Ten Random Ways to Save Money and Not Starve as an Actor

Ten Random Ways to Save Money and Not Starve as an Actor By Katherine Schreiber

nnn1. Shop Wisely. Avoid buying food in high income and trendy areas. Choose Trader Joe’s over Whole Foods and head to Harlem, Inwood, Chinatown, Jackson Heights, or any neighborhood that has a Pathmark or Pioneer…You can also stick this list in your back pocket next time you head to any store for a cheap yet still healthy way to stock up: http://greatist.com/health/44-healthy-foods-under-1-dollar-031412/nn2. Swap garbage bags with (FREE) grocery bags. You know, the complementary kind you get at the grocery store. (Paper, plastic, whatever you can get without an extra purchase.) The seven bucks or more you’d normally spend on a box of Hefty, Husky, Glad, or other anthropomorphized swath of stretchy plastic could be better invested in an en-route-to-rehearsal falafel. Or a Metro Card…nn3. Immerse yourself in culture the cost-effective way. Don’t give me that Oh I can’t afford to go to museums excuse. Virtually every cultural venue in the city has some night they’re open for free. Try MoMa’s Target Free Friday Nights, the Neue Galerie’s First Fridays. Head to the Frick for Free on Sundays between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm. After Saturday brunch (at a cheap restaurant, of course) dip into the Jewish museum before 5:45pm for no charge or swoop into the Guggenheim between 5:15 and 7:45 without paying anything at all. Wednesday work better for you? Go to the Bronx Zoo (think of it as a live, occasionally disturbing museum) or the NY Botanical Garden for zero and we mean zero dollars.nn4. Milk that student ID. If you’re studying at T. Schreiber or elsewhere you’ll likely be provided with some form of identification verifying your enrollment at a studio or institution. USE IT TO YOUR ADVANTAGE. Student discounts come in all shapes and sizes, and you may be surprised just how far you can stretch that little piece of plastic (or paper). Bring your student ID to Angelika’s Village East Cinemas on Tuesday nights for discounted tickets and free popcorn. Flex your muscles for cheaper by inquiring at 24 Hour Fitness about their Student Discount membership rate. And don’t forget student rush tickets on Broadway! Check the hours of operation at the theater of your preferred production for the best time to line up outside. (But in the interim: Here’s a rundown of just how cheap the current Broadway offerings are…)nn5. Get (List)Served. Sign up for deal alerts from Groupon, Lifebooker, LivingSocial, Buy With Me, and Rue La La for the latest, greatest, and relevant deals for your lifestyle. The key here is patience — sometimes it takes a while to have something crop up that you can really use. Be forewarned to resist urges to buy something just ‘cuz it sounds cool…like a $79 Laser Hair Removal Package or a $295 ultrasound liquified fat cell treatment (what!?).nn6. Befriend someone with a Costco membership. (If you don’t have a membership yourself.) Go with said friend — especially if s/he has a car — and stock up. Nuts, peanut butter, frozen veggies, yogurt, milk. Act like it’s the apocalypse but the kind of apocalypse where refrigerators still work. (You’d be surprised at just how many edible things can be frozen and saved for suspiciously long periods of time.) And while you’re at it, store up on canned goods — lentils, soups, legumes, yea we know you crave Annie’s mac and cheese… The weather has already been frightful, so these may help you prep for what the Mayans predicted. (Hey, it’s always good to play it safe, right?)nn7. Know your tax exemptions. Being your own advertiser, publicist, and independent contractor. Traveling to shows, auditions, and go-sees. It adds up. But rest assured. To the chagrin of those on one end of the political spectrum, state and federal governments can help you foot the bill. Until we hear back from Congress on a tax reform plan — rest assured nothing’s happening anytime soon — working actors everywhere can squeeze through a fair number of loopholes for a hefty reimbursement after that dreaded April deadline …nnCheck out this über helpful expense list from Actorstaxprep.com for a run down of just how much you can get reimbursed for:nhttp://www.actorstaxprep.com/docs/ATPInfoSheet-ExpenseList2011.pdfnnhttp://www.actorstaxprep.com/writeoffs.phpnn8. Rent what you wear. Need to look sharp for an audition? Do NOT waste money on an insanely overpriced piece of material you will wear a possible total of three times ever. Two venues in NYC offer fancy designer dresses, jewelry and more for a far more affordable sum than you could ever imagine. (Provided you don’t spill, tear, or otherwise mar the eye-catching piece.) Check out RentTheRunway.com or Ilus nn9. Cut your hair and your bill. A good do doesn’t have to ruin your wallet. Check out Time Out NY’s guide to the cheapest haircuts NYC offers.  The best deal? Getting a COMPLETELY FREE cut by being a hair model. The once catch here is you may radically change your look. But hey, if it fits the character you’re going up for, sign up for Bumble and Bumble’s Hair Model project.nn10. Exchange. Yea, yea, the altruist would donate her old clothes to Goodwill. But not all of us can afford to be so selfless. Head to Buffalo Exchange to swap your old clothes for cash or store credit. Why Buffalo Exchange? Well, one of their locations (26th between 6th and 7th) just so happens to be right across the street from T Schreiber Studios. So feel free to drop by for a (FREE) info session if you’re exchanging on a Monday around 5:45 pm…


