Acting Advice

In addition to acting, John works as a creative director in the advertising industry. As a result, he's watched thousands of commercial auditions and, a few years back, decided to write up what he'd learned. The glimpse-behind-the-curtain proved to be very popular with his fellow actors. 


10 Callback Audition Tips for Actors 

You nailed the first audition and got a callback. Congrats! Now what?

A few years back, after spending 10 hours in a room watching 90 actors at callbacks for a national TV commercial, I pulled together these 10 tips for my actor friends. They still ring true.

Now, these are tips for normal working actors, not celebrities. Rules don’t really apply to celebrities.

And these tips are for commercial auditions — ads you see on TV; ads that may pay an actor’s bills for a few months and make sure he or she qualifies for heath insurance for the year. Movies are a different thing, and that audition process is different. But you know that.

Screen Shot 2017-09-01 at 2.28.06 PM.png

5 Things Every Actor Should Know About Commercial Auditions

Actors who regularly audition for commercials have my utmost respect and empathy.

Yes, the rewards (i.e. residuals) can be great for those that book the job. But the process of auditioning for commercial productions is nutty and can be demoralizing. There are many, many more at-bats than hits.

For working actors, (not “stars,” because different rules apply to “stars”) it’s a grind where you rearrange your life for the two minutes or less that you spend in the audition room. And then there are a million things that are outside of your control that go into the decision.

I’ve written before about how to nail the callback audition. But I thought I’d share a little bit more about what happens behind the scenes and what’s in the mind of those making the casting decisions. After all, the more you know, the better you can prepare.

Screen Shot 2017-09-01 at 10.35.58 AM.png

Fame Lessons From Riki & Dicky 

Want to be a success in the entertainment biz? Here are six things you can learn from two rising stars. 

In this weird advice column, I write about two performers who, on the surface, don’t have a ton in common except the fact that I’m zero-degrees-of-separation from them both.

This is about actress/comedian/musician Riki Lindholme and rapper Lil Dicky.

Riki is well known as one-half of the musical duo Garfunkel and Oates and has an impressive list of TV and film acting credits, including the Comedy Central series Another Period, which she co-created.

Lil Dicky’s debut album in 2015, Professional Rapper, went gold and his videos are some of the most inventive and talked about of the last few years.

AND I AM BEST FRIENDS WITH BOTH OF THEM. OK, not really but...just click on the article and it'll make sense.