Surrendering is Not Giving Up

Actors – you know how it works when you’re working in theater; you audition, you are cast, start rehearsals, then tech, then dress, then opening night! After learning lines, blocking, cues, and choreography, you’ve trained your body, mind and spirit to know your character inside and out. At a certain point, usually just before opening night, you need to let go and ‘leave it up to the theater Gods.’ Whatever your ‘higher power’ of choice is, the surrender to the higher power is as necessary of a step towards your best performance as rehearsal.
Many actors don’t realize is that this ‘surrender’ applies to auditioning as well. You receive the audition details from you representative(s) or Cast it Talent, you read the script if available, you learn your lines, you go to the gym to feel your best, you fill your car with gas, you show up to the audition, you are kind to everyone including the receptionist 😉 and then you walk into the room with the Casting Director and do your best to click into the character and show your unique quality. This quality is something that NO ONE but you possesses, including the six people in the waiting room who may look like you. Then you get back into your car, bus or Metro, and surrender!
In ‘Surrender practice’ you either surrender a desire or a fear, so here’s how it works; after the audition, take a moment to say (whisper, yell, write) to your higher power ; ‘I surrender my desire to get this job’ or ‘I surrender my desire to leave a lasting impression on the Casting director which will result in a long fruitful relationship with this casting office’  OR ‘I surrender my fear that I will not get the role’ or ‘I surrender my fear that I was not memorable’ or fill in with whatever version of this that resonates for you.
If you surrender ALL desire and ALL fear to the Gods, higher powers, etc. you will see amazing results. It’s important to get out of your own way and know that we can  control how much work we put into the audition (or play or movie role etc) but we cannot control the outcome, this practice will help reduce anxiety and shift your energy in very positive ways.
Give it a try!
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Joanna Colbert began her career as a casting director in association with Juliet Taylor on Interview with a Vampire for which she conducted a nationwide search resulting in the discovery of Kirsten Dunst. Colbert then went on to work at Universal Pictures as the Manager of Casting and then Senior Vice President of Casting, overseeing such blockbusters as The Mummy series, American Pie, Meet the Parents, and Bruce Almighty. She formed Joanna Colbert Casting in 2001 and Colbert/Mento Casting in 2006. Her credits include: No Strings Attached, the Step-Up series, Cedar Rapids, The Mummy, Everything Must Go, Hollywoodland and The Good Girl. Colbert is currently producing several projects, including a documentary about casting and its influence on film titled Casting By, a feature film titled Atticus Run, The Black Version tv series and Kate McClafferty’s blog, 356 til 30.

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