How to act at an audition

How to act at an audition

Wondering how to audition for a movie and make it to the big screen? Here, we’ll share six important tips for success.

Many major movies are filmed in big cities such as Los Angeles and New York. Whatever big city you are closest to, you should start by looking up the local film office. For example, if you search online for “Massachusetts State Film Office,” you should see a website like this.

Every state also has its own film office, which will have all the information you need about what is being filmed in that state, local auditions, etc. Keep reading for more helpful tips to nail your next audition.

How to Audition for a Movie: 6 Steps

1) Find Your Role

This is a necessary step for those interested in how to audition for movies.

For most films, it may sound superficial but looks really are everything. You will need to try to assess which characters you could play on film. For example, do you look like a high school student? Could you portray a daughter, or a sister? Or could you play the dreamy boyfriend?

Think of all the different character possibilities you could portray, and start looking for the most appropriate auditions.

2) Find Smaller Productions

If you’re diving into film for the first time, you don’t necessarily have to shoot for the major, commercial films.

You might not realize it, but whatever city you are in there are many independent and student films being created and filmed all the time! This is a great way to start out, and see what it’s like being on a film set.

If you’re a college student, you should also get involved in your school’s film department. Many students will need to make films for their majors. These won’t pay well, but it’s a great way to start learning about film and how to act on film.

Also, low-budget independent films and short films are a great way to get a speaking part!

3) Find Background Work

If you’re wondering how to audition for a movie, you’ve probably already done some acting training or taken acting lessons. If so, don’t be be afraid to go for the big budget films! But films are being made every day, and they usually need tons of extras.

Extra or background work is fun – you will learn so much about film, get a decent paycheck, and perhaps even be featured on film. The part may be small, but you never know – depending on your look and how you act on the film set, you could get bumped up into a featured or speaking role.

If you want a speaking role, or a main role in a film, doing extra work is essential before you can hit these goals. Extra work will help you become comfortable on camera, get used to the terminology, and learn how a movie is made.

You may or may not need to audition for extra work. I encourage you to research online for local casting directors – try searching for something like “Background Casting Directors” and a list should come up near your city.

You then can register to have your headshot and resume on file, and if they have a role open for your character type they will get in touch with you.

4) Keep an Eye Out for Audition Notices

Many audition notices are posted online on sites like Playbill, Backstage, Actors Access, and Casting Networks. Some of these trade websites require a monthly fee to subscribe, and some of them even allow you to “audition” by submitting your materials online.

Your materials should include a headshot and acting resume, and perhaps a reel of video footage. With the industry changing so much, it’s easy to get headshots taken and get some film footage with YouTube, Vimeo, Vine, and so on.

5) Expect Competition at Auditions

At a film audition, you should expect a lot of other people auditioning for the same role as you. Sometimes the writer or director may be present in the room. Other times it will be interns from a local film office who will film a quick take and send it to LA for more consideration.

No matter who is in the room, you should always remain professional and courteous at all times. A film audition will usually consist of you reading lines from the actual movie, say with another actor, who they are also considering for a role.

Sometimes you will have seen the script before, and other times they’ll give it to you on the spot. The casting team has many people to see, and are usually tired from auditions. If you’re wondering how to audition for movies in the best way: be prepared and don’t ask them many questions.

6) Work Your Way Up to the Union

Working in film and TV, you will eventually need to be part of the union, which is called SAG/AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild, and American Federation of TV and Recording Arts).

The union will make sure you are paid fairly, have health insurance, and are not working under unethical circumstances. Many of the main roles and speaking parts in major films are cast with actors represented in the union, and usually only actors in the union can audition for that role.

If you are not in that union, you are then considered non-union. Non-union actors are paid less, so you’re probably wondering, how can I get in that union? The answer is: it will take some time, work, and dedication!

You will need to do extra work for a few years before getting into the union. If you audition for a film as a non-union actor, and are offered a union role right away, the production will grant you the opportunity to join the union. No one can just join, you have to earn your way up!

Also by doing extra work, sometimes you can earn “waivers,” which are given when the role is meant for a union person, but they cannot possibly find a union person to fulfill it. Once you earn three waivers (three days on set), you become eligible to join.

However, there is a pricey initiation fee to join, and once you join you can’t do work that is not covered by a SAG/AFTRA contract (meaning you can’t do non-union work).

