Overcoming Audition Nerves

28 Feb

Unfortunately to get that role you really want, you have to do something you don’t really want to.

Audition for it!

We all have to go through this tedious, nerve-wracking and sometime embarrassing process. I have done so many auditions over the years that I now rarely get the sweaty palms, turning stomach and uncontrollable nerves.

Auditions nerves

When I finished my training I was terrified of auditions. I probably suffered the worsted anyone could do, that it nearly stopped me from continuing my career as an actress. At times I struggled to even make it to auditions. But enough was enough and I told to myself ‘Get the hell over it!’ I can’t be an actress without going to auditions. So the next audition I had, I walked into the room, picked up a script, took a deep breath and sight-read (which I am terrified of). The next day I got a call confirming I got the role! Yippee!

Auditions are really not as bad as I had anticipated them to be. 99% of the time everyone is lovely and I now actually quite enjoy them. Casting directors really do want you to do well. They are not people to be afraid of and a lot of them have been in your shoes. I find them usually to be very accommodating, encouraging and positive, especially when they can see that you are nervous.

Although I do believe that the only way to conquer audition nerves is by going to audition after audition and gaining experiences, here are some tips I find really help me when I feel these butterflies coming on:

  • Be prepared – If you have a script to learn, learn it well otherwise its likely you will stumble over words and not portray any kind of character.
  • Believe in yourself – You can only be yourself and that is the best you can be. Be proud of it and believe you can nail the audition.
  • Breathe – It’s so simple and important but most people forget to breathe. It will help you slow down your speech and not speed through it like you can’t wait to get to the end. Plus it helps you relax.
  • Warm up – Before you go to the audition, do vocal and physical exercises. This will help you focus and relax.
  • Loose yourself in the speech – Don’t think about what you are doing, just do it. It it obvious when people are thinking about what they are doing and not acting on instinct.. This becomes easier after a few auditions but keep at it and you will get there.

All auditions are going to be different and things will happen that are unexpected. Last week I went to an audition for an indie feature film and the casting call was described as:

Tony’s Girlfriend: Bubbly, fun girl with brains. No preparation needed. Scrip will be given at the audition.”

When I turn up there were two friendly guys with a camera, they asked a few questions and then told me that the girlfriend was only in one club scene. They asked me to dance for 30 seconds, with NO music, like I was in a club… this is nothing like what I expected. There was no script and no words. I am not a dancer and I don’t even dance in clubs, I sway! It was humiliating and embarrassing but as soon as I walked out of the room I fell about laughing. What us actors do to get a job is crazy and my friends would laugh if they could see me. Oh, and no surprise I didn’t get the part!

Take weird auditions on the chin, dust yourself off and go onto the next.

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3 Responses to “Overcoming Audition Nerves”

  1. Christine Bissonnette April 4, 2013 at 10:17 pm #

    This is great advice. Auditions are something that I struggle with as well, but the amount my nerves hinder me depends on the type and size of roll. I know that it’s just a matter of getting out of my head and letting go. Easier said than done, but I know if I work on it I can overcome them and make those jitters work for me.

    • Beauty Drama Queen April 4, 2013 at 10:34 pm #

      I was exactly the same. As hard as it sounds the only cure is to face it head on. After that you will honestly not remember what you were so nervous about.
      Thanks for taking a look at my blog ❤

      • Christine Bissonnette April 5, 2013 at 10:31 pm #

        Thank you for taking a look at mine! Yes. I think I’m going to try sitting down with myself in meditation, and finding a place I can go to in the audition hall that will calm my nerves. Your right though, repetition will cure me… but I’m just so impatient.

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