casting calls for Hoopla house teams
currently casting for a brand new long-form show!
We are currently casting for a brand new long-form Hoopla house team. The show will start of by performing on a regular basis at our Pre-Party nights to develop the show, before progressing to be one of our regular house teams at our weekly Clubhouse nights.
This is a fantastic opportunity to join the Hoopla team and rehearse and perform on a regular basis alongside our other house teams and guest groups.
director: Sean McInerney
Sean has trained with Hoopla as well as most other major London improv companies. He went on to train overseas at The Groundlings, iO Chicago, UCB and Second City. We’ve chosen Sean to direct our new show due to his fantastic diverse training influences, great performing abilities and passion for long-form improv.
who we are looking for
We are especially looking for people who can play as part of a team and support other groups and Hoopla nights in general.
Unfortunately due to the high number of people who have recently completed long-form training with Hoopla we are only accepting applications from Hoopla students at the moment. However there will be other shows starting later in the year.
Monday 11th February 2019.
7pm – 9:30pm.
Venue near Liverpool Street tbc.
If you can’t make the audition date please apply anyway as we may hold a second audition if there is high demand.
Rehearsals are all 7pm – 9:30pm at a venue tbc near Liverpool Street.
Monday 25th February 2019
Monday 11th March 2019
Monday 18th March 2019
Monday 25th March 2019
Monday 1st April 2019
Monday 8th April 2019
Monday 15th April 2019
Monday 29th April 2019
Monday 13th May 2019
Monday 20th May 2019
Monday 3rd June 2019
Monday 17th June 2019
If rehearsals or shows clash with a Hoopla course you have booked and you make it into the show we will be able to reimburse you for the Hoopla course.
Please don’t apply for the show if you are likely to miss more than 2 rehearsals over the run.
The show will start as at least every other Saturday 6pm at our Pre-Party night for new acts. After a couple of months and when the show is ready for a wider audience it will progress to every other week at our Thursday 8pm Clubhouse night alongside our other new house teams.
Exact dates will be confirmed with your director during rehearsals.
The show will run regularly until August. If the shows have worked out and we have a regularly rehearsing committed team we will potentially extend the show with fortnightly rehearsals and shows ongoing after August.
The shows are free to the audience so this run is unpaid so is to be done for fun and experience only. Hoopla will cover rehearsal room hire, teaching fees and marketing costs so there shouldn’t be any cost to the performers.
to apply for auditions
Application deadline is by 5pm Tuesday 5th February 2019.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with:
- Your name.
- Your email address and telephone number.
- 1 paragraph of your improv or acting training.
- 1 paragraph of your improv or acting performing experience.
- Your preferred audition date.
- Acting CV (if you have one).
- Spotlight or Casting Call Pro link (if you have one).
receive news about casting calls
current casting opportunities
Long-form team: casting open now!
Meisner based scenes team: casting open February 2019.
Short-form team: casting open March 2019.
Ministry of stupid ideas team: casting open April 2019.
Narrative team: casting open May 2019.
Hoopla Improv Marathon: applications will open in July for a September show.
Hoopla UK & Ireland Improv Festival: applications now closed.
Gamez (short-form): casting currently closed.
The Descendants (narrative): casting currently closed.
The Staccatos (musical): casting currently closed.
progression as an improviser at hoopla
Hoopla improv classes, with end of course shows
Auditions for House Teams or forming your own group
Performing at Pre-Party as show develops
Performing in Clubhouse regularly to build audience and show further
Performing at our Main Stage Shows
Group showcased via online film channels (in development)
Group showcased at festivals (in development)
We also have 2 jams a week for to help you build up stage experience as you go. We also help our students form their own groups with many performing opportunities for new groups at Hoopla.
how auditions work
Improv auditions vary from show to show but all tend to have some group warm games first to create a supportive environment and then lots of 2-3 people scenes.
Auditions mainly focus on improvised two person scenes from suggestion, as that’s the main thing most improv forms have in common. There are sometimes then some larger 3-4 people scenes or scenes or games specific to the show.
You aren’t in competition with the other person on stage
When you are on stage with someone at an audition you are not in competition with them. The job of an improviser is to make each other look good, and this is especially true for auditions. The basics of listen, agree, yes and are the best things to focus on in an audition and what we look for most. So being in competition with your scene partner in an audition is counter-productive.
