Actor Tip: Keeping in “Acting Shape”

An actor recently came in for an audition, couldn’t get through the copy and apologized saying, “Sorry, I haven’t auditioned for anything in a month…I must be out of shape”. I thought to myself, this poor guy wanted to do his best and nail the audition but was too caught up in the moment to take a deep breath and put forth his best work. Therefore, what can an actor do to “keep in shape” for their next audition? Some people don’t have the luxury of working or auditioning everyday so what can you do in your downtime to stay in the game? LOTS!
Acting is about endurance and keeping in shape. In a way, you should treat yourself like a professional athlete and always be in shape for an acting challenge. Always be prepared and ready because you never know when the situation will arise and you need to deliver. If you stay in what we like to call “acting shape” you are more open and ready when the last minute audition comes in and you have 10 minutes to get to the casting studio…plus you will have your headshots with you and an audition outfit in your bag. This also means hone your craft by taking classes or attending a workshop, do some improv – it will keep you on your toes. Go see a show, do some theatre or anything creative, network by meeting and talking to people in the business, be involved in the acting community or do a student film to get more on-set experience. You’re only as good as your last performance so don’t let your last performance be the audition you screwed up two weeks ago.
It’s a huge pet peeve when someone coming in to audition is not familiar with a reference listed on the breakdown. Watch TV, or at least watch some of the current hit shows and be familiar with them. This day and age there is no excuse for not being up to date with the current trends and hits on TV. You never know when a director is going to ask you to be a little more like Ty Burrell…and you should definitely know who that is and how to deliver the next take if you expect to get the job. Plus, hopefully you will find some entertainment in doing your research.

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