Knowing these tips for how to audition for a movie is your first step, but keep in mind that working your way through the film industry will take time. With hard work, patience, and persistence it will all pay off, and you will have fun doing so!

How to act at an auditionLiz T. teaches online singing, acting, and music lessons. She is a graduate of the Berklee College of Music with a B.M in Vocal performance and currently performs/teaches all styles of music, including Musical Theater, Classical, Jazz, Rock, Pop, R&B, and Country. Learn more about Liz here!

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A queasy feeling settles into your stomach. You are surrounded by a group of gossiping men and women who sip cafe mochas while complimenting each other's headshots. Suddenly, the casting director calls your number. "What monologue will you be reading for us today?" she asks.

"Oh, sorry," you reply. "I didn't know I was supposed to bring one." Her annoyed expression tells you everything. You won't be getting a callback.

This scenario can be easily avoided by following these simple audition tips.

Read the Audition Notice Carefully

Actors should arrive at auditions fully prepared, not just ready to perform, but also to present any requested material. Examine the audition notice. Should you prepare one monologue? Two? Make certain you match the material to the play. For example, if you are auditioning for Oedipus Rex, prepare a scene from Greek drama, not The Odd Couple.

Finally, based on the audition notice, make certain you are trying out for an appropriate part. If the casting director is looking for a tall, bald man in his 60s, don’t show up hoping that they will change the script for your short, frizzy-haired, thirty-year-old self. Follow whatever guidelines are offered to ensure that you arrive at the audition as organized as possible.

Be Professional

Show the casting director how reliable you are by showing up at least fifteen minutes before the audition. Be courteous, but don’t be too talkative. Don’t pester crew members or fellow actors with idle conversation. Spend your time privately readying yourself.

Most casting directors expect you to bring a headshot and resume. This might not hold true for community theatre productions. However, if you are committed to a career in theater, you may want to bring these along just to make a favorable impression.

In general, think of an audition as a job interview. Avoid inappropriate behavior, whether its chewing gum, using profanity, behaving too shyly or brashly, or making long-winded speeches as to why you are perfect for the role.

Dress Appropriately

Usually, it is best to wear “business casual” attire. You want to exhibit charm and professionalism, but you don’t want to look like a stock-broker or a banker. Remember, many new actors make the mistake of wearing costumes to audition. Perhaps they say to themselves: “Hey, I’ve got a great pirate outfit from last Halloween! I’ll wear that!” Sadly, this is bound to cause casting directors to chuckle under their breath. They might be amused, but they will definitely not take the actor seriously.

If you are auditioning for a dancing part in a musical, wear dance attire. It should not be anything flashy or expensive. Any choreographer worth her salt will focus on your dancing ability, not your sequins.

Perfect Your Monologue

If you are asked to bring a monologue, make certain that you have rehearsed it completely. Do not just know the lines, know the character you are becoming. Let the directors see a striking difference between the person that just said hello to them and the character that is now coming to life on the stage.

At the same time, be flexible with the audition material. They might have you read the lines over, asking you to take on a different personality. Sure, you may do great when you perform the monologue with tears in your eyes, but be prepared if they ask you to do the same lines in a calm, icy voice or a whimsical British dialect. If given the chance, show them that you can interpret the role in many different ways.

Get to Know the Play

Many auditions involve reading “sides.” Sides are small, hand-picked portions of a script. Sometimes they are a brief monologue. Sometimes they are short scenes involving two or more characters. Most of the time, you won’t know exactly what scene you’ll be reading. In that case, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the play in general.

If you are auditioning for a popular play feel free to buy a copy of the script online or at your local bookstore. Better yet, visit your local library. Watching a film version of the play might help as well. Don’t simply mimic the movie actor’s performance, though; casting directors want to see what you can create, not what you can imitate.

Practice Cold Reading

If the play is rather obscure or brand new, it may be difficult to purchase a copy. In that case, you’ll want to polish up your cold reading skills. Cold reading is the act of performing lines as you read them for the very first time. It can be a nerve-wracking experience, but with practice, most actors can become quite adept at it.

The best way to become a fluent cold reader is to read aloud as often as you can. When you cold read during your audition, do not worry if you stumble over a word or two. The important thing to remember is to stay in character. Create chemistry between you and your fellow actor. Make the casting director, and anyone else watching, believe that you are thinking and feeling the words on the page.

