When starting out as an actor in Hollywood, the hardest and most nerve-racking process is auditioning. Many young actors, quite talented in their own right, have lost sleep, vomited and nearly broke down in tears trying to prepare for an audition. Obviously not sugar coating it – auditioning can definitely be a nervous and scary ordeal. But, there are ways to ease the tension and to nail an audition at the same time, to the point where you book the role and not get sick in the process! First and foremost is preparation. Be prepared, be prepared and be prepared. Because if you don’t know your lines and the material at hand, there is no way you are going to come across naturally; and you won’t be able to showcase your best performance to the casting director. Memorizing your lines is the most important and crucial first step to preparing for an audition properly and efficiently. If you know those lines back and forth, there is nothing you can’t do with that content and character. You can play the role any and every which way you choose as long as those lines are locked in your brain. Aside from memorizing your lines, know the content itself. Memorization is only part of conquering a great audition. Sometimes, and not always, you’ll get sent the whole script as oppose to just the “sides” (the few pages that you are given, containing the lines you will perform in the audition). The times you do get the whole script, read the whole thing! Knowing your character and his or her journey is incredibly helpful to understanding the scene you’re performing in the audition. That way you will be able to play on the character’s background and insight, understanding where he or she is coming from in that particular scene. But what if you don’t get sent the entire screenplay before your audition? Then read the few pages you are given. Read them through and through and try to grab as much knowledge about the character before the audition. Most likely you will tap into the character’s voice and get a decent understanding of how to play the role. Regardless, you will at least have a gut instinct on how to perform in the audition. And that is a very important factor in this process – you might have five different ways to read the lines in the audition, but you must do it the way you feel most comfortable. Go with your gut every time. Even if it’s not the way the casting director had in mind, they will at least see your talent as opposed to a disastrous performance which is what will happen if you play the part in a way that makes you uncomfortable. Above all else, the best piece of advice in preparing for an audition is to be relaxed. Forget about getting the part, forget about how many people are in the room that day (directors, producers, casting agents, etc.) and forget that someone is judging you on your performance. You must be relaxed before, after and during an audition. Otherwise your performance will come off stiff and choppy and completely unnatural. Harder than it sounds, right? How do you relax when auditioning for a part that you want so badly? It’s simpler than you think…Just have fun! Remember why you got into this career in the first place. Most of you are doing it because you love to act. You love to perform. You love to move people whether it’s through comedy, drama or even horror. So, if you love to act and you want to have fun…well then, have fun! If you look at it like playtime, then you will enjoy yourself. And if you’re having fun, your best performance will definitely come through in the audition. So, give it your all and enjoy yourself at the same time!