As the CEO of Craze Agency, I have witnessed 1000’s of auditions in my 26 years in the talent business. One of the most important keys to booking a role is total memorization. If your audition is not memorized, it sends a message to the casting director or client about how committed, prepared and professional you are. The actors that book the roles are usually off page in an audition even if it is a cold read.
Memorization should be at the top of the list of your preparation. It is the beginning of everything. It’s difficult to walk in and nail an audition if you are not 100% sure of your sides.
To give a powerful performance, you must be able to perform your lines without thinking about it and use your eyes to react to the other actor you are auditioning with. Nerves can do funny things to our brains, and you can’t rely on the lines “coming to you” in the middle of the audition. Only once a piece is totally, thoroughly, and completely memorized can you begin to relax and build an emotional and intellectual foundation.
For most of us memorizing our lines is hard work, and there is no easy way around it. Having a scheduled time of the day or week set aside for this type of work and practice is important if you are serious about acting.
First practice your sides out loud. This is how you will be doing it at the audition so become comfortable doing it this way.
Retype or rewrite the scenes. Bold or highlight the key words and enlarge all the words if needed. It’s amazing how much easier you can memorize your line just from the act of typing or writing them down
One of the mistakes some actors make is memorizing their lines without also memorizing the other actor’s lines. What good is memorizing your lines if you don’t know when and how to say them?
Listen to and really understand the meaning of your lines and the other actor’s lines. This will help you to memorize the lines because you are not thinking of it as learning it word for word. You then understand what it going on and this will automatically help you to know and memorize your lines.
Split up your memorizing work into small manageable sections. Read and understand the whole scene first. Then know and memorize each set of lines before you move forward to the next set of lines. After this is done locate the hardest lines for you and spend extra time working on them.
When you practice try to do it in different pressure settings and environments. It is amazing how many actors swear they have their lines perfectly memorized, but when they walk into the casting room something throws them off and they forget and draw a blank. This often happens because they practice by themselves one way and no one is watching or critiquing them. The casting is a shock to them and they forget.
Make a tape of only the other characters lines, use it to rehearse out loud if you do not have a partner.(Remember to really listen to the other actors lines).
Rehearse with a friend. It is totally different than rehearsing all by yourself with no one around. Unless it is a monologue you will be auditioning with another actor so get used to it.
For more advice on modeling or acting go to
The Truth about Teen Modeling and Acting all the way to Adults of all ages!
I have enjoyed working in the talent industry booking models, actors and extras for over 27 years. I have usually worked in market sizes fewer than 2 million people. I have also worked with many other agents across the U.S. that also work in these size markets and have discovered some interesting facts that I would like to relay to you.
First off yes there is plenty of legitimate work available for teens, young adults, adults and even seniors! With that said these is also a certain percentage of work that goes out to each of these age groups and also a certain percentage of people that are applying for these age groups. This can sometimes make it harder and sometimes easier for each person depending on their age, markets and experience level.
I have broken it into different age categories. Please remember these are educated guesses and can vary slightly depending on the ability of your agency, the market location and size, also some years are busier than others.
Teenagers age 13 to 17 years old -This age group can be busy sometimes and sometimes a little slower depending on if the production is using a lot of teens or there is an ad campaign in town using teenagers. The Disney Films, various TV series and family features will use a ton of teens, but companies marketing their product and most commercial print studios do not use a lot of teenagers. In high-fashion markets (New York, Miami, LA, Overseas etc.) this is a good age for high fashion models to start their career. In our markets this age group is very competitive since we receive 25-30% of all of our new faces who apply that want to belong to the agency and approximately 15 to 20% of the work we receive available for this age group.
Young adults 18-30 years old -This is usually the busiest age category for fashion modeling, pretty busy for commercial and lifestyle modeling usually busy for Film and TV acting. It is fairly busy for corporate business modeling and acting. Many productions ask us for people 18 and over especially in Union made Films, TV and Commercials who look younger because they do not have to deal with as many legality issues. Once someone is 18 they are no longer a minor. This age range is fairly competitive though, we receive approximately 25-30% of all of our applicants for new faces and we book approximately 20-30% of the jobs in this age category.
Adults 30 -40 years old- This is very good for many types of print work, especially commercial and lifestyle. It is also good for website spokesperson jobs and business spokesperson jobs. Many roles are available for Film and TV. talent in this age category and they generally make some of the higher rates for local markets. Approximately 20- 25% of the people apply as new talent to this group and it generally books 20-25% of all the work available.
Adults 40-60 years old- This can be a busy category especially for film, corporate work, commercial and lifestyle photography. This can also be a good category for pay. We receive approximately only 10-12% of all the people apply to be talent with our agency in this age group and they get 15-22% of the jobs booked, a great ratio. The person with a good business look does very well in this category especially if they can also act.