REEL DO’S and DON’TS by Helen Abelln

nThe basic purpose of a reel is to grab the attention of the agent or casting director by putting selections of your highest quality material together to put your best face forward and then leave them wanting more.nnIf you’re sitting there thinking, “I don’t have enough material,” Don’t worry!  You can put together a speed reel of short clips of your work or even selections of (professionally taped) recent student films.nnImportant DO’s to remember:n*Know what you are auditioning for and to whom you are marketing towards.n*Always! Lead off with your strongest, most recognized, professional quality material. Then finish up with your second strongest piece of work. Give it a nice bookend.n*It must be focused on YOU! The first face they see should be yours.n*Know your type and focus your material in a way that highlights your type. As your reel continues on you can diversify away from your type and show them how you can stretch, but you want to begin with how you are most easily cast. You want the casting director or agent’s first thought to be, “Yes. I can see that. I know how to cast this person.”n*If you are submitting for a particular audition and your dominant type presented in your reel doesn’t necessarily match what you are auditioning for-it is better to submit good material rather than nothing at all. Who knows! They may consider you for another part or cast against type! Stranger things have happened!n*Always choose Quality over Quantity. One clip of strong professional work is worth a lot more than 5 badly edited, badly lit scenes.n*Make sure your finished reel is posted on the casting sites! It gives you a leg up. Your submission is more likely to be seen if it has a video attached.nnHow long should it be?n*A professional reel, which includes network television and major film credits, should not be any longer than 5 minutes.n*If you do not have a legitimate number of credits, it is a good idea to keep it between 1 minute and 30 seconds minimum and 3 minutes maximum.n*If you don’t have a lot of material the best thing to do is to create Speed Clips instead of a reel.  30 seconds to 1 minute of good quality material from one project is better than throwing a bunch of mixed quality things together. Break it up and showcase yourself with the little clips.n*Most importantly, the first 30 seconds are the most crucial!nnPutting it togethernA title card at the beginning of your demo is a great way to start out. It should include your name and your web address.nnIf you are putting it on your website or into an email, it should be embedded or no more than one click away via youtube or vimeo. You don’t want to make Agents or CD’s have to chase you down. They don’t have the time, so make their lives a little easier.nnEach clip should be well edited and it should not over show you. You don’t want to show the entire scene/show/film/etc, you want to give a glimpse and leave them wanting more.nnRemember: The point of a reel is to:n


  1. Show what you look like on camera
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  3. Show your dominant type
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  5. Demonstrate your acting ability
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  7. And when you have enough material: it should demonstrate your acting range.
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nKeep It Simple! But if you know how to do a bit of editing, allow yourself to play around with it. Add a little light background music or a still shot of you in the opening. Be wise though and get some feedback on it before you send it out. And if you are clueless about editing, get it professionally done.nnBe proud of your work, but be realistic about what you have done. If the quality is bad or sound, lighting, and editing is not up to par, then it should not be used no matter how good the acting. If it distracts from the performance, then it is not good and it won’t help you.nnGood quality footage from Film and Television is the best business card you can have; it gives you credibility. Short and really good is better than long and pretty good.nnFor Theatre: all of the above applies.n*Most theatre auditions are in person and a reel is not necessary. However, on the occasion you have to send a reel for an out-of-town audition, or if one is requested of you, it is a good idea to have one ready.n*Make sure it is an accurate representation of your work.n*Performance footage is awesome, but not always easy to obtain and this is understood in the industry.n*If you are taping a song, dance number, or scene:nn            1. Make sure it is project specific. Ask yourself: What do they need to see if you can’t be in the room?nn            2. When compiling material for a specified audition, do not cut together the best portions- it should be shown in one take.nn            3. When compiling material for a theatre reel: same rules apply as in film and television.nn nnWritten by Helen Abell  with interviews from Vince Pisani, A-List Atlanta Actor, & Vic DiMonda, Associate Producing Director of the John W. Engeman Theatre

