How to Audition for Broadway

By Jonathan McLelland

Broadway is a dream for millions of actors across the world. However, if you are interested in actually auditioning for Broadway, there are several tips you need to keep in mind before ever stepping foot inside of the theater. Following these tips will help you throughout the actual audition process of trying out for a Broadway show.

Auditioning for Broadway

Prepare for the audition by ensuring you have at least 32 bars of music memorized and perfected. Depending on the audition you are going on, you may be required to sing less or more, however, 32 bars is the standard among Broadway auditions. Always hydrate your voice before going to a Broadway audition, and rest your voice for several days prior to the audition.

Gather your headshot and resume, sheet music and a bottle of water before heading off to the audition. You may need to bring dance shoes with you to the audition; however, this is not always the case. Normally, the dancing points of an audition is during callbacks, but always check the audition notice to ensure whether or not you need to bring dance shoes.

Leave your house early enough so you will arrive at the audition at least 15 minutes early. If you are attending an open call, which is an audition that anyone can attend, plan on arriving at least an hour before the actual audition time starts. If you are attending an open call Broadway audition, expect to wait in upwards of two hours before you are able to audition.

Performing for a Broadway audition can be different depending on what show you are auditioning for. In many cases, you will be auditioning within groups. Always introduce yourself to your fellow actors and be extremely pleasant. Many will find a support system within the actual group of actors they audition with, which will help you get rid of pre-audition nerves.

Walking into the audition, always have at least three copies of your headshot and resume. You will hand these to the casting director, or the casting assistant.

Hand your sheet music to the pianist, who is normally located at the side of the stage. Before you begin singing, always introduce yourself and the song selection you will be singing. An example of this would be “Hello, my name is John Smith and today I will be performing Stars from Les Miserables.” After saying this, nod at the pianist to inform them you are ready to begin the song. Once you are finished with the song, take a small bow to the casting director and thank the pianist for their assistance. You may be required to perform a monologue, which would come after the song; however, this depends on the exact Broadway audition you are attending.

Tip

Always check the audition notice to see if you need to prepare an audition song and a monologue, or just one of these two.

If you are required to dance, bring appropriate shoes and wear comfortable clothing that you can move in.

Warning

During an open call Broadway audition, always arrive at least an hour early, or you may find yourself waiting in a four-hour long line.

About the Author

Jonathan McLelland has been a professional writer since 2005. He has worked as a story writer and editor for the international sitcom, “Completing Kaden,” as well as a proposal writer for various production companies. McLelland studied communication and theater at St. Louis Community College.