Self Tape Auditions = Less Preparation?

There’s a serious disturbance in the Force!

As self tape auditions become more the norm, something, I’m not a fan of at all, I’m old school, I LOVE going into a casting office for a live audition… however, that topic is for another time. What I’m concerned about right now is how I’m hearing more and more from actors that because they have a self tape audition, they don’t have to prepare as much as they used too. To that I say;


In fact, it’s the exact opposite! Now that you’re receiving sides well in advance, you have more than enough time to prepare, you can perform your audition whenever, wherever and however; the pressure of being as close to perfect has never been more true! You need to absolutely CRUSH your auditions! There are no excuses. Traffic? NOPE! You lost your sides? NOPE! You had to wait over an hour in the sterile as F waiting room? NOPE! Some other actor in the waiting room wouldn’t shut up? The director, CDs and producers just starred at their phone? NOPE…NOPE…NOPE!!! Hell, you can perform your audition 100 times! You can take a break if needed. You can grab a water, wipe off your sweaty forehead, etc. You can’t do that in a live audition!

I heard some actor say, “I don’t need to be off book because I can post the sides on my wall.” Are you nuts?! You’re going to literally read your audition?! Do you think a professional casting director can’t tell? What is wrong with you!

“I can always edit my read so it looks better.” NO, IT DOESN’T! It looks like you’re an unprepared actor who had to splice together their audition tape! Again, you think a professional casting director can’t tell?!

I could rant about this for hours. In fact, I told a brilliant actress (one who does prepare) recently that if she just shows up prepared to an audition and/or submits a self tape in which she’s prepared, she’ll be better than 90% of the actors she’s competing against. And that’s a fact! That’s just a point I was trying to make. I followed up with her and said she still needs to put in the work and do the best damn job she possibly could.

For any actor out there who may be reading this and saying to themselves, “I do this.” Than I’m about to drop some stone cold truth on you… YOU’RE LAZY!

A self tape audition doesn’t mean it’s time to coast, it means it’s time to be more prepared than ever! One thing I absolutely loved about all of my acting teachers in L.A. was how much they pushed preparation. I miss them and wish I could still take their classes. Actually, Shari Shaw offers a workshop in Atlanta from time to time. Sadly, to study with Stan Kirsch, you have to go to Hollywood.

But no matter who you study with, where you live or your level of talent, don’t be lazy, put in the prep and knock your self tape auditions out of the park… or continue to be lazy and allow us non lazy, super prepared actors crush you!

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