Becoming an actor is not as simple as it sounds. You need to be as dedicated and willing to do the hard work to make it in the film, television or theater industries, as you would in any other job.
Wanting to become an actor is a legitimate ambition, especially if you know that it takes more than just good looks and you’re not in it just for the fame and fortune. It may take a bit of time and hard work in order to actually make a name for yourself and last long in the industry. But if you have your head on straight and are serious enough about your dreams to commit yourself to improving yourself, then you just might have what it takes to make it big.
Why You Should Become an Actor
There are those who may be doubting themselves and second-guessing whether it’s a smart move to pursue their acting dreams, but there are actually a few good reasons to become an actor, aside from the eventual fame and fortune:
- It’s fun – Just imagine doing what you actually love to do professionally. You will also get to meet a lot of talented and great people – whether they work behind the scenes or in front of the camera.
- It’s creatively rewarding – If you are seriously good at acting, you will find a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment when you study a character or role and portray it in a way that gives it justice.
- It will allow you to travel – If at first you are limited to the theater down the street, or at a studio at a neighboring city, there will be opportunity to travel down the road. Many actors are given jobs that take them around the world – all expenses paid, too!
- It’s realistic – Contrary to what your well-meaning mom or dad will have you believe, you can make a living out of acting. Even if you don’t become a world-famous actor and have millions in the bank, you can consistently work as a professional actor that makes a decent living doing what you love to do.
How to Become an Actor
While there is no one way to get into show business, there are a few things you can do in order to increase your chances of success.
- Take Acting Classes. Whether it’s from a drama school or a summer acting workshop or camp, you will inevitably learn something valuable that will help you improve your acting chops.
- Hire an Acting Coach. A personal acting coach can give you the personal attention that you need in order to hone your skills as well as help you identify and work on weaknesses.
- Get Ready for Auditions. Auditions are an inevitable part of your journey as an actor, whether it’s for a movie, a play or TV show, so you have to make sure you can sell yourself for roles and showcase your talents in a short period of time. Don’t give up even if you get more no’s than yeses.
- Get an Agent. Good agents work hard to get your name in the door. Ask around for referrals from those you trust in your professional network.
- See Movies, Plays, Etc., Read Reviews. This will help you learn more about the business which in turn will help you determine what will work well for you. Doing this can also serve to inspire you to do better.
Benefits of Taking Acting Classes
While not a requirement, many aspiring actors take acting classes as a first step towards reaching their dream. Acting courses will help you overcome self-consciousness which is crucial especially since actors regularly perform in front of an audience or audition in front of casting directors.
You will develop public speaking skills that will come in handy when delivering dialog or speaking out in interviews. On a related note, acting classes can help improve your communication skills, honing your verbal timing, facial expression, body language, poise, and how you display your emotion through your voice, all of which will help you become a great storyteller.
Attending an acting class can also help you learn how to work and collaborate with others. This is a crucial part of preparing to work in the industry, since you will be exposed to many different kinds of people on and off camera/stage. You will learn to give and receive constructive feedback and help create a safe and supportive environment for your fellow actors.
Where to Take Acting Classes
You can try calling local community colleges or universities to find out if they have available drama programs and enrolling in them. Participating in high school, college or local community plays can also help you hone your skills early on.
There are various acting schools in America, some of which offer online or free acting classes.
One important thing to remember about an acting career is that the learning process never ends. Each role you will get is different, and you may need to learn something different in order to portray them properly. Some actors have been required to learn a skill, such as sword fighting, horseback riding or speaking with or without an accent. You must be prepared and willing to become a lifetime student if you want to become an actor.