So you finally decided to have your child join a Disney Channel audition. We understand the enthusiasm or the nervousness, but there certainly are rules of decorum during auditions that you need to take into consideration. Just like a job interview, there are several things you need to be aware of before ever setting foot in the interview room. Additionally, you need to be sure to prepare your child and yourself on how to behave properly. Here are the basic don’ts for parents at a child’s Disney Channel audition.
DON’TS for Parents During a Child’s Disney Channel Audition
Do not overdress your child.
Kids should look like kids. Girls should not show up caked in makeup, struggling in heels, or wearing inappropriate clothing. Boys don’t need to be forced into their Sunday best with starched stiff collars and their hair slicked down unnaturally. How would they normally look on a school day? More importantly, it is imperative that your child looks exactly like their headshots. And you do know the number one rule in headshots: actors should look like themselves.
Do not intimidate your child.
Casting isn’t really that scary. Understandably, your child may get nervous in certain meetings. After you saw them ace the Disney Channel audition, you may start getting insecure as you watch the number of children in the room grow. This is why it’s important for you as a parent to not further intimidate your child regarding who’s in the room or just because you yourself are nervous. Be careful what kind of energy you project. To kids, particularly those who have theatrical flair, the number or the credentials of people in the room isn’t so scary until they start hearing you say “Well, so-and-so directed this, so you have to impress her!” Don’t freak out your supposedly fearless kid.
Do not tell your child to engage in small talk.
Your child should do three things when they enter a casting room: (1) They should clearly say hello and make eye contact with everyone in the room. More than likely, they won’t need to mention their name as everyone in the room is already expecting your child to enter; (2) they should perform their scene; (3) they should say thank you and goodbye and exit the room. Be careful not to tell them anything else to say as anything else may come off as very fake, brownnosing, or overly pushy. They shouldn’t ask how they did or when to expect a callback. They should not make any other kind of small talk on the way out, unless the casting director speaks to them first.
Never make excuses for your child.
Even if their poor performance was a direct result of something, assume that every casting director you meet has not only heard every excuse in the world hundreds of times; it’s more likely that they don’t care. They simply have too many other potential or better candidates to see. Wasting time listening to your excuses why little Tommy doesn’t know his lines is not something any casting director would want to do.
Never coach or scold your children in front.
One sure way to ensure your child’s failure in getting an acting job is to scold them in the presence of a casting director. It is often cited as the most uncomfortable moments of any casting director’s careers, so avoid it whenever possible. Not only will this significantly reduce your child’s chances in landing the role, it will also discourage your child from joining auditions in the future because of embarrassment.
Do not be that entitled parent.
We understand that you firmly believe your Annie is charming and blessed with innate talent. But most of the actors in Disney Channel auditions are not just starting out. Most of them have agents and are experience, seasoned child actors. It may take years for your child to even get the audition they are hoping for. Be patient and make sure your child is consistently working on their craft. Whatever you do, don’t be that parent that thinks your child is entitled to skip training, auditions, and acting exercises. Parents like that don’t make it very far in Hollywood and often end up hurting their child’s career.