It’s fun, isn’t it?
If I had a nickel for every time I walked into a room praying that the people behind the table had actually seen me in a performance and if I could use that as audition currency to get me to the callback, I could probably pay those people off to, well, call me back. Though the payoff would be all in nickels and honestly no one wants that.
“Just let me at the material!” I telepathically scream at them. And while I feel like my brain is quite clearly communicating this thought, what they’re most likely seeing is a woman staring at them incredibly hard without blinking.
I make an impression.
I’ve had an audition where, goodness knows why, I muttered the stage directions aloud to myself and then, horrified, realized that indeed I had voiced them rather than said them to myself. (In my brain. you know: the appropriate way.)
I’ve had an audition where, as I left the room, the artistic director–who I had never auditioned for before–kindly pointed out that my dress was tucked into my tights.
At least I’ve got party stories. But! I have also had more than one audition in which I walked into the room knowing exactly what I had to offer and knowing in that moment that no one could play that role better than me. And you’ve had those auditions too.
I can’t say that I’ve mastered auditioning.
I have my own struggles just like everyone. I battle anxiety and the adrenaline that accompanies it and I’ve spent almost a year working on centering and grounding myself so that I can focus. I say cruel things to myself about my abilities instead of affirming my gifts. But I also have my strengths. I play. I listen. I bring the insatiable desire to make someone laugh, smile, feel, escape, commune with me. See? I’m getting better at affirming myself!
What are your struggles?
Are you willing to take a risk? Are you centered and focused? Do you believe in yourself? Are you putting in the time? Do you know what makes you special and unique from everyone else? Because you ARE. You are a gift. It’s time to know that.
Sometimes auditions are the only opportunity we will have for months (maybe longer) to perform. When we walk into that room, we have to make it Our Show. And I’m learning how to do that. So while I can’t say that I have mastered auditioning, I have learned to find the joy in it, the fun in it. It’s just another opportunity to do what I love the most.
Landree Fleming is a Chicago-based actress, comedian, and writer – and the current muse of The Money Note. Catch her at the Chicago Women’s Funny Festival this June with her musical sketch group Off Off Broadzway.
What about you? What are your particular challenges with auditioning? Do you have funny stories to look back on? We’d love it if you’d take a minute to share them below! Who’s first?