How to Crash an EPA and Get Seen
I got my first callback from crashing an EPA! Dreams do come true. Hang in there guys! It took me 3 years, but hey, I think I got a formula going.
If you're not familiar with the term, EPA stands for Equity Principal Audition. Actors Equity is the divine protector of theater actors in America, aka its labor union. All Broadway, off-Broadway and select regional theaters are required to conduct EPAs. But because Equity members are priority in these auditions, non-eqs like myself have to wait all day in the hopes that a slot will open up, and you will be seen at an audition.
Ain't that sad folks? We don't even want the job, we just want to be seen for it. That is the struggle! A lot of us also don't want to waste our whole day waiting and not getting seen. So here are some tips I've formulated through trial and error.
1. Find your niche.
Go to casting calls that are type/skill specific. Whenever it's a call for Asian actors, I always get seen. Always before lunch time too. (hooray ethnic actors! the lack of diversity in the union actually benefits us this time) If you can do accents very well, or play an instrument, or dance tango and casting asks for it, your chances are a lot higher.
2. Get EMC Points
I hate you mother*#$% . Here I am patiently waiting for my turn, and you show up with a flimsy card and you get bumped up before me?!!!
3. Go to audition locations that are not at the Actors Equity Office
I find that less people show up if an audition is held at Shetler or Ripley Grier or in casting offices. But if a show is popular, then forget this one.
4. If the production has more than 2-3 days of auditions, show up at the first and second
I got seen for the Broadway production of The Crucible on the second day of auditions. And I did not get seen for the third day of auditions for Miss Saigon (curse you flu).
5. Go out of town
Out of town EPAs tend to have half the numbers of NY calls. I once made a trip to Cambridge to audition for a musical, and less than 10 showed up.
6. If all else fails, make sure you're on the top of the non eq list.
Depending on how popular the show is, you might need to be there as early as 5 am.
Have more tips on getting seen at EPAs? Please share in the comment section below.
Goodluck! Keep on crashing! WE CAN DO THIS!!!!