Designer revival…on your acting life

Its just like a day on Rodeo Drive (but in London…where it may or may not be a bit rainy). You leisurely stroll though expensive stores eying off beautiful items available for purchase. After some humming and haa’ing you select a stunning little piece. It compliments your eyes and looks amazing with what you’re wearing right now. Even the store owner can’t keep her eyes off you. You’re delectable. Without a second thought you give the obligatory nod letting her know she has made the sale. You linger towards the counter to pay for your exquisite purchase. And this is where the action really begins.

She asks you if you’d fancy joining their very exclusive mailing group so you can find out about sales before the general public, thus making sure you don’t miss a bargain (if this shop actually has any actual bargains – they’re pretty pricey!) and always get your size. Of course you squeal. Then she enters your details into the computer with her perfectly manicured hands.

She proceeds to ring up the transaction, takes your card and swipes it, but you aren’t even focused on that. She has kept you busy with so much delightful banter and you’ve hardly noticed the “payment” take place. You watch her very carefully fold your garment into branded soft tissue paper (probably from special eco friendly trees hand picked by men with tiny hands and hours of time) and then covers it in small labeled stickers to keep it perfectly in place. Finally, she selects an elegant cardboard carrier bag that is twice the size of the garment you’ve just purchased and places it in there. She moves around the counter to personally hand you the bag as you slowly manoeuvre your way out of the store. You feel loved up, delectable and know you’ll be positively radiant parading the streets in your new attire.

BAM! Sale nailed.

So do you nail the sale as well? Let’s reverse back and start again.
It’s just another day in acting land. You log onto a website and send your CV details through to a Casting Director. The picture is at least three years old but you figure you’ll get away with it. You send a flimsy half-assed message that isn’t even tailored for them, and then proceed to click the “send” button and race out to a much more important event like a coffee date with hot Joe from up the road.

Next day an email pops into your inbox confirming they want to see you for the job. You quickly peruse the content, flick a confirmation email back, check the slides for lines guesstimating it’ll take only 10 minutes to learn and you can sort it later.

Audition day arrives and you are late.  You are later than the rabbit and the hatter to a tea party.  You arrive, flustered and a little sweaty.  You ditch the jacket, sit down and try and get your bearings before you’ll be rushed into the audition room.  The Casting Director appears and calls your name out.  You raise your hand to show you’re there.  There is a momentary flicker of half-acknowledgment that runs over their face….did they look at you as if to say “is that actually the same person as the headshot I said yes to”… Oh well. You enter the audition room and do your thang.

Audition over, thank you’s done, and you leave. “Phew.  Glad that’s over” you think to yourself.

Waaaaaaiiiiiitttttt.  What is wrong with this picture.  At what point did you do the ‘Designer’ moves on your Casting Director.  Why didn’t you gracefully enter early, have up-to-date headshots, know your lines like a Juliet monologue, dazzle them with your preparation, amazing appearance and earnest performance.

Get a grip actors. Get out there and create a designer revival in the audition room! Near enough is not good enough. Half prepping is not the full prep, buying a third of the ingredients does not mean you can bake a cake (I could go on but these made-up pearls of wisdom are awful).  If you aren’t prepared to do all that is required, plus some, then you are surely not in the right game. If you aren’t offering fries with that at every audition, you may as well head to MacDonalds and sell them… at least that way you know you’ll get a steady income.

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