How To Apply For Drama School - iampro
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How To Apply For Drama School

The acting and performance industry can sometimes seem daunting and confusing, with lots of conflicting advice and information available online.

Here at iampro we spoke to expert Richard Neale who trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School for his top tips for any aspiring actors and actresses applying to drama school. Using Richard’s tips and our own, we have created this blog to make it all a bit easier for you. Richard is now on the audition panel for Guildford School of Acting, Drama Centre and ArtsEd.

1. Learn your script

This may sound like an obvious one, but it is incredibly important. Everything you present in the audition room should be learnt and not read out. Ensure that you have practised your lines thoroughly in the days and weeks up to your audition. Even with self-tapes that you can record yourself in private, it is vital that you know your text well. 

Knowing your script well will help you to bring your best performance, where you are able to concentrate on the delivery of the words and the expression of your character, without worrying about which one is next. If you do forget your words, make sure that you take the time to re-centre and even ask to start your performance again. Only begin again once you have completely calmed down and are confident that you can deliver your speech once again. 

2. There is no tick-box

There are no set boxes that you have to tick before wanting to become an actor or that make you have more of a chance at making it through an audition compared to someone else. It is all about what happens in the audition room on that specific day, in that specific moment. 

The panel often does not know what they are looking for before they see it, and for that reason, you should go into your audition with confidence and self-belief – you have just the same chance as the next person. This furthers how the quality of your speech and the way you prepare for it are just as important as performing it. All you can do is strive to share your very best work with the panel on the day. 

3. The panel are on your side

It can be daunting entering an audition room with all eyes on you but know that the panel is always on your side. They want you to give your best performance so that they can judge you fairly and not miss out on a potentially really great actor or actress. The audition panel is not judging you and are definitely not trying to catch you out. They are there to ensure you are comfortable and get the most out of you as possible. 

4. Speak in your own voice

It is really important that your own, authentic voice is used in your audition. This gives the audition panel the truest representation of you. It can be tempting to put on a drastically different voice to fit in with a certain character you are trying to portray, but it is vital that your own voice always shines through. 

5. Make your performance your own

Be yourself! Make sure that you bring your true self to the audition day. Whoever you are or however much or little experience you may have, make sure that the panel gets to know the real you. This is what they really want. 

6. Don’t be put off by redirection

Sometimes the audition panel may ask you to read your speech in a different way, or try a new technique whilst performing. This should not be taken as a negative but should be seen as a great opportunity to show off more skills and a side to your acting that the professionals will love. 

7. Make sure the school is right for you

Your audition should be a two-way transaction. When visiting the school or acting agency make sure that you are thoroughly checking out the people, building and teaching facilities there. You want to make sure that, if successful, you will feel happy and supported when learning and performing. After all, this could be a huge step in your career and therefore isn’t something that you should take lightly. 

As much as the audition is for the school to assess you and your acting ability, it is also for you to interact with the people who may be teaching you and those you may be learning alongside. Be friendly, personable and open. Do not be afraid to ask questions! 

8. All in it together

Regardless of how other people present at an audition day, remember that you are all there for the same reason. Try not to spend your time worrying about how confident other people seem or whether they are practising different warm-up techniques to you as, ultimately, this is a decision that lies with the audition panel. You are all going through the same process and there is no one correct way of doing it. 

9. Make the most of the moment

Ultimately, the audition is all that matters. The panel does not judge you outside of the audition room, where last-minute anxiety may be kicking in, but instead observes you in the moment of your performance that you have worked so hard to perfect. You can control some aspects of your audition day, such as how much preparation you have put in and whether you have eaten a good breakfast beforehand, but there are some things that you can’t. The outcome of your audition is out of your control, so you should be proud of whatever happens. 

10. It is YOUR space

Enjoy it! Take pride in your performance and relish the opportunity you are being given to express yourself. Ultimately, your audition is a chance for you to take up space and show the panel what you have been working on over the past few days and weeks. 

Watch Richard’s video

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