THE SEVEN LEVELS OF AUDITION HELL
Level One: Pre-Audition Jitters
Your heart is beating quicker than normal. It may be from the five flights of stairs you just had to climb to get to the audition venue. But most likely it’s because in a very short period of time (or long period of time if you’re at the end of the list), you’re going to be on display, getting judged by complete strangers as to your look, level of talent and how appropriate you are for the role of a lifetime – or at least a “bit part” in a high-profile project.
Of course, you have been extremely nice and polite to the monitor who checks you in. You know that they do have a certain say in the process, and are capable of influencing the powers that be with one side comment to the casting team about how cranky you were while signing in. It’s a widely-known fact that you can ruin your chances of getting chosen by being rude to the sign-in person… so it pays to be extra-nice!,
As you sit and wait for your name to be called, you look around the room. Your peers, your colleagues, swirl around you as they try to mentally, physically, and of course nonchalantly try to psyche themselves up and psyche you out. Everyone in the room and the hallway and downstairs smoking in front of the building seems to match your type, fit your category. They all look like you, they all have the same credits as you, and you’re sensing that is not going to be easy.
Luckily you have brought a magazine, a newspaper, a crossword, sudoku – anything to keep you occupied and keep your mind off the situation – and the other performers. Bringing Back Stage or The Hollywood Reporter to read will give off the extra aura that you are “in the know” about the biz.. Headphones also help, the ear-buds NOT the big ones since they will prevent you from hearing some showoff pretending to be on the phone with his agent, which is a standard psyche-out tactic.
In our next Career Cues, we’ll explore Level Two of Audition Hell … Late, Rushed & Flustered.
Break a leg!