7 Sneaky Ways to Make Money In Between Acting Gigs


7 Sneaky Ways to Make Money In Between Acting Gigs By Katherine Schreibern

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nHow many times have you collected unemployment this year? It might be time to try and find a more lucrative part-time or temp position to complement your less than predictable acting career. To help you out, we picked the brain of actress-turned-CEO and Founder of Survivaljobsforactors.com Michelle Dyer for some sneaky job-hunting tips all actors should file alongside their resumes.nn nn nn nn1.     Promo TimenYou know those occasionally funny but sometimes extremely annoying-when-you’re-trying-to-get-somewhere folks who hand out free stuff in Grand Central Station? You can bet your month’s unemployment check they’re actors who didn’t have an audition that day. You can submit a photo and resume to most promo companies online. 360 Promo Network, Elite Marketing Group, Spectrum Events, and Davenport Theatrical are good places to start. The best part? Promo companies love actors. (Think of how your stage presence and vocal projection, amongst other awesomely endearing qualities) makes you stand out! If you just so happen to keep an eye on your appearance, your success in this area will double. Superficial as it is, these companies want extroverted, animated, and, well, pretty people to increase brand awareness and sell products. So submit your smiliest shot in the online app and let that personality sparkle once you land the interview.nn2.     Play SicknDon’t panic, but the medical community may need your help. To assess and improve doctors’ bedside manners, many med-schools hire actors to fake disease symptoms in front of soon-to-be-M.D.’s. You’ll be doing a favor for future patients as well as earning a not-so-shabby wage. (Some schools pay up to $25/hour.) For New Yorkers, Mount Sinai, NYIT, and North Shore are hiring.  Commute? Johns Hopkins and ECFMG are also looking to add to their team. For West-Coasters, Kaplan Medical is accepting apps. Your best bet, however, is to search for “Standardized Patient” on any job search engine, like simplyhired.com or indeed.com.nn3.     Get Paid to Make People SweatnBecoming a personal trainer may seem like a daunting commitment. But nabbing a group fitness instructor certification may not take as much time as you think. If you have a couple hundred bucks to spare and a free weekend, you can become a Zumba teacher in just one day. Longer term trainings and more hardcore certs — think: qualifying as a personal trainer, Pilates instructor, or yoga teacher — are options for those with a bit more time and money on their hands. See ACE, NASM, and ISSA for info on becoming a PT. For the OM-inclined: Yoga Works, Sonic Yoga, or Kripalu. And if Pilates is your preference, try Core Pilates, re:AB, or visit the Pilates Institute of America’s website for more info.nn4.     Show People AroundnIf you’ve got a knack for facts and enjoy putting on a show (we have a feeling the latter goes without saying), consider becoming a tour guide. Companies like On Location Tours — who offer Sex & The City, Sopranos, and Gossip Girl themed tours in New York and Boston — seek actors to parlay all sorts of fun and interesting facts to tourists from around the globe. (The more film experience you have under your belt, the better — improv and stand-up experience also won’t hurt you.) The schedule? Flexible (think: 3 ½ hour shifts that leave you plenty of time to audition). And it pays — upwards of $100 per shift (even before factoring in tips). Plus, there’s no long-term contract so if you do happen to get work — like previous On Location Tour guides Gary Mahmoud, Stephanie Schweitzer, and Stacey Sund  — you’re free to take time off. To apply, e-mail your headshot and resume to marketing@onlocationtours.comnn5.     Keep it Real (Estate).nAnother way to make money without sacrificing your Monday through Friday availability? Get licensed as a real estate agent.nnTake it from veteran broker Belynda M’Baye, who supplements her income with sealing apartment deals while pursuing a career in film production. Though she notes the work of a real estate agent can certainly be stressful — pro tip: be prepared for pushy customers who don’t quite understand you aren’t available 24/7 — M’Baye underscores how much freedom the job affords: “The job does involve a lot of juggling, but you make your own hours and you can often work remotely — say, backstage after a rehearsal or on break during a film shoot.”nnSome brokerage firms provide real estate education training programs that can be completed in less than a week. (To actually be able to practice, you’ll need to pass the Real Estate License Exam.) Check out Rapid Realty’s cert program or a university-affiliated continuing ed course like Hunter College’s to see if the training fits your schedule and budget.nn6.     Sell Stuff!nNo, we don’t mean exchanging all your furniture for cash on Craig’s List. (Though this can be a viable, albeit temporary and kinda sketchy option.) Theatre companies like Roundabout hire Telesales reps on a seasonal basis. Note: This work usually occurs during “regular business hours” (aka Monday through Friday, 9 to 5.) Check out Roundabouttheatre.org or call 212.642.9625 ext 8200 to schedule an interview.nn7.     Keep it Temporary.nTemp agencies can be an actor’s best friend — as long as you know how to use them to your advantage. Atrium ranks high on most intermittent job seekers’ lists. Core Staffing, Adecco, and Bon Temps also garner their fair share of smiles from those they help employ. Fancy non-profits? Try PNP.nnDyer recommends picking one day of the week to consistently e-mail your upcoming schedule to the temp agency. This helps them keep your availability in mind and ups the chances you’ll be able to fit a last minute gig in between rehearsals, classes, and auditions.nnDyer also cautions actors to shore up their assertiveness skills. “Temp agents can be pushy if you don’t tell them you only want one-off jobs,” she says. It’s tricky when you really could use that money working the Monday through Thursday slot they just offered you. But there’s also that big audition on Wednesday you’ve been prepping for. Use your best judgment when prioritizing your career and don’t feel you have to take up every temp opp that comes your way. Be clear and stand up for yourself!nnFor more job hunting tip-offs, visit survivaljobsforactors.com and sign up for Michelle’s regular e-mail alerts about open positions for actors in NY and LA!nnSpecial thanks to Michelle Dyer and On Location Tours’ Alan Lochter and Georgette Blau for their seriously huge contributions to this article!



