Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Audition Fatigue

This time of the year is a tricky one for students - not just here at Read College, but for any students who are in the thick of college auditions.

It's easy to criticise auditions and to feel as though the people on the panel didn't pay you enough attention or weren't on your side, but the bottom line is that auditions will be a part of your life for the rest of your career as an actor, dancer or singer.  For that reason alone, you've got to make the most of each and every audition and learn to love 'em!  It can be a tiring, demoralising, slog.  But remember what it's all for...

Read graduate Abigail Lewin, now about to graduate from Urdang
Auditions are the only realistic way for colleges and prospective employers to see what you have to offer as a performer.  It may be short and it may not be on your terms, but staying positive about the process and accepting it for what it is will be your only way to survive them

If you're in the middle of auditioning at the moment, you might want to bear a few of these thoughts in mind:

1.  Make sure you're performing the right stuff.  Your rep needs to show you off but it also needs to fit your casting bracket (in other words, be a role that you could reasonably play).  Playing someone way out of your age range, or of a different ethnic background, or even of the opposite sex, doesn't just frustrate the audition panel - it makes it apparent to them that you don't really understand the theatre industry.  Albeit there are occasional productions where roles are deliberately cast against type, most of the time you will be working within your casting bracket and whether you like it or not there's not all that much you can do about it.  If you're too tall to play your favourite Musical Theatre lead or too short to play a Shakespearean king, then that's the end of that.  Move on and find out what you ARE going to play, and get good at it.

2.  Almost every audition panel you will meet WANT you to get in.  They don't want to spend their days meeting people who are no good to them, and they want great people on their courses representing their college.  Don't go in feeling like they're out to judge you harshly and that they don't want you, because it's not true.  With that in mind, go in positive, enjoy the experience and know that you're in a room with people who want you to be good!

3.  The most important thing.  Separate 'you' the product from 'you' the person.  This is something I say to my students all the time, and it is the single most important thing that a professional performer needs to do.  If you are rejected by a college, they are not rejecting 'you' the person and there is no emotional intention behind the rejection.  They are rejecting 'you' the product because that product doesn't fit the brand that they represent.  I know it sounds very corporate, and I also know it is a very hard thing to do, but without making the distinction you will finish up feeling like people don't like you, rather than realising - much more importantly - that you're just barking up the wrong tree.

If you feel like you could do with some more advice on you audition process, then why not come and attend one of our 3 day Audition Preparation courses at Read?