"In a few weeks, I will be holding auditions for a production of Horton Foote play I am directing. I thought I would post a few words here about auditions and why - when you consider the number of actors who audition for a role - the large percentage of these auditions are so ineffective. The answer is not complicated.
The first part has to do with the fact that very few actors have claimed the ability to invest themselves in a deeply personal way. So. the result is a monologue, a cold reading, a rehearsed scene from the script or an improvisation which remains at an intellectual level - clever, theatrical, possibly slick but always without any sense of true passion or urgency. Yes, often, you do not have a lot of time to make choices and personalize them which is why it is even more essential to master these most basic acting skills.
The other part has to do with the inability and the unwillingness in the actor to actually create in the moment. Here, the actors are relying on their preconceived and tightly held ideas about how the material should go, which leaves no room for surprises, for the unexpected, for the thrill of discovery. Where is the current of life? Where is the joy of performing! It certainly isn’t there in the audition room because the actor left all of it outside the door as he entered. Unfortunate for all involved."