n1. Save the Socializing for LaternnIf you’ve been in the biz for a while, you’ll likely run into yet another person you know at that next audition. But Theater World award-winning actress and teacher Julie Garfield warns actors not to get too chatty.nn“It’s very important to not waste time or energy catching up with your friends when you could be centering yourself before a reading,” says Garfield. “You don’t have to make enemies, but you must prioritize the work you’ll be doing in the audition over socializing with other actors in order to be adequately focused and prepared.”nnGarfield suggests a polite wave or nod of acknowledgement followed by a return to the sides or script in your hand. She also recommends donning headphones to convey that I’m in my own head now, thanks message to incoming chatterboxes.nn2. Follow The ReadernnSo you think the person feeding you lines isn’t as important as the text you’re reciting back to them? Think again. Actors should always remain aware of their readers, emphasizes T. Schreiber Studio and Theatre’s Co-Artistic Director Peter Jensen. No matter what that reader may be giving you.nn“You’ve got to play off of, or at least find someway to use, the reader,” Jensen says. “Some actors pretend someone else is seated across from them, delivering them cues, rather than really engaging the actual reader.” Big mistake.nnAnother note? Do not take a reader’s delivery of a line as your opportunity to rehearse what you’re going to say next.nn“So many actors make the mistake of looking down at their scripts and getting ready for their upcoming line when a reader is speaking,” says Jensen. “This prevents you from being engaged and spontaneous.”nnLook up, listen, and truly hear what the reader is saying to keep yourself authentically in the moment. Don’t be surprised if this slight adjustment gets you a few more callbacks down the line.nn3. Don’t Fight Your TypennSuccess in acting is as much about knowing how you read as it is about what you read. That means going for auditions you’re more likely to get rather than for auditions that are out of your range.nn“A lot of actors just don’t have any awareness of whether they’re a character actor or a true leading lady or man,” says Terry Schreiber, founder and Artistic Director of T. Schreiber Studio and Theatre. Absent the knowledge of what they’re best suited for — physically or emotionally — actors can waste a lot of time going up for auditions they haven’t a chance in the world of making.nnSchreiber himself admits that it wasn’t until he “gave into being a Midwest Farm Boy that I started getting cast.”nnActors may resist being cast as a type or feel demoralized at the thought they aren’t right for a leading role.  But ultimately, says Schreiber, “you’re really only going to get your foot in the door by playing the obvious.”nnA tip for still-starting-out actors: Get to know who you are and what you throw off when you walk into a room by asking directors, teachers, or agents what precisely this looks like. And pay attention to the types of roles you keep getting sent out for or cast in.nnOnce you become established as one kind of character, then you can prove how far your emotional or behavioral range extends.nnTake it from Schreiber: “It wasn’t until I gave into being a Midwest Farm Boy that I started getting seen by people. Only after I’d established myself as that type was I able to take on more nuanced — and prominent — roles.”





