About auditioning with us - your questions answered
Preparing to audition with us - Checklist.
1) Read through the show information on the main AUDITIONS page.
* Check your diary to make sure that you are available to attend at least 50% of the rehearsal times, and all the show dates.
* Check that you are able to get to the rehearsal venue (Chestnut Community Centre, 1-3 Poplar Close, Brixham, TQ5 0SA). See FIND US if you need a map or directions.
* Read the list of characters. Who would you want to play?
2) Fill out your audition form.
3) Contact us on email@example.com to request character sides and with any questions.
4) When you have received your audition sides, you do not need to learn them for the audition, but do please familiarize yourself with them and make strong choices about how you will play the character.
5) Come along to the auditions!
When attending an audition, please wear comfortable clothes, bring a pen, your diary, a comprehensive list of dates that you are not available for rehearsal or performing, and your completed audition form.
Lots of people ask us how our auditions work - and after all, it is different for every theatre company. So, we have tried to put together the common questions on one handy web-page here. If you have additional questions, please do email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Audition sessions are led by, and overseen by Laura Jury, a freelance actor since 1996, founder of the South Devon Players, and one of four theatre directors nationally on Equity's Directors & Designers Committee.
So first of all - lets clear up some misconceptions...
All too often in this industry people think that they can only be cast if they fit a certain demographic of age, physical appearance, ethnicity etc. That is not true - especially with us. We welcome people of all ages - there is a reason age ranges are so broad on our casting calls; so that we can cast the best actor for the role. Ethnicity - well as a company run by a person of colour, we also love to welcome people of all ethnicities. Unless it is absolutely unavoidable that a character is a particular ethnicity, which 99 times out of 100 it is not, then we love to audition people of all ethnicities, and the same goes with accents, and the same goes for character gender identity. Unless a character has to be of a specific gender identity, then we are very happy to audition anyone for that role.
We also welcome people with disabilities. Remember that person of colour who founded and runs the company? She is also disabled with non-visible conditions. So are several of our regular actors and stage crew. Visible or not, disability is not a barrier to working with us. If you are cast, or simply considering auditioning, please ask us about accessibility or accommodations - we will do as much as we possibly can, and happily discuss everything with you. This will have no bearing on casting decisions.
You do not need to be an experienced actor to be involved in our shows. In any given production, we have a cast that ranges from complete beginners who have never set foot on a stage before, through to people who are seasoned freelance professional actors who have been performing for decades.
So what do we look for?
Well we have a few very defined parameters that we look for in casting:
* Locality - We only accept actors who are locally based (in Devon), or who have assured us that they will be in the area, and able to attend a reasonable amount of rehearsals and all performances.
* Attending auditions in person- We only audition actors face to face. This is ideally on our main audition day for a show, otherwise if you are unavailable on that day, we will arrange with you to meet with you separately during the fortnight before the main audition day.
* Strong characterization in auditions. You do not need to second-guess what the director has in mind, but we will focus on energy, commitment to acting choices for your audition scene, and believability of the character.
* There are additional things we look for on the audition day, which we can only look for in person. We look for good timekeeping (arrival on time or early); politeness and respect towards others in the audition room (being kind and pleasant to the others present, listening to any direction, not physically grabbing another person without express permission, to name just a few things ); preparedness, and good teamwork.
Okay so with that out of the way - what does the audition day and decision process look like?
The audition day formally commences at 12 midday, when we open the doors of the rehearsal hall. When you come in, you will find chairs arranged in a semicircle in front of the casting panels table, with a performing area in front.
You will be asked for your completed audition form, or given one to fill out if you do not have one. You will be shown where the toilets and "help yourself" coffee/ tea/ biscuits facilities are, and asked to sit anywhere in that semicircle of chairs.
The auditions take place with small group readings of scenes highlighting main characters. The panel will make notes, and may ask you to do the scene twice so that we can see your audition to its best advantage, if we think you may have been nervous on the first reading. Remember, the audition panel want you to perform really well - we are on your side!
Sometimes we may ask specific people to read scenes alongside a specific other person. This is so that we can see how two people work together, to consider a possible casting of linked characters.
When everyone has read for the characters they are most interested in, the public side of the auditions is closed. People auditioning may go home and await an email, or they are also welcome to wait and have free coffee and tea.
The panel will usually convene there and then, to create a draft casting.
Casting offers are made within two or three days. Then and there, if you are waiting at the audition hall. We do ask everyone to wait up to a week to hear from us, in case a role is turned down and we re-offer it.
If you were not selected, you will be informed, within 7 to 10 days and feedback will given. Not being cast does not preclude you from auditioning again.
At the end of that week (or sooner if possible), the final cast list is announced. Actors and crew will be invited to a full cast and crew script readthrough and meeting within the following 7 days on a Sunday afternoon or Wednesday evening. At that meeting we will also do actors contracts, discuss any questions, and prepare for the next months working together creating the show.