5 Reasons You Wont Book the Commercial

Why You Won’t Book the Commercial

Even when you did a great audition

I am sure you have wanted to know why or why not you do not book Commercials when you feel you have done a great audition (and even when those running the session have let you know you did a great audition). , You might get an avail or are put on “Hold” but then you don’t book the job. It can be very frustrating. Often there is no definitive reason so I believe it would be helpful for you to understand some of the business and subjective factors being considered that often have little to do with you, your talent or your audition.


Consideration that could determine why you will or won’t be cast:

  • Other Way To Go: When the commercial CD gets the breakdown and selects the actors for their session, many get creative and add actors who are “another way to go” for the role. And often, some of these actors could change the direction of the casting.
    Role is cut or changed: When watching the casting, the director and/or advertising executives might determine that a part is not working and then could cut it out, replace it with another role or choose to go with a different type of actor.
  • Matching: When casting a spot with multiple actors, the matching or pairings need to look like they could be couples, friends, workers or a family. And yet in a group of friends, office employees, neighbors, etc., it is preferred those cast be of different ethnicities, physical types or hair color- because many commercials need to appeal to various groups of people.
  • Identifiable and Aspirational: Commercials need to appeal to target markets. The actors cast in the spot must be people that those the spot is designed for will find aspirational or will identify with. And thus is a major factor in the casting. This is why casting specs are pretty specific as to age, gender, ethnicity and physical types. Then, because these considerations are often subjective, each group of people doing the casting and various target markets could create diverse factors that would make different actors identifiable and/or aspirational for various products.
  • Chemistry: When matching couples, families, friends, workers, etc., they need to work well together and have a chemistry that creates the feeling that they belong together. And it is something that is there or it is not and it too is subjective.
  • Compromise: Those doing the casting are not always in agreement on who they like in a role. In that case, so that no one looks bad, they may choose another actor (who might not be as good or as right). It happens.
  • Personal Preference: Directors and advertising execs are human and have preferences. Sometimes actors might remind one of someone they like or don’t like or another actor that may be too recognizable. Casting preferences can work for an actor or against them.

Knowing these factors should help you understand that when you believe you have done a great audition why you may not book the job. I know it is frustrating and seems unfair but realize that these same factors that might work against you for one job might work in your favor for others. And in order for you not to take it personal and to protect your confidence, I suggest that you remember this, “You didn’t lose the commercial, someone else booked it” – this time.

video_Who_Books_Commercials

Who Books Commercials and Why?

Once you have done your callback and leave that is when the director, agency execs, producer and maybe someone representing the client start the process of selecting who will book the job – whether they are in the room or via a video feed. I am sure you have wondered how the final selection is made: what is considered, the politics, who has the decision making power and what happens during those few days you are waiting to see if you booked the job.

Doing great auditions, unfortunately, doesn’t always get you cast. Actors often get and don’t get jobs for reasons that have nothing to do with their talent or audition technique. The powers that be, who usually have different opinions on the best actor for the role, have to agree. The final decision maker depends on the job and the “clout” of either the director, agency execs, producer and maybe someone representing the client.

These decision-makers will compare notes, examine pictures and resumes and review the video auditions then the discussions and often compromises go on for a few minutes or hours. They choose their top recommendations and present these “selects” on video to the client and the other decision-makers who were not present at the callback for the final approval. This can take a few hours, days or sometimes weeks.

The agents of the actors that are being strongly considered are informed to put their actors on “Hold” or “Strong Avail” for the shoot date(s). This means that the actors need to hold those dates to shoot the commercial. It also means that if the actor is offered another job for the date(s), his/her agent must inform the producer and the decision-makers must choose to hire that actor or let them take the other job. Once the final choice is made, the actor’s agent is informed and the actor is booked. Those who were on “Hold” or “Strong Avail” and were not book are usually (but not always) are informed and released.

Most of the time, the actors auditioning for a specific role fit a designated physical description; they are all the same age-range, ethnicity, gender, type, and build. Yet those getting the callback and booking have the look (along with the personality, essence and talent) that resonated stronger for the occupation/role being cast. It is a subjective decision of those doing the casting.

