What Do Casting Directors Look For?

What makes a child stand out among the thousands of performers casting directors see at auditions? Casting directors look for a well-rounded, authentic child who can give a compelling performance.  They value personality, and they can spot a fake from a mile away. They want to see naturalness. Casting directors know that acting demands a certain level of maturity from a child, The child performer is expected to be a professional in delivering the goods. Here are qualities that casting directors look for in aspiring young performers.

Training. A young performer may have a winning look and a great personality, but they must demonstrate that they’ve benefited from group classes or private coaching. Child actors must develop skills in the theater arts. Lack of proper training will show up in an audition and put the child at a distinct disadvantage against performers who’ve built a foundation in the industry.

Personality.  What personality traits are casting directors are most eager to see? It doesn’t matter whether your child is funny and quirky or thoughtful and curious. Opening up and revealing authentic parts of their true self will make the child memorable.

Naturalness.  Your child should not seem fake. Casting directors want to see kids being themselves. They can spot fake a mile away, so it’s best to just relax and be real.  There’s no way to overstate the importance of authenticity in auditions. Avoid mannerisms that are manufactured in acting or personality. Casting directors want to see young performers display an emotional connection to their audition materials.

Well-rounded.  A song or a monologue are important in an audition, but so are the child’s interests outside of acting. Skill at baseball or swimming may turn out to be marketable, but they also give casting directors insight into how the child would fit the character for which they are casting.

Professionalism. There’s no room for immaturity in the acting business. Acting is a job that calls for a child to behave professionally on set and be easy to work with. Demonstrating a passion for the craft will help the child make an indelible impression.

Parental Support. Casting directors want to see that child performers want to be there because they love acting and not because they or their parents want them to be famous. Casting directors want to see that parents are supporting their children, not pushing them.



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