The process of getting into an accredited drama school has become synonymous with adjectives such as “tough” and “challenging”. It requires not only creative ingenuity but also pragmatic organisation over a period which can span over six months. The very nature of an audition is stressful, with your performance dependent on innumerable factors which are out of your control- from the time of your audition, your nerves on the day, to whether the Northern line was part suspended due to planned engineering works. However, there are aspects that you yourself can plan that don’t involve Transport for London.

Many drama schools will assign an audition date as early as two weeks after having received your application form. This means you must already be confident enough to perform your audition speeches by the time you send it off.  It’s also worth noting that drama schools have different audition requirements, with some stipulating one modern speech and one Shakespeare, others requesting three speeches and some such as The Central School of Speech and Drama providing a list of speeches for candidates to choose from. Reading the small print has never been more critical as I disquietingly discovered at East 15 when asked to do my second modern speech and had only Hermione from ‘The Winter’s Tale’. Despite the audition panel being obliging, this is a situation that could have been easily avoided. Tilly’s peerless acting coaching furnished me with unparalleled positivity and confidence, but it requires a whole other kind of audacity to feel poised and centred when in this position, which even she cannot provide.

Over the course of auditions and hopefully recalls for drama schools, audition panels will give notes as to how they think a speech could be improved or done more interestingly. Often notes from different drama schools will be contradictory as each panel will have varying tastes. This means that your audition speech will evolve even after Tilly’s acting sessions. Personally, I found it helpful to have “top-up” sessions at Audition Doctor, as this gave me time to discuss my audition, and workshop the panel’s suggestions. Furthermore, drama school auditions are staggered over a length of time and acting sessions at Audition Doctor are useful to ensure that the speeches don’t appear to be over-rehearsed and tired but fresh and original.