Joining a great acting company is beneficial to an actor looking for exposure or to stay active during slow times. I’ll give you some tips that I know on how to join a great acting company:
Ask people in the arts community if they recommend any good acting companies to join. Word of mouth is important in the theatre community. You’ll definitely hear about the good acting companies if you ask around.
Read play reviews of acting company productions. A good source for play reviews is the arts section of you local newspaper or arts community publication. Backstage.com is a good online source to find acting companies in the Los Angeles or New York area. Go watch performances of the acting companies you read about. See what type of plays the companies perform. Talk to the actors afterwards and get a feel for what the members are like. Find out if they hold open auditions. This will give you great insight into the company as a whole and help you decide on whether you would want to join their company.
If you get called in to audition for a company, get two contrasting monologues together to show your range as an actor (one classic, one modern). Show them your strengths as an actor and what you would add to their company. Find a great comedic monologue if you are good with comedy. Do an awesome Shakespeare monologue if you are trained in classical theatre. Show them what you got!
Another way to join an acting company is by personal referral. See if you know anyone in a reputable acting company who is willing to refer you to their company. This is an effective way to get in with groups who are more exclusive and don’t hold open auditions.