Make The Decision
Many actors say they want to become professional but they aren’t prepared to do what it takes. So, what does it take?
A great parallel for an actor wanting to become professional is the athlete who wants the same. Both are asked to:
- Have a deep passion for the sport – or, in our case, the craft (But not only a passion for yourself in the craft, but also a passion for the craft itself);
- Create a training and competition (process and performance) routine that works;
- Develop a high level of focus;
- Train smarter and harder than those around you;
- Accept pain is part of the process;
- Don’t dwell on bad results, but power on;
- Cultivate discipline and a healthy competitive approach;
- Be prepared to travel; and
- Be resilient. You need a strong mind and a thick skin. You will not always perform at your best, so it is inevitable that you be on the receiving end of some harsh criticism. Criticism can be hard to handle from directors, coaches, producers and fellow actors but today with social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram anyone can be a critic. It takes a strong mind and truckloads of resilience, if you are to get through these low points in your career.
It all starts with the decision to commit to pursuing your dreams and preparing for the reality.
Stay In The Work
If you want a career in acting, you need to act as much as you can. This will ensure you build up skill and networks as well as your reputation. They often say “it’s not what you know, but who you know”. You want to work and expose people to your work ethic and process. If people enjoy working with you, they will want you working on their projects. I often use the same actors because I know I can trust their process and their results. Then the more work they do, the more projects they are asked to be involved in, the more others want to work with them
Learn To Produce
You want to find yourself as many opportunities as you can to perform and to challenge your process. If you are not in a school or training institution this can be difficult. So, you need to learn the process of putting on your own work. You don’t want to give yourself any excuses not to act.
Get confident in your process enough that you feel confident and ready to invite industry. Remember they are often being asked to see shows so their diaries can be very full. So, you want to give them plenty of notice, which means you can’t wait and see if you are happy with the results once the show is up and running. You need to be at the stage where you are so confident with your process that you trust your results.
The truth is, it’s not an easy path to travel but if you are willing to follow the advice above you are well on your way. To start your journey towards becoming professional, to take your skill, knowledge and networks to the next level, attending a training program under some of the finest coaches, and past, and current, professional practitioners could be just the edge you need.