What young girl doesn’t dream of being a princess?
As many young girls grow up watching Disney movies, the thought of being a princess can seem like an elusive dream. Not so for some. Becoming a Disney princess or parade performer is often just an audition away.
So what does it take to become a Disney princess? Faith, hope and pixie dust? Just about. Throw in a winning personality, and you’ve got a great shot.
Last month, my daughter and I traveled from our home in Houston to Austin, Texas to attend a Disney Face Character and Performer Audition. Elizabeth had never been on any kind of audition before and neither of us had any idea what to expect.
As we often do, we turned to the internet to see what information we could find to help her prepare. Interestingly enough, there wasn’t a whole lot of information to be found. Yes, there were a few YouTube videos of participants trying to explain what the process was all about and while we found that information helpful, what we really wanted to know was the important stuff…what to wear, what to expect and some first hand information about the whole audition process.
Since we went into this audition with a lot of unanswered questions and little knowledge of the process, I decided to document our experience as I’ve done in my previous Disney College Program posts. Hopefully, you’ll find this information helpful.
We noticed that the Austin auditions are usually held at the same location, Dancer’s Workshop. If your Austin audition is held at this location, there is a lovely Homewood Suites just down the street from the studio. It’s a very nice hotel with spacious rooms, complimentary evening dinner and drinks and a full breakfast in the morning.
Before your audition, have a few inexpensive head shots taken. We took several photos of our daughter outside in our backyard and had them developed at our local Kodak store. She didn’t need to turn them in, but if she made it further in the audition process, she may have needed to. It’s best to be prepared and it also makes you look like you’re a professional.
Even though we read online to wear comfortable clothes such as jeans and nice, comfortable shoes…everyone wore dance attire.
Arrive early. Do not be late.
When my daughter arrived at the audition, she waited in line. When she got to the front, she was asked to type her name into an iPad and was asked whether she would be part of the College Program or a full-time employee. They gave her a number and wrote down her height. Then, she sat and waited.
While none of this is technically “the audition”, my thoughts are that the audition actually begins as soon as you walk in the studio. I think every participant is being assessed.
How well do you interact with others? Do you look enthusiastic, friendly and approachable? I think everyone is being observed on the side by the casting directors.
After a brief wait, kids were called into a room in groups based on the number they were given. For example, 1-50, etc. The others went into another room while the group learned a brief dance which consisted of easy marching and hand waving similar to what one would see in a Disney parade. I’m told that if you advance in the audition process, another dance will be learned and it will be a little more difficult although not hard.
My daughter said she was asked to act out several roles. They told her to pretend she was a parade character. Others have said they were asked to be a pirate. You get the idea. Be prepared to be asked to perhaps step outside your comfort zone and pretend to be someone else. Just let go and have fun.
After each group finished, they were sent back to a larger room where everyone was gathered together. The Disney Casting Director came in and thanked everyone and began to call out numbers. If you’re number wasn’t called, you didn’t make it.
This was where our journey ended. I was in a waiting room with about 50 other moms and dads. There were lots of tears, hugs goodbye and a few congratulations being said. Even though Elizabeth didn’t make it, we both agree that this audition had been a tremendous learning experience. She had lots of fun, we both met new friends and this experience intensified her desire to audition again.
Have you ever auditioned for Disney? I’d love to know what your experience was like.
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Joanie Zisk writes a food, wine and travel blog called ZagLeft. She is also been involved in the Disney College Program as a parent of two participants.
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