Auditions may feel like a competition and they can feel like a difficult atmosphere because of that, but we are looking for improvisers who can see through all that and focus on supporting each other around them, helping others to relax and basically have a good time. This comes with practice so we recommend taking advantage of as many performing opportunities as possible and going to as many auditions as possible to build up experience.
Focus on the basics
At improv auditions it’s usually best to focus on the basics. Listening, agreement, yes and, who what where, building relationships. These things done well are always what we look for. Things to avoid are playing overly negative scenes or aggressive characters, as we’re looking for people who can lift the spirits of the room.
You don’t have to be perfect
You don’t have to be perfect. The show rehearsal process is where we make the show. So don’t worry about mistakes, just brush them off and get back on stage. In fact being able to laugh at mistakes is actually likely to get you into a team.
Auditions are also a great way to meet other people who are also interested in performing and many spin off groups have formed from people who initially met at auditions.
what to do if you don't get cast in the show
Don’t give up.
It’s very rare for someone to make it into a show at their first ever improv audition. The more auditions you do the more you’ll learn and the more likely you are likely to get into a later show.
We’ve got loads of other performing opportunities for you
If you don’t make a show the best thing to do is make the most of all the other performing opportunities out there. Go to jams, form your own group and basically just do as much improv on stage as you can. When people apply for shows we have huge respect for people who’ve previously started their own shows or been to lots of jams. We also have space and support for people who have formed their own groups.
Audition for future shows
We don’t forget people who audition with us. In fact quite the opposite. We have a huge amount of respect for people who put themselves forwards for auditions and keep them on a list for future opportunities.
We also have a huge respect for people who audition for multiple shows. This shows a commitment and will power that we want to work with. We recently offered a place to someone in a show who had just missed out at three previous auditions. When a place in a show opened up she was top of the list.
Going to auditions gets you known as someone who is brave and interested in performing, so even if you don’t get into that particular show it’s still a good way to meet like-minded people.
Hoopla itself started from not getting into an audition. Before Hoopla we were doing improv for fun at workshops but nobody wanted us in their shows. We tried auditions but couldn’t get in. So we started our own regular practice session, formed our own group and 14 years later we’re the UK’s biggest improv company. Badaboom badabing.
So if you don’t get in it doesn’t mean do less, it means do more. Go big.
how we choose people from auditions
The director of the show usually runs the auditions. We also have an independent person in the room to take notes, input into the selection process and to ensure all decisions are fair.
How well the cast know the director doesn’t come into selection as there is an independent person there who is responsible for making sure the audition is fair and based on what’s happened in the actual audition.
We also make sure we have a balanced diversity of genders and background across our House Teams, which we manage by having multiple places we advertise casting and independent people overseeing the process to ensure there isn’t subconscious bias when casting.
If people want notes regards the audition they are welcome to request this afterwards. Due to volume of applications and limited resources we are unable to write up detailed notes for each person unless this is directly requested.
At most of the auditions we’ve found the selection breaks down as follows:
10% are very ready to be the in the show, they have a huge amount of previous experience, are very comfortable in the auditions and supporting everyone around them and helping everyone have a good time. Both the director and independent person think they are ready and they are automatically offered a place in a show.
80% could do the show, and have great improv skills, but for various reasons weren’t quite in the top 10%. Usually they just haven’t got the previous experience behind them to give them the full confidence and skills for an audition. But we’re still very keen to put as many as possible in the show as our aim at Hoopla is to give people the experience they need. This section is very difficult for us to select from. The director and independent person discuss each person, and any they both agree on are offered a place. If two people are equal then we will prioritise giving a place to someone who has done their training with Hoopla, as we need to make sure we are giving our students as many opportunities as possible. Also if two people are equal regards improv experience and audition we will prioritise giving the place to people who help improve the diversity of the show.
This means there are often lots of people in the middle 80% who could have been in the show but we just didn’t have space for. We know this can be demoralising for them but we do encourage them to take advantage of other performing opportunities and try again next time, we encourage people to audition for more shows.
10% don’t have any previous improv performing experience and aren’t ready to be in the show, usually due to blocking offers or lack of listening in the audition. We still have a huge amount of respect for them and would welcome them back at future auditions once they have built up more experience through jams, classes or independent groups.