Seniors people 60 years old and up- The work ranges from lifestyle modeling ads, to Film, TV and commercial work to stock photography. Pay ranges from $100-$150 per day for extra work to $200-$1000 per day for most other jobs. There is not as much competition as some of the other categories. We receive about 6-10% of all our new applicants who are in this age range and surprisingly this category gets about 10-15% of all the work. Many people either winding down their careers or retires looking for some extra part time income usually apply.
As you can see there are many variables in our industry. Of course the more experienced and qualified you are will help determine your odds on booking jobs. There are no guarantees but usually the talent that gives it time and an honest attempt will book jobs eventually!
Types of Modeling-There are various types of modeling to choose from and most models don’t just stick to one kind. Very broadly, they can be classified into Fashion Modeling, Body or Body Part Modeling, Commercial Modeling. The following are the most ethical types.
- Fashion modeling of course can be further divided into print, runway, editorial, catalog, lingerie, bathing suit, fitness, size specific (petite, plus size etc) modeling and possibly a few more.
- Commercial modeling this is actually the busiest modeling in a medium to small market size. This includes lifestyle modeling, sport modeling, modeling for trade shows, product promotions, etc.
- Body part modeling is actually an off-shoot of fashion modeling which uses models for specific body parts. So for example, a model with great hands would be used for an ad for a hand cream.
Finding Work-There is never a lack of work for models but for paying jobs but it is very competitive. Finding work can be hard on your own, especially if you’re an unknown face with no proven talent. The best way to start out in modeling is to work with a reputable agent who takes you under their wing. It is the agency’s job to promote you and find you work and it helps you gain a foothold while you’re still new to the industry.
Versatility-You will immediately become more employable when you are versatile and can pretty much suit any role a client needs. Versatile model are just as comfortable at photo with different photographers and products at photo shoots as they are saying lines for various TV commercials or working as a spokes model. Once you’ve proven your abilities, you will soon become the person the client asks back for the next promotion as well. This is when it becomes much easier because you do not have to continually audition, they just directly book you.
The Client-Your career is client-driven. Your ability to book jobs is based on how well you can help the client sell the product or service. Without the client you will have no work, and obviously no pay. Doing an amazing job when you are booked will force the client to hire you over and over again.
For more advice call the Craze Agency at 801-438-0067
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Many parents would love to have their child become a model or actor. These are key things that the CEO of Craze Agency Troy Lee recommends that will help you to have a great interview with a professional agent.
What is the most important trait you look for in child actors?
The ability to be relaxed, comfortable, disciplined and natural in front of virtual strangers is a hard quality to find. Clients want kids to be real kids not seem like they were forced or coached.
Simple age appropriate clothing not to casual but also not overly dressy for both an audition and an interview. No hats or makeup. We want to see what they naturally look like.
Upon first impression, what might immediately deter you as an agent from selecting a child?
Pushy parents that answer the questions for the child, kids that cannot sit still very long or have a hard time taking direction. Parents who have unrealistic expectations.
What would you say are the perks of a small boutique agency vs. a large company?
Though we have agencies in Utah and Idaho and work primarily in the Intermountain region we also find work in many surrounding markets. Because we are not in a top ten populated market we find work in many areas. Commercial print modeling, Lifestyle print modeling, a little bit of High Fashion modeling, Small budget and Feature films, Commercials, Website Spoke Persons, Brand Ambassadors and Trade Show Modeling. In order to provide clients with appropriate talent, we represent quite a few people that just do this part time and not as a career. We also assist talent in getting larger market representation once they are qualified and ready. I have found that successful agencies in smaller markets cannot specialize as much as most of the larger market agencies.
Get a reputable agent in your market. It is too hard for an individual to get their foot in the door with most paying clients. Many agencies in smaller markets also rely on training the models and actors for income. This is not always bad but if you want your child also promoted properly, you have to be extra careful because they may make the majority of their income training the talent. Do not worry too much at first about spending a ton of time finding national work for your child. Try to develop their skill level and resume with local jobs. If they want to be an actor research the best film and commercial acting instructors. In our market most theater jobs are low or non-paying so we spend our time with film, TV and commercials. Make sure your child’s head shot and resume are of industry standard quality. Then mail them with a brief cover letter to every ad agency, commercial photographer and casting director in your market. Also it is all about networking so at first do low budget or free projects just to get out there and create visibility and experience. What People are Saying
Encourage the child but never force them to be in the industry. Educate them on the good and bad points and be realistic. Usually there is not as much consistent work for kids until they get a little older.
