For many Disney fans who love spending time at the theme parks, working for the company seems like a dream job, and one of the most coveted positions that Cast Members are character performers. After all, you get to become some of your favorite Disney characters!
If auditioning to become a Disney princess, furry pal, or any other Disney character you see around the parks sounds like your ideal career, then you are in the right place! Here is everything you need to know about auditioning for Disney.
First, you need to know where to find Disney audition notices.
On the Disney Auditions webpage, Disney constantly posts auditions they are holding. On the site, you will be able to click on an audition to see what characters Disney is looking for (including what height you must be to play the character), what Disney Park or Resort they are hiring for (such as Disney World or Disneyland), and what city is holding the audition.
Thanks to the FAQ portion of the site, Disney has given us all the information we need to know for their auditions.
How can I prepare for my audition?
- Read the audition posting carefully! This will tell you what to prepare, what to expect, and whether you meet the specific requirements for that particular offering.
- Keep your headshot and resume up to date on your Disney Auditions profile.
- Do some research about our entertainment offerings before your audition, so you have the most information possible to be successful.
- Make sure to get a good night’s sleep before your audition.
What should I wear?
- Dress appropriately for the type of audition you are attending.
- Avoid wearing hats.
- If you wear makeup, a fresh, natural look is best.
- Do not wear a costume.
- Bring a sweater, sweat pants or sweatshirt with you to stay warm.
What should I bring?
- Bring a snack and water in your bag to keep your energy up.
- Stay hydrated. It seems simple but can make a world of difference.
What should I do once I’m in the room?
- Be confident in who you are. It will shine through at an audition.
- If you are nervous, take long, slow breaths. Breathing with intention can help calm your nerves.
- Remind yourself that the Casting Director wants you to do well and is rooting for you.
- Be in the moment and connect with the material you are presenting.
- Be open to direction in a callback and have a positive attitude.
- Have fun! Our goal is to make magic, after all.
I’m auditioning for a dancer role. How do I prepare for my audition?
- Wear form-fitting but non-restrictive clothing and refrain from wearing street shoes; tennis or dance shoes are required.
- Be mindful that some auditions require specific dance shoes.
- Pack extra tights, tap screws/tools, athletic tape, knee pads, Band-Aids, and other personal items that you may need.
- Arrive early enough to sign up and warm up.
I’m auditioning for a vocalist role. How do I prepare for my audition?
- Bring music in several different styles and genres, and make sure you are comfortable and prepared to sing everything you bring.
- Select music that authentically represents your personality within the style of the show.
- We’re a storytelling company! When performing, tell the story of the song.
- Communicate clearly with your accompanist. For example: “I’m singing [title of song] in the style of [singer]. I’m starting here, ending here. The tempo goes like this: [point to the chorus or hook, sing a little bit of it while you tap the tempo on your body]. I’ll nod when I’m ready.”
- All of your audition music should be clearly marked, in the correct key, and bound either in glare-free sheet protectors or edges taped together accordion-style. Do not bring loose sheet music.
I’m auditioning for a musician role. How do I prepare for my audition?
- Be versatile. Be ready to play in multiple styles & genres. Examples: Rock, jazz, big band/swing, shuffle, soul, R&B, technical, lyrical, New Orleans Second Line, pop, etc.
- Choose music that you really enjoy playing.
- Sight-reading and improv are often required. Practice your reading and improv skills in different genres. Remember that a beat of silence is just as long as a beat of sound.
- Keep your music neatly organized.
- Keep your instrument tuned & warm while you wait.
- When you enter the audition room, feel free to play a few notes and re-tune if you need to.
- Remember: We are storytellers. Your personality and connection with your audience (the Casting Team) is JUST as important as your chops.
I’m auditioning for a stunt role. How do I prepare for my audition?
- Safety is our number one priority at an audition. Don’t try something new at an audition.
- Be sure to listen to directions at your audition.
- When auditioning on high bar and rings, provide your grips.
- Avoid loose fitting clothing.
- Do only what you are asked to do, it is most important that we see technique, rather than see something flashy.
- When doing pull-ups, ensure they are controlled over-hand pull-ups with the palms facing away from you.
What to expect after the audition?
- Offers can be made hours, days, or months after your audition, depending upon the timeline of the project. If the team is interested, they will contact you via phone and/or email. Keep your contact information up to date on your headshot, resume, and profile; and be sure to check your spam/junk mail folders regularly.
- Didn’t hear anything after that last audition? Got cut in the first round? Let it go and consider attending the next one that interests you!
- It’s a good idea to have a current passport. You never know when you’ll get a last-minute offer to jump on a cruise ship or work in another country. Adventure is out there!
One of our own at Inside the Magic has been through the audition process and had this to say: “Smile and be yourself. Do not be intimidated by the number of people at the audition. Do your best. Remember, it is all subjective this is not a judgment of who you are as a person. Let go, and have a blast!”
What types of characters can you audition for?
There are also many kinds of characters that you can audition for when a posting becomes available — and each will have different requirements. Height is one of the most differentiating factors when it comes to auditioning for a Disney character because each character fits within a certain size range. For example, in the past, to fir the role of a Disney Princess such as Belle or Jasmine, females would need to fall within the 5’3″ – 5’7 height category. When an audition posting is available on the Disney Audition page, the height requirements will be noted accordingly, so you can see which characters you would be able to audition for.
If you can’t fit the princess height, no worries! There are plenty of more types of characters available. Let’s take a look at a few of the categories available.
Face performers: These are characters in which you can see the performer’s real face. These are going to be any of the princesses, princes, many villains, and other characters such as Peter Pan and Fairy Godmother. A good way to find out if your favorite Disney character is a face performer that you could audition for, aside from seeing them in the parks in the past, is looking to see if the character was a real human in the film or tv show. All face characters are “real people” in their respective films and TV shows, so when Disney brings them to life, they must be real as well!
Fur performers: Some of our most favorite characters at Disney are covered in fur! If a character is not typically human, to keep the cartoon and fantasy world alive, characters must be covered in a full suit. All of these characters range from super short (Mickey Mouse) to very tall (Goofy), so there is plenty of wiggle room here for a variety of people to audition.
Parade Performers: Both face and fur performers could perform in parades, but if you have ever been to Disney World and watched Festival of Fantasy (or any other parade) you likely know there are performers who are not playing an exact Disney character but are following set choreography down the parade route. These performers are often people with a dance background and undergo a different audition process than face or fur performers as more skill must be demonstrated.
Stage Performers: Like parade performers, stage performers must audition for the show they would like to be in. These auditions often include a dance call, accompanied singing (many times a pianist is available and you must bring sheet music), as well as a possible acting portion to the audition.
No matter what character you audition for, and if cast, end up playing, you will undergo extensive training to make sure you can walk, talk (if needed), behave, and even sign autographs like your character to keep the Disney magic alive!
At the moment that this article is being written, Disney is not currently auditioning any performers. Considering the tens of thousands of layoffs that the Walt Disney Company recently underwent contained many performer Cast Members, it is not surprising that they are not looking to hire at the moment. That being said, as things return to normal at the Disney parks, keep an eye out on the Disney Audition page of the site if you are interested in a performer position!
Would you want to be a performer at Disney? Have you ever auditioned?