The Importance of Audition Preparation

The Importance of Audition Preparation

By Hannah Macri

As performers in the professional theatre industry, one of the biggest components about the job is auditioning. Whether for a community theatre production, or even to a professional tour, a performer must be prepared to show their skills to a casting team and impress them enough to book the gig. To make sure that you as an auditionee show the casting directors your best skills, it is important to do as much preparation as you can before an audition.
A list of preparations to make for an audition in the theatre industry can include:

  • Preparing a repertoire of songs
  • Researching the production and character
  • Familiarise yourself with the script or sides


  1. Preparing a Repertoire of Songs
    For a performer, it is important to be as versatile as possible within an audition, as anything can happen in any moment. Often, audition panels want to hear what your voice sounds like in a particular style, or they want to see how your voice varies from an upbeat, character song to a power ballad. Therefore, it is important to prepare a repertoire of songs from all different genres, so you can perform any songs at a drop of a hat.
    It is also important to research the audition beforehand: Will there be an accompanist? Will you be required to sing the whole song, or an audition cut? Will you be required to bring your own backing track? You must be able to answer these questions and already be prepared by the time you walk into the audition room, so you can make the best impression possible.

  3. Researching the Production and Character

    The audition panel is looking for someone who can fit into the picture of what they want the production to be. To make the best impression possible, it is imperative that performers research the production along with the character(s) that they are auditioning for (if doing so). Understanding the background of a show can make it much easier for you as an auditionee to choose your repertoire, your dance style and your character that fits in with their vision. Often, a performer makes the mistake of not doing research into a particular show or character and this can be detrimental to your audition.
    Common mistakes include:

    • Choosing the wrong songs or wrong genre of songs:
      Choosing a rock song to sing in a classical musical theatre audition
    • Having no knowledge of the character you are auditioning for:
      Auditions could ask you to talk about the character or even act out a scene as your character

    In the end, the audition panel wants to find actors that will fit best with their idea of their show and taking these steps to prepare yourself will give you a better chance of succeeding in this endeavour.


  5. Familiarise Yourself with any Material Given Beforehand
    A prepared performer is a confident performer. You look like you know what you are doing if you have taken the time to familiarise yourself with any material given to you beforehand. Materials could include:

    • A script
    • Audition sides
    • Audition choreography
    • Character breakdown

    Often, audition panels are looking for performers who are confident and know what they are doing and talking about. Often, performance anxiety can play a huge factor in auditions and performers can often be hindered by it. By taking the time to familiarise yourself with the material given, you can eliminate the anxiety and be comfortable in your ability to perform the role

    Preparing for an audition is so important and can often be the deciding factor on whether you smash the audition or not. Michael Jordan, a famous basketballer accurately sums up this by stating, “Work ethic eliminates fear. So, if you put forth the work, what are you fearing? You know what you’re capable of doing and what you’re not.