To demonstrate how this might work, the next time you are in a group of people whom you don’t know, play this game. Pretend you are casting roles in a commercial or film from the people you see. Cast the following characters:

  • Members of a wedding party: Who would be the bride or groom, maid/matron of honor, best man, members of the wedding party, various family members, eccentric relatives, photographer, caterer, wedding planner, etc.?
  • People in a business office: Who looks like they could be the boss, bookkeeper, human resources person, assistant, executive, computer technician, secretary, “creatives,” errand boy or girl, receptionist, etc.?
  • Those in a suburban neighborhood: Who looks like members of
the family who has lived there the longest, those new to the block, busybodies, problem neighbors, those on the welcoming committee, fast-food-delivery people, mail carrier, gardener, etc? Also, who could be the residents who have all the right products (sold in commercials) and those who don’t have them? 
You will see that most people physically fit a role or two in each scenario. Play along with a friend and compare how similarly you cast these strangers. Whether you know it or not, you have been conditioned by the media to see distinct physical types of people playing specific kinds of roles. This exercise will give you an insight into casting. Actors want to perform a range of parts, but those who are identifiable types are often more “castable” in commercials.

Many new actors resist the idea of being a type. They feel it is limiting to their talent. I believe it is necessary in order to start getting work. Knowing your type is not a limitation. It is a distinction that gives you parameters within which to play. There is only one of you and if you are a good actor, you can do all kinds of roles that are you.

For additional insights and tips, check out my book Hit The Ground Running @ www.hitthegroundrunningbook.com and for Commercial Acting Classes: http://carolynebarry.com/workshops/commercial/

Commercial Improv

Improvisation Training: Vital to an Actor’s Career

When actors interview with me before taking my commercial class, I always suggest that they the take a workshop either before, during or immediately after they take a commercial class. Improv will help actors to get more Commercial auditions and is a major factor in doing better auditions and, I believe, is crucial to a commercial actor’s career.


As a commercial actress, I have booked over 400 national commercials and I truly believe that I got many of those jobs because of my Improvisation training. When I first started doing commercials there were no actual commercial audition training workshops so I studied acting and then started doing Improvisation classes – which I loved. I quickly saw that the freedom and confidence I was getting from the Improv work was helping me do better at my auditions and thus I started booking even more jobs.

Granted that era was not anywhere as competitive as it is now but I do know that Improvisation training is even more beneficial and vital today then it ever was then for several reasons:

First of all, so many auditions today do not have dialogue and require Improv skills therefore commercial agents are more interested in actors (especially new actors) who have professionally studied improvisation because agents know that it will be easier to them auditions.

There are more non-scripted commercials being cast then ever before so casting directors usually want actors who are good with improv. Legally SAG/AFTRA does not allow actors to Improvise dialogue at their auditions so actors will probably never be technically asked to “improvise” but in actuality that is what they will be doing – verbally creating their own dialogue and/or scenarios. AND those who study Improv usually do so much better at those auditions.

There are more non-scripted commercials being cast then ever before so casting directors usually want actors who are good with improv. Legally SAG/AFTRA does not allow actors to Improvise dialogue at their auditions so actors will probably never be technically asked to “improvise” but in actuality that is what they will be doing – verbally creating their own dialogue and/or scenarios. AND those who study Improv usually do so much better at those auditions.

Find a teacher or institution that specializes in Improvisation. A lot of studios mix in the Improv training with acting, commercial and cold reading. This is not really offering the maximum value of studying Improvisation. Then, some teachers offer it as an on-going class. There are several problems with this format.

I strongly believe that Improvisation should be a second training workshop along with your acting class. Your acting training is focused on the techniques specific to whatever discipline of training you choose – motivation, emotional connection, subtext, character life, pre-life and after-life, etc. Whereas good improvisation training focuses on creativity, commitment, listening, trusting instincts, supporting the other actor and building confidence. When both acting and Improv are studied at the same time, you will get more out of your acting class and you will be ready to start auditioning sooner.