Don’t Apologize

After an audition, an actor becomes his own worst critic. Often times, hopeful thespians are tempted to explain themselves to the directors. They provide excuses or even apologies in hopes of gaining sympathy. Avoid this as much as you can. Thank the casting director and leave the stage knowing that if you are right for the part, they will contact you. If not, know that you did your best. And remember: there are many other wonderful roles out there just waiting to be filled.

Want to learn how to get into acting? No experience? No problem. We all had to start somewhere, right?

Managing Expectations

Before we continue, ask yourself a question:

“Do I want to get into acting, or do I just want to know how to become famous?”

If you’re reading this article and hoping to be a movie star by tomorrow morning (or even this time next year), then we can’t help you. Becoming an actor takes time, passion, sweat, and most of all, perseverance.

We don’t say this to discourage you. If you want to be a movie star, it’s not impossible. Shoot for the moon! But be prepared to work for it, because there’s no magic formula.

That being said, let’s talk about how to get into acting!

What You Should Do

Read plays and books about acting.
Because just like any other industry, the acting biz has its own terminology, lingo, and mumbo-jumbo. What’s an objective? Where is downstage? What’s a gobo? If you can speak intelligently about these things, you’re one step ahead of the game.

Also, reading plays is a great way to refuel your passion.

Take acting classes.
Scene study, voice and speech, movement, stage combat, etc. It’s good to have talent, but you have to focus and forge that talent into skill.

And by the way, taking an acting class doesn’t have to cost you money. For example, find an acting studio and ask if you can volunteer in their office while you audit their classes.

Make friends with actors.
Acting is a community sport. It’s rarely, almost never done alone. And one thing actors love to do is talk about their process. Find a few and listen in. (But of course, take it with a grain of salt.)

Volunteer backstage. Local community theatres are always looking for volunteers to help with props, sets, costumes, and so on. Then, next time they hold auditions, come in and do a monologue. Why not? You already know everyone in the room!

Become a movie extra.
This is a great way to get your feet wet. (And put some cash in your pocket.)

Watch actors work.
Go watch the movies listed by the AFI (American Film Institute). These actors, living or dead, are the finest example of truthful acting EVER. Examples include Citizen Kane, Casablanca, Lawrence of Arabia, and Gone with the Wind.

Also, go see theatre. Lots of theatre.

A solid, well-crafted audition is the best way to get into acting. That’s why this website exists. So audition often, audition well.

What You Shouldn’t Do

Don’t do mailings.
Actors like to print out hundreds of professional headshots and resumés, and then mail them out to every casting director, agent, and manager in town. Why? Because it makes them feel like they’ve done something for their career.

But you know better. It’s costly, ineffective, and a waste of your time. Better to work on a monologue or audition song.

Don’t pester the powers that be.
Directors and producers won’t cast you if you blow up their phone and inbox with messages. In fact, that’s a great way to get black listed. “Don’t cast that guy, he’s a stalker!”

Don’t lie about your experience.
Another great way to get black listed. “Don’t cast that guy, he’s a lair!”

Don’t alter your appearance.
One of your best assets as an actor is your unique and individual look. Don’t change it based on what others might think.

Don’t talk too much.
It’s better to keep quiet and listen to what’s happening around you. One of our favorite quotes from Robert Redford:

“Really good actors don’t have to talk too much.”

Armed with this new information, you know how to get into acting. So get out there, and let your passion drive you on to great success. Maybe someday you’ll be telling others how to get into acting!

How to act at an audition

Auditions are a fact of life for the dancer. They are your chance to show your skills and talent to a panel of judges. Whether you are auditioning for college, a dance company, or an entertainment position, they can feel overwhelming to prepare for. Here are some tips to help get you on the right track.

1. Practice Regularly

Take dance classes in different styles consistently. During your classes, take your training seriously so that your technique is in peak form. Perform each combination in class to its fullest potential and take corrections in stride, employing them immediately. This will help condition your body and mind to the rigors of the audition world.

Know what style of dance you excel in, and then try something completely different. You never know when a choreographer is going to throw some ballet into a hip-hop routine these days. Versatility is a sought after quality in a dancer.

It also helps to take new classes regularly; that way you are continually testing your mental ability to pick up choreography quickly.

