ICT Audition Tips

What’s An Audition?

Webster says, "au•di•tion n: a trial performance to appraise an entertainer's merits; vb: to give an audition to"

An audition is a try-out hearing, usually competitive, of an actor or other performers seeking to be cast in a play, hence, to audition for or to be auditioned. The “auditor” is the person(s) listening – the director(s).

Audition Procedure

You will be asked to fill out an audition form to present to the monitor at the audition table.  For large cast shows, you may be photographed (head and shoulders) so that the audition form can be printed with your photo included.  This is an aid to the director in comparing the auditionees (it really helps at 1:00 AM when working on casting a show).  The form will ask you to list your recent theatre experience, and some details about your physical type, and contact information.  The monitors will assist and guide you through the audition.

You may come to more than one audition session if you like, it will often help if the director would like to hear various combinations of actors.  But, you may not always have an opportunity to read a second time if the schedule is tight.  It’s important that everyone who wants to audition have the chance to do so.

On Stage

There will be any number of auditors present at the audition.  The auditors will group you with other auditionees and give you a selected scene from the play to read.  They will tell you what your characters are doing.  Who they are.  What their relationship is to each other.  This is the coaching part of the audition.  Listen carefully to how you are being directed.  If anything is unclear, or you have questions - ask!  Don't be afraid to ask questions.  This shows that you are thinking and listening.  Have fun with this moment.  Relax.  They are watching to see if you can take direction.  Enjoy the experience.

Give it your all in the reading performance, but work with one another.  Also, make eye contact as much as possible with your partner(s).  It shows that you are listening.  Try not to keep your face buried in your script, but act out to your partner and to your audience.  Look down for your lines only when you have to.  If your partner is talking to you, look at them and react.  Don't put your face back into your script the moment your lines are out of your mouth and you have nothing to say. That's the key to scenework auditions.  Be interactive and dynamic.  Make strong character choices and stick to them.  Enjoy yourself!

In an audition for a musical, actors can be asked to sing and perform movement.  There might be a few other events or exercises that you will encounter.  You will probably be put through some speech and stage movement work.  They want to see if you can move and speak clearly.  They are looking for the potential in you, not the star.

There might be some improvisational work as well.  Again, the whole point of this audition is to find the potential in you.  You do not have to be accomplished at any of these things.  So relax and have fun.  Keep your eyes and ears open.  Keep your mind open, as well.  Try everything.  And give it your best.

As a rule of thumb, what most directors will look for in an audition are:

  • An element in the actor’s person that suggests the character.

  • Voice and ability to project.

  • Physical appearance relating to the role.

  • Ability to focus and take direction if offered.

  • Stage presence and poise.

  • The actor’s understanding of the theatrical requirements of the role.

Above all else,

Have Fun!

PS: You will also find some tips in the Community Thearte Green Room's Top Ten Reasons You Didn't Get Cast