Category Archives: Auditions

How To Identify Bad Acting

 

I’ve directed two theatre productions so far, meaning I had to sit through auditions and make casting decisions. I also had the opportunity to see many Namibian stage productions and as a film fanatic, over the years I have seen numerous movies; both local and international.

I’d like to think my taste in cinema is pretty much above average. While I really enjoy high-quality movies with big names, I also watch a good variety of indie films with amateur actors. I judge films/plays on its storyline, technicality and for the most part, on acting. Acting can make or break a film or play. A good actor can save a horrible script, whereas a bad actor can destroy a good script. In my opinion, acting is the biggest part of any production. Otherwise, people could just write good scripts and we’d go to the cinema/theatre to listen to the message, but that not really the gig, is it?

From a film perspective, I have seen movies/tv-shows from various industries; Namibia, South Africa, Hollywood, Nollywood and Bollywood, UK, China, etc.. You can tell it is a lot of different cultures and storytelling methods, but the acting is the only thing that really sets the movie for me.

So how do you know an actor’s performance is bad? Here are the signs of a bad actor:

Bad Actors Speak In A Monotone

You know that thing where an actor is on stage/screen and you are convinced they are reading from a cue card? This type of acting is horrible. Bad actors take the script, rehearse their lines and focus on sounding their lines word for word, without adding any type of personal expressiveness to their speech. If the speed, pitch and delivery of an actor’s dialogue remains the same while they are talking, they are bad at their job.

Bad Actors Are Afraid To Break Down Walls

In order for an actor to be believable, they have to convince their audience by showing, not by saying. An actor can have a very intense script to work with, but if they can’t show how they really feel, they are bad at their job. If an actor is afraid to be vulnerable on stage or on screen, they are bad. A good actor will not be afraid to be embarrassed. For instance, actors who refuse to be in nude or kissing scenes will not really heighten their acting capabilities- not that these equate to good acting, but being comfortable and really selling the character will unlock great acting potential. Actors who hold back are bad at their jobs.

Bad Actors Don’t Know How To Work With Their Castmates

What this means is they just don’t listen to their acting partner. This can especially be detrimental to stage productions. A bad actor is only focused on remembering and delivering their lines, so much that they don’t care what their dialogue partner said, they will blindly deliver their next line without properly reacting to what the other actor said. A bad actor is only focused on looking good on camera or stage, they don’t care about their fellow castmates.

The International ARTS Talent Showcase Is Coming To Windhoek And Wants You!

On 23 February 2019, the International ARTS Talent Showcase (IATS) will host auditions for Actors, Singers, Dancers and Models at the National Theatre of Namibia (NTN).

Every year the IATS helps entertainers realise their dreams by providing them a platform to showcase their talent and this year, for the first time, Namibian entertainers are also afforded the opportunity to showcase their talent on home ground come this February.

In Windhoek, performers will audition for talent scouts, Elsubie Verlinden and Elouise Janse van Rensburg. Successful performers will then be invited to the second round of auditions in Johannesburg in October 2019. Director of the Applause Rising Talent Showcase from the United States of America, Kim Myers personally attends the Johannesburg auditions and then invites successful performers to Orlando, Florida where they will represent Africa at the ARTS Convention in July 2020.

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Participants of the IATS are studying at the New York Film Academy, walking the runways of New York and LA Fashion weeks with some models booked for brand like Ralph Lauren, Hugo Boss, NBA Fan Clothing Range. Some actors have also been booked for Broadway productions in New York while singers performed at New York’s Bitter End Rock Club and Apollo Theatre, where amongst others Neil Diamond, Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift kick-started their careers.

Similarly, artists who has been on IATS’s platform had great success within the industry in the USA, such as Namibia’s Abraham Pieters who had the opportunity to audition for Tyler Perry Studios.

Related: Abraham Pieters sets sight on E! News, OWN

Pieters advises entertainers to do their best work when going in for the auditions in February, urging them not to rush their audition.

“It’s your Audition, you lead they follow. Actors, if you fumble your lines ad-lip/ improvise, the judges will never know you made a mistake, because they don’t have a script only you know what you prepared. Singers; Its not just about your vocals and your vocal gymnastic capabilities – it’s about stage presence, confidence. Make love to the stage and perform – make eye contact with the judges and most importantly have fun in the process. Models: Your cute face will not always get you in the door, use your body, it is your main instrument. For if you don’t know how to use your body, especially the men, it will come across as awkward. Wear comfortable clothes. Ladies, please where heels that you can walk in and if it happens that you fall, stand up and continue walking as if nothing happened. It’s all about confidence. Body language speaks volumes. To the dancers, please have energy when you perform, if you mess up your choreography just continue, you alone know the choreography if you make a mistake know one will know… The stage is yours, have fun,” Pieters says.

Related: How to ace your cold read audition

Break a leg!