Audition and Interview Information for Theater and Dance Technique Classes
All students are invited to audition for TDPS acting and dance courses. If a disability-related accommodation is needed for a class audition, please contact the undergraduate academic advisor, Michael Mansfield <firstname.lastname@example.org> at least one week prior to the start of the semester. Please note: some audition spaces are not readily accessible for those with mobility impairments. With advance notice, we are happy to make arrangements for an alternate venue. Those in DSP, please contact your DSP specialist well in advance of the audition so there is time for the accommodation process and notify the department to make arrangements. Please ask DSP to also send disability accommodation notices for auditions to Michael Mansfield at least one week prior to the start of the semester.
• Not all classes are offered every semester. Please check the Schedule of Classes.
Dance courses requiring an audition: *Theater 40, 45, 141, 142, 143, 145, 147A and 147B
All dance students must attend the first day of class for the required placement audition. Students interested in Theater 40 and 45 may enroll in advance, all others must wait until after the audition. Those not admitted to 40 or 45 will be asked to drop the class.
All auditions will be held during the regular class time in Bancroft Studio, located at 2401 Bancroft Way, at the corner with Dana. If you don’t know which level is appropriate, attend different technique classes on the first day to determine which is the best match. At the end of the first class, the instructor will give you the Permission Number needed to enroll in that class if you have been admitted to that level.
No special preparation is required for the audition. Footless tights, leotards, or fitted gym clothes are suggested attire.
Please note: For Theater 40 and 45, priority will be given to our Majors and Minors and to first-year and second-year students.
Please remember – Theater 147A and 147B are electives and do not fulfill the major requirement to be in a modern dance technique course each semester.
Theater courses requiring an interview: *Theater 112, 162, 163
All interested students must attend the first class to be interviewed by the instructor for admission into the course. Be prepared to talk about your interest in the course and any relevant experience. The class list for 162 (Stage Directing) will be posted on the TDPS online callboard (tdps.berkeley.edu/callboard). Selected students will be given the Permission Numbers needed for enrollment.
Acting courses requiring an audition: *Theater 10, 109, 110A, 110B, 111
Acting students will NOT be able to enroll in 10, 109, 110A, 110B, or 111 before the beginning of the semester. Instead, starting August 15 (for Fall) and January 15 (for Spring) students will sign up via the TDPS online callboard (tdps.berkeley.edu/callboard) for auditions which will be held at the very beginning of the semester. Theater 109 requires at least one semester of college-level acting training (or equivalent experience) and each subsequent course in the series requires an additional semester of college-level training or experience. If you don’t know which acting level is appropriate, sign up for more than one audition.
After the auditions, class lists will be posted on the TDPS online callboard. If you are accepted into the course, the instructor will give you the Permission Number needed for enrollment and you must then add the course. NO ONE will be considered for 10, 109, 110A, 110B or 111 without an audition.
For the audition, please prepare a one-minute speech from a play, film script, or a selection of prose. Memorization of the piece is strongly encouraged for Theater 10 and is required for all other classes.
Here are some tips and pieces of advice to prepare you for our acting class auditions:
For Theater 10 and 109 Auditions:
How long should my monologue be?
One minute maximum. Be sure to time your piece – if you go over during the audition, you will be asked to stop.
Does it need to be memorized?
You have a much better chance of getting into a Theater 10 class if you memorize the selection. Memorization is required for 109.
Any tips for selecting my monologue?
• Look for a speech from a play. Passages from other forms of literature, including poems, are not as strong.
It is probably best for beginners to stick to contemporary pieces – written, say after 1940.
• Stay away from accents.
• Choose something you can relate to, probably in your general age range.
What are your tips for performing the monologue?
• Remember to breathe.
• Speak loudly and clearly enough for us to hear you.
• Imagine whomever you are speaking to is standing or sitting in front of you and speak to that imaginary person.
Any other ideas for how I can increase my chances of admittance into the class?
• Write your email address and name on the audition form legibly.
• You have a much better chance of getting into a class if you can indicate on the forms that you are available for more than one section.
How early should I arrive to my audition appointment?
If possible, please come 10 minutes before your appointed time in case we are running early. It will also give you a moment to fill out the audition form where we ask about your previous training (if any), previous experience (if any), major/minor status, number of semesters of college-level acting training, and preferences for which sections of your level of acting you are available for. You are welcome to bring a resume or cv of your previous experience and training if you have one.
If I have not yet taken Theater 10, can I audition for Theater 109 instead?
If you are trying to skip 10 and go into 109, you should have at least one semester of college-level acting training or equivalent acting experience. Your monologue will have to reveal that training and experience to help you gain access to the class. It is recommended that you do the entire acting sequence in order once you arrive at UCB as a freshman.
For Theater 110A/B and 111 Auditions:
When is each class taught?
110A is taught in fall. 110B is taught in spring.
What should I prepare for my 110A audition?
If you have taken 10 or 109, you may use your contemporary monologues from those classes. You need not use heightened language or classical monologues.
If you are trying to skip 10 or 109 and go into 110A in the fall, you should have at least two semesters of college-level acting training or equivalent acting experience. Your monologue will have to reveal that training and experience to help you gain access to the class.
What about requirements for 110B auditions?
If you are trying to skip 10 or 109 or 110A and go into 110B in the spring, you should have at least three semesters of college-level acting training and voice training or equivalent acting experience. Your monologue will have to reveal that training and experience to help you gain access to the class.
What if I am trying to skip 110B and go into 111?
If you are trying to skip 110B and go into 111, you should have a 60-90 second Shakespeare piece as well as your contemporary 60-second piece.
What if I am a transfer student?
Transfer students are encouraged to begin their training at the appropriate level based on their studies in Junior College. It is recommended that you do the entire acting sequence in order once you arrive at UCB as a Junior unless you have had two or more semesters of college-level acting training in your Junior College, or equivalent acting experience.
What is the ratio of people who audition and people who are admitted?
It varies greatly from semester to semester. Often many more students audition than we have space for, so placing everyone is not assured.
What if I don’t get in? Where do I go from there?
Due to the large number of students who audition, it is not possible to get individual feedback from instructors holding the auditions. We strongly encourage you to try again the next semester.
Don’t think of this as a wasted semester of training. Get involved in other TDPS classes that have a performance component. Audition for a TDPS Workshop or Mainstage production. Contact the film department for student film opportunities, or audition for an on-campus production sponsored by one of many student-run performance groups.
If you would like to gain more experience off the UC Berkeley campus, organizations like Theater Bay Area offer audition preparation workshops, and many schools around the Bay Area offer theater classes one can sign up for. For an extensive list, please see the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies.