audition tips by kemisha


“Hello Darlings!

Sorry I wasn’t able to stay on the call for very long. I got super busy with a line of actors and just had to end my break abruptly.

Anyways I’d like to share a few notes from these past two days working in casting. I will be at the callbacks to take notes specifically on the acting and to help with giving adjustments with the director– which is pretty fucking amazing btw.

What’s important for the actor during the audition process…


*You need to look like your headshot. You’re selling a look, so when you walk in the room and you look completely different then you sold us a lie.

**Don’t get stuck in auditioning for the role you submitted for. They
might ask you to read for another role and if you aren’t able to make those adjustments, then they see you as someone who would either need a lot of direction or as someone who cannot take direction well. That means more time spent trying to get you to give them what they want, and when you only have a specific amount of time to shoot, that could be a problem. This is what they’re thinking about….this is also why you shouldn’t dress for a specific character. You might end up auditioning for a completely different role!

– You should make a bold choice when auditioning!!!!

* The same type of preparation you would do for a scene, do it for the audition! Be off book if your sides are given to you beforehand. If you have sides given to you at the audition, then “take it off the page”. At no point should you be reading your lines while looking down! We lose everything there, and it’s not captured on camera!

** You need to know the moments and hit them! When you miss all the beat changes, then you miss the progress of the scene you’re no longer telling the story.

*** Have a clear intention! Do not look like you’re just reading lines, or playing at an emotion. We see that, the camera sees that and it comes off fake.

**** ENERGY! Dead energy on camera is boring! We lose interest in you immediately.

***** Pace. It’s best to know the rhythm of the scene. Relationship is also a part of this. A well established relationship is full of overlapping, cut offs, and it’s a much quicker pace. You build relationship in silences, so every silent moment needs to be active.
~~ another very important note, know the relationship before you enter the room, or create one if it is not clear. You will be given information and adjustments depending on what you do. There is nothing more annoying than playing 20 questions before you do your audition and there’s a line of 10 actors we need to get through. Plain and simple, know your shit before you enter the room~~

– LISTEN! This is key!
At no point should you look like you’re just waiting for the next line. There should always be a thought in the character’s/your head. The camera will pick it up, trust me. Don’t only turn it on when you’re speaking.

*** the last and final note, cheat to camera, be natural and be genuine, you don’t stare at someone the entire time when you’re speaking to them. Sometimes you become internal, you look away, you zone out, you think about something else. The wheels are always turning, don’t get caught having a staring contest. It doesn’t look real on the camera.

Now, something very encouraging I’d like to share with you, this just proves even more to me that Janet is the best guiding hand we can have tackling this industry. After I was hired as script supervisor on this film, the producer asked me for my information, and I gave him my business card. He was shocked. He said “wow, I’ve never seen a PA with a business card before”. I asked if it was a bad thing, jokingly. And he said “No, you should have a business card. Now I know I’m working with a professional”. And this guy is a producer who started off as a PA working on Super Nanny. He worked his way up. He said he kept getting rehired because they loved his work ethic and he was a joy to be around. He ended up as a production manager for MTV. Now he producers and does all this awesome stuff. I only know him on first name basis right now, but I’m so very happy to have this new connection.

And the best part is, they all know I’m an actress (since I was referred) so now I have more value being a part of their team for this project. Two days in a row I had the director tell me I’m a great reader, I take really good notes. He’s having me approach each character as if I’m auditioning myself. So the pressure was definitely on, but you know what, I did my homework, I’m confident in my talent and my ability, and I delivered. So guys, work hard, be the best representation of yourself and fucking own it!!!”


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