Written for The Networker by Terry Berland @berlandcasting.
It’s quite a feat to deliver an unforgettable audition in under a minute, but that’s exactly what you have to do in a commercial audition as well as in any short dramatic scene for a film or TV show where you may have only one to five lines.
Your main goal in such instances is to come off as authentic as possible in these clutch circumstances. In a commercial, you’re being used as a vehicle for the sell. In a dramatic scene, you may be needed as a lynchpin to convey story information or to serve a transitional beat in the story.
Here are six essential tips for delivering the authenticity you’ll need to crush your audition and significantly raise your odds for a callback and booking.
1. Know how to dissect the script. Understand the script. Understand if the spot is selling via humor, frustration or putdown.
2. Understand your character. Are you the winner (the hero), the looser (the one whose life is not working because you don’t use the product), the leader or the follower (the side kick or friend)?
3. Be someplace specific. Create a specific place where you are standing. In your imagination, create every detail of the location. Include tangible/concrete sensory details like colors, lighting, smells and sounds.
4. Reveal your authentic self instantly. In my teaching of how to find your authentic self, I’ve discovered the answer lies in finding what empowers you. Through the exploration of your empowerment, there is a “sweet spot” where you’re guided by feelings of confidence, honesty, awareness and relaxation. Hooking into that sweet spot is truly an “a-ha” moment.
5. Come from the standpoint of the person saying the words.Remember that it’s WHO is saying the words that’s going to be booked. The client is looking for a personality to make the character in their spot come alive. Your personality needs to drive your performance. The words will take care of themselves.
6. Be confident in your choices. Commit 100% to your choices. Choices are to be respected, not to be afraid of. Being neutral will get you nowhere.
Now go out there and crush it. You’ve only got a minute!
If you want to sharpen up on your commercial acting technique, follow this link to Terry Berland’s Commercial Acting workshop.