Tips for Self-Taping from Judy Henderson, CD, Judy Henderson Casting

Emmy Award winner Judy Henderson, currently casting the Emmy Award winning Showtime TV series HOMELAND, provides a few tips for making the most of your audition time at midtown NYC rehearsal studios.

With ever-changing advances in technology, actors are now able to tape auditions on their own and with their agent’s assistance with greater frequency. In light of these changes, we have compiled a list of taping recommendations designed to assist you in achieving the highest level of quality in your auditions. We hope you find these instructions helpful, as we want all of our actors to have the best chance at landing that role that helps them achieve their dream to perform in NYC!


  • Please do not use the black fade in and out feature on your camera. This makes editing difficult. You should never see black on your tapes at the beginning or end of your auditions. Thank you.
  • All auditions should be saved in WMV, MOV, or MP4 Format. The size of the audition file should be limited to 100MB with ideal range being 20-40MB. Very large files do not send or upload well.
  • If you need to save your file into a different format, please use conversion software such as FORMAT FACTORY (
    It is free to download.


1. Start each audition with framing that shows the actor’s head and shoulders only. Tape should lead with audition first (not slate).

2. Sound must be clear. We recommend using a lavalier mic if possible.
If not, please be sure that the mic is directed toward the actor and the reader STANDS BACK so as not to overpower the actor’s voice. The actor’s voice should be clearly heard and the reader’s should be quieter.

3. Lighting should be good enough so we can see the color of the actor’s eyes. Use soft lighting if possible – avoid stark white light.

4. Please tape auditions in front of a light-colored, solid wall or backdrop. Try not to have anything behind the actor that will distract the viewer’s eye, like furniture, pictures, windows, etc. Again, a clean, solid wall or backdrop is best.

5. One good take, please. A second take is acceptable only if you feel strongly about showing a different creative choice and it is a good read.

6. At the end of your take, each actor should slate his/her name and role they are reading with head and shoulders framing.

7. Then pull back for one, quick full body shot.

8. In addition, it is acceptable to use a simple title block that shows actor name, role and agency at the very beginning of the tape.

Emmy Award winner Judy Henderson is one of the busiest CD’s in town and is currently casting the Emmy Award winning Showtime TV series HOMELAND.  Besides TV, she also casts for film, theater and commercials.

Need to put an audition on camera and upload or send it digitally? Actors Connection can help!

In recent months, many actors and agents have contacted us looking for an affordable place for actors to have their auditions recorded and posted digitally or emailed.

We are now set up and ready to make this service available to you with our NEW SELF TAPE AUDITION PACKAGE.

This $40 package includes:

– 30 minutes in the studio for taping, playback, and review with reader/camera operator. (additional taping time can be requested at $35/per half hour)

– Your audition clip will be sent same-day with such options as email via YouSendIt/Hightail/Dropbox or by uploading to a webpage like Vimeo or YouTube.

To inquire about appointment times and availability, please call us at 212-776-4900.

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