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Audition Series: How to Show Up and Show You

Are you ready to take your audition skills to the next level? Are you ready to feel like a professional performer? We like the way you think! In our audition series, we share tips, tricks, and helpful insights about auditions to help you feel confident in yourself and your creative work. Today, we are considering some small, simple additions to your auditions.


Auditioning is a common method to find professional work as a performer. Essentially, auditions are like job interviews. The directors in the room want to know if you align with what they envision for a show and if you seem like a person with whom the director would like to work. As performers, our goal is bringing in material tailored to our individual artistic voice that we feel excited to share, while giving a personalized first impression. What do we mean when we write or talk about a personalized first impression?


Have you ever received the audition suggestion, “Just be yourself,” and thought, What the heck does that mean? The phrase “Just be yourself” is meant to be encouraging, but it can be baffling, too. Often, we focus on highlighting the performer in us that we forget to be ourselves. Below are some tangible ways to incorporate this kindhearted and legitimate advice:


Express how you feel about the audition—whether you are experiencing excitement and/or nerves, both are worthy and normal. It can be as simple as saying, “I’m excited to be here today!” or “Wow, this is nerve racking, but let’s do this!” Both of these show that you are a real person and are brave enough to show up.

Go the extra mile when you enter and exit the room. “Hello, how is everyone doing today?” or “Thank you, that was fun!” It’s up to you what you specifically say, but make sure you say something is our advice!

Take your time and ask questions. Holding a moment for yourself before you dive into the performance, allows you to center yourself and gain authority over your work. Asking questions is a great way to also show how you work as an artist.


All of these ideas are tools to add to your artist toolbox. Begin to view auditions as a moment to show a piece of your work and yourself. As Lin Manuel so brilliantly writes in Hamilton, “I am inimitable. I am an original.” It’s the honest truth, Downstagers.


As we always say, “You are you, and that is your artistry”.


Stay tuned for more DSA advice, news, and thoughts!

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