Ten Qualities That Influence Casting

We are often asked what directors look for when they cast shows.  Here is a list that might be helpful as you work to develop your performance skills, and prepare for auditions for YMTC or any other school or company.

1.  Acting ability: A person’s theatrical “instincts”; believability as a character; versatility; willingness to try new things; and learned and developed skills that provide a broad intellectual and emotional pallet from which to draw.

2.  Vocal ability:  A person’s vocal quality, flexibility, and range.

3.  Musicality: (admittedly hard to describe) A person’s sense of ease with music in general and singing in particular; their intuition about and expressiveness through music.

4.  Dance/”physicalization”:  Dance skills, grace, and accuracy; a sense of control with the body and ability to use it in the service of a character.

5.  Preparedness:  How well presented the audition is — memorized, rehearsed, clearly thought out, and appropriate to the role/show for which a person is auditioning.

6.  Type: How “right” someone is for a given role — this is not simply a question of how someone looks but pertains more to their energy, how they hold themselves, and their all-around temperament.  (This is not a fixed thing —  it’s something one can work on expanding in themselves; some directors might see it as more fixed.)

7.  Chemistry: How the actor works or “connects” on stage with another actor or actors with whom he/she will be in relationship.

8.  Energy: A person’s energy level, focus and a willingness to invest in whatever it is he/she is doing on stage.

9.  Professionalism: promptness, preparedness, discipline, respect for directors and fellow actors; appropriate balance between confidence and humility; and an ability to collaborate with others for the good of the group.

10. Courage: Evident openness to taking direction and to taking risks, enabling an actor to venture into unknown territory and to be willing to appear foolish.