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Art Bites - Top tips for auditioning - 03. Video auditions
KARL VAN WEL: Picture this. You found the audition of a lifetime through a random link your Mum accidentally sent you, and you decide to go for it. You find out you have to prepare a video audition, and you think to yourself, "Karl, how am I supposed to make a good video audition?" Well, here are some top tips that professionals such as Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie wished someone had told them when they were young, and I'm about to tell you.
Tip Number 1. Don't be lazy. Although it might be easy to just send a video of you singing at your neighbour's birthday party last year, or your school assembly in kindergarten, that's not what the panel wants. Start afresh and make a brand new video specifically related to the part you're auditioning for, and make sure that it is up-to-date.
Tip Number 2. Make sure that the video you submit is just simple, quality, raw footage. No need to add filters, backgrounds of fancy cars, or the soundtrack to 'Grease.'
[Music - Frankie Valli, 'Grease']
Or any other unnecessary editing or voiceovers. These things will just disguise your talent and limit what the panel can see and hear. After all, they want to work with you, not some auto-tuned robot performer.
The third tip is to spend time thinking about where you are going to film. I don't just mean at home or at school. I mean exactly what space is the best. Make sure it has good lighting and enough room for you to move about. The camera needs to be somewhere where it is stable, such as a flat surface or a tripod.
And, the microphone should be positioned towards you to capture quality sound. If you're using a phone or tablet to film, make sure that you are filming in landscape, so that the microphone is not covered. You'd be surprised how many videos are really muffled or shaky, which is not the way to get the gig.
The next tip for you guys is to make sure that your face can be clearly seen on camera, so the panel can see your expressions and personality. This is a really important part of your audition and performance. You need to show your commitment, engagement, emotion, excitement, and connection to your performance. And, all of that comes through your face, so make sure you're not hiding it.
A big part, and the fun part, of filming a video for your audition is choosing your outfit. Unless you've been specifically told to wear something, it's best to wear plain, bold colours. Avoid wearing stripes, patterns, or fluro because, for some reason, they look really weird and flare on camera, which isn't great when you're trying to look your best.
Tip Number 6. It's always good to film your video a few times so you can pick which one was your best performance. This way, you can be sure that the panel will see the best of your abilities.
Tip Number 7. I'm sure many people have been caught out by this before, including myself, which only gives me more authority to stress this point. Don't leave filming and submitting your video to the last minute. Even if you think you have loads of time to do it, there's no point in putting it off till later. Uploading a 3-minute audition video isn't complicated once you know how to do it.
But, when there's 5 minutes to go before it's due, that's when your world will flip upside down, and things will start going wrong. Your flawless Wi-Fi will fail, the data you use for your hotspots will vanish, or your computer will grow wings and fly away before you can submit your video. I'm not joking. I've nearly missed some great opportunities because of that last one. [dings] So, save yourself the stress and just get it done in plenty of time.
Tip Number 8. Watch your video back after filming it, so that you can see what the panel will see. Make sure the video is suited to the style of what you're auditioning for, and try to show that you match the style of the performance that you will, hopefully, ultimately be doing. You want to stand out, but not in a bad way. Don't be the person who dressed as a gladiator for the 'James Bond' themed party.
Once you have a video that you're happy with, be sure to pay particular attention to passwords and listings as detailed in the audition requirements. You don't want to have a brilliant video that you can't submit, or the panel can't view, or that you end up sending to the wrong person. [Descending trumpet tone]
My final tip is to check that your link works before submitting your audition, and label it clearly with your full name. And, for extra advice on how to make a great online audition, you should watch The Arts Unit's videos for more awesome info on recording techniques. So, there you go. Follow these tips and you're sure to be on the red carpet with Brad and Margot in no time. Good luck.
End of transcript