Bad Auditions

We all have em. Sometimes you just don’t have enough time to prepare, sometimes you over prepare, sometimes your gps gave you the wrong directions, and sometimes you aren’t feeling well. Whatever the reason, we all have bad auditions.

The other day, I got called in last minute for a big show in town. I knew it was a role that wasn’t going to be in my sweet spot. Yes, we are actors and we can play anything, but in the professional world that doesn’t happen. So already, the cards were stacked against me. Then at the audition, I could just tell I was not giving what the director wanted to see. I kept reminding myself to listen to the reader and respond honestly. Even with the directions I was getting, it just wasn’t singing.

I left pretty bummed. Bummed that there was yet another job I wasn’t going to get, bummed because I have never had a good audition at that theatre, and bummed that I had a bad audition.

Well, it happened. Now what do you do?

You move on. That wasn’t even the worst audition I’ve had. My first time meeting with an agent (I didn’t actually sign with them), I broke two vases on the coffee table in my enthusiasm to get up and shake her hand. THAT was embarrassing. And the thing about being an actor is you have to give the work up and keep moving forward. Even performances and runs of a show aren’t meant to last. Auditions aren’t either. So let it go. There will be another one coming.

Also, I’ve had some pretty AMAZING auditions. Some of those got me the job, and some of them didn’t. But when I have a bad audition I think back to my good ones and remind myself that I am capable of knocking it out of the park, just not every time at bat.

I’m also getting the pleasure of helping a friend demonstrate a “BAD” audition. I get to go in and do everything wrong. Preparing for this has made me feel a lot better about my auditions- sometimes they are bad, but never this bad! Here is a list of things I will be doing and therefore you should never do:

-Crowd the table

-Wear too much perfume and completely inappropriate attire (including jangly jewelry)

-Do an inappropriate monologue for the occasion and for your age and type.

-Wander aimlessly

-Ad lib the monologue

-Have a headshot on copy paper, and no resume, or without contact information

-Describe the monologue before you do it.

-Make eye contact with the auditioners during your piece

-Comment on your performance after you are done with your piece

-BE LATE to your appointment

So as long as you don’t do these things, your audition probably won’t be that bad. And remember, always move forward with your career. So bad monologues or meetings can be left behind.

What are your worst audition stories?


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