2. Gather Your Information

Be informed about what you are auditioning for. Are you auditioning for a Swan Lake role, or a music video backup dancer?

Learn as much as you can about the role or company you are auditioning for beforehand. Find out if there is a fee to audition and be sure to bring it with you. Then, find out if you need to bring or submit any documents. If the audition requires a resume and headshot, start to prepare the required documents.

Make sure your resume highlights your strengths and recent accomplishments, and includes your name and phone number. Also be sure to mention where you have trained, who you have studied with, and performance experience.

Your headshot should be a professional photograph. Some auditions may also require a full body photo. They may require you to apply and send this information in advance; others may want you to bring printed copies that they can keep.

3. Cross Train

Become a stronger dancer by cross training.

Increase your cardio health through running, biking, or swimming. Lift weights to increase your strength for partner work. Do yoga or Pilates to stretch, strengthen your core, and focus your mind. Be patient to find what works for you.

This will help you get through a long audition. Cross training also keeps you in physically good shape, so that the judges are seeing your best self when you audition.

4. Be Healthy

Get plenty of sleep in the week and night prior to your audition.

Maintain a plentiful and balanced diet. Focus on eating whole foods rather than processed foods as much as possible, especially the night before and day of the audition. Have a good, healthy, and filling meal the night before your audition, but don’t overdo it.

Eat a light meal an hour or so prior to your audition. This is very important so that you can function to your highest ability when auditioning. Drink plenty of water regularly.

5. Dress Appropriately

Be smart about knowing what you are auditioning for. A ballet role is going to want to see you in leotard, tights, ballet slippers, or pointe shoes. A hip-hop role will allow you to express your personality through your outfit.

If appropriate, wear something that helps you stand out in the crowd. Be edgy, but, keep it clean and neat. Inquire if you have any questions about the dress code. Bring the correct dance shoes as well.

6. Be Prepared for Anything

This may mean choreographing a short solo piece, participating in a group class, or performing an improvisation.

Find out if the audition will require a solo, and prepare by choreographing in advance. You can choreograph it yourself or have someone else choreograph it on you if you are more comfortable with that. Make sure your choreography suits the style of the audition and also shows off your technique and artistic ability. Practice your solo regularly.

This also means to bring back up supplies such as hair bands, bobby pins, band-aids, extra water, other dance shoes, knee pads, or anything else you think you might need.

7. Arrive Early

Give yourself time to check-in and warm up. A good, thorough warm up is essential to any dancer being able to perform at their best. Take time to center yourself, stretch, and move, even if they are giving you a warm up in the audition.

This time will also help orient you to the studio space. If you start to feel nervous, take a few deep, slow breaths to calm yourself down.

8. Be Positive

Remain lighthearted and natural if you begin to feel nervous at all. Channel your nerves into enthusiasm for the choreography.

The more you can allow your talent to shine through your dancing ability, the closer you will be to landing the job! Be there for yourself and your desire for the job.

There is no need to compare yourself to others, so leave your judgment at the door. Be optimistic in the time leading up to the audition and bring that passion into the studio with you. Be yourself, relax, and have faith in your abilities.

When the time comes to audition, focus your mind on the present moment rather than what the results will be.

Auditioning is a skill that should be practiced often and will improve over time. Remember to learn what you can from both good and bad audition experiences. Remain hopeful in yourself and dedicated to your craft to continuing growing as a dancer and performer.

Following these tips to prepare for a dance audition will give you the confidence you need to succeed. And remember…you have already done most of the work through your training!

Anyone who has ever contemplated a career in acting knows that there is a long road ahead. And I won’t lie—it is a rough path. But it’s also one filled with joyous achievements and artistic milestones if you’re passionate, dedicated, and willing to work at your craft.

As an actor (with many friends in the industry as well), I know that beginning to move forward is often the hardest step in this process. When I first became an actor and a writer, I was truly confused as to what that meant. I knew I wanted to act and create stories to entertain people—it was all I ever wanted to do with my life. But I wasn’t exactly sure how to get there.

I have learned much since I started out on this path—most of it the hard way. So, if you’re an aspiring actor thinking about striking out on your own, let me illuminate some of the unknowns to help get you on your way.

Learn, Learn, Learn

The first thing I recommend is to come into the ring as prepared as possible. Doctors go to school for a decade to learn their craft, and so must you. Whether you take college courses, enroll in art school, or dip into local acting classes, continued education in performance is the best way to keep learning and be on top of new trends.

