For an actor, the audition process can be a bizarre and soul-crushing experience. In this short film (“The Audition”) actor-director Celia Rowlson-Hall humorously demonstrates the hoops an actor must jump through to win a role… literally
Brainfilter spoke to Rowlson-Hall about her film. Here’s what she had to say:
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself (career, education, aspirations)?
After completing my BFA in modern dance and choreography, I moved to New York and danced professionally for two companies, as well as choreographing for film and music videos. Four years ago I started to play around with filmmaking and I don’t plan on doing anything else. I love it… endless amounts to learn and discover. I aspire to be a feature film director.
Why did you make “The Audition”?
I don’t know, it’s an idea I’ve had for a while now. Since living in New York for six years now. I’ve attempted many lives–an actor, a dancer, a model, you name it… and I’ve been in some pretty ridiculous situations. I thought it would be fun to create an impossible audition for a menial role.
How much of “The Audition” mirrors your real life experiences?
Well it’s an abstract piece but yes, I’ve been asked to act like a
drink was just spilled on me and I have cut my hair (even dyed it pink and orange) for jobs.
But the reason I wrote general directions like “jump through hoops”
and “juggle many things at once” is because I think one can relate it to any job that someone asks of you, or what you ask of yourself-not just acting.
How did you make the film?
We shot on a Canon 7d in a dance studio with the regular room lights on as well as natural light coming in from the window. I wanted it to be filmed how you would actually film an audition- not add anything to it… no color correction.
What challenges did you encounter while filming?
Well we could only shoot this once, so I was really nervous!
What’s the worst audition you’ve ever had?
Once while auditioning for a JC Penny commercial, I was asked to tell a funny story. After I finished I was told I wasn’t funny.
What’s the best audition you’ve ever had?
I think you just watched it. Not going to lie, I had fun filming that.
How do you think the audition process can be improved?
Oh goodness- the process of auditioning is simply a weird beast. Just be nice. It works for just about anything.
What else are you working on?
I’m currently editing a short film I directed this summer in Miami, a fun fashion video for DUSEN DUSEN, and a music video for the band Neighbors.
[Also], I’m choreographing for a feature film this weekend and prepping to direct another music video in a couple of weeks as well as stage “the nutcracker” in my living room for December performances. I’m working on a dance film with friend and collaborator Lexy Hulme and we begin shooting in November.
You also mentioned that you would like to be a feature film director. Do you have a roadmap in your mind of how you could achieve that?
Well I’ve written a script that I am in love with and know who my DP, editor and most of my actors will be.. just need that funding!! I’m ready though, it’s going to happen soon, I feel it.