8 Reasons You Need an Audition Log
If you have a great memory, that's great! Still, you need to keep lists if you’re auditioning for acting roles. I’m serious -- you need to start making lists just to keep it all straight. This entry is about keeping an Audition Log.
Every time you go on an audition, you should write down notes afterwards. These notes are to keep you sharp, remind you who else was in the room, and help you track all your auditions -- whether you’re auditioning a lot or a little. For most actors, as soon as you walk out the room, you forget everything! We want to make sure you have the notes that you need to make sure you are improving as the time goes on. Don't be discouraged, be informed.
So, what is an Audition Log? You know, I didn't know what an audition log was until my career coach Ethan Paulini introduced me to it. I always knew that I needed to keep a log of all of the things that I was doing because my memory is terrible, but I didn't know that it was an actual thing that many people use.
Here are the questions that you should be asking yourself and tracking after you walk out of every audition. Stay tuned to the end because I'm going to tell you the best way to keep track of all these questions.
When Did the Audition Happen?
At the end of the year or at the end of the month, you want to be able to look back and see how many auditions you had over a given period of time.
Where Did the Audition Happen?
After auditioning for a while, you'll get to know the different locations auditions are held. You'll know the color of the back wall so you don't dress the same color as the wall. (That's always awkward). Keeping track of things like that can be helpful.
What Did You Enjoy About the Audition?
Unless it’s a self-tape audition, ask yourself what about the audition you enjoyed. We want to be operating from a place of gratitude and this question looks at each audition in a more positive light. Even if you walked in and figuratively face-planted on the floor, what did you enjoy? Find the moment that you felt good about. Maybe it was your slate, maybe it was how you exited the room. Write it down, celebrate one thing that you did. It could just be the fact that you went.
What Did You Audition For?
Was it a television audition? Was it a commercial audition? Have you auditioned for the same TV show four times and they still haven't hired you? Write down what role and character type, so that you can start to see how people are seeing you and what they're inviting you to audition for. If you're constantly called into the room for Nerd type roles, then you're doing great at performing that type, but perhaps not other roles.
Who Was In the Audition Room?
This is the thing that makes us feel really awkward. We don't want to call anybody by the wrong name. We don't want to have to re-ask anyone's name or wonder if we’ve met them before. And it’s really important that you know who is in the audition room before entering. A lot of the auditions will have a list of everyone who’s in the audition room on the sign-in table. If they don't, the sign-in table is a great place to ask so you don't go into the audition room asking the casting director their name.
What Did You Wear to the Audition?
This one might sound silly. It's important to know what you wore for two reasons. The first reason is that you’ll need to wear the same outfit if you’re called back. If you’re like me, you’ll forget what you wore once the next week rolls around. The second reason is that if you get a call back or book a role, your outfit may have played a factor. You know that your outfit was a good choice and you’ll want to use that outfit again and again. And yes, outfits matter when it comes to casting.
What Feedback Did You Receive at the Audition?
Did the Casting Director give you any feedback? Whether they say “Can you do it one more time for us, do it a little bit faster?” or “Could you just be a little bit more conversational?” Even if it was a simple “That’s great.” Whatever it is that they say to you in the room, write it down. That's a note that you want to use or be aware of the next time you go in for that person.
What Grade Would I Assign My Audition?
This last step depends on your age, but I think it's helpful nonetheless. Assign yourself a letter grade. What do you think your grade was for that audition? Maybe you did amazing, so you give yourself an A. Maybe you didn't do so well, so you gave yourself a C. Then take into account the day you had. What's been going on during the week? If you gave an audition that was pretty terrible during a really difficult week, then maybe you give yourself a higher grade because you tried the hardest that you could in that moment. This is great for kids because it gives them an opportunity to assess their entire world, what's going on rather than how people judged them in the audition room.
If you want to take it a step further, you can also pick a high point and a low point of the audition. I like to call it a Glow and a Grow. What's one thing that you did that was so good it was a Glow? I was so confident when I walked in there and I said my slate or I introduced myself, and I said a joke really quickly and it made everyone laugh. That was a Glow. Maybe in that same audition, you stumbled over this one sentence and that was your Grow. Pick a Glow and a Grow every time you go in the room to both celebrate and challenge yourself.
Advice For Parents
Those are all of the things that you want to write down when you have an audition. Here’s my piece of advice to you parents. When a kid comes out of an audition, there are so many things that are going on in their head. If you have a system like this, you can leave them alone and let them process. Some kids like to talk to you about it, some kids do not, and you really need to feel out what your child wants. Ask them questions about what they want and give them that. Having their feedback is going to be helpful for you.
The best way to do this is to create a Google Form and have your child fill out all of that information right after it's done. That way, you come out, you pass them the phone, and they fill it out. If they want to share something with you verbally, they can, but if not, they can walk away and they don't have to talk about it anymore. A lot of parenting young actors is managing expectations and managing feelings, and after an audition, you can come out with a kid that's on top of the world or the complete opposite. This system gives you the opportunity to get the information that you need as a parent so you know what they need to improve on, but also gives them the space that they need as a creative.
All right, guys, I hope this was helpful for you. I hope you start creating your Audition Logs. If you have an audition that you recently went to, comment below your Glows and your Grows. I want to know how you're doing in your auditions. Thank you so much for joining me. As always wishing you love, light, and all that jazz.