One of the best approaches, both to learn and to help you meet other actors, is to sign up for a good workshop or scene study class. Classes can be a haven for your growth, providing a safe place to take risks and discover hidden talents, and they can also help quench your artistic needs while you’re still working on your skill. Ideally, find a few teachers you trust so you can ask them questions and learn in a comfortable environment.

Get a Gig That Pays the Bills

As an aspiring actor, you must be able to go to class and auditions when you get them. But, unless you’re among the fabulously wealthy, you’ll also need to work. Find a day job that is flexible for this reason—personal assistant gigs, restaurant jobs, or catering staffing companies are all great options.

That said, make sure your day job is at least moderately enjoyable. If you’re going to spend 40 hours a week doing something that’s not your passion, at least make sure it’s not a miserable experience. Better yet, try to find a gig working with other like-minded people, so you can keep your mind on your artistic goals.

Make Connections

As you would in any field, you’ll want to start meeting people in the industry as soon as possible. Get on a set as an extra through an extra casting agency like Central Casting or Extras Management—no, it’s not glamorous, but it requires no previous experience and it’s a great way to remind yourself that the people doing this job are just human beings, not untouchable super heroes.

More importantly, talk to people while you’re there. Compare notes and figure out what other actors’ paths look like. There is no “one way” to break into the world of acting, and every actor will have his or her own unique story. But talking to each of them will help you get an idea of what options are available to you.

Get a Great Headshot

As you start putting yourself out there, you need to get a good headshot. The good news is there’s a ton of competition, so you don’t have to pay $1,000 for a photograph (and your friends from acting class will likely have recommendations of good photographers).

Your headshots shouldn’t be made up too much (read: not a glamour shot) and shouldn’t represent anything other than who you are. Bring different clothing options in flattering colors and styles that make you feel comfortable and at ease, and bring your iPod to the photo shoot and play music that inspires you.

Also, take some time to figure out what looks you’re going for. Most headshot photographers will help you with this, but you’ll need a fun commercial shot, a serious theatrical shot, and a range of other shots that highlight the characters you think you can play. Do your research online and find examples of what current headshot trends are at the moment.

Learn How to Audition

To start landing gigs, you’ll need to know how to audition, and a good way to do this is to sign up for casting workshops. These two-hour classes get you in front of legitimate casting directors and are a valuable tool for learning how to get comfortable in the audition room. (Plus, auditions can come straight from these sessions on occasion.)

That said, they can be expensive, so do your research and make sure you spend your money wisely. Again, ask people in your classes for good workshops and casting directors to meet. These workshops can be incredibly helpful for building your network and stretching your audition skills to the limit.

Start Putting Yourself Out There

There are plenty of websites dedicated to getting jobs as an actor, including Actors Access, LA Casting, and Now Casting, which all list big projects as well as student films and plays. Sign up for an account, then keep your profile updated with current pictures and any new credits as you book them.

Once you’ve done that, get yourself out there as much as possible—and don’t be afraid to submit to every project you are right for, no matter how big or small. Small student films can help build your reel and widen your network. Big projects just might be looking for someone like you—and you never know when you might be submitting to a casting director who just saw you in a workshop and wants to give you a shot. This truly happens all the time. It might not end up in a booking, but it could end up in a great audition. And making your mark in a big casting office is a milestone.

And go to every legitimate audition you get, no matter what. Many actors skip auditions because they’re afraid, deep down, that they’re not good enough at their art, but I encourage you to prove yourself wrong. Every auditioning experience—even one gone terribly wrong—is something you will learn from and can use to become a better actor. Show up scared and prepared, if you have to, but just show up. You will be miles ahead of a lot of actors who chicken out.

Stay Positive and Focused

One thing that can be a pervasive problem while pursuing your dreams is keeping your mind on your ultimate goals while you’re struggling to make a living. The need for comfort and security can derail even a great artist—and wanting a nice car and clothing can really keep people from exploring their potential. So, if this is something that truly matters to your career, you’ll need to really prioritize, saving your extra money for classes and headshots instead of restaurants and vacations.

