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STRIDES IN WEB TECHNOLOGY BOOST DEMAND FOR AUDITION TAPES

AuditionTape, Inc, the first audition taping service in Los Angeles, marks its 10th anniversary this month. The outfit’s long tenure – a full decade – is a surprise to many given that strides in web technology have only recently (in the last 5 years) made it practical for average computer users to post, send and watch video over the internet, which today is the standard method of viewing audition tapes.

“When I started the business in 2000, the end product was a VHS tape that was most often sent by FedEx to the agent or casting director†says AuditionTape’s owner/operator, Dino S. Ladki who, himself, is a casting director and acting coach. “Now, they can simply click an internet link to watch the audition just a few minutes after the audition is taped.â€

Ladki credits his business’s longevity with two things. First, being capable and flexible enough to adjust with the times and technology. “Our method of delivery has constantly evolved,†he said. “After VHS, then everybody wanted DVD. And, in no time at all, that format became practically obsolete. Next, everybody wanted the auditions streamed on the internet, but then production companies became concerned that their unreleased material might somehow be publicly accessible on the internet.†To address this concern, AuditionTape’s current delivery method is to email the files directly to the receiver via secure digital content delivery services such as YouSendIt. But, Ladki says, “It’s just a matter of time before that seems as antiquated as VHS tapes.â€

Now that it has become so easy to watch video on a computer, casting directors, producers and directors are increasingly asking for pre-taped auditions. “Recently the Coen brothers wanted to work on casting for their next project, “True Grit,†while they were at home for the holidays, so they asked for audition tapes to be emailed to them. As a result, we had several high profile actors come in for tapings and were able to meet their need,†said Ladki. “Also, casting directors in general are finding that our service is making their job easier – whether it’s a casting director in New York who wants greater latitude to cast actors from L.A. or one here who simply doesn’t have enough time to meet every new actor in person for a “pre-read†(an initial screening audition).â€

The second reason for the business’s longevity? Ladki says that, in addition to great lighting and good quality audition tapes in general, “it’s the relaxed environment we create and our insider’s knowledge of the casting process that each client benefits from. We are not some cold studio churning through auditions. Each actor receives personal and undivided attention and, in some cases, coaching in a comfortable and unhurried atmosphere. This fosters their best work and, in an industry as competitive as ours, these often overlooked factors can mean the difference between booking the job and not.â€

For more information visit www.audition-tape.com.

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