The Actors' Audition Guide

The Actors' Guide to Audition Part 1-3

Throughout my career, and my life I have been extremely fortunate to meet childhood idols and other mentors. They have given me their time, shared their knowledge, and offered me skills and information, creating opportunities like I never knew possible.

In each case, the resounding message has always been to make sure you share this information with the next generation. The pay-it-forward mindset of so many of my heroes and mentors has made a lasting impression on me and it has motivated me to not only pay it forward, but to inspire others to do the same.

I’m excited to share my 50-part ActorsAudition Guide to booking roles in TV & Film with you as a series.

Dedicated to every person who was told they shouldn’t pursue a career as an actor. Follow your dreams!

Michael Coleman, Story Institute President & CEO


The Actors' Audition Guide #1
The Actors’ Audition Guide #1

1.The rule of three  

The script.

The people.

The compensation.

My philosophy is the rule of three. In order for me to be interested in a project I need two out of the following three categories to be interesting or worth pursuing. Anything less than two? I do not pursue the opportunity.

Great money? But bad script and people you probably wouldn’t want to work with professionally? Not interested.

Great script? Great people? No money? I’m in.

As actors we often face more rejection than seems fathomable and when someone is interested in us it becomes extremely compelling.

Stick to the rule of three. You’ll work happier and with a greater sense of purpose.


The Actors' Audition Guide #2
The Actors’ Audition Guide #2

2.Is acting a craft, or is it art?  

The word “art” is often used when referring to works that express feelings, emotions, and vision. The word “craft” is often used when referring to a set of learned skills and techniques. Art serves an aesthetic purpose, where craft serves a decorative or functional purpose. So what is acting? Is it an art or a craft?

“Art” is often connected more closely with raw talent, while “craft” often suggests anyone in the world, can learn any skill, if they are willing to work hard enough.

Why can’t we do both?

For those wishing to make this career choice something that brings in a fiscal return so you can pay for food, rent, and other nice things—

Never let one of these ideas trump the other.

Never rely exclusively on your art or your craft if you want to find true happiness in your work. Pursue both relentlessly, and don’t settle for anything less than both.


The Actors' Audition Guide #3
The Actors’ Audition Guide #3

3.The power of “No” 

It is no secret. The life of an actor can be a life of feast or famine. We are often programmed to take any audition or role offered to us, partly in fear of not being asked again if we refuse. This is more prevalent in our earlier years as professional actors where we are actively building our resumes, trying to showcase our skills and diversity, and just grateful for any opportunity to work alongside other creative individuals on a similar career path as our own.

It is important to realize you can always say “no.” I am not just referring to the types of roles you will perform or the lengths you will go to for your craft. I mean this also in the most general sense of the word.

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