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Director resources - auditions

We are in the midst of auditions for our next musical, Rock of Ages, and I thought I would record some of the things we have learned after ten years of doing this.

1. It is about the team. A musical relies on a cast and crew, it is not a single person. Every part matters and having the perspective of multiple people is a bonus. For our auditions we have the artistic director, two co-directors, the musical director a d the choreographer. I find we make better decisions as a team than I would on my own. Each person has a slightly different perspective that helps us sharpen our own focus.
2. More organization early helps. We typically have 60-100 students try out for our musicals. They sign up using Google forms, the results are download into an excel spreadsheet and audition profile booklets are printed up Thanks to using mail merge (did you know you can include photos in a mail merge? Since student photos are named by the student number this is very handy!) The spreadsheet is sorted alphabetically by first name and I'd numbers are assigned. Labels are printed so at a glance we can quickly find the info for students that we don't know.
3. We run three days of auditions - acting, singing then dancing. This allows us to focus on each individual. Each audition is videod for reference with the videos deleted after casting.
4. Going through the script and recording ea h entrance/exit and song is invaluable. Using g a pivot table you can quickly see which characters have trickier songs.