At the start of the Improv classes that I offer in my program, actors talk about how nervous they are about taking an Improv class. Most are concerned that they are not funny, or creative or instinctive. A good improv class does not push you to be funny and when you are “in the moment”, not thinking or planning and being instinctive , most actors find that they are creative and often funny. Improv is about freedom and it is a process that is achieved in a safe space with a really good teacher who creates a supportive NOT a competitive environment. Don’t we all want that feeling of freedom in our acting as well as our life.

COMMERCIAL BOOKING SECRETS

Ever wonder how they choose the actors they book on television commercials? Is there some secret determining factors that influence the casting decisions? There is -and I think it is important to for you to know what it is. From years of being a working commercial actress and booking over 400 commercials, having done the casting for over a thousand TV commercials and being a commercial audition teacher since 1983, I strongly believe that there is a formula for why actors get commercial callbacks and bookings. I know it isn’t carved in stone or even the exact way the director, ad execs and clients would verbalize but I REALLY believe that this is basically the formula.

60 percent of why actors get callbacks is their physicality – what they look like. Since those chosen must represent the client’s target market and must be a strong physical representation of the character they are portraying.

20 percent of why actors get callbacks is their talent and creativity – what they actually do on the audition whether it is an improvisation or a scripted monologue or a scene. The decision-makers look for actors who are believable, unique and/or their work

The remaining 20% factor, is the actor’s confidence, personality and essence which usually needs to match up to the actor’s look. This is the factor that most actors don’t consider and often don’t understand.

Now, let’s say the actor is a great physical type for a particular commercial and does a great audition but he/she comes off arrogant or too silly then he/she will probably not get a callback.

Or if he/she is really approachable and likeable (which is important for most commercials) and is the perfect type but overacts on their auditions (which happens way too often) then again, he/she will not get a callback.

Now when it comes to getting the booking, the numbers change a little, since there is some agreement between the ad execs and the director on the looks of those being called back, the importance of the actor’s physicality is still important but now since it is still subjective, it is about 30%.

What also is relevant in the “looks” area is when it is necessary to match actors with spouses, friends, workers or family.- the consideration becomes, Do they look like they belong together. What the actor does in their audition, how they take direction, their creativity and talent now becomes the prominent factor at 40%..

The actor’s attitude, personality and essence factors comes in at 20%..

And finishing up the BOOKING equation are wildcard factors: it could be anything from the actor’s wardrobe (which one of the decision-makers really likes for the spot) to any of the execs or director having subjective preferences or dislikes. There are too many subjective wild card factors to cover here but I am sure you can imagine some.

This information should help you to not take it personal or think you did a bad job when you don’t get a callback or booking. And it should help you have the insights you need to put the odds in your favor for booking commercials. And by the way a lot of this is also applicable for booking smaller roles in film and TV.

Commercials: solo dialogue

Audition Tips for TV Commercials – Solo Dialogue to the Camera

A challenge with monologue dialogue commercials auditions is how to truthfully start speaking. With 10, 20 or 25-second copy, there is no time to work into it. You must be connected at the beginning otherwise those viewing your audition may lose interest and fast forward to the next actor. I believe that when you use a “who” and a short pre- life you will get an immediate connection to the dialogue.


Who: The person you have chosen to relate to with the copy. The selected “who” is one you believe that you can connect to best with a particular piece.

Pre-lIfe: the thoughts, feelings and/or action that the actor thinks, feels or does that precede and motivate the scripted dialogue or the physical action.

Both these tools are major acting and audition assets for scenario and scripted commercials as well as theatre, film and television work.

THE WHO
The “who” is primarily important for auditions when you are doing monologue copy to the camera, – not so much when you are auditioning with other actors. You might be thinking how can I speak to someone when there is no one there. Well, what about when you are talking on the phone? There is no one to see but you are totally involved in the conversation. And with practice, you can have that same connection with your “who” when looking into a camera.

