Here you’ll find a selection of good audition monologues to choose from for your acting auditions, as well as some acting tips on how to pick good monologues for auditions and perform them in a way that grabs the attention of directors and producers. You can also upload your audition monologue video to get feedback.
1) Links to Monologues for auditions
Click here to view contemporary monologues, male and female monologues, comedic and dramatic monologues, movie monologues, Shakespeare monologues and more for your acting auditions.
- Pick a short one.Most casting directors will ask for a 1-2 minute audition monologue. Even if they don’t, pick a monologue no longer then 2 minutes. You want to leave them wanting more, not checking their watches!
- Pick the right genre.Pick audition monologues as close to the genre and style of the play or film you’re auditioning for as possible. Of course, that means picking a Shakespeare monologue if you’re auditioning for a classical play and a comedic monologue if you’re auditioning for a comedy. But it goes beyond that. There are many styles of comedies and films, and many different roles. The casting director needs to see in your audition monologues the potential to play the part you’re auditioning for. So if you’re auditioning for, let’s say a con artist, choose an acting monologue where you can show some of the charm of that character. I know so many actors who got callbacks simply because they picked the perfect monologue!!
- Stay away from famous monologues.We all dream of playing certain roles, but it’s best to keep those classic monologues for acting class. For example, there’s plenty of good Hamlet monologues without picking the To be or not to be soliloquy. Similarly, if you pick a movie monologue, make sure it’s not one where the original actor’s performance is still fresh in people’s minds (i.e. a monologue from a recent film or from a classic moment in cinema). You also want to stay away from overused monologues. Sometimes, even if a play is not that well known, auditioners will have seen a monologue from it a million times because it’s an actor’s piece (for example, the “tuna fish monologue” for women).!
- Pick a showcase piece.Pick a monologue that showcases your strengths and talents as an actor. If you get emotional easily, even your comedic monologue can have some crying in it as long as it’s funny. If you’re a character actor, pick an audition monologue that showcases what you do best.!
3) Tips for Performing your Audition Monologues
You should know your monologue like the back of your hand so you never have to worry about memorization when you audition. The lines should be second nature. Same with volume. Practice your monologue at the decibel level you’re going to perform it at (louder if you’ll be auditioning in a large theater, quieter if you’re auditioning in an agent’s office). If you’re not sure about the space you’ll be auditioning in, practice your monologue at different intensities.
DO dress the part.
Don’t show up in costume, but suggest the character you’re playing in the way you dress. (If you’re doing a Shakespeare monologue, don’t wear jeans).
Don’t wait for the casting director or producer to tell you what to do. After you’ve greeted everyone in the audition room, introduced yourself and handed over your picture and resume, announce the name of the play your monologue is from, along with the author and the character you’re playing, and start your monologue (unless the auditioners obviously want to have a chat first). If you’re doing a comedic and a dramatic monologue, take a brief pause in between, and then announce and perform the second monologue.
DO take your time.
Audition monologues are much more nerve-racking then audition scenes, because the actor is on his own on stage. As a result, we often rush through audition monologues. To remedy this, approach your monologue as a scene. When rehearsing at home, work on creating the character you’re talking to and imagining their responses to what you’re saying. When you get into the audition room, imagine that your “scene partner” is in the back of the room behind the auditioners. This way, they can see your face fully as you deliver your comedic or dramatic monologue.
DO use the space.
If you’re auditioning for a play in the actual theater space, use it! The director will want to see how you move on stage. If you have a theater audition, you may want to “block” your monologue when you rehearse at home, otherwise you could be thrown off once you’re on a stage much bigger then your living room. Think of your character’s motivations and remember not to move or gesture without a purpose.
- DON’T talk with other actors in the waiting room.First, this is your time to prepare for your acting audition. Second, you want to be quiet out of respect for the actors auditioning on the other side of the door. Third, you don’t know who the monitor is. The person who signs you in and runs the audition can often be an important member of the audition team. You don’t want to take the chance of making a bad impression.
- DON’T break the 4th wall.For the most part, monologues are unnatural. After all, do we really ever talk to ourselves aloud like that? As tempting as it is, though, try not to make the casting director the other character in the room. Not only is it considered unprofessional, you could make the person uncomfortable and unable to judge your acting . Moreover, it will break your concentration. You don’t know what kind of look you’re going to get back. A non-responsive or harsh look could throw off your acting completely!
- DON’T apologize.No matter how terrible you feel about your acting on a particular day, never show it in the audition room. You forgot a line? That happens to award-nominated actors all the time! Don’t miss a beat, just move on. Your audition monologue is not going the way you want? Concentrate on your acting and move on. Don’t ask to start again from the beginning. A director will not hire you if they think you may do that in the middle of a performance in front of an invited audience. Similarly, don’t explain at the end of your monologue why you think your acting wasn’t as good as it can be. You don’t know how the casting director feels about your performance. More then once, I have seen actors apologize for their work when they had just delivered a great audition monologue!
- DON’T linger.Once you finished your monologue(s), the casting director will usually say “thank you” and that is your cue to smile and promptly take your leave. Click here for tips on wrapping up your audition.
Now that we’ve gone through the DOs and DON’Ts of audition monologues, here’s a few more monologue tips to help you grab the attention of the director or producer sitting behind the audition table.
- Create strong beats.The people holding acting auditions see dozens of dramatic and comedic monologues everyday. As a result, they tend to get bored easily (or much quicker than your acting coach). Don’t give them a chance! Create several strong beats in your audition monologue. Each beat should have a very precise mini-objective that shows a different color in your acting.
- Think your audition monologue is ready?Throw away all the work you’ve done and try your monologue three completely different ways you would never dream of doing. You’re bound to find one original approach you hadn’t thought of. If it fits with your character and the circumstances, incorporate it in your monologue. A little surprise can only help you stand out of the crowd.
- Don’t work on your audition monologue the day of the audition.You want your acting to be fresh! Instead, focus on the circumstances surrounding your monologue (what does your character want, where is he coming from, etc.) Consider making the stakes a little higher. This can boost your energy level in the audition room and help you give a charismatic performance.
Hope all these acting tips help. They can really make a difference.
Want more tips?
Need feedback on your Audition Monologue?
If you want feedback on an audition monologue you’ve been working on, why not share it here? When we have feedback we feel could improve your performance, we’ll share it on this page.
Please note that other actors will be able to see your performance, so only upload if you’re over 18 years old and comfortable with others seeing your work. We will only publish constructive comments from other actors.