For many actors, auditions can be the worst part of theatre. From finding the perfect monologue to cramming in as much emotion as you can in 60 seconds, auditions can be stressful, but with these tips, the process can go a bit smoother.
Find A Monologue With Substance
My first piece of advice is to find a monologue that you can work with, and for me personally, this means finding a piece that allows for bodily movement, expression, tone shifts, and room to show off what you can do as an actor. Don’t go for a piece that’s popular, or sometimes even conventional – you might find a gem in spoken word, slam poetry, film, or literature. Click the link below to listen to a spoken word piece by Rudy Francisco that I used for an audition.
All too often, I find myself slurring my words together in an attempt to get the audition over with as soon as possible. Remember to relax, slow down, and project! The worst thing you can do is be nervous. While this may be your only chance to prove that you’re worthy of consideration, you still can’t let it get to you. I like to envision that I’m on stage speaking to an audience, not just a judge, and like it’s opening night. This helps me mimic a performance that I’d usually give during rehearsal. Remember to make eye contact every now and then with your auditor to maintain some level of non-verbal communication, but don’t stare at them.
Memorize Your Lines Early
At every opportunity, you should be reciting your lines. In the shower, in the car, at lunch, during commercial breaks; weeks in advance. It should come naturally to you without having to think of what comes next.
During your audition, remember to remain calm and engaging. Introduce yourself and your piece with a smile, don’t rush, and have confidence. Remember to thank the auditor for their time.
Give Movement Purpose
If you’re incorporating movement into a piece, make sure there’s motivation behind it. A great way to find motivation is to analyze your character and develop your character, understand their personality and motives, and apply this to your acting. Is your character scared, happy, angry, or mellow? Don’t pace the stage unless your character feels the need to do so. Don’t fidget, wave your hands, or rock from side to side. If you move, make sure it is big, shifts the focus to the message you’re trying to convey, and makes sense for the tone and motivation of the character.