I believe that people have a different energy, connection, tone and verbal delivery when talking to the various people in their life. For example I have a different relationship thus a different way I speak to my students than I do to my family or a loved one – also different than when I talk to someone I work for than I do with a funny friend. This is probably true for you.

Understanding this can help when you select the most beneficial “who” to speak to when preparing your audition material. Allow each piece of commercial copy to suggest a meaningful person for you to relate to.

PRE-LIFE
In order to create an honest “pre-life” during your audition prep you must first DETERMINE YOUR “WHO.” Next, decide what that person said to MOTIVATE YOUR FIRST LINE. It is helpful to hear a short question. It is not only thing you can hear but it works best most of time. If you choose to see something, respond to it by having a thought or two. The pre-life happens quickly and should take one or two seconds (no more).

Now that you
Know who you are talking to,
Know what you have heard or seen,
Once you hear the words in your mind
Honestly react to it with a simple, physical, UNREHEARSED reaction.
Allow this reaction to motivate the first line.

The key to an effective pre-life is the simple physical UNREHEARSED reaction during which you might utter a little sound. If it is an honest reaction it will be different every time. When you are preparing, each time that you do a run through, allow for the “pre-life” reaction to be instinctive and different – not the same unless it organically happens. Trust, never question, your instincts while auditioning. Committing to them helps keep you “out of your head.” Don’t be concerned with how you are doing.

Auditioning using a “who” and “pre-life” should result in more callbacks and bookings. It also reinforces the craft, which assists actors in becoming better actors.

If you missed previous craft and audition technique articles and videos you will find them in the archive on my COMMERCIAL page on mastertalentteachers.com.

There is a lot involved in learning to do your best at commercial auditions. For additional insights and tips, check out my book Hit The Ground Running @ www.hitthegroundrunningbook.com and for more information on Commercial Acting Classes: http://carolynebarry.com/workshops/commercial/

commercial_insider_tips_1

Insider Tips for Doing Your Best Commercial Auditions – Part 1

Commercial auditions are challenging for most actors. Audition material or scenarios are at the most 20 seconds, which means you need to be up to speed right away. No time to get into the material. You are only in the audition room, on an average of 5 minutes. Just a few minutes to get comfortable, answer questions, take direction, hopefully get a rehearsal, slate and do one or several takes.

I believe that the following audition pointers that I formulated from personal audition experience, teaching thousands of students and observing actors who have auditioned at my casting sessions, will serve well your auditions for commercials (as well as TV and film):

  • As you walk into the audition, don’t think about anything you worked on. Let it all go. Be present to whatever happens.
  • Be respectful, positive and professional without losing your personality.
  • Give full attention to the person who is directing you: Don’t be distracted by anyone or anything. When you are being given direction, don’t be figuring out how to do what they are saying. Just listen and trust that you got it: otherwise, you might miss input.
  • If clarification is needed, ask questions. Questions are only irritating when they are unnecessary. Those running the session won’t think less of you because you request answers. Their input will help you to do a better audition for them.
  • While being recorded, if they talk to you or ask questions, don’t second-guess what they want to hear. They probably want to get to know you and see your personality. Just talk to them as opposed to trying to impress.
  • If the session director or CD is rude, short-tempered or seems ambivalent, do not take it personally. It may be their nature or they may be dealing with problems or previous actors who tested their patience. Stay pleasant, positive and do your work.
  • “Get centered” before starting your audition. Breathe, take one or two seconds before beginning or find your own way to “get centered” but don’t take a self-indulgent period of time to begin. Don’t be influenced by the anxiety or negative energy of those running the session.
  • Do not rush your audition. When actors are nervous or “in their head,” many speed up the dialogue or their improvised scenarios. When actors are connected and focused, they don’t rush. On the other hand, don’t speak really slowly or take long pauses between the lines.
  • Stay Focused. Whether you are auditioning for one person or a group, reading 
into a camera or speaking to an actor or a few actors, auditioning with a bad actor or a great one, in a small room or a large theatre, stay focused and don’t allow unexpected incidents to upset you and/ or put you “in your head.” No matter what happens, go with it and adjust quickly.
  • Motivate Out. For improvised and scripted on-camera scenes, when possible, find a way to “motivate out” your actions and/or dialogue at least fifty percent of the time to maximize your facial exposure.

