The Aesthetics of Casting

Convener(s): Claire

Participants: Gillian Russell, Matt Trueman, Laura, others briefly

Summary of discussion, conclusions and/or recommendations:

  • Pick plays knowing the actors you have (repertory-style)
  • “Aesthetics” more related to TV?
    • Actors’ experience = No. Slightly less bias in theatre but still very present.
  • Headshots = Best to have a variety
  • Word of mouth as a better/more reliable way of casting – opinions of colleagues you trust.
  • All-male Coriolanus, all-female Julius Caesar provoked lively responses – why?
  • Casting against ‘type’ as an experiment;
  • Appearance is transformative in theatre, but is a wig always a wig, and can the audience always be expected to suspend disbelief?
  • Radio – aesthetics of voice. No escape from what you have, so use it and make it work for you.
  • Is there a case for talent vs aesthetics?
  • Timidity of Casting Directors means pool of regularly-used actors is getting smaller, similarly the work is more scarce.
  • Isn’t always a bad thing to cast solely on looks – works for recorded media, helpful to Casting Directors.