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Friday, April 24, 2009

Making Strong Choices

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I always tell my students that my philosophy on “making a strong choice” and “taking risks” is that they are defined by having the courage to follow your instincts in the audition room instead of playing the stereotype. I just came across these articles by casting director, Mark Sikes, who explains, in detail, some of the best auditions he has experienced, and why. Namely, making strong interesting choices that are natural to the actor and avoid trying to figure out what the casting director “wants”:

Best Auditions Ever

He has a followup article, which talks about charisma and “magic” in the audition room. I have an exercise that I do with my students called the “ACE Strategy” which helps actors figure out that special essence that is inside of them, and how to make sure to reveal that in the audition room (as well as in their marketing materials and while performing). Mark gives examples of what charisma and magic mean to him:

Best Auditions Ever, Part II

It is amazing to know that the work my students are doing is being supported by the pros in the industry. Bottom line: Getting to know yourself as a human being - and accepting yourself as such - is the foundation of any successful acting career. You achieve that, and you will be brought in over and over. Will you be a star? Who knows. But you will be someone people will want to hire, and audiences will want to watch. And you will feel like a million bucks in the pursuit of your career goals because you get to Just Be Yourself.

(Mark Sikes writes an article every week called The Casting Corner, which appears Mondays on Showfax. You can also read articles by Bonnie Gillespie, titled The Actor’s Voice, also published Mondays on Showfax.)

Erin Cronican's career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Diego. She has appeared in major feature films and on television, and has done national tours of plays and musicals. She has worked in the advertising & marketing departments of major corporations, film production companies, theater magazines, and non-profit acting organizations. To learn more, check out

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