Tag Archives: Casting

Actors Websites – Where To Find Work

20 May

Wherever I go I always come across people who ask me where I find my acting work, without an agent.

Recently I was working on a sports event and I met this lovely girl who didn’t know where to start looking for acting work. I wrote down a list of websites and gave it to her. As actors we all struggle and I find it important to help others. Years ago I met a girl who did this for me and I am forever grateful for her kindness.

If you live in the UK and are looking for acting work and don’t know where to start, here are all the websites and companies I use:

  • Spotlight – Spotlight is very important to all actors. All big shows, films and commercials are advertised on this website. There is also unpaid work on this site for anyone who wants to help out in fringe theatre or student films. If you are looking for an agent it is crucial you have a spotlight page as it is very rare for an agent to take you on if you don’t have Spotlight. (Needed: Headshot, 3 professional credits or accredited drama school, Approx. £150 for a years subscription.)
  • Casting Call Pro – This is where I get most of my auditions from. There is a lots of unpaid work on this website but also a lot of good paid work. It is not a must have, official actors website like Spotlight but it is very good and you are far more likely to get work from here. It is free if you just want unpaid work but it costs £20p/m to apply for paid work. (Needed: Headshot, 3 professional credits.)
  • Star Now – If you rummage through a lot of rubbish work on this site you will eventually find a gem! There is paid, unpaid, commercial, extra, modelling work to be found on Star Now. However be careful as anyone can post an advert on this site, so if it sound unprofessional, it probably is. (Needed: Photos, Approx. £35, 6 month membership.)
  • MadDog  and 20/20 Casting – Very good extras company. Supply extras for feature films and commercials.
  • Universal Extras – You set up a profile and wait for a call. They do lots of extra work. I have had great work from this site, including being Lady Gaga’s body double. I get a call about every 6 months for a job.

I honestly would not waste your time with any other acting websites apart from Spotlight, Casting Call Pro and Star Now. Any other sites you will come across (no matter how professional the site looks) will be advertising the exact same jobs but less of them.

There are sites like, Shooting People, which can be good for unpaid work but again whatever is advertised on there is always on Casting Call Pro.

Obviously having an agent is the best thing you can do to get work as an actor but when searching for your own work, these sites are the best.

Hope this helps some people ❤

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Auditioning For Drama School

28 Apr

Over the last few weeks I have been auditioning for drama schools in London to do an MA in Acting. I had been pondering over the idea of going to drama school for a while. I already have a degree but thought that a year at drama school may just give me that little bit of extra training that I need.

Should I apply… should I apply…. should I apply…?!?

Well I finally did and I couldn’t be more pleased that I did as I was lucky enough to get offered a place at one of the best drama schools in the country. YIPPEE!

Auditioning for Drama Scool

My Audition Experience 

I don’t want to single out certain schools but I did audition for a few of the main drama schools in London. The audition process was pretty much the same for all of them but all the schools have different vibes. I went into some of  and didn’t feel comfortable at all but at others I could see myself running though the corridors singing as free as a bird.

For all the auditions I needed to learn one modern and one shakespeare monologue. It really doesn’t matter what monologues you choose as long as you do them well. I did a very common one by Helena from A Midsummers Night’s Dream.

You will either be asked to do your monologues on front of the group of other auditionees or on your own with a panel of teacher/s. I much preferred auditioning on front of the group because although this sounds more nerve wracking it is actually supporting and you kind of forget about the teacher/s.

My first audition was terrible! If something goes wrong, don’t let this put you off. I felt awful afterwards and thought there was no point in carrying on with the other auditions but I got back on my feet, neatened up my monologues and got an offer.

Advice

Stay grounded. When performing monologues don’t move unless you have an intention. When someone is swaying on their feet or walking back and forth it is very distracting to watch. This advice was given to me by a current student at one of the schools and it made my monologues so much better. You will stop thinking of your movements and will only move in response to the text. Own the space and stand tall.

Stay focused. If you get through to the second round you will likey be asked to improvise. Listen carfully to what they are saying and do exactly what is asked for. It maybe to change your monologue style or to act like a fish or a watermelon (this isn’t an exaggeration!)

Be bold. When asked to do a task, go for it and don’t hold back. They much prefer seeing actors make a fool of themselves for being over the top then someone holding back and thinking too much about what they are doing.

I was terrified about auditioning but I actually ended up having loads of fun and leaning new things about myself as an actress, even if I didn’t get excepted into the school.

I am very excited about starting drama school in September!!!

Whats Your Typecast

20 Mar

If someone asked you what character you would cast yourself as, what would you say?

The tough guy?
The geek?
The slut?
The mother?

Typecast Characters

I had this discussion with a group of actor friends of mine and found it quite surprising about how they viewed themselves.

Typecasting isn’t based on your personality but it is the way you look. A 6ft tall, size 8, very attractive female is highly unlikely to ever ever be cast as a butch, aggressive criminal in a gangster movie, even if she has had a few clash ins with the police in real life. She would most likely be cast as the beautiful girlfriend or successful business women.

I noticed that most people cast themselves as how they want to be viewed as a person and not how they stereotypically look. A male friend of mine thinks his casting is the leading man and the successful entrepreneur. I was shocked by this as he has only ever played supporting roles as the thug or the common best mate. When I told him what he would actually get cast as, he got very defensive and said he hates it when people cast him as the thug for the reason that they are not the roles he wants.

Well tough luck! The acting world is cruel and if you want to get jobs and become successful you need to embrace your typecast as no one is ever going to cast you as the innocent teenager when you are in your mid twenties and covered in tattoos. You will just be fighting a losing battle. You may not at first like being stereotyped but once you embrace it and the jobs start coming in, you will soon start to appreciate it.

Some of my type casts are like my personality and others aren’t.

My type casts:
Bimbo – very stereotypical, as I am a blonde.
Girl next door – I have a young face.
The girlfriend – just a role that I always get cast in.
The bitch – not something I would ever want to be perceived as in real life but as a slim blonde people seem to cast me as the bitch.
The young professional – I’ve been the librarian, the trainee nurse, the office worker. This one stubs me as why from my appearance but I like to think its because I look smarter than I am. Ha!

Of course I would love to play many other characters but I have excepted these are the role I usually get auditions for just from my headshot.

A lot of very successful actors seem to have got stuck with their typecast and recycle their performances over again but it is great to see that many are able to get the opportunities to break this cycle.

Helena Bonham Carter – Crazy, eccentric typecast. (Sweeney Todd, Alice in Wonderland.) This character has done well for her recently in Hollywood with the help of her husbands, Tim Burton, movies. I am happy to see her branching out more (The Kings Speech) to show her true talent. We know she is a great actress from all her previous work, before Hollywood came calling.

Colin Firth – Wet, serious and awkward typecast. A great example of an actor that used his look to his advantage but since his roles in The Kings Speech and A Single Man he has been able to break away from his typecast.

Others however, use it to their advantage as they don’t seem to have the acting ability to create other characters.
Hugh Grant
Jennifer Anderson
Sarah Jessica Parker

The most legendary actors are the ones that never play the same characters twice in movies but you need to play to your typecast when starting out in your career.

Embrace your typecast as a newbie because as an actor your appearance is your first selling point, so you might as well use it to your advantage.

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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