an audition unless you absolutely must).

  • Listen to the Director and anyone else giving you directions. Do your best to follow the directions given.

  • Don’t make excuses-just do your best!

  • After the dust has settled, accept your role with a positive attitude (keep your opinions to yourself, thank your casting directors and roll with it!)

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