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Open Call Must-dos and Do-nots

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If you happen upon an open call as you’re scrolling through your social media sites and plan to attend, you’ll want to make sure you prepare in advance – especially, if this is your first rodeo.  There are certain must-haves and do-nots you’ll want to keep in your back pocket so you stand out to casting directors. 

First thing’s first.  Even if you have limited information, aren’t sure about a particular part of the character breakdown, or haven’t had much time to recite your lines, if you’re right for the role, it’s worth your time to show up.  CDs will be looking for someone who fits physically and can pull off the audition on the fly.  If the breakdown includes multiple opportunities for background roles that have broad character descriptions, go.  Chances are, as long as you present well in person, you’ll be booked.

The other side of the coin has to be considered here, too, of course.  If you read through the role descriptions and you simply do not fit any of them, don’t attend the open call.  You’ll just be wasting your time and the CD’s and, if you want a chance to work with that individual in the future, you certainly don’t want to waste his or her time.

Choose a monologue that is appropriate for the role you wish to play.  If you’re trying out for a kids’ movie, bring a Disney monologue or something similar.  If it’s a horror flick, search for common scripts that fit the genre.  When you’re auditioning, your audience will want to be able to adequately envision you in the project.  So, help spur their imaginations and show up prepared.

You’ll want to make sure you bring your headshot with you, too, and if you have any images that portray a persona close to the one you’re going for, bring these along.  Again, this will help the CD see you actually in the role.  Visuals are key.

Remember, how you dress will be noticed in the first few seconds after you walk through the door, so prepare accordingly.  If you’re trying out for the role of a protagonist princess, don’t come dressed in all black.  Play around with your outfits a bit until you find just the right fit.  Make sure you look “put together” regardless of the ensemble you choose.

And, above all, come with high energy and a friendly demeanor!  This is a must even if traffic was terrible, you just got a call on the way that put you down in the dumps, or whatever else may be happening outside of the gig.  Leave it at the door.

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