This week's Scream Queen observations:
The further you get in the process, the better you need to be. The safe from elimination round is still taking place, but the winner is no longer safe from elimination. Your audition delivery might get you a callback, however, your audition delivery at the third round of callbacks probably will not be good enough. I don't mean totally change up your character choices. I mean have it polished.
Do not be safe...when making character choices. Making the safe choice only results in being safe from being cast. Make a strong choice and go for it. And don't worry about what choice the powers that be are hoping to see. As long as it is a strong choice that is appropriate for the character in that scene it will be what they are hoping to see. Even if it is a choice they had not thought of. Naturally, you should keep yourself flexible enough that if given more character info in the audition room or you are given an adjustment, you will be able to incorporate it.
There are two memorable performances: Strong and in the proverbial left field. At the no longer a safe from elimination challenge, the task was to be a zombie escaping from a coffin and going to a rock. What zombie movie style (Zombieland, 28 Days) the actress's zombie best fits was up to the actress. Left Field was so concerned about making a stand out choice she forgot the character. Her choice was a Wayne's World inspired rock musician. No zombie in her performance. Strong kept in mind the goal or intention of zombies. Find brains to eat. She visualized victims. The other actresses concentrated on how does a zombie walk.
Remember the character's intent. The person judging the contest in the contest mention in the previous paragraph was able to see the hunger in Strong's performance, but not the others. Her actions were basically the same as the others. There was no one actually playing a victim and she did not eat a pretend victims brains. She did not do "I am hungry" physicalities. Her intent on finding brains to eat and visualizing victims resulted in those watching seeing hungry.
There are multiple levels to you. Don't play the character at one level. If your character is a nerd, your character is not just a nerd. There's sexy nerd, introverted nerd...
Knowing how to do the technical things like hitting your mark is just as important as making a strong choice. One actress doing the now poorly named elimination safe challenge looked at the mark eight times. Any more she probably would have gotten whiplash. She was told it would be terrible if she turned out to be the best actress, but didn't get it because she did not know how to deal with the technical aspects.