But you’ll also need to take care of yourself. Keep upbeat, positive music in your car or on your mobile device. When you feel a hard day coming on, combat this with a mandatory dance break or a happy sing-a-long. Surround yourself with supportive people who are on the same path or who understand your struggle. Take a walk and feel the sun on your face to get your head in the right place. Take a bath or read a book or do whatever you need to feel important and happy in this moment.

And above all, remember how lucky you are to be pursuing this dream. So many people out there don’t have the chance or don’t believe in themselves enough to even try. Just to be attempting your dream is a blessing.

How to act at an audition

There are many ways to secure auditions until you find can an agent more adept at procuring opportunities. Being your own agent is very important, and doing so can be highly effective in advancing your acting career. In fact, you should always aim to act as your own agent to some degree–even if you’re at a point in your career when you don’t need to. This keeps you constantly proactive in your career, aggressive in your search for work, and you’ll be able to make your own career choices (i.e.: being your own boss.). Everyone has an opinion and lots of people will try to tell you what is best in this industry. The only person who truly knows what is best for you is you.

Be Your Own Agent

The most important way to obtain your own auditions is to find out who is casting a particular television show or film. It’s also very important to know when auditions for certain roles are being held. You may find this to be difficult without talent representatives, who have instant access to casting notices. However, it's certainly not impossible to find casting and audition information on your own.

You can start by checking out the “SAG-AFTRA Show Sheet.” If you’re a member of the union, and you can do research online for current information about productions on such sites as “Casting About.”

Ask around town. Networking is always a huge help and in show business, everybody knows somebody. Many men and women around town undoubtedly have knowledge about the roles that are currently being cast for a project.

As soon as you do discover a pilot, television show, or a film that might be a good fit, send your headshot, resume, and your reel to the casting director via e-mail, or by dropping it off at their casting office. If you are not able to physically drop off a headshot, then drop it in the mail. Most casting offices list their email addresses and physical addresses online. IMDB Pro is a good place to find this information.

Let’s say that your friend has an audition for a specific role on a television show that may also be right for you. Consider putting yourself on tape for the role and send it to the casting directors. Often the audition "sides" (lines) for a character that is being cast are available for download online. A service called "ShowFax" allows you to download "sides" for a fee. There's no guarantee a casting director will watch your reel, but you have nothing to lose by sending it. It is the casting director's job to seek and find the best person for the job, so help them to find you.

Casting Notices

Another great way to obtain auditions without an agent is by searching casting notices available in publications such as Backstage. The projects are screened by the company in order to be sure that the notices are legitimate.

You should also sign up for certain websites that allow actors to self-submit to certain projects electronically for a fee. Do your research, as there are many websites that charge fees and promise to deliver countless auditions, but may be scams. "Casting Networks" and "Actor's Access" come highly recommended.

Another way to obtain auditions without being represented is to attend "Casting Director Workshops." These allow you to meet casting directors and read to them for free. They can be helpful, but they’re not for everyone.​

Hiring a Talent Agent

Eventually, hiring a good talent agent or manager can help advance your acting career. However, until you sign with a talent agent who can assist you, you can achieve a lot of success independently. A majority of auditions, bookings, and successes in your career can be achieved without the help of a representative.

The Bottom Line

You have the power to do anything, and obtaining auditions on your own is very attainable. As is true with everything else in this business, it will take hard work, perseverance, and determination.

Auditions for kids and teens are plentiful. But you have to know where to look. (And who to talk to. ) So let’s get started!

What do stars like Natalie Portman, Drew Barrymore, and Leonardo DiCaprio have in common? They were all children when they got their start. And they all had an agent.

Agents and Managers

For adult actors, representation is not as important. It’s better to focus on finding auditions and mastering their technique. Getting an agent happens when they’re working consistently. It happens when they’re ready.

But when finding auditions for kids, they must have an agent first. Why?

Ever been to an open casting call for the Disney Channel? It’s a zoo. Everyone and their mother is there. Literally.

(And speaking of Disney, read this article about how to become a Disney Channel actress.)

Agents and managers can save you from that stressful experience by getting you a private audience with the powers that be.

Here’s how to find an agent/manager for kids:

1. Do your research. Search for acting studios in major cities near you. Call and ask if they teach a class for kids (or teens). If they say yes, it almost always means that they’re looking for local talent to sign.

2. Take a class. The studio might offer kids’ courses from 6 to 9 weeks long. (This is another good signal that the studio is poaching kids to sign contracts.)

