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Acting Career Advice

There is a section on my SandeShurin.com website called Ask Sande And I’m amazed and dismayed by the amount of untrained Actors asking for Career advice. Not the steps leading up to getting jobs, that’s fair play; but how they can get work now, as they are, just starting out and untrained and undeveloped as actors. I’m hoping that I’m talking with Actors that are in a good acting class (refer to my article on a good Acting Class). For now I will go over some points that I refer to in many of my recent articles and add some new thoughts and suggestions.

I want you to know that I love training and developing actors, also in taking good actors and making them brilliant. That’s my distinguishing point as an Acting Teacher and Acting Coach. And certainly as a Director as well as an audience I love brilliant, risky bold, actors that use their own uniqueness as the basis of character work. That being said here is a 10 step advice list for your Acting Career.

1-Be a great Actor
Acting class will become the nucleus for your development, creating a network of supportive people, and some well deserved social life.

2-Audition
That means consistently make auditioning a way of life until you frequently book jobs.

3-Networking
Networking events are plentiful and the Internet is a terrific source in finding them. Look for Casting Director events and auditions. Meet directors, Producers, writers, other Actors at parties, plays, film screenings and lectures.

4-Meet Directors
Send a note with picture and resume to a Director whose work you really admire and ask he or she to consider auditioning you for their next project. If they are already casting be specific about the role. (This only works if you really mean it).

5-Be able to work in all mediums
Read my book Star Power it very clearly explains what is required for Film, Theatre and TV.

6-Acting Coaches
Having an acting coach that you can call to help with your auditions or work with you when you book a job seems to help actors step out further and take more chances on what they audition for. Of course I highly recommend myself, however there are many good ones such as Susan Batson.  Should you want the advise of a career/ business of acting coach try Lisa Gold of www.outsidetheUnionsbox.com

7-Unions
The unions, SAG, Aftra, Equity offer seminars and information. At a certain point it is of benefit for you to join them. That is when you have done some work and have a viable resume, also that you are a good actor and know what you’re doing on a set or stage.

8-You are your own business. Carry your business cards (your picture and contact info) and always have your pictures and resume with you.

Be a good boss, get organized, keep files of people you meet, build a mailing list, keep track of the mailings you do. A lot of marketing and business take place on the Internet, use it.

9-Create your own work
Form a company and produce your own work, either ongoing or for the particular project you’re working on. You can generate this on your own or with a group of friends.

10-Managers and Agents-A manager can be terrific at giving career advise and of course an agent is key to helping you get more work and handle your contracts. Until you are working with one/or both keep inviting them to see you work. Of course you have to keep booking on your own before this happens and work along with them after.

There are your 10 steps, only you can build your Acting Career. Keep in mind why you want to act, what inspires you about the profession, what your contribution is and what you love about it. Keep working at being a great actor, audition, network and stay visible. Work, wherever and whenever you can as long as there is quality in the project. It’s your career, build it!

-Sande Shurin