This is your calling card. Your resume very often gets in the door before you do and you want it to represent you in a clear, accurate, and professional manner.


A good rule of thumb is to provide enough information to make them interested, but not so much information that it is a turn off.

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Should be top & center and in a clear font. Large and in Charge!


Contact Info


List your cell, email, & web address and/or your Agents contact information.

n* If you have an agent, use their contact info. It is usually better to have someone in your corner who can handle the details of the contract when you get to that point. Always include your web address, especially if you have your reel on your website.nn* NO home address or any personal information. Ie. SS#. They need to know how to contact you, they don’t need to have easy access to steal your identity. Plus there are a lot of scammers out there and you don’t want some personal information ending up in the wrong hands. Also remember, a fair amount of headshots and resumes go straight in the trash. It is unfortunate, but it happens and you don’t want any of your information that isn’t already readily available to end up on the street corner.n



Height, Weight, Vocal Range (if a singer), Eye & Hair color (some people are leaving this off now as headshots are now in color, but if you change your hair a lot I would include your natural color. In the past when I have had to change my hair color, to something other than what is in my headshot, for a production I have added a header note stating: “Hair is currently Brunette for a production”. I found it helpful because when you walk in the room they are expecting to see the person in the photo. That little note can ease the shock if they’ve pre-read your resume and also remind them later of what you look like if you are being considered.


Your Experience


First you want to list the category of your work. These include, but are not limited to: Film, TV, Commercial, NY Theatre, Regional Theatre, Touring Theatre, Improvisation, Dance, etc.


Bold faced, ALL CAPS, and Underlined are usually a good idea. It helps to make it clear and distinct.


Underneath each category you will list your work.


n nnFILMnnFirst:    DON’T                      LIE!                            PERIOD!nnSecond: Keep it to a 3             column                           format.nnFirst column is                         Second column is         Third column isnnTITLE.                                        BILLING.                      COMPANY/Directornn nnThe first category should be your most experienced category. You can also adjust your experience based on what you are auditioning for ie. If you are going into a Film/TV audition, move your Film/TV credits to the top of the list. It’s a little extra work, but it makes for easy viewing by the CD’s, Directors, & Producers you are in the room to see. They want to know what you’ve done in that genre and they need to see it quickly. So by making it easy for them you are helping yourself out as well and making yourself look professional.nn nnPRODUCTION TITLES should be ALL CAPS for ease of read.nn n

BILLING should be correct.


For Theatre: Character Name


For Film: Lead, Supporting, Principal


For TV: Star, Co-Star, Guest Star, Featured, or Under 5

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(if necessary).


*no need to put the year you did the show

n nn*Commercials: It is typical to list your work in this category as “Commercial conflicts available upon request”nn*DO NOT list Extra/Background work. Not much goes into this work (except patience) and what they really want to see are the projects you put all your years of training to use in.nn*If your resume is small and you want to list scenes you have done in class work, so industry can get an idea of what you can play, that is fine, but PLEASE make sure you label the category as Class Scene Work.nn nn n


nWhat, Where, and Who. *College education is not necessary, unless you are just leaving college and entering the larger markets.nn nnActing: T. Schreiber Studios – Terry SchreibernnVoice: T. Schreiber Studios – Page Clements (vocal production)nnDance, Stage Combat…etc.nn n

Special Skills

nLast, but not least! Special Skills. This is where you list things like stage combat ability, accents, other languages, or any other special skill you might have, ie. Juggling. The important thing to remember is anything you list must be performance ready. I have been in an audition before where I was asked to combine my Irish accent with a lisp while doing the scene in American Sign Language. Obviously the director was really bored and it was a bit over the top for them to request all of these things at once, but I did it. You must be performance ready with everything you list you can do!nn nnThings to Remember!nn**Don’t add more information than is needed. Remember: keep it clean, clear and easy to scan.nn**Your resume should match your IMDB resume. If you do not have IMDB credits yet, make sure your resume matches on the different casting sites you are on. Ie. Casting networks, actors access, backstage, 800casting, etc. People in the industry do cross-reference.nn**Very Important: when you attach your resume to your headshot, trim it down to the same size as your photo. (preferably before you arrive at your audition…not while you are in the lobby)nn**Be proud of your work and what you have accomplished. If you are just starting out people in the industry understand and expect you to have a shorter resume. Wear it proud!nnWritten by Helen Abell. With interview by A-List Atlanta Actor, Vince Pisani.

