Starfall Audition Tips: Naturalism in a Nutshell

Coming across as natural is one of the highest ideals that an actor can aspire to – the ability to look like you’re not trying, even though you are. Naturalism is about achieving the effortlessness of everyday speech, while being conscious of what’s being said, and how. It’s something that’s easily achieved once you’re aware of it!

The audition process consists of recording three monologues, and uploading them to the contest website. The three monologues are from classic stage plays, and can be found in the “Photos” section of our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/2LJProductions You can record these monologues using your computer’s webcam, or your smartphone’s camera, or you can ask someone to help you record the videos for you using a camera.

Guidelines for recording your monologues can be viewed in the following instructional video:

 

How to Give a Natural Performance

  • Don’t get into the character’s “head”. Instead, get into your head, and think about how you would behave if you were in the same situation as the character.

  • You can eliminate self-consciousness by talking into the camera for a few minutes about something that you’re passionate about – a pet, a new pair of shoes, or an upcoming vacation!

  • Wear clothing that you feel comfortable in.

  • After each take, review the video and ask yourself the question: “is this the best that I can do?” If the answer is “no”, do another take.

  • Don’t feel that it’s necessary to move around in the space, or to gesture. If you find yourself moving or gesturing, do another take, and put the energy and effort from the movement and gestures into your facial expression and voice.

  • While preparing, review each line and be able to answer the question: “What is the emotional state of the character while she’s delivering this line?” Then, think about how you wish to convey that emotion through facial expression, and voice.

  • Running words and sentences together will seem unnatural – feel free to put pauses between words and sentences, as long as they seem natural to you.

  • Don’t feel that it’s necessary to do any accents or to speak with an affectation – doing so will only distract you.

  • The choice of which emotions you wish to convey is yours. If you’re unsure, use the following as a guide:

    • Three Sisters: happiness, realization

    • A Doll’s House: sadness, disillusionment, hurt, helplessness

    • Miss Julie: anger

In our weekly spotlights, we highlight actresses who deliver compelling performances that reflect one or more of the acting principles we consider to be important. Feel free to view them for tips and tricks! The following is our spotlight from April 5, featuring the very talented Clarissa Thibeaux: