Nancy Linari in Cascade's "Kitchen Counselor" campaign as the judgemental mother-in-law

Someone once told me that actors have the wrong goal at auditions. He wasn’t talking about the character’s needs and choices, but what the actor in the waiting room wants that day.

To get the job. Of course, we all want the job, but this means that 99% of the people in that room fail.

As actors, we can spend a lot of time trying to figure out what “they” - the producers, the director, the writers, the client – want. So we try to adjust things about ourselves - our looks, our voice, our clothes, even our age – to become what we think they want. Sometimes we succeed in this, but often our audition doesn’t ring true. You can see the acting, when all you want to see is the character.

What if instead, our goal was to show the powers that be how we would do this role? What unique things we bring to the party? This doesn’t mean we are going to get every job; we are not right for every job. But we can succeed at each audition. We can leave the room knowing that we did a good job and will be remembered for it. Good auditions are like energy, they live on.


Nancy Linari has been a professional actress for over 30 years.  Her work can be seen and heard in both commercials and animation, on television and radio; from Bones to Modern Family, from ABC’s animated The Addams Family (the sexy Morticia Addams) to the Academy Award nominated The Social Network (the cranky secretary to the president of Harvard.)  Nancy has appeared in hundreds of commercials including Cascade, Swiffer, Honda, McDonalds, Bisquick and Walgreens.  Her voice over work includes national campaigns for Advil, Taco Bell, Radio Shack, Wal-Mart and California Avocados. She also works extensively in video games and is an award-winning audiobook narrator.

At Keep it Real Acting she teaches Youth Classes, as well as Commercial Wednesday Workouts.