My biggest challenge as a young actor
A young actor on Twitter recently asked me: “When you set out to pursue acting what was the most challenging thing for you?” Rather than tweet a response in 140 characters or less I’ll blog my answer and hope that if you’re starting out might see yourself in my story and be able to progress faster than I did. . . As a young actor I was not the most naturally gifted among my peers. I had been an athlete, a soccer player, so I had some awareness of my body but I certainly didn’t have a keen awareness of my inner life nor had I been much of a student of others. Despite these shortcomings, I knew I wanted to act. . I soon discovered two bigger challenges: 1. I was afraid of making choices and 2. I was easily distracted . In my first real acting class I was […]

My Biggest Challenge as a Young Actor  

Most casting for new series takes place during pilot season. Pilot season runs from approximately January through April, ending with the network’s annual upfronts in May, where network executives unveil their new fall and midseason shows to potential advertisers and the press. A pilot that gets picked up can quickly skyrocket your career! Here are 12 ways to get ready for the coming pilot season. [vertical_spacing height=”10″] [vertical_spacing height=”10″]   Update your tools Headshots should capture the essence of who you are, the kinds of roles you’re castable in and should look like you will when you arrive at the audition. Resumes should be organized, easy to read and up-to-date. Have your current reel available online in single clips and labeled so casting can watch your 12 second ‘comedy’ clip without having to watch your entire reel. [vertical_spacing height=”10″]   Get your social media together When casting Googles you, what […]

12 Ways To Get Ready For Pilot Season

3 things to consider before taking an acting job
Congratulations, they want to hire you! That’s great news! But before you decide how to spend your paycheck (if there is one) you’ll need to decide if you should take the job or turn it down. Deciding to accept or pass on an acting job isn’t always easy.  The simple equation I use to evaluate acting offers is Money + Experience + Exposure. If a job gives you 2 out of 3 seriously consider it.   [vertical_spacing height=”10″]   [vertical_spacing height=”10″] Money It’s no accident that the first (unofficial) rule of show business is “Take the money!” The first thing I consider when offered a job is “Does it pay and, if so, how much?” While it’s true that money isn’t everything, it’s amazing how important it becomes when you don’t have it. Taking a gig that pays you to stand on the corner in a chicken suit is a […]

3 Things To Consider Before Taking An Acting Job

[vertical_spacing height=”10″] To nail your musical theater audition you need time to prepare. But balancing a busy life and a career can make finding that time difficult. And, with auditions popping up on short notice, it’s easy to feel stressed, under-prepared and, as a result, less effective in the audition room. Here are five things to do before your musical theater audition so you’ll feel less hurried and ready to be your best when it counts. Make sure your book is ready! Having several songs organized, rehearsed and ready to perform beautifully does wonders for your peace of mind and your audition. Songs in your book should be age and type appropriate, showcase your strengths and reflect who you are. Choose at least one song from the “Great American Songbook” a.k.a “standards” (Rodgers and Hart, Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer, Jerome Kern, etc.) and one song from the “Golden Age” (Rodgers […]

Five Things To Do Before Your Musical Theater Audition

[vertical_spacing height=”10″] Marquee athletes get paid to perform at a high level under pressure. More importantly, they know what it takes to get to the big leagues. The punchline to the old joke “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” applies to athletes and actors alike. “Practice, practice, practice!” Here are 2 things athletes can teach actors about auditioning. [vertical_spacing height=”10″] Prepare more than you think you need to. You’ve spent some time in the batting cage, you’ve been hitting the ball regularly so you feel like you’re ready for game day. The next day, with the game on the line, the manager says “You’re up” and you step out of the dugout and up to the plate. But somehow, your time in the cage didn’t quite prepare you for this. Your hands are sweating, your breathing is shallow and you can feel your heart beating in your chest. You […]

What Pro Athletes Can Teach Actors About Auditioning

[vertical_spacing height=”10″] There are many reasons your audition song may not be working but you may be surprised that it often has little to do with your voice. Memorizing a song doesn’t mean you’re ready to perform it any more than knowing the parts of a car makes you ready to drive one. [vertical_spacing height=”10″] Zeroing in on what your issues may be is the first step to giving better auditions, getting more callbacks and booking more jobs. Among the many possibilities, here are 3 reasons your audition song isn’t working. [vertical_spacing height=”10″] You’re not asking the right questions I have about 30 questions I ask when working on a new lyric and those always lead to more questions. But this a short article so here are three basic questions you should ask if you want to make your work clearer, more specific and more interesting. *Who are you talking […]

Three Reasons Your Audition Song Isn’t Working

[vertical_spacing height=”10″] Everyone has some audition nerves. It’s completely understandable. After all, you’re standing in front of a group of complete strangers who are judging your looks, personality, voice and talent. Add the fact that a job you really want hangs in the balance, and an audition can take on almost Greek proportions in your mind. But it doesn’t have to. There’s a simple reason and a simple solution to the problem. [vertical_spacing height=”10″] The reason your audition nerves flare up is your awareness that you’re being judged makes you focus is on yourself during the audition. You think about how you look and how you sound and you adjust as you go to make sure it’s going well. It’s like you’re standing outside of yourself scrutinizing everything you do. It’s a huge waste of energy. Sanford Meisner said “Actor’s have two problems. They’re self-conscious and they don’t listen.” That’s […]

The Simple Solution to Your Audition Nerves

In a musical theater audition it can seem like there’s very little you can control, but there are some elements that you can. Here are five things to avoid at your next musical theater audition and why your audition will suffer if you don’t. [vertical_spacing height=”10″] [vertical_spacing height=”10″] Making your accompanist’s job harder. Every audition song is a duet. Smart actors make their accompanist’s job easy so they can play their best for you; your audition depends on it. Give your accompanist a clean copy of your music containing only what you want them to play and what you are going to sing. Put it in non-glare sheet protectors in a three ring binder so there’s no weird reflection from rehearsal studio lighting, and it won’t fall off the piano as they turn pages. It should be in the key you want. The name of the song, the composer, and […]

5 Musical Theater Audition Mistakes You Can’t Afford