3. Snoop around. Ask questions, seek answers. Someone connected to that studio is an agent or manager. Make sure they know who you are.

4. Be talented. They won’t sign just anyone. From a class of 30 kids, maybe 1 will be approached about working with an agent. Make sure it’s you.

The strategy is simple: Find the right community and become an indispensable part of it. This is how success works.

If it doesn’t work the first time, try again with a different class. Or even a different acting studio. Keep your eyes and ears open. It’s easy to become a child actor, you just have to be in the right place at the right time.

Be Careful

Some agents and managers can get you into private acting auditions for teens and kids. Absolutely. But others are just liars and charlatans. Here’s how to tell the difference:

They ask for money. If an agent or manager tells you there’s a fee for signing his contract, run the other way. Why?

Because agents and managers get a percentage of what you earn as an actor. If they ask for money up front, it means they might take it and disappear.

And the same goes for organizations like ProScout, which promise to set you up with agents and managers.

Hide your checkbook. Period.

Acting Training for Kids & Teens

Kids have a wonderful capacity for imagination. Much better than us adults. And imagination is one of the key components of acting talent.

In my experience, acting classes stifle a kid’s ability to imagine. Too much structure and not enough creativity.

“But you just told me to sign up for an acting class!”

True. But stick to classes like voiceover or commercial technique. Anything that doesn’t directly involve acting methods. Plenty of time for that later. Make auditions for kids your first priority.

Stage Mothers

The musical fable Gypsy is about Mama Rose pushing her daughters to be vaudeville performers. But along the way, she exposes them to adult situations, and destitution.

Mama Rose is the ultimate stage mother: Agressive, domineering, and downright pushy. So what happens to her? She ends up alone, desperate, and abandoned by her family.

A simple word of caution for parents: Make sure you’re not confusing your kids’ dreams with your own. Don’t push them.

The Bottom Line

Auditions for kids are out there. But it’s a wild world, and you should only do business with people you can trust. If you follow this advice, you’ll be a real working (child) actor!

If you go to an audition, you’ll be asked many questions about your work. Here’s the top questions you should be able to answer at any audition you go to.

What Are You Working On?

The first question you need to be able to answer is what you’re working on right ow. This can be anything that related to acting. For example, you might be in a play or finished a film. Anything that you’re currently doing or just completed would be good to talk about. Most actors and actresses are doing something, so tell the person doing the interview that you’re been up to. If you’re not doing anything currently, tell them why this is the case. It can be something as simple as updating your website as it lets the persin know that you’re actively working on your career and not just sitting around doing nothing.

What Types of Projects Do You Want to Work On?

With this question you can explain more about some of your passions. Maybe you want to do commercials or work in a music video. Let the interviewer know what kinds of work you’re the most excited about. You should have a focus area that you’re most interested in. It’s also a good idea to have the focus as it relates to the job you’re applying for. Of you’re applying for a commercial show that you’re interested in doing more commercials.

What About Your Acting Style?

You need to be able to express more about you with this question and your style of acting. Be sure to describe various teacher that have influenced your acting style. Try to avoid a generic description such as “I’m dramatic” or a “comedian.” Talk about research you do into characters you portray as this shows that you’re interested in the characters you portray. Tell them if you can do things on your won or prefer more direction.

Can You Names Actors You Admire and Why?

With this question feel free to discuss the actors and actresses that you admire. The interviewer wants to know more about you and your individual style. They want to know about your knowledge of the business. You should have several influences and be able to talk about this influence freely as this shows you have an interest in the entire acting business. Be ready to explain why you like the actor or actress do showcase your critical thinking skills.

Do You Have Questions for Me?

With this question, it’s your turn to ask questions to the person doing the audition. Ask about the casting process. You could ask about the person’s background and what they have done in the past.


These are questions you should be able to answer during the audition process. You need to be ready to answer these questions as they are important. Just be yourself but showcase all of your talents to the person doing the audition and you’re more likely to land the job you want.

So you’ve finally mustered up the courage and decided that you want to try out beginner actor. Where do you start? Obviously, auditions. But since you’re just starting, how do you exactly find acting auditions or casting calls?

If you think you’ve got what it takes to become an actor, start seeking for the following audition outlets on your own. Here’s how and where a beginner actor can find the latest auditions and casting calls.

