Bryan Cranston on Auditioning


The video below struck a cord with me because it answers something that been bothering me over the last few months. I’ve done more auditions since January than I have the entire rest of my life put together (not that it’s a lot by acting standards). This has brought to the forefront an issue I’d noticed before but when auditions are months apart it’s easier to shove the thought away and forget about it than when you have one a week for several weeks in a row.

My issue is exactly what Brian deals with- the attitude to have about an audition. I have two defaults that I swing between, forcing myself into one or the other.

      1. I don’t care if I get in, this audition doesn’t matter. It’s just practice.
      2. I want this role/job/etc SO BAD and I have to convince them to give it to me.

Neither is working for me (zero callbacks this year).

      1. Gives me an excuse to not put in an effort. Lets me off the hook. Creates a feeling inside that I’m faking it or pretending, either because I’m pretending to want something that I don’t want, or else pretending to not want something that I do want. Either way, it feels false and I can only assume it looks false as well. Cuts my energy too, especially in improv auditions. Even if I try to give 100% I can feel that I’m not if in the back of my head I’ve already decided I’m not getting in.
      2. Makes me feel desperate. I have to be perfect and precise and relaxed and talented and witty and likable and sexy and fun and natural and beautiful and intelligent and flawless and I have to do it RIGHT NOW AND DON’T YOU DARE SCREW IT UP ANNA BLACKMON OR YOU WON’T GET THIS THING! You can imagine how that interacts with nerves and adrenaline.

OK, here’s the video-

There it is. Don’t say, it doesn’t matter. It does matter. But also don’t say, I’m trying to get a job. That’s often out of your control (and it makes me into a crazy person).

CARE about the craft, about the role, about the work. Care about the job I already have- the bringing to life a role in the moment in front of them. And care about the result- how in impacts them right then.


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