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.