Where Does a Beginner Actor Find Acting Auditions and Casting Calls?

Talent agent

First and foremost, actors have talent agents whose job is to actively find work for them. On top of that, a talent agent also defends, supports, and promotes the interests of their clients. So if you have friends, colleagues, or classmates who have talent agents, you may ask them to submit your information for you.

How to act at an audition

Rachelle Morvant

Prepare a beginner’s portfolio (headshot, résumé, and reel, if you already have one) and give it to them. If, on the other hand, you do not know anyone with connections to a talent agency, you may look for a local group of actors, get to know them, and ask them about talent agencies.

If you don’t want to hire an agent, however, you’ll have to find acting auditions yourself. That doesn’t make you any different! There are actors who want to constantly be proactive in their career, aggressive in their search for work, and able to make their own career choices.

School productions

You may not know it, but actually, school productions do matter in the real world as relevant experience, especially in the entertainment industry. School productions entice industry directors and producers as audience, or if you’re lucky, your teachers could actually be professional playwrights or producers. Join these organizations or audition for them when you have the chance. Even if it is a volunteer or low-paying project, this may help you get noticed by a talent agent.

How to act at an audition

Westfield School

A job well done could make a lasting impression on your superiors and land you somewhere!


Many beginner actor attend workshops in order to learn, meet, and perform for experienced personalities. Should you choose to pay to attend a casting director workshop, this can be a great way to meet casting directors and possibly be called in for auditions.

Choose workshops facilitated by mentors with considerable credentials, background, and experience. You may need to save up some money to enroll, but you also get to learn industry knowledge, acting theories, tips, and local personalities by the end of the classes in return. Aside from that, enrollees will be required to participate in a fancy culminating event, which could be attended by prominent people in the industry. Do your best in your performance, and they might notice you. Don’t forget to keep in touch with the mentors and organizers as well. They could turn out to be valuable connections someday as some are known to refer their “graduates” to local productions when talents are needed.

How to act at an audition


Even though it is certainly not guaranteed that you will find acting auditions, the workshops can be very informative about the projects that a casting office is currently working on.

Performing arts / film schools

Schools that focus on the art of making plays and films continually produce performances or films and participate in events, so they’re always on the lookout for talents in every project. There are local universities that offer degree programs in filmmaking and acting here and there. The course outlines all require films as student outputs, so the students are bound to put up casting calls every trimester or semester. A single project you have with them will surely turn in a lot of valuable connections.

How to act at an audition

New York Film Academy

You can also consider enrolling to these schools, but if you find yourself unable, you may have friends or other connections studying there who can update you and help you find acting auditions there regularly.

Social media

You should definitely be utilizing social media in order to further your acting career. Because almost everyone is using social media to connect and advertise, you can actually find acting auditions, learn about castings, make industry connections, obtain agents, meet new friends, and book jobs through social networking. It is changing the entertainment industry and creating new opportunities for performers everywhere.

How to act at an audition


Look up film schools, productions, local enthusiast communities; follow their pages or join their groups; and turn on notifications to stay up to date on news and important posts. Even film festivals announce on social media whenever contingents have a need for talents.


Searching online for auditions is a great way to find opportunities for acting work and to submit yourself for projects. Like social media accounts, some film, theater, or TV productions also have official websites where they post announcements in. Aside from that, there are several websites that function as job boards, which let you search for and find acting auditions or notify you when there are any in your area.

First of all, it is important to be certain that the websites that you choose to utilize are legitimate. Do your research as there are many websites that charge fees and promise to deliver countless auditions but may be scams.

How to act at an audition

Marci Liroff

For a low monthly fee, these websites let you post your headshot, résumé, and special skills. Auditions that match your basic information, like gender and age range, will come into your inbox, and you can decide whether to pursue them. Explore Talent is one such talent resource site with over twenty thousand available casting calls for you to choose from.

Print and broadcast media

Many TV networks announce casting calls for shows or other projects on their websites or as commercials. Theater auditions and castings, on the other hand, are often published in theater magazines or local newspapers. So don’t shy away from major newspapers in large cities. There could be ads and classifieds you can come across. Even regularly tuning in to the radio can turn in unexpected projects.

How to act at an audition

Good Luck!

You have the power to do just about anything, and to find acting auditions on your own is no impossible task. But like everything else in this industry, it will take hard work, perseverance, and determination.