Self tapes are a way for actors to audition for a role or opportunity without attending a casting. Learn how to do a good self tape by following our simple how to guide below.
1. Production quality
You want your self tape to look professional so consider these things:
- Camera - record your self tape on a camera or phone that has a high enough resolution so the quality is not grainy.
- Sound - sit near to your camera/phone to make sure the audio quality is good.
- Lighting - make sure you are lit, natural lighting is best, and you can see all of your face. There should be no obvious shadows.
- Filming - make sure the camera is still, the best way to do this is to mount your camera on a tripod.
2. Filming your self tape
A self tape is a virtual casting, it's your opportunity to impress, so make sure you are centre stage and visible at all times. Remember:
- Select a script, or part of a script, that is no longer than 1 minute in length.
- Always film in landscape (not portrait).
- Face the camera but never look directly into the camera lens at any point.
- Be in a close up (head and shoulders) throughout the self tape.
- Sit or stand, whatever feels more comfortable.
3. Picking the right script
When recording your self tape you may already have been asked to read a particular script. If you do have to choose your own script, we recommend:
- Choose a script that is only from TV or film.
- Research scripts that suit your casting type.
- Use a reader. If you aren't reading a monologue, ask a friend or fellow actor to read the other part in the script.
- Want some inspiration - check out this website
4. Prepare in advance
Rehearse your performance before filming. Learn the script, and know what you're trying to achieve.
- Set up the room. Choose what your backdrop will be.
- Make sure your clothing is appropriate for the character.
- Only use props if they are essential.
City Academy are a creative and performing arts company in the United Kingdom. They offer a range of acting classes, taught by professional actors, in London and Manchester.