These Self-Tape Audition Tips Could Book You Work While Social Distancing

Article Image
Photo Source: Antoine Beauvillain on Unsplash

Since the worldwide pandemic of the coronavirus hit the U.S., in-person auditions have temporarily become a thing of the past—but that doesn’t mean you can’t still book work from home. The show must go on, especially now! Self-taped auditioning and remote casting is the way to do just that. As part of The Slate, Backstage’s new on-camera series of online workshops, interviews, and seminars, our own casting specialist Christine McKenna-Tirella spoke earlier this week about how to perfect your next self-tape. 

Even in quarantine, auditions are still being held.
“I’m the casting specialist here at Backstage and I’m also a casting director that has over eight years of experience in New York ranging from Broadway and national tours to commercials and reality TV. Over the last few weeks, we’ve seen the shift in the industry that in-person auditions have been cancelled or put on hold for this moment. But we’ve also seen an uptick in interest in self-tapes and remote casting. That’s definitely gonna be a trend. It just keeps on building momentum during this time and we want you to feel prepared and empowered and ready to put your best foot forward.”

You can still be productive in isolation.
“Something you can do today to stay creative and focused: Let’s look at your résumé that you’re sharing with Backstage and make sure that it’s completely up-to-date. Also, did you know that you can have unlimited material on our site? You can have a reel up there, you can have maybe a teaser for a movie that you’ve been in, you can share some small clips of you singing or dancing. Something that is really showcasing you in the best light. Make sure that they are up to date, that they feel professional. But it is certainly something that you could do right now to share your best work.”

Make sure you record your self-tape audition in a professional setting.
“So with self-tapes, here are some of the basics that you will hear again and again. You hear them because they are so essential. [You need] little to no distractions in the room, a nice plain background so that [it] isn’t distracting. A nice medium to tight shot so that I can connect with you through that camera so that I can see the great work that you’re doing. You wanna upload all of the material that you received in the packet. You wanna do everything that the audition requires you to do. Ideally, you have a reader that really works well with you and gives you something to work with.”

Do multiple takes. That’s the benefit of self-tape auditions!
“Normally, you get to go into the audition room, it’s five minutes long, and you walk back out and you go, ‘Ugh, I wish I could do it again.’ Maybe? Right? With self-tapes, you can do this again and again and again until you feel like you got it right. And then you send it in. So you have the opportunity to really put your best foot forward right now. Show your best work, do multiple takes of the audition that you get.”

Looking to get cast? Apply to casting calls on Backstage.