    Most new actors constantly look at their partner(s), which keeps them in profile and they are upstaging themselves. Don’t cheat out. Learn out to “Motivate out.”

  • Look into camera. When auditioning with a reader and told to do the dialogue looking into the camera, don’t look back and forth between the two. It makes you look nervous.
  • Use the cue cards when needed. Most actors feel they will do better if they memorize the audition dialogue. That is true for many but if for one millisecond you are not sure of it, LOOK AT THE CUE CARD. It is there to help your audition. If you are convinced you know the copy and are stubborn about looking at it then you will go in your head to try to remember and will often loose the flow of your audition.
  • During the read, trust and commit to your instincts. Unless given a specific direction, don’t consciously perform anything you rehearsed. Some of the choices that you rehearsed might not feel right in that moment. Don’t interrupt your instinctive interpretation trying to perform them. Allow for your read to flow – you will most likely organically do most of what you rehearsed. When you are connected and “out of your head,” you are open to instinctive moments that are often better than those you planned.
  • Ask to do it again. When you feel your solo audition was lacking or if you have another interpretation that you would like to do, politely request, “If you have time, I would like to do it again” or “do another interpretation.” It is not a foul to ask. If they refuse, say “thank you” (mean it) and leave. It’s worth asking.

There is a lot involved in learning to do your best at commercial auditions. For additional insights and tips, check out my book Hit The Ground Running @ www.hitthegroundrunningbook.com and for more information on Commercial Acting Classes: http://carolynebarry.com/workshops/commercial/

Look Before You Leap into Commercial Auditions

Look Before You Leap Into Commercial Auditions

When I interview people before taking my classes, so many tell me that they have been told to start their acting careers by training for commercials. I would like to silence all those who are perpetuating this disempowering misconception. They are destroying acting careers before they even start. But I do understand that when most people look at actors in commercials, it looks so easy. It is no wonder that many think that it is a way to break into acting, be seen and make lots of money. Yes, it is fun, creative and can be lucrative. Most working commercial actors can make it look easy because most are pros. As you will discover, there is a lot to do, learn and know before starting to audition well and book commercials.

WHEN TO START: I strongly believe that you should study acting for a year or so and Improvization for a good six months (at the least) before doing a commercial class. Then you will be more prepared to go get a commercial agent and start auditioning – hopefully, while you continue to professionally train consistently. I believe that when people start auditioning too early, it often creates major problems with craft and confidence. And when those actors do less than stellar auditions, there is a good chance the casting directors they audition for will choose not to see them again, even in the future after they train and improve.

Although, I do have lots of students with little or no training take my beginning commercial workshop. And, I also have agents send me total beginners (who are great commercial types) to learn enough basics to be competent at their auditions. AND after the class, many of these rooky actors who are good commercial types and/or have strong performance talents or skills, do book some work. On the other hand, from years of experience, I am convinced that those who want to book lots more work, plan to have an acting career and want to feel secure about their craft need to prepare and train first before jumping into the commercial arena.

MISCONCEPTIONS and CHALLENGES: Many feel they don’t need to study acting first or that after they book a few commercials, they will use that money to study – I truly believe that thinking is ass backwards. Don’t be fooled, this is a commitment and requires more than you know. Before pursuing any venture, you really need to understand what is involved, Here are just a few of the issues rookies as well as trained actors should know about before auditioning for commercials:

