Leslee Dennis

Power Tools Excerpt

Excerpt from Leslee’s Power Tools

  • Upon enrollment, all of Leslee Dennis’ students will receive a full copy of the Power Tools to Unveiling the Mystery of Performing and Auditioning.


Most people can predict what their day to day lives will be. They plan what they are going to do work wise and socially. They go to the same job, see the same people, know what their paychecks will be. They know what is expected of them and will be able to deliver it with confidence.

Not so much for the actor, where a regular paycheck is not guaranteed, and that auditioning each time is so unpredictable. They may get a script or not! They may get plenty of time to prepare or not. They will be sitting for hours amongst the competition or you may be the only one. It might be in a tiny office with one person or a huge room with the CD, network and studio execs, and the director. You may get a good reader or one who gives you nothing. You may not get feedback or not know why you didnʼt get the job.

Alas-what does this do to the actor? It could put them into a stinking thinking space that will cause the following SELF DEFEATING BEHAVIOR!

  1. Not to prepare in a serious way because the decision will rest on how you look or your personal quality, which will automatically disqualify you.
  2. You become intimidated by the competition and feel everyone else is more right for the role.
  3. You feel out of control because your audition is totally dependent on others.
  4. You suffer lack of confidence and feel insecure, even though you know you are a better actor than in the audition.
  5. You are sure that the role has already being cast by a name and they are seeing you as a backup or as a favor.
  6. If the room is a cold one, you feel that they hate you.
  7. You feel “they” are the enemy and looking for reasons not to hire you.
  8. The pressure gives you too much energy or not enough.
  9. You rush through so as not to be boring and donʼt take the time to experience the moments.
  10. You feel angry, blocked, technical, in your head, unfocused, naked, amateurish.
  11. Your focus is on pleasing everyone in the room rather than on your own work.

Had enough? Sound familiar?

The good news: actors are supposed to be sensitive and vulnerable. How else would they be able to understand, connect and empathize with their characters?

Ok… now it is time to know how to turn all that around and use it to your advantage, by knowing how to take back your own power, stop being the victim, and knowing that by being prepared you can inspire those whom you are auditioning for and affect change for the positive. You will actually start looking forward to it and look upon it as a “chance to act.”