The 1st annual Alliance sponsored Casting Director Q & A gave me more insight into the local casting directors than I had thought I'd gather. There were the extraneous check list of actors do's and don'ts in a casting office: make sure you have a head shot and resume, make sure you bring multiple copies, make sure there are more in your car just in case, make sure you LOOK like your head shot - the list goes on; and usually I go to these events more to make sure my agent knows I care and to socialize but I actually picked up a few things:
1) Do not spend your money or your time on sending the CD's random promotional items or gifts. It's better to use the money on new head shots or classes and they'd prefer if you were just memorable in your audition.
2) They do not remember how you sucked at an audition....forever.
3) You CAN actually ask them to let you do it again if you know that you didn't do it as well as you could have or if you have another take you'd like to try. Remember it is YOUR audition and even if it feels rushed in the office if you have something else to offer, ask. Apparently they only say no if you try to do this 4 or 5 times.
4) The CD's and other people in the room are on your side. They want you to be the one for the role, they want you to be perfect for the part. They're on your side.
5) Try to dress more simply. It's not about your hair or your accessories. When they pull you into an audition they want to see specifically what it is about you - your essence. The way your voice is, your body, and your face. What you give off as a person just as you are without all the stuff. Be natural.