For Tip Tuesday, we are sharing how to introduce yourself in an audition. The industry term for this portion of the audition is ‘slating’.
1. Pay Attention to the Slate Instructions
For most auditions, you will be given slate instrusctions. In the case of an in-person audition, the casting director will talk to you before the audition begins to tell you what information to slate with. Follow their lead.
If you are doing a self-tape audition (recording yourself at home), instructions for your slate will be in the email about the audition.
2. Provide All the Information That You Are Asked For
Once you know the instructions, say the required information in your slate. Typically, casting directors ask for your name and height, in which case you would say, for example- ‘Hi, my name is John Doe, I am 6 foot 3’).
Casting for independent or student films tend to ask for your name and representation. For example, ‘Hi, my name is John Doe and I am with MAX agency.’ or, if you do not have an agent, ‘Hi, my name is John Doe and I am self-represented.’
In some cases, you may be asked more specific questions such as speak a different language, where do you live, and so on.
3. What To Do If They Do Not Ask For Anything
Typically, you will given instructions. In rare occasions, however, you may not be told what to say in your slate. In this case, there is no rule.
Go for what you prefer. You may say your name and the role that you are auditioning for, for example, ‘Hi, my name is John Doe and I am reading for the role of Alex.’ Other options are your name and representation, or your name, height, role and representation. ‘Hi, my name is John Doe, I am 6 foot 3, I’m reading for the role of Alex, and I’m represented by MAX Agency.’
4. Film the Required Camera Shots
Especially when doing a self-tape audition, your slate instructions may include “full body shot”, or “profile shot”. If none of that is mentioned, you do not have to worry about filming different shots.
“Profile” means that you need to turn to the right and left so they can see shots of what you look like from both sides.
“Full body” means that they want to have a shot where they can see you from head to toe. Shoot the full body shot only for the slate, once you are doing the acting performance, you need to be close to the camera so that your facial expressions can be seen properly.
Ideally, have someone film you, initially zoomed out to get your full body, and then zooming in so that you can be seen down to about 6-7 inches below your shoulders. This is when you will give your slate, pause, and start your peformance.
- If you are asked to do a ‘tail slate’ for your self-tape audition, the casting director wants you to do your slate at the end of the video instead. Start your audition tape with the performance, and then give the information that they asked ofr at the end.
- Keep small talk to a minimum. Follow the lead of the casting director- if they are chatty, you can chat with them but if they are very formal, be very formal. Usually, less small talk is better as castings are probably in a hurry, small talk may make you seem nervous, and small talk may throw you off and make you lose your character.
The best way to make casting directors like you is to follow their instructions and their lead. Say a quick hello, do a good job, and leave.
MAX Agency is a successful Toronto modeling agency representing men, women and children. MAX provides talent for the film, television, fashion and advertising industries as well as appearance in trade shows, promotions and special events.
If you want to join our roster, apply here.
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