  • GETTING AN AGENT: Getting a good agent can be challenging. Agents are inundated daily with dozens of pictures and resumes of actors who want commercial representation.
  • COSTS: Between training, commercial wardrobe, photos, a website, reproductions, casting sites and mailings, it can get expensive. Plus, by working a job that gives you the flexibility you need to audition, your income usually will not be as good as if you had a full time job.
  • TIME CONSUMING: Depending on the location of the casting facility, each audition will normally take on the average of 2 ½ to 4 hours, to travel back and forth, park, prepare, wait and do your five minute audition. And often but not always, actors go out on dozens of audition before booking one.
  • HIGHLY COMPETITIVE: Getting auditions is very competitive. There are hundreds to thousands of actors submitted for every role. Only 80 to100 are seen each day per role. So you have normally a 10 -15% chance of getting an audition when submitted.
  • MONEY EARNED: The money that most new actors think they will earn form booking a commercial is not always the case. It depends on many factors whether the commercial is: union, non-union, local, regional, national, international, one spot or multiple spots, the number of actors, on-camera or voice-over, buy-out and/or residuals. Actors can earn anywhere from a few hundred to (in rare cases) a few hundred thousand dollars doing a commercial.

My main intention in laying out these misconceptions and challenges is not to discourage you from pursuing commercial work but to help you avoid the pitfalls that can make it difficult to make a good start. There are many more misconceptions and challenges you should be acquainted with before jumping into beginning your commercial acting endeavor, do watch my Look Before You Leap Into Commercial video.

For additional insights and tips, check out my book Hit The Ground Running @ www.hitthegroundrunningbook.com

Commercial_Submissions

Commercial Representation – Submissions

In major markets, there are hundreds of agents. Attaining legitimate representation for commercials is usually rather involved so it important to choose the agents you wish to target and research them:

•      In major markets buy updated books that list and describe agents and managers (In Los Angeles, these books are sold at Samuel French and New York at the Drama Book

•      Obtain a list of franchised agents from SAG.

There are agents who are not SAG-franchised. That does not mean they are not reputable. Those who are members are just easier to check out and are accountable to a supervising entity.

•      Ask industry pros you know as well as your friends, teachers, relatives, and classmates the following about agents:

– Whom do they recommend or have heard about with great reputations and who should be avoided?

– What is the best way to contact them?

– Is there anyone they know who could help get more information or has an “in”?

•        If you belong to a networking group, check with their members and their records.

•      Go to the websites of those you are considering and read about the company history and the agents.

•      Once you have a short list, check your choices with the Better Business Bureau. Find out if they have had claims filed against them.

SUBMIT

The size and status of the office you should realistically approach is determined by where you are in your career. When starting, you will find that the small and medium-sized offices are often more receptive to meeting new talent but if you do have an “in” at a major agency or just want to try to get with one, definitely pursue it. If your timing, talent and type are right, you could get lucky.  Now that you know the reputable agents you wish to pursue, submit a picture, resume’ and cover letter.

Don’t mail to one at a time and wait for them to contact you. It is also a waste of money to do a mass mailing to every agent in town. I suggest mailing to a select fifteen or twenty. Agents are bombarded with actors soliciting them. You might hear from some within a few weeks. If you don’t get any responses, submit to your second choices. Agents and managers will call you for a meeting if they are interested in what they see in your submission. If you have industry contacts, teachers or friends who can recommend you to your desired agent(s) I propose you ask your contact if they would advise the agent to expect your submission.  If you get minimal or no response after the second round of submissions, shoot new photos, redo your resume and cover letter and then, in a few months, submit again to your first then second choices. Client rosters often change, making room for an actor who was of no interest just a few weeks earlier.

For additional insights and tips, check out my book Hit The Ground Running @ www.hitthegroundrunningbook.com and for more information on Commercial Acting Classes: http://carolynebarry.com/workshops/commercial/

Commercial Agent Meetings

You have submitted your photo, resume and a succinct and engaging cover letter to several commercials agents and you have interest from one or more who have set-up meetings, -now what.  How do you prepare so you will have a great interview?

Before the meeting, research the agency so you will be able to knowledgeably talk to the agents.  For the meeting:

  • Be on time (even though you will probably have to wait)
  • Dress and groom yourself appropriately for who you are and to meet a person(s) who can help with your career
  • Bring additional pictures and a reel of your acting work (if you have one)
  • Bring a list of your commercial industry contacts (if any)
  • Be prepared to read commercial copy (some agents do readings, some don’t)
  • Be in an authentically positive mood
  • Ask questions that will help you determine if that agency would be the right one for you.

