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The Television Hosting Audition: Interview with Evelyn Vaccaro: Part 6/9
In part 5 of this exclusive interview with actress and television host Evelyn Vaccaro, she has 18 tips for the television host to share.
Now, in part 6, she talks about what a television hosting audition is like.
Tony: Attention to detail! What is a hosting audition like? What kinds of things can one expect at a hosting audition?
Evelyn: When you walk into the building you should already be smiling. I can’t tell you how many times I have been in the elevator with the director or someone from the audition. Thank goodness I’m always naturally personable and friendly.
Always be polite and professional from the minute you enter the building. Whatever else is going on in your life, forget it, leave it somewhere else. Your audition starts the second you hit the front door of that building.
When you get to the offices where the audition is being held, there will often be signs where your audition is being held. If not, ask the receptionist. In that area where the auditions are being held, there is usually a script and a sign-in sheet. But if you don’t feel ready, wait before you sign in. Only sign in when you feel completely ready. If you need another 5 – 10 minutes or so to read through the script, take it and then sign in. This practice is OK unless, of course, they are running behind and need you to audition at your exact time.
Once you go into the room for a television hosting audition there might be anywhere from one to 4 or even 5 people in there. I’ve been in an audition room with as many as ten people in it as sometimes the clients, themselves, want to be there. There will often be a camera, but at times none. They might just want to see you in person. There will be a director who is actually running the audition, a camera person and possibly a client or two.
They’ll ask you to say (slate) your name. They might also ask for a profile and to see your hands.
Then there might be some small talk or some explanation of what they want you to do. After that, they may do a countdown and then call action. Sometimes they just have you begin the action right after you slate your name. Just be willing to go with the flow.
Tony: I’m asking you a lot of basic questions because many of my visitors have no experience at all, so I really want them to know what they can expect from a television hosting audition. What’s the deal with the countdown? Why is that important? What’s the real significance of it?
Evelyn: In a television hosting audition the director or casting director will count down 3-2-1 so they make sure they are ready when you start in order to get all of your audition on film.
I have something else to say that is really important.
When you are waiting to go into the audition room, there will sometimes be other actors or hosts who can sometimes be very distracting. They might be goofing around, having fun, being chatty. My suggestion is to be polite and smile and say hello, but you really have to concentrate on your script. Don’t allow other people to distract you.
Stay focused and read the script over and over again until you know it really well. I often find a quite corner to hang out at until I hear my name called.
Tony: So for a television hosting audition you actually get the script before you go into the room?
Evelyn: Yes you definitely get the script before you go into the room for your television hosting audition or sometimes they actually send it to you via e-mail the night before, which is really good. In that case you really have to learn it well. But most of the time you get the script at the audition itself. There are also times when the script is mailed to you the night before and by the time you get to the audition the next day, it has changed 100%. So you always have to be ready and flexible to switch if they need you to.
You also have to be able to take direction for both TV hosting and acting. Sometimes they want to see if you have range. Let’s say for example that the director wants to see a host who is very friendly, outgoing and really animated which you give them. Then they might tell you that they want to see you do it more like a news report. You have to be able to make the switch without skipping a beat if you want to win the role. It’s good for both acting and for a television hosting audition to prepare different sides or at least be prepare to switch it up.
Tony: Especially since they send you the script before you come into the room, do they expect you to memorize it?
Evelyn: There are times when they do want you off script which means that you should have it memorized. If they do want that, they will usually send it to you the night before. Being off script is definitely better than holding a paper to read from. It can just be very distracting. If you don’t know the script by memory, then you should at least know it well enough to be able to just glance at it every once and a while.
In part 7 of this exclusive interview with Evelyn Vaccaro, she talks about the importantce of being able to use an ear prompter in the television hosting audition. In the remaining parts to this interview, she talks about hosting reels and how to make them and headshots.
Here are some other related pages you might find helpful:
A page full of advice to start an acting or hosting career.
ActingCareerStartUp.com Acting School Directory
8-Step Guide To Preparing Your Trip To New York To Study Acting
A Guide To Starting A Successful Acting Career
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Sara, Pasadena, CA
Just wanted to thank you for bringing me in to [audition for the video], meet you and chat this Saturday. I was really excited to hear about your working on actingcareerstartup.com and even took a look at it today - it's awesome! You are very well-spoken, knowledgeable and enthusiastic, and it shows through the work that you do! I hope our paths in the industry will cross again and really enjoyed meeting you. Thanks, again and best wishes with your very important work!
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