All posts by Cristin McAlister

What Happened at Your Kid’s Audition? Five Tips for Parents of Young Actors

Anne Acker is a professional actor and mom living in Chicago. She teaches on-camera acting at The Green Room Studio, as well as runs the Kids and Teens Program.

As a child’s acting coach, I often hear the same scenario from the parents of my young students. Mom or Dad agrees to have their child audition for a professional role—they then spend time helping the child prepare, putting together the child’s resume and picture, coordinating their outfit, running lines, taking time out of the family schedule to get their child to the audition, and so on. Once there, the child enters the audition room without mom or dad. When they return, the parents eagerly ask how it went, and the child responds with a vague “fine”. The parents are left to ponder the mysterious inner workings of the audition room. While we can’t expect children to give a detailed analysis of each experience, we can keep these five things in mind to help young actors in their auditions.

Continue reading What Happened at Your Kid’s Audition? Five Tips for Parents of Young Actors

The Nuttiness of Auditioning

By Steven Ivcich

Over my long career I’ve gotten to know every aspect of auditioning. As a writer/director I know the frustrations of trying to find the right actor for the role. When I was a casting director I struggled to get the most from actors in auditions. As an actor I’d thoroughly prepare for every audition only to have something unexpected render my preparation useless.

Continue reading The Nuttiness of Auditioning

Voice Over with Robyn Moler

We chatted with voice over instructor, Robyn Moler to find out what she loves about it.

Robyn Moler teaches Intro and Advanced Voice Over.

What’s your favorite thing about Voice Over?
We get to act without memorizing lines! I’m TERRIBLE at memorizing.

Why is Voice Over good for actors to pursue?
Voice Over is a great compliment to any acting career. Advertising can be a fun and creative industry and voicing commercials lets you be a part of it.

What do you like about teaching VO?
I like talking about voice over cuz I’m such a freaking nerd about it and it’s nice to have eager listeners who are a captive audience 😉 but also I really like seeing the progression from the first week to the last. Everyone makes great progress and it’s fun to be part of that.

Continue reading Voice Over with Robyn Moler

Hurry Up And Wait

If there is one motto that sums up the actor’s dilemma it is, “hurry up and wait.” You spend most of your time waiting for that next audition, or rehearsal, or performance. It seems you’re dependent on everyone else to put your skills to work. Since there is so much “waiting”, it’s easy to see the “waiting” as wasted time. That need not be the case. There are ways to put that “waiting” to work. Continue reading Hurry Up And Wait

What the On-Camera Training Program Did for Me

Cristin is an actor, improviser and writer living in L.A. She is also the admin extraordinaire for The Green Room.

When I first graduated from college with my degree in theatre I thought I was prepared for my future life as a professional actor. And in a way, I was. I auditioned for and was cast in plays. It was fun and I got to do the thing I loved. But then I started auditioning for commercials, TV shows and films and I wasn’t getting bookings like I thought I should. I knew I was a good actor but for some reason no one else seemed to agree. So I took one on-camera class and called it a day. It helped, but I still wasn’t booking.

It wasn’t until I came to The Green Room TEN years ago in 2009 that things really started to click. I’d never had anyone break down all the aspects of on-camera acting in a way that felt manageable and helpful the way The Green Room did. All of a sudden, I understood what a commercial casting director was looking for and how I fit into the story they were trying to tell. Continue reading What the On-Camera Training Program Did for Me

Episodic Season: Your First Day on Set

By: Courtney Rioux

Courtney’s first day as EMT #1.

As a recurring character on a network television show and an acting coach, I get a lot of emails from people asking what they can expect from their first day on set for an episodic.

I remember my first day on a network TV set, as “EMT #1” on Chicago Fire. I was excited, but mostly nervous. It was a hot Saturday in July. Most people I knew were at Lollapalooza and I was on 290 in an ambulance.

At lunch, I was eating alone and my background EMT partner sat at another table alone. I called him over. He told me he wasn’t allowed to talk to “1st team”, which is why he didn’t automatically sit by me. It wasn’t my first time on set ever, but it felt like it and I could have used some company. I hope I can shed some light for you here on a day in the life on set, so you can be less nervous than I was on day one. Continue reading Episodic Season: Your First Day on Set

Take stock of what you’ve done.

If you’re like me, you probably always feel like you could be and should be doing more to further your career. While I think it’s important to be driven, it can be exhausting. It can be incredibly stressful to be an actor and it’s very easy to compare yourself to others and their successes. This holiday season, I encourage you to stop for a minute and take stock of all you accomplished. Continue reading Take stock of what you’ve done.