It is important to remember that you will be interviewing the agents as well.  So many actors are happy to have the meeting that in an effort to be signed they are often afraid to let their true personality show and are hesitant to ask questions.

During your meeting, agents will be evaluating you to determine if you are a fit for their agency. They will look at many things: physicality, personality, type, essence, age, credits, professionalism, talent (if they have seen you in a class or production, have auditioned you in their office or have viewed your reel) and if they need and/or want your type for their rooster. Bottom line, you are a product to them. This is a subjective business. Each agent will choose clients based on his or her criteria, taste and needs.

YOU HAVE A CHOICE

There are many commercial agents, smaller theatrical agencies and managers who sign actors based primarily on type, a look and/or personality. Talent is not their main focus. Do you want representation that submits just your look or one that represents you and your talent?  I suggest that you encourage your potential representation to see you act. If they don’t do auditions and there is no professional work to view, consider shooting some quality video of yourself doing two or three short commercials and/or short scenes. (If you do create your own reel, make sure it is edited together and does not run more than three minutes.)

It is important for whomever you go with to know your work in order to best represent you. If you are anxious to get a “start-up” agent or acting is a hobby, the distinction of them wanting your type as opposed to you and your talent may not be important. If you have choices or can be patient, then signing with someone who appreciates your talent is better for your career. Being an actor whether for theatre, TV and Film or commercials is a business. In order to be a success, you need to train, market, promote and select representation that gets what makes you special, guides you and creates opportunities to book work.

To be prepared, check out my FREE video, MEETING with COMMERCIAL AGENTS at mastertalentteachers.com in which three top Los Angeles Agents talk about what they look for in their meetings with prospective clients.

If you missed the first article in this series covering HOW TO SUBMIT TO AGENTS, you will find it and the accompanying video in the archive on my COMMERCIAL page at mastertalentteachers.com. In my next article, I cover how to create a successful relationship with your agent and thus get the necessary opportunities to audition for and book television commercials.  Don’t’ miss it.

For more information on Commercial Acting Classes: http://carolynebarry.com/workshops/commercial/

commercial_callbacks_part2

Commercial Audition Callbacks, Part 2

There are dozens of audition technique tips I have given in previous articles and can be found on my partner page on Master TalentTeachers.com that would be really beneficial but right now the most valuable information I can offer to help you to do your best callbacks is offer some insights on Commercial Callback Anxiety.

Commercial auditions can be challenging for actors but callbacks are a cause of anxiety for most. The pressure is on because the decisions-makers are in the room, you know that everything little thing you do is being carefully judged, changes of direction are sometimes made at the last minute giving actors very little time to be secure with the adjustments, the money that you can make if you booked the commercial is often needed, and because it is a callback, the pressure you put on yourself to do well can be problematic.

Every audition especially callbacks are a precious opportunity to work, make money, create contacts and fans and move a career forward. When actors fixate on these expectations before auditioning, it normally creates anxiety and pressure. Don’t focus on disempowering thoughts and questions, such as:

Did I wear the right outfit? Maybe I should have done something different with my hair. Did I work on the material enough? I hope they don’t notice that my skin is broken out. How many people will I be auditioning for? Who are they? Will they direct me before I read? What will they ask me? What should I ask them? Will they think I am physically right for the role? I wonder if the reader is going to be any good? I haven’t seen this CD for a few months – maybe she doesn’t like my work. How will I do? Will they re-direct my reading? Am I right for the role? What will they think about my audition?

Many of these thoughts flash quickly through almost every actor’s mind and especially those who are new. These are the same types of concerns that people usually have interviewing for any job. At callbacks, because the stakes are raised, the concerns get more intense for most. Actors who are unfazed at the initial audition often have callback anxiety. Now, the thoughts are

They must like me; now the pressure is really on. It’s only betweena few others and me; I have to be great. Will my agent (or manager) dump me if I don’t book this job? What did I do that made them call me back? I really need the money. My competition must be good. I hope I don’t “blow it” now. And so on.

