Are you an aspiring performer looking to get into acting school so you can launch your career in the entertainment industry? If so, there are a lot of things you need to know before you get started. Something that’ll be important for you to learn is the difference between a demo reel and an audition tape–both play very important roles in your career, but both also serve different purposes. In this article, we’re going to take a look at what demo reels and audition tapes are and how you can make the most out of both.
WHAT IS A DEMO REEL?
So, what exactly is a demo reel? Quite simply, a demo reel is a video compilation of your best work. It’s meant to showcase your skills and talent to potential employers. Your demo reel should be a well-rounded representation of your work. You want it to highlight your range and ability as a performer so that casting directors know that hiring you is a good choice and that they’ll be able to count on you to deliver a multi-dimensional performance.
WHAT IS AN AUDITION TAPE?
Now that we’ve covered what a demo reel is, let’s look at what exactly an audition tape is. An audition tape is a specific tape or a video you submit in response to a casting call or job posting. It might even be something you need to submit to an acting school before you can be accepted as a student. An audition tape is usually tailored specifically to the role you’re going for–you’ll want to focus on scenes that show you in that type of role or with those kinds of skills. This will help casting directors envision you as part of their project so they can decide if you’ll be the best fit or not.
EQUIPMENT FOR MAKING DEMO REELS AND AUDITION TAPES
Making a demo reel or audition tape might feel a little daunting, especially if you’re not familiar or comfortable with audio-visual equipment. That’s totally ok! The more you audition, the more comfortable you’ll become. Until then, let’s look at some of the equipment you need to get started so your demo reel or audition tape can be as polished and effective as possible.
–Your camera: A lot of people are concerned that they’ll have to go out and buy a huge and expensive camera. Thankfully, when you’re just getting started, you can easily use the phone on your camera. Later on, you might want to upgrade your equipment, but for now, your phone camera will do just fine.
–Lighting: You don’t want the lighting to be too low, and you also don’t want it to be so harsh that it casts major shadows on the background of your video. But don’t think you need all kinds of professional equipment to achieve the right balance! You can find effective ring lights on Amazon or other online stores for an extremely reasonable price.
–Microphone: If you position your phone correctly, you should be able to just use the microphone that comes standard. However, if you’d like to make an upgrade, you can purchase a small lapel microphone online. Shop around a little to find something that fits your budget.
–Background: If you don’t have access to a plain and simple wall, you can always hang a neutral bedsheet behind you. You can find a very reasonably priced bedsheet online or at a local Dollar Store.
Creating a demo reel or audition tape might seem like a difficult task to undertake, but it doesn’t have to be! By familiarizing yourself with the differences between the two and gathering some simple and affordable equipment, you’ll have a launching point in no time!