For acting once the child is one of the most booked children in your State, which is a very small percentage. Also if they can be SAG eligible and have 2-3 years of really good experience on their resume. For modeling I would say they probably would also need to be a pretty good actor because there are a ton of cute kids already living in L.A. so they need to be able to do both well to catch the eye of the better child agencies. They should also have some tear sheets of work they have done for companies. Over the years I have had a number of really good actors and models jump too quickly to L.A., even though they were making some good income in our market and developing a nice track record with the local casting directors and ad agencies. Though I counseled them to first further develop their acting skills or modeling portfolio with tear sheets etc. they would listen to many so called industry people advising them they are L.A. ready now. Most of the time they go before they are really ready and end getting discouraged and they just quit the business. For many actors or models L.A. or New York should be the goal, but just make sure you give yourself the very best chance possible to succeed!
I had a high school friend who managed an agency offer me a new faces recruiting agent position even though I had little experience in the Modeling and Acting world other than doing many trade show spokesperson jobs for various companies. After about a year of working for this agency I realized there were better ways to promote and recruit the talent, so I worked hard and opened up my own agency and have now been promoting talent for about 25 years.
What is the most important lesson you have learned working in entertainment outside of Hollywood?
I have had to be extremely diversified to grow and succeed. Sometimes there are a ton of movies all going on or commercials or print jobs and other times almost nothing. We are usually busy all the time because we have such a diverse section of talent that we can find opportunities daily. Also sometimes smaller market agents are just as smart and savvy as major market agents. They have to be just to survive.
Why are you passionate about your agency and/or being an agent?
I have a fantastic team at the Craze Agency that has worked together for years. It really gives me pleasure when I see one of our talents careers begin to flourish. I also love the fact that over the years we have assisted thousands of people in achieving some of their dreams in the entertainment industry.
Why should a company hire a model or actor from a respected Modeling and Talent Agency?
Don’t take the chance on getting flaky people! Most models that are not represented do not have much to lose if they do not show up for the job or casting.
Quality Modeling and Talent Agencies will screen and individually prepare the talent for your specific needs thus giving you reliable and professional Talent.
An agency will make sure that the models show up on time, healthy, trained and with a great attitude. The Agencies long term client relationship and reputation may be at risk and we know how hard it is to find good clients as well as clients to find good Agencies.
Often models that are not represented are usually not at the level professional modeling and talent agencies accept. This is why they are independent. Unrepresented models often use outdated or unrealistic photo shopped images in an attempt to book a job.
You may be surprised but often the Agency can work within your budget with no added fees. You only need to make out one check to the agency and they can disburse the checks to all of the models saving you valuable time and accounting expenses.
You also only need to make one call and the agent can do the rest. If a model or actor does not show up it is usually too late to find a replacement.
Some of the areas a full service modeling and talent agency can help you with are Models and Talent for Promotional Events, Retail and Exhibition shows across the United States. They also often represent Actors, Extras, Print and Runway Modeling, Film, TV, Commercials and Internet.
If you would like to set up an audition with talent, the larger agencies often have casting space. The agency also can put you with the best Casting Directors if your project calls for that.
Great agencies can also communicate with you on getting as many important details as needed, then sifting through their talent database to find you the very best candidates. If you want to see professional photos and resumes of their talent most good agencies can give you a list of great models immediately. A large Agency with variety can also save you the expense of hiring a casting director. If they have a good eye for talent the can assist you in finding the perfect fit for your project.
If you need assistance or would like to find professional models in your area or referrals call us at 801-438-0067 or 208-433-9511 or go online to
Modeling and Acting advice.
Models and Actors don’t psyche yourself out before, during or after the audition or casting call. Follow these steps and you will get book more jobs.
After promoting excellent models and actors for over 25 years at the Craze Agency, I have witness many otherwise excellent models and actors damper their chances of landing the job or having a successful career.
Many times they don’t even know they do it until it is too late.
Here is a list of things models and actors do and the solution to their problems.
1-Worrying too much about things you cannot control. Often there will be many types of other talent auditioning, some better looking, some skinnier, some with more experience etc. You never know exactly what they want so you just have to go in with the attitude you are confident, professional and the best choice for the job.
2-You think you are prepared for the casting, and then when you audition it does not go the way you envisioned or you blow the audition. Auditioning for strangers and people who actually make the decisions is totally different than preparing in the comfort of your own home and for friends and family. You need to constantly be testing yourself in different settings and situations. A pro can adapt comfortably no matter who or what the situation is.
3-You are not properly prepared or informed for your audition. There is a lot more too being a great model or actor than genetics and talent. If you are not 100 percent confident, educated and prepared you probably will be turned away. Remember paying clients look at this as a business and they hire people that are ready and can make their investment profitable.
4-Some models or actors get discourage because the client doesn’t seem interested in them at one particular casting. Sometimes the client is interested in you but they have a lot on their mind. Sometimes they are not interested but the next client could be the one that helps you become a star. Everyone has different tastes and needs so stick with it and have a tough skin.
