Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
Friday, June 14
The Indiana Daily Student


Auditions: the fine art of getting the part

Directors describe how to ace a try-out

Auditions. The cause of bitten nails, stomach aches and superstitions, the making or breaking of a career. Is it possible to ace an audition? If the outcome of an audition never ends in happiness, maybe your audition skills need some tweaking at the roots.\n"All auditions are different," said Iris Rosa, director of the African American Dance Company. \nDuring an audition, a director may look for specific qualities in a performer, depending on what the role calls for. Each role may be detail-oriented, so sometimes talent is not even a determining factor. Looks can matter. Height and hair color may be important. Age. A unique style. There is no true way to ace an audition.\nMost directors might say they try to avoid politics when it comes to auditions for a specific role. A successful audition for a play may require certain character qualities. \n"Be prepared, look at the audition notice and see what they're looking for," Rosa said. \nThese requirements may be crucial in order for an actor, singer, dancer or comedian to fit the part. In the African American Dance Company, being an African American is not a requirement, but, the ethnicity and cultural background of the group is a large part of the organization, drawing in many black dancers.\nJunior Matt Isler, member of the comedy troupe All Sorts of Trouble for the Boy in the Bubble, said during auditions, members of the company bring in auditioners one at a time for an interview to get a feel as to how a potential company member will fit in with the group. All Sorts of Trouble for the Boy in the Bubble is a student-run comedy group that accepts new people that the current members are sure that they can get along with. \nRegardless of extraneous factors, how a person is "going to fight for an audition," is extremely important, Rosa said. Aside from being a good dancer and having qualities such as proper training, attitude, attentiveness and alertness can help someone to ace an audition. Technique, flexibility and skill come into play, but mental and physical preparation will diffuse a positive energy from the performer. Rosa said one should be prepared with proper dance clothes, shoes and attitude. \n"You don't go in messy," she said. \nMichael Schwartzkopf, director of the Singing Hoosiers, also said solid preparation is the key to a successful audition. \n"Know your music and prepare yourself as best you can," he said. \nThe singer should not only know the notes of the song that is being used for the audition, but the background of it, to help relay its message, Schwartzkopf said.\n"Sing a song that you can sing well any day of the week, not only on a good day," Schwartzkopf said.\nAll areas of the performing arts expect that a performer should not only be good at the area that he or she loves to shine in, but that the performer should find a way to sell the audition to the director. Taking risks and displaying a quality within a talent that accentuates a performer's capabilities can never hurt. Make a fool of yourself. Take the chance to show off unique talents if given the opportunity...the director may find some use for it in a comedy sketch, skit, or a choreographic piece. Potential talent is important as well, because a director may want to fine-tune that potential for a performance.\n"Do all the right and proper things you can do," Rosa said. \nPreparation, presentation and the refusal to say "I can't" will get a performer as far as possible in the audition process. If an audition isn't aced, it wasn't necessarily a flop.

Get stories like this in your inbox