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The Edit

Mara Klein | Your Audition Friend

by Amy Fausset

5 years ago


  1. What gave you the idea to start your own business?

Honestly, I never thought I would. I’ve never viewed myself as an entrepreneur – I’m an actress. But I got to a point in my life where I was sick of working a day job to pay the bills while I was waiting for acting to do so. My day job had become boring, numbing really, and I was absolutely sick of making an hourly wage and having to argue for an extra $1 to $2/hour every year at BEST. I wanted some sort of stability, room for growth, something that actually fed my soul … I knew I was worth more and, more importantly, I knew I had more to offer. While I got joy from acting and there was room for exponential growth there, I wanted something else I could do in tandem with it and to cover the slow times. So I spent a good year doing some soul searching. Asking questions like -- What inspires me in my life already? Where do I want to expand my knowledge, grow & learn? What talents do I already possess? What would I want to invest more time in? And lastly, what were people already paying me for? (That last one was key). I hit on several ideas I could pursue over that year and would sit with them, but nothing quite inspired me to take the next step (i.e. go to a class, reach out to someone in that industry, start a business – although that hadn’t even crossed my mind yet). Then I realized I already do what Your Audition Friend is offering in my life (though I hadn’t come up with the name yet). I was trained for it, have been paid to help run lines before, have worked as a reader for casting offices, I am an EXCELLENT friend, and I really do enjoy helping people and watching them succeed. Plus, bonus - it exercises my acting muscles. Not only that, but there’s a market for it and no exact service available. Actors have acting coaches and self tape studios, but no one was offering the in between. As soon as I hit on the idea I knew it was the right one because I wanted to do more, invest more, ideas for how the business could grow (let alone my income) kept popping into my head. I was finally excited about something and saw my way out of a day job I hated… and that’s how the business was born.

 

  1. Tell us more about you?

I’m an actress and have wanted to be since the age of 3, which is as far back as I can remember, so it’s basically the anchor of my identity. I grew up in Maryland right outside DC and did community theater & school plays all through childhood. I went to college in New York studying drama at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and went to London for classical training at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. Right after school I moved to LA, which is where I still live now and LOVE it! Seriously, I drank all the Kool-Aid. I hike, yoga, meditate, eat the green things (plus meat), love to cook, farmers market, flea market, brunch, and have a dog I adore. It’s really easy to live here and be happy. Plus I’ve made some truly amazing friends. As for acting, I’ve had moderate professional successes since I actively began pursuing it as a career in LA … and there’s more to come.

 

  1. Who in your Girl Gang has pushed and inspired you? (you mentioned some stories yesterday that were inspirational so I think this would be great to put in there and tie it in to our brand mission)

Am I allowed to say Amy Will? This is not a plug, I swear. She’s not only a good friend of mine, but an inspiration in entrepreneurship. Someone who shows you that when you have an idea go run with it and make it a reality instead of talking yourself out with all the reasons why not. Also, it was actually one of my girlfriends who gave me the idea for my business. I was going through a particularly rough patch in life and, amidst tears, telling her about my week … cause she asked. … just rattling off what I had been up to. When I mentioned that I had run lines with an actor friend who pays me to do so she stopped me and said, “wait why don’t you make THAT your thing?” I immediately countered back with all the reasons why not.  And she knocked them down one by one. Allowing me to see myself as clearly as she did. Giving me the strength and courage to say yes to this new path.

 

  1. How do you feel launch day!?

Ummm excited. Nervous. But mainly like I’m taking control of my own life and making things change instead of whining about them anymore. So I feel powerful for sure. There’s definitely something to pushing the button that says “Publish” and knowing that I’ve made a thing that’s out there in the world.

 

  1. Tell us about what Your Audition Friend is?

Well, as an actor so much of what we do is dependent on another person. Acting can’t happen in a room alone, it necessitates an audience. Even in audition prep. And usually that means we either pay for a coach or ask favors of friends – to be a reader for a self tape, to run lines aloud, to be a sounding board for if our choices are working or not. That’s what Your Audition Friend is – Someone practiced who can help you tape, run lines, give constructive feedback, calm your nerves, even call in the car right before you enter the audition room. So you stand strong in your talent without worrying about the lines. And added bonus, you’re not left with the pressure or guilt of taking someone’s time, or having to return the favor in the future.

 

  1. Where can people find out more about you and your new business?

www.yourauditionfriend.com for the biz! AboutMara.com to see what I’m up to in the acting world. Or IMDB me at www.imdb.me/maraklein

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