The forward march of autumn signals the advent of that sentence that many applicants have nervously been waiting for on drama school websites – Applications for September 2014 are now open. Download application form here. While it can often feel like you are one of many just bursting through the starting gates, filling out whether you are male or female is the least stressful part of the entire process. While the advice “get your application form in early” is not without foundation (RADA even have different audition fees for applications received after a certain date in December), sending off the form knowing that you have the right audition speeches is a far better move strategically.
You can be called to audition within two weeks of you sending it; two weeks is not enough time to have sat in French’s or a Waterstones researching various monologues as well as have explored the countless ways of playing the character. There is also the simple fact that the longer you have to work on your speeches, the better you know your lines. This means you are far less likely to dry in front of the panel. Forgetting your lines when you’re redirected is common; performing a speech with opposite intentions when the panel watch you in the process of discovery. Knowing your lines inside out means that you can concentrate on exploring the acting side of things, as opposed to making your audition a memory test.
Today on Ideastap, the Artistic Director of the National Youth Theatre, Paul Roseby, spoke about what he looks for in auditions. He emphasised the importance of finding “a speech that suits you. I like ambition – people coming in with  ambitious ideas about their future, themselves and what they’re doing. But we  want to see great characters. Look for something or someone that interests you  because, if it interests you, then it’s probably close to you.” He also averred “There is no guarantee in auditions. Like we say, we want to ban the bland. It’s about watching somebody who is  watchable. That doesn’t mean they have to, technically-speaking, have the best  audition. It’s about the personality as much as the audition technique.”
Having said this, some drama school applicants do seem to believe that their personalities are the most important aspect of the audition. They think the panel have to “like” them. While there is an element of truth in this, they’re not there auditioning you to be friends with them, they want to pick the people with the best potential. As Audition Doctor repeatedly attests, it is always the audition speeches that can afford you the best opportunity to show them this.
Many people come to Audition Doctor believing that they can succeed in the industry without training. While this has worked for some, Tilly is the first person to always stress how training is the best possible route to secure credibility and longevity in the profession.
When Arthur Darvill was asked how useful he found his training, his responded: ” Training is a funny thing. I was very lucky and went to RADA. That was the Holy Grail for me, before I went. But it meant that I spent my first year trying to “get it right” rather than get what I could from it. The truth is that you never get it right, you just keep learning. Drama school was a great opportunity to do that and – like any place of learning – you get out what you put in.” Audition Doctor works on the same basis which means the number of sessions you will have will be totally up to you. However, you absolutely get back in spades what you put in, which makes Audition Doctor your best bet for getting into drama school, as well as being a taster of how you want to approach your training should you get in.