5-You become overwhelmed by nerves and the situation. Often nerves are a direct result of inexperience and the unknown. Talents often over analyze the situation, placing too much importance on this one particular audition which creates panic in you. Get a respected coach and practice the correct things over and over again. Being photogenic besides being nice looking, is moving correctly, knowing different poses, listening to the photographer and understanding how you look in front of the camera. For actors there are so many variables you need to work with someone who understands these and can give you the knowledge and confidence.
6-Beating yourself up after the casting call if you do not land the job or receive a callback. Be proud that you first were called for the audition. Many times the client is selective on who and how many people they see. There are so many outside unknown factors that go into each casting that I have witnessed numerous accounts of models and actors going on well over ten failed auditions and getting so discouraged, then the next audition they go on they get the booking and make great money, have a blast and their career gets moving quickly. You just never really know, even the biggest stars had a bumpy road to the top. Enjoy the journey and good things will come!
If you have more questions call Craze Modeling and Talent Agency at 801-438-0067 or go to http://www.crazeagency.org
Questions you should ask and know when performing acting audition
These are some of the questions you should answer when you prepare to perform or audition an acting scene. Be creative and try to think out of the box. Casting Directors, producers and directors respect actors who are original and creative but still are true to the script.
If you do not know the answer below just use your best judgment but please make a choice. There really is not a right or wrong but just your interpretation and ability to demonstrate it to the audience.
Casting directors stress that you need to make and be able to perform strong choices when auditioning.
When practicing your audition do it for a friend or family and see if they are able to answer these questions by witnessing the actual performance.
Always try to remember the audience only knows what you are thinking by performance. Learn to connect with the audience by being able to let them feel and understand what you are thinking and conveying.
Make a worksheet every time you audition and fill in the following questions
What is the physical description of my character?
What is the personality like of my character?
What are my emotions at the time of the scene?
Where is the scene taking place? Describe the setting and the time of day?
What type of Film, T.V. Series or Commercial is this (Drama, adventure, comedy, period piece etc.)?
What is my character trying to accomplish?
What does my character want the other character to DO (now)?
What are the other characters trying to accomplish?
What is the pace of the scene (depending on the situation you can slow down or speed up just as in real life even in the middle of the scene)?
Where are the key shifts in the scene (emotional, mental, physical etc.)?
Do I completely know and understand the scene, (once you really do you can then let the scene flow naturally and live the moment)?
This may seem like a lot of things to think about especially in a short scene, but having the ability to display this will give your performance depth and believability.
1- When you are booked for any job write down the director, producer, casting director, TV Network etc… You need this info. for your resume. Also remember the part you played. (If it was extra work you must put that in a separate Extra category not acting). Always update your resume the day you do the project. You would not believe the amount of work people lose out on because their resumes are not updated.
2- To insure payment when you are booked on a job, please remember to bring appropriate ID and fill out all forms legibly and correctly. Also keep track of the dates you work and what job it was just in case.
3- Keep your look close to the photos your agent uses to promote you, or you must update the photos. Clients really get upset when you do not match your photo or if we send you out to meet them and you have gained or lost weight, have longer hair or a different color we could lose that client permanently.
4- Never say a negative word on set. Even among fellow actors or models. Even about other agencies. It never helps you or us in the long run! Let’s take the high road even though many people and agencies don’t.
5- A successful Modeling and Acting career is like any other career it takes time, persistence, dedication, knowledge, skill and patience!
6- Many National Clients take time to pay you, even when your agent bills them with a 30 day voucher. We all hate it as bad as you do, (we all have bills to pay). Often they have 2-3 clients they bill to get you paid. Legitimate agents will do everything in their power to collect, but it has always been that way and will probably never change with the big national companies. They know they get a lot of people work so if you harass them too much the client will just use someone else.
7- Do not accept an audition unless you are 100% sure you can make it and be on time. Usually agents are limited in the time slots we have and we do not have time to replace you. We also give the casting director a list the night before and they will too be busy the next day of the audition for us to schedule someone else with them. They just figure you are unreliable.
8- No matter how you feel inside you have to portray self confidence when you are interviewed. Clients never hire people who let them know they are new at this or who are not a polished finished product.
9- Don’t show it or be shocked if the audition is not what you visualized. A pro expects it to always be different and is ready to make quick on the spot adjustments. They almost want it to be tough because they know the amateur will let it affect them. Half of success in this business is
10- Always just have fun with this business. Clients love to be around smiling, funny, happy people. Many actors, models get too serious when they audition because they feel the pressure.
11- If a client ask you what your rate is say, call my agent or let us know. That is our job and we will make sure to get documents signed if needed and get you the best rate possible for that type of project. Usually clients that do not want to initially go through agents will either never pay or low ball you or work in an unprofessional manner. Plus you are responsible to let the agency know about these projects.
12- If you need an agent research the Better Business Bureau, call your local Film Commission and ask casting directors who they use. If you live in the western U.S. except California contact the Craze Agency 801-438-0067