In order to give you – reader, the student, the friend – an idea of what my career path looks like, I am going to share my audition, rehearsal, and performance adventures.
Today I had an audition in one of the top casting offices in town (there are only a few left). It was for a non-union commercial to be broadcast on TV (limited run) and the Internet (indefinite run). The pay was $600 for one day.
I read for two roles. Each had one line. As in one sentence. 6 or 7 words.
The casting office was packed. I have never seen it so busy. The older fella sitting next to me leaned in and said, “This is what casting offices looked like 10 years ago…” The era of plentiful paid work in Seattle is over, or so it seems (stay tuned for a short post on renewing the WA State film incentive).
They were running about 20 minutes behind. I arrived 15 minutes before my time like a good boy. Thus, my wait was long. Luckily, I got to catch up with a colleague to stave off complete boredom. I probably should have been rehearsing my LINE, but I felt that “they will like my look or not, it’s not really about the ‘acting,'” so I chumped out and chatted away with a friend. I do not recommend wasting time which could be spent practicing. Some day, I will take my own advice.
My first read was alone and I got a bit of direction beforehand, which is always nice. After the read, I was adjusted (“A bit slower”), and I read again. The read was lackluster and tight (and I will post soon about the problems with self-analysis). The second read was with a young girl (10 ish) and I played the dad. I started to talk to her about the scene as they started to roll and then delivered the line. I was adjusted, went again, and chatted with her a bit more (commonly called “improv”). The improv got a laugh from the client.
I left thinking this: I do not consider myself a commercially cast-able actor, thus I under-prepare. I was tight in the room because I did not rehearse enough. I need to find playable actions even in one line commercial reads. I was able to have a bit of fun in the room to show I am easy going and humorous.
I would not have had the opportunity to audition without an agent.
Hopefully, I will be able to post again soon about the next audition.