Four Tricks to Soothe Pre-Audition Angst

Four Tricks to Soothe Pre-Audition AngstnBy Katherine Schreiber

nnn1. Remember: It’s all in your head. You walk into an audition room. Your palms are sweaty, your heart is pounding, and all those fellow actors you’re contending with for a role look like they’re giving you dirty looks. Plus you’re convinced the casting agent already hates you for some unexplained reason.nnWhen we’re too nervous our brains shift our attention towards just about everything that’s negative in our environment — say, the scowl on a fellow auditioner’s face, or the subtle tone of annoyed disapproval in a director’s voice. A bit too much audition anxiety kicks our nervous systems into threat mode, which means our blood vessels tighten up to deny adequate oxygen delivery to our muscles, tissues, and organs (including the one inside your skull). Small wonder, then, that stress screws up our ability to make sound decisions — like which character choice to fall back on, how obsequious we act in front of a reader, and whether to glance nervously back at the audition crew several times before high-tailing it to the shift we’re scheduled for at a restaurant.nnBut before you give yourself a panic attack, keep in mind that you have control over what stress does to your body — at least, to the extent that you can re-appraise whatever it is that’s making you anxious. Research reveals that as long as you think you’re fully capable of manning (or womaning) up to a challenge, your body responds by mobilizing any stress-induced nervous system activation: More blood gets to your tissues and organs, plus you’re less likely to be intimidated by obstacles, threats, or negative feedback. (What, some younger, thinner, and more thickly mascara’d potential star gave you the stink eye in the elevator? Well she ain’t got nuttin’ on your emotional prep for this reading!)nnThe key is to re-think what those initial tummy butterflies mean when you’re en route to an audition. If you see pre-reading stress as fuel for the character you’re about to portray, you’re more likely to derive a helpful jolt from nervousness than crumble under its ability to bias you towards negative feedback and self-defeating thought.nnSo next time you get super stressed before hearing your name called for a cold reading, embrace the heart rate spike, sweaty palms, and fear of failure. See fear as a mobilizing force and harness its power to your advantage.nn2. Squeeze, don’t choke. Okay, maybe you’re not able to trick yourself into re-appraising stress so as to use it to your advantage. (Yet.) Fear not! Here’s a fun trick proven to dial down performance anxiety and help get you out of your head: Make a fist with your non-dominant hand (the one you don’t write with). Seriously. That’s it.nnWhy on earth would this make a difference? Using the less dominant side of your body rescues your mind from rumination ruts by dialing up activity in brain regions that aren’t devoted to over-thinking. This subtle attentional shift enables us to fall back on automaticity of thought and movement, rather than self-conscious over-analysis of everything we’re about to do wrong.nnThe less hyper-aware we are of performance pressures and all the possible judgments a reader, director, or casting agent may form of us, the more open we become to what’s actually happening in the audition room and how a character might authentically respond. (Funny, didn’t someone named Sandy Meisner once tell us to stop thinking so much for the most successful on-stage outcomes? Well, now science backs him up.)nn3. Swing it Out. Psychologist, TK titles, Kelly McGonagle, author of TKTKTK, recommends a full body technique she calls the I don’t care swing. Find some space in the audition room — sometimes a restroom or hallway is your best bet — or do this at home before you arrive.nnStand up tall, stretch your arms up, inhale and then, as you exhale, drop your arms and upper body forward and down towards the floor. (Those with back issues, just stick with the arm movements.) Envision any anxiety, stress, or intrusions from your personal life being thrown from your fingertips with each downward motion. Inhale again. Repeat three to five times, or more!nn4. And Don’t Forget to Breathe. Mconagle also recommends breathing techniques, like alternate nostril inhales and exhales. Breathe in through both nostrils, then plug your left with a finger. Inhale through your right nostril, then exhale through your right nostril. At the bottom of the exhale, plug your right nostril and repeat on the opposite side. Three to five rounds on each side should do the trick — and by that we mean center you and begin to reduce some nasty stress hormones as well as calm your heart rate.