This “brain-noise” is normal. How you deal with your questions, concerns and expectations will determine how much power those thoughts have. You must learn how to alleviate, use or quiet them, or they will take their toll on your work. I know great actors who can’t get out of their heads at interviews (and refuse to do anything about it), and their work suffers. I also know less talented ones who shine because they have very little “noise” and are excited to be auditioning.
What you think influences how you feel, and how you feel impacts your audition. With time and experience, actors usually figure out how to alleviate the self-imposed stress. In the meantime, work on your audition anxieties whether it is with self-help books, hypnosis, audition classes, coaching, therapy, talking with friends or teachers and/or developing a sense of humor about your disempowering thoughts – the sooner the better.

SUGGESTION: What you think produces feelings. The feelings are real but the thoughts you created are not real. So be careful what you are saying to yourself.

For additional insights and tips, check out my book Hit The Ground Running @ www.hitthegroundrunningbook.com and for more information on Commercial Acting Classes: http://carolynebarry.com/workshops/commercial/

Commercial_Callbacks_part-1

Commercial Audition Callbacks, Part 1

DEAL WITH CALLBACK ANXIETY and BOOK COMMERCIALS

There are dozens of audition technique tips I have given in previous articles and can be found on my partner page on Master TalentTeachers.com that would be really beneficial but right now the most valuable information I can offer to help you to do your best callbacks is offer some insights on Commercial Callback Anxiety.

Commercial auditions can be challenging for actors but callbacks are a cause of anxiety for most . The pressure is on because the decisions-makers are in the room, you know that everything little thing you do is being carefully judged, changes of direction are sometimes made at the last minute giving actors very little time to be secure with the adjustments, the money that you can make if you booked the commercial is often needed, and because it is a callback, the pressure you put on yourself to do well can be problematic.

Every audition especially callbacks are a precious opportunity to work, make money, create contacts and fans and move a career forward. When actors fixate on these expectations before auditioning, it normally creates anxiety and pressure. Don’t focus on disempowering thoughts and questions, such as

Did I wear the right outfit? Maybe I should have done something different with my hair. Did I work on the material enough? I hope they don’t notice that my skin is broken out. How many people will I be auditioning for? Who are they? Will they direct me before I read? What will they ask me? What should I ask them? Will they think I am physically right for the role? I wonder if the reader is going to be any good? I haven’t seen this CD for a few months – maybe she doesn’t like my work. How will I do? Will they re-direct my reading? Am I right for the role? What will they think about my audition?

Many of these thoughts flash quickly through almost every actor’s mind and especially those who are new. These are the same types of concerns that people usually have interviewing for any job. At callbacks, because the stakes are raised, the concerns get more intense for most. Actors who are unfazed at the initial audition often have callback anxiety. Now, the thoughts are

They must like me; now the pressure is really on. It’s only betweena few others and me; I have to be great. Will my agent (or manager) dump me if I don’t book this job? What did I do that made them call me back? I really need the money. My competition must be good. I hope I don’t “blow it” now. And so on.

This “brain-noise” is normal. How you deal with your questions, concerns and expectations will determine how much power those thoughts have. You must learn how to alleviate, use or quiet them, or they will take their toll on your work. I know great actors who can’t get out of their heads at interviews (and refuse to do anything about it), and their work suffers. I also know less talented ones who shine because they have very little “noise” and are excited to be auditioning.

What you think influences how you feel, and how you feel impacts your audition. With time and experience, actors usually figure out how to alleviate the self-imposed stress. In the meantime, work on your audition anxieties whether it is with self-help books, hypnosis, audition classes, coaching, therapy, talking with friends or teachers and/or developing a sense of humor about your disempowering thoughts – the sooner the better.

SUGGESTION: What you think produces feelings. The feelings are real but the thoughts you created are not real. So be careful what you are saying to yourself.

For additional insights and tips, check out my book Hit The Ground Running @ www.hitthegroundrunningbook.com and for more information on Commercial Acting Classes: http://carolynebarry.com/workshops/commercial/