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Audition/Interview Advice

Here is what you can expect when you schedule an audition/interview for the Theatre Arts Program at Baylor University:

Students interested in performance or theatre studies will perform an audition.

  • Your audition will consist of two contrasting monologues; each monologue should be one minute in length or less. There are a variety of ways that these monologues may contrast: perhaps one is classical while the other contemporary, or perhaps one is dramatic while the other is comedic.

  • If you feel that singing is a strength or if you are interested in the musical theatre concentration, you may also sing a selection (16 bars or about one minute) from a musical; but a song is not required, and you should not include a song in your audition if singing is not your strength.

Students interested in theatre design and technology will share a portfolio of their work.

  • A portfolio is simply a visual representation of your past work in theatre or related artistic endeavors.

  • A portfolio could be a notebook, a website, or a collection of renderings, pictures or other artistic pieces.

All prospective students will be interviewed by Theatre Arts faculty.

  • This is a chance for the faculty to get to know you better. You may be asked to talk about your goals, your additional interests, or your past experiences.

  • Remember that the faculty are interested in students who view theatre holistically; so tell us about your related theatre interests. If you are a performer, tell us if you have ever designed or constructed a costume or set. If you are a designer, tell us if you have ever performed. Tell us if you have served as a stage manager or assistant stage manager. Tell us if you have dance experience. All students should be able to talk about their favorite dramatic literature: the plays they have read and seen.

  • This is also an opportunity for you to ask questions of the faculty, though this is not required. Be sure to ask current Theatre Arts students about their experiences while touring the facilities or seeing performances.

Helpful Hints for Performance Auditions

  • If you choose the optional pre-screening, watch Accept’’s online video on "How to Create an Awesome Prescreen Recording."

  • Dress and present yourself in a professional and businesslike manner.

  • Observe all time limits.

  • "Slate" with your name, the title of your audition pieces, and the character you will be portraying as an introduction. No other information is needed.

  • All audition pieces must be memorized.

  • Choose monologues from published plays. Avoid self-written works, teleplays or screenplays

  • Avoid audition pieces that require an accent.

  • Avoid monologues with telephone calls.

  • Avoid playing profile. Place your imaginary acting partner directly above or adjacent to the heads of the auditors/camera.

  • For live auditions, be prepared to repeat your monologue, with changes, after direction is given.

  • Pick audition pieces appropriate to your age and emotional range.

  • Avoid overacting and/or overly dramatic material.

  • Remember that sexually explicit or socially offensive material usually works against an auditioner.

  • Don’t apologize or make excuses for your work.

  • Don’t choose a "signature song" (a song that is strongly associated with a particular performer) or songs that are overdone.

  • Musical accompaniment is preferred for singing auditions, but a cappella auditions are acceptable.

  • Keep your audition simple and honest.

  • Avoid elaborate staging, properties and/or costuming in your audition. Keep it simple and let us focus on your acting skill.

Helpful Hints for Theatre Design/Technology Portfolios

  • If you do not have a formal design portfolio, include any materials that you feel reflect your sense of artistry and your interest in theatrical design--sketches, drawings, paintings, photographs, prompt book excerpts and accompanying paperwork, technical drawings, etc. Your digital portfolio can take the form of a website, slideshow presentation, or other digital file. Make sure that your files don’t require specialized software to open.

  • Plan out your presentation in an organized manner.

    • You don’t need everything you have ever done in your portfolio, just your best work. This may be many things or just two or three things.

    • Show process shots--the final product is often less important than your growth through the process of getting there. Make images as large as possible so that we can see detail.

    • Keep your portfolio streamlined--it should be clean, clear, and concise. Neatness shows a respect for your work, your work environment and your fellow workers.

    • Presentation and organization: This refers to the layout of the project--Does it have a beginning, middle and end? Are there transitions between projects? Are there organizational charts and paper work that help describe the scope of the project? Your portfolio showcases your process, resourcefulness and artistry.

  • Make sure images/objects are labeled neatly, consistently, and clearly.

    • Name of production and your contribution are essential. From there, you can add other designers, name of producing organization, year, and other information, if appropriate. Don’t let your labels overtake your images or drawings.

    • Clearly indicate your work and others’ work. Give credit to the appropriate person. For example, don’t claim a design as solely your own if you functioned as the assistant designer.

    • Labeling and keys are extremely important tools that will help describe your work even when you are not in the room. Let your portfolio present itself.

  • Never apologize or make excuses for your work or the condition of your portfolio.

  • Proofread your portfolio and resume carefully before submitting.

  • Do not feel the need to limit your portfolio to theatrically produced work. We would like to see the way you think creatively. Examples of drawing, sculpture, photography, digital art, and theoretical projects are highly encouraged.

  • Never be ashamed of having limited experience or only a few credits on your resume. You are at the beginning of your career. That is expected.