Every talented musician, dancer, and actor had to start somewhere, and by booking your first audition, you’ve already taken the first step toward cultivating your child’s talents. Being new to the world of casting, you’d probably like to gain some insight before going to your first audition – and we’re happy to help.
Although you’re undoubtedly excited and possibly a bit nervous, it’s important to keep these tips in mind before heading out:
Practice! – Your kid might feel overwhelmed on the day of the audition for a variety of reasons: they’ll be in a room full of people, performing in front of strangers, and will feel under pressure to do well. This is why it is important to practice beforehand! Before the audition, walk them through what it will be like and what they will have to do. Let them know how long they may have to wait before the audition, and how to behave in front of other people. Pretend to be the casting director and have your child act out the audition. Have your child practice introducing themselves, making eye contact with everyone in the room when your child walks in and properly saying goodbye and thank-you at the end. By allowing your child to have a clear picture of how the audition will occur, you will help them feel comfortable and prepared come the actual day of auditioning.
…But don’t over-practice – Although you may have practiced the necessary lines and cues with your kid, they need to be ready when asked to take direction that deviates from what was rehearsed. Let them know that the casting directors might ask to change how certain words are said or to do something different physically, and that it’s important to adapt when they do. Practicing excessively may make your kid nervous and unable to perform when asked to change from what was planned.
Arrive early – It’s important to make sure your child is relaxed and collected prior to the audition. Arriving early ensures that there will be enough time to get settled and to get focused prior to the audition.
Pack for downtime – You might have to wait for quite a long time before your child is called. It’s important to pack food and entertainment to keep your kid from getting too hungry or restless before auditioning. Hunger and boredom breakdowns can disrupt your child’s mood and prevent them from auditioning at their fullest potential.
Let the casting directors direct – Although you want your child to perform as best as possible for the audition, you must refrain from coaching in front of the casting directors. Your child should know what to do based on earlier practice, and trying to coach them at an audition may make them nervous and uneasy. Your coaching can also give the impression that your kid can’t take direction. Even more important is that you do not scold your child, which puts the casting directors in an uncomfortable position and makes them likely to remember you for the wrong reasons.
Dress appropriately for the role – Whether your kid is 5 or 15, make sure they dress appropriately for their age group and role. If your child is 5 years old, this might mean refraining from excessively using makeup and making your child wear heels unless the role calls for it. Likewise, there’s no need to throw your son in a suit and tie if it’s not necessary for the role. Let your kid be comfortable in their own age and clothing, they’ll perform more naturally and confidently.
Relax – After introductions, your kid should take a moment to breathe before beginning the audition. This allows them to calm their nerves to think clearly, ensuring they give their best performance. Let them know that making a mistake is okay, and that if one happens, they should take a deep breath, relax, and continue normally. Panicking will only serve to hurt one’s performance.
Keep Trying! – Don’t let your child be dismayed. If your child doesn’t get this audition, remind them that not everyone can be chosen for every audition, and that many kids will often compete for the same role. There will always be casting opportunities available in the future, and it’s vital to keep practicing and refining your child’s talents with each audition. If your kid truly enjoys their talent, they should be willing to keep refining it. Making sure they stay motivated is the most important thing you can do to ensure they take advantage of their talents and do their best come the next audition.
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