Auditions for the 2020-2021 Season
Our upcoming season remains under review as we devise programming that follows all due precautions during the ongoing pandemic. Check back soon, as we look forward to new and creative performing opportunities in the months ahead!
Auditions for plays and musicals in the Spotlight season are open to young performers up to the age of 19, depending on which show it is. Some shows may require limited age ranges depending on the material. The requirements to audition are posted for each separate show, linked to this page when available.
Head Shots and Résumés
Prepare a head shot and a résumé for season play auditions. Believe it or not, this can be a worry free process.
Head shots are necessary to help everyone on the directing team remember who is who during casting. No one judges whether the photo came from a studio. A color printout is just fine. To get the best head shot, follow these hints: A basic, average shot is usually better than your favorite shot. A zoomed-in or cropped view of head and shoulders is better than a very-close-up angle. A simple smile or straight face beats your biggest smile for this purpose. To look three-dimensional, it’s better to turn head and shoulders a few degrees to the side, with only your eyes aimed at the camera, instead of facing perfectly straight like in a police mug shot. Have fun, but don’t stress over it.
An actor’s résumé does not need to be long. A single page is best. First-timers and child actors often have limited info to include anyway. It is helpful to include specifics that matter for casting parts such as age and height, experience with performing arts, team activities, awards, etc. Mention special skills we might miss during auditions (juggling, acrobatics, guitar, celebrity impressions, etc.) that may come in handy.
It is crucial to have contact information such as phone number and valid email address typed at the top of the résumé. Even though teens often manage their own schedules, and may provide contact information to the stage manager later, only adult contacts (parent or guardian number/email) are advisable for generic résumés.
Check Schedule Conflicts
Prior to auditions, check your calendar for any and all schedule conflicts between the audition date(s) and the scheduled dates of the show. We understand that everyone has possible conflicts with certain rehearsal dates. The directors must know all of the excused absences that will be required prior to casting the show and scheduling the rehearsals, without surprises. Normally, it is impossible to cast a performer if there are conflicts with the final rehearsals or public performance dates.
Plan for Style and Content
Some plays require auditioning with a prepared monologue, and some don’t. If you know a specific character you want to play in the show, your 1-2 minute monologue (memorized is better than written) should resemble the style of that character. Don’t use a monologue from the same show.
Most musicals require singing a short section of a song. Your choice of audition song matters. The directors want to hear if your voice and style will fit the show. Don’t choose a song from the show, but do choose a song that fits the show. In other words, don’t sing a nursery song to audition for a rock opera. Don’t sing a current pop song for an old classic musical.
Also, if you are aiming to play a specific character in the show, select a song that sounds the most like that character: a funny song for a comic role, or a love ballad for a romantic lead.
At some level, auditions are scary for even the most practiced and experienced performers. At Spotlight, we hope that auditions are a fun and educational process nonetheless. Not everyone can get into every season play, and that’s hard for directors and cast members alike.
Remember that it’s normal for good performers not to make it into some shows. Usually, it’s just the math (like when 60 performers audition for a cast of 20). Other times, the show calls for particular mixes of ages, male or female, short or tall, and so on. We prefer all the diversity we can get. Many times at Spotlight, there are wonderful actors, even those who have won awards for playing leads in other shows, who don’t make it into a particular cast.
Sometimes, performers need to build experience with other opportunities such as theatre camps, performance troupes, or vocal or dance lessons in order to win more parts with the skill and confidence that comes from that experience. Some shows are geared especially to include opportunities for all skill levels, while others are highly competitive.
Even if you’re new to this and perhaps go in expecting only to gain the experience of auditioning, it is worth it to learn from the examples of others, meet new people, and learn something about the theatre.
Our directors are always looking for new performers to join the Spotlight family and can’t wait for you to succeed!