It took me years to get over auditions. I would leave and punish myself over what I did wrong. Then I'd read reviews and find out who got the part and compare myself to them. Really? Totally. Then I started writing, producing, casting, etc. And I finally realized, who gets the part has nothing to do with talent and it's never personal. If it were, you wouldn't have gotten the audition in the first place. It's assumed you're a good actor otherwise, no one would waste time auditioning you which is expensive and time consuming. Who gets the job is based on either economics or personal resonance. If the show needs to put butts in seats or get number one ratings in the first episode to survive, then a person with a following and high box office numbers gets the job. Period. That's business....shows rarely get past the first two episodes before they're canned. So, that's just real.
Personal resonance had to do with the decision maker: Director, CD or Producer's personal taste. If they're working on this project, it obviously has personal resonance for them. It reminds them of a parent, a sad time in their lives, a dear friend, it strikes an emotional chord. The person getting the job will remind them deeply of this resonance, they will feel familiar and reaffirm that director's idea about who the character is. That is something the artist has no control over. It is completely subjective, so watching the final product to see who got the job is a waste of time. It was a personal "intuitive connection" the decision-maker had to what that person was bringing or it's a business decision.
This realization took a weight off my shoulders. Once I realized that, I was able to leave auditioning stress behind, focus on my own work and create projects that resonated deeply for me.
April Yvette Thompson is a Tony-winning producer, writer & actor working across media.
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