Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Top Ten Tips to Prepare for Auditions

Have you ever wanted to audition for a role, but was hesitant to because you weren't sure what was expected of you at auditions or you weren't sure what you needed to do to prepare for an audition?
Sunday, June 30, 2013
2024 Nellie Drive

Rest assured that you are not alone. Scores of actors – veterans and novices alike – are always asking, “What do I need to do to prepare for the audition?” During the course of the season, Slidell Little Theatre is asking each of our directors for advice that we hope will provide you with the information you need to better prepare for auditions and give you the encouragement you need to audition again and again.

Slidell Little Theatre launches its 51st Season in August with the family-favorite musical Seussical, directed by Scott Sauber and starring Horton the Elephant, The Cat in the Hat, Gertrude McFuzz, Lazy Mayzie and many more of our favorite Dr. Seuss characters.

We asked Scott to provide us with his Top Ten Tips to Prepare for Auditions. Here is his advice:

1. Prepare. Prepare. Prepare.

You would never stand up and sing a concert without preparing it first. Do your solo the same favor.  You should never stand up and do a monologue without preparing it...  And there is no such thing as being too prepared.  Also with the internet as a tool - there is no excuse for not knowing something about the show you are auditioning for.  Google it!

2. Say "Thank You" to the people you are working for and working with.

They have a golden opportunity to cast you and stand next to you.  Thank them for that.  Don't apologize to them with awkward facial expressions.  We all feel the same way when we stand up there in front.  Express pride.  Die outside the audition door.

3. Leave your ego at the door.

If you think you deserve it, I am here to prove you wrong -- and I hold the cookies.  I like to reward those that can do a good job.  Not feature those that say, "Me. Me. Me."  And the role I see you playing is because I want to challenge myself and you...not because everyone knew you would get it.

4. Be flexible.

Be willing to work on a project because you trust the director, enjoy the process and want to entertain an audience.  THAT'S how you build a resume.  Accept any and every role.

5. Practice in front of mawmaw and your friends and your cell phone video camera.

Get the nerves out, check your facial expressions, make bold choices.  And please decide what you are going to do with your hands.  They tell a lot about your level of preparedness (see #1)  and they annoy auditioners when you constantly slap your thighs.

6. Dive into the character.

Don't sing how you would sing.  Sing "Mark" from RENT like you are Mark...from RENT.  I am looking emotional connection, facial expression, and a physical choice.  If the character is prim and proper - stand prim and proper.  If the character is a hunchback, by all means - I need to see your hump.  If your character longs for something, hope for it... and show it in your eyes.  

7. Choose a song early and sing it often.

Lyrics should be the least of your worries at an audition.  Make physical choices driven by the character, but don't dance around.  Make gestures, but don't spell it out for me.  Change a rhythm or speak a sentence.  Make it your own -- driven by the character. Find your favorite audition song and sing here, there, and everywhere. 


The full version is on YouTube.  You see disappointment, growth, hard work, rejection and a CRAZY GOOD monologue that will leave you in tears....all in an audition. And you will learn a lot about life and a little about theatre.

9. When nerves are shaking you up - DO A CARTWHEEL.

The physical exertion calms your nerves.  And if you are willing to do it on stage in front of the auditioners, you've got nerve and grit...and then you're willing to do anything.

10. Did I mention PREPARE.  It shows.

Good luck to each and every one of you coming out to auditions on June 30th!

Do you have your own tips for preparing for auditions? We’d love to hear what you do to prepare for an audition!

SLT’s production of Seussical is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). A thorough synopsis of the musical and other research material are available through MTI’s website here.

A list of the characters and suggested ages:

The Cat in the Hat                                18 – 35
Horton the Elephant                             25 – 35
JoJo                                                       8 – 12
Gertrude McFuzz                                 22 – 33
Mayzie La Bird                                     21 – 32
Sour Kangaroo                                    23 – 35
General Gengus Khan Schmitz          30 – 50
The Grinch                                           25 – 45
Mr. Mayor                                             32 – 45
Mrs. Mayor                                           30 – 40
Yertle, the Turtle                                  20 – 50
The Wickersham Brothers                 14 – 40
The Bird Girls                                      16 – 35
Jungle Creatures                                  8 – 80
The Whos                                             8 – 90

Seussical opens August 16, 2013 and runs every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through September 8.

A multiple-award winning actor, light designer, director and educator, Scott Sauber teaches Theatre in the Talented Arts Program at Slidell High School and is a graduate of the University of New Orleans Theatre Department.

A complete listing of Scott’s stage and offstage credits can be found here

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