Excited and perhaps nervous, you are auditioning for an acting job; very precious indeed. The Room is a challenging beast to master. Often, it is someone’s office or perhaps a conference room. Regardless, it by no means resembles a set, sound stage, or the “location”. You likely will perform the scene alone and will definitely not be afforded the luxury of rehearsal time to get things just right as is typical in a play.

What’s It Like In The Audition RoomYou will be expected to completely present, immediately likeable and charismatic, and should be prepared for distractions such phones ringing, conversations, and other noises from the other room of 20 to 30 actors all waiting for you to finish so that they can walk in and bump you off your role.

This is not the glamorous aspect of the profession. Yet, mastering the audition process is a fundamental key of a working actor. It isn’t easy. Mastery rests on your ability to spontaneously turn on charisma in all its subtle shading within fractions of a second of entering the room. No immediate allure (think sparkle), no job. Though once mastered, the producer or director will love you and create a new star.

Everyone who you have ever watch voice an utterance on TV or in a movie had to first impress a casting director. Casting directors are the gate-keepers and are perpetually seeking exceptional actors and if they are lucky, the next big star to usher through the gate.

I love watching celebrity; they captivate me. For eight years, I worked on “Frasier”. During that time, I met and collaborated with the bright and dazzlingly talented regular cast members. In addition, I worked with the constant parade of highly accomplished guest stars. Like an astrological nebula, “Frasier” birthed many future stars that first entered the room as “unknowns”.

Over  eight years, I spent thousands of hours in The Room. I am an expert on The Room. All casting directors are. I championed for numerous actors after seeing their work on stage only to watch them tank their audition. Though they sparkled on stage, once they entered The Room, they were unable to shine and capture the director and producer as they had the audience night after night. We casting directors are limited. Pushing an individual too much the director or producer might feel cornered into a decision—that would be unwise.

Not only is the room frustrating and frightening, it is also very boring.  A typical Primetime Network pilot will attract roughly 300 aspiring actors per role. In a pilot with six to fifteen series regulars the number of auditions we see is upwards of 1,400 people saying the same thing. That’s a long time sitting.

The main point to take away is not to enter The Room seeking approval. Good actors share who they are with their audience. They are authentic in their portrayal. Do not enter this profession to fulfill your lifelong dreams—it has no magic. It cannot heal you. Identify and then work on personal issues through any means that brings you succor. Take your time before auditioning. It is your time. It is all about you. If you get butterflies, it’s okay. I do. We all do at some point or another. You can only succeed if you direct them to fly in formation.