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The first thing the director is looking for is to see whether or not you can speak loud enough to be heard, and whether you can speak with expression.  If you are trying out for a non-speaking role, the director wants to see if you are animated in your movements and facial expressions.

Next, the director looks for performers who understand the characters.  For instance, if your character is happy, sad, excited, or nervous at a particular point in the script, the director wants to see if you can show those feelings with your body and voice.

The director is also looking for a variety of body shapes and sizes to create an interesting picture on stage and stay true to the script.  For example, a son should be smaller than his mother and so on.

We often have many times more people audition than we have roles.  If you are not offered a role, it does not mean you are not good.  KEEP TRYING!