Getting to an audition early in the morning is a feat (especially if you need to be awake at 4 am to get there in time.) Getting to an audition and not being nervous is impossible.
Nerves are just a part of the business. Butterflies appear when you audition, step on stage, or even meet your favorite actor. They can plague you through the rehearsal process. They can show up when you least expect it. In all honesty, being nervous is good. It means you care about what you’re doing. It’s not a fear, it’s a mechanism to help us deal with how much we care about a project, a role, an audition.
Sometimes, however, nerves can be debilitating. Everyone has seen someone succumb to stage fright. You definitely can’t afford to have that happen to you at a big audition or on opening night of your show! Most seasoned actors have different ways of dealing with those pre-show or pre-audition jitters. For the newbies, though, it can be hard to find something that works.
Here are a few of my tips:
- Find a hobby that calms you. Crocheting, origami, sudoku, writing. Do that before a big audition. It’ll help ease your mind. Repetition is also a good thing in a stress busting hobby.
- Drink something to take the edge off. I’m not talking about booze. Don’t be that guy. I’m talking about coffee and tea (for you caffeine addicts) water, juice. Nerves can sometimes mask symptoms of dehydration and make your symptoms worse. True story.
- Get yourself a mantra. Remember when I said repitition is good? Repeat something over and over to yourself. “Breathing in, I calm my body. Breathing out, I smile.”
- Hug someone.
- Pet a cat.
- I’m totally serious.
What’s your favorite way to beat the butterflies?