The beginning of the year is a great time to evaluate your progress and your goals for the year. Actors are a business, and we need to look at ourselves from that perspective. In January I talked about what a beginning actor can be doing, February I discussed the intermediate actor and this month I’ll cover the advanced actor. If you are a beginning or intermediate actor, you can review that in the archives.
As I cited previously, since there is no curriculum, or set pattern to make a career in this business, many actors feel helpless, frustrated, lost, and waste time and money trying to make the right decisions. Here is a guide. Monitor yourself, see where you are and how you're doing. It's only a guide. Review yourself; check your strategies and goals; and use it as a barometer. Add and subtract according to your own situation, needs, and desires. At the end add your ideas or what you may have or are doing.
As an advanced actor, you are what I consider a working actor, who is either working or “in between” jobs.
That is the mindset. You should be actively going out and getting as much work, experience, and contacts as you can. There is a lot of work for you to seek and get. At this level you want to continue to build credits, make connections, and build your network. If you consider yourself an advanced actor, see how you compare to this list.
Advanced Actor (5 years +)
- Has a great headshot and solid resume.
- Takes a class and/or is working on a job.
- Performs in 2 - 3 plays a year
- Has several current and good TV credits.
- Has been in several films (union or non-union).
- Has an excellent tape and footage available to show.
- Has a good relationship with their agent and/or manager, and communicates on a weekly basis.
- Participates in a theater where they can audition, perform, do play readings, showcases, scene nights and “work out.”
- Has a database of casting directors that they know, auditioned for, or worked for, and stays in touch on a regular basis (post cards, notes, stop-ins, Facebook, etc.).
- Knows every prime time show and who casts them. Knows every show they are “right for” and gets seen by those shows' casting directors.
- Has several projects they are working on, on the side (screenplay, play, putting together projects for themselves, pitching ideas, etc.).
- At the flip of an email can connect to anyone in the world with their picture resume, video, and representation of their work.
- When they meet someone, that person could already have an idea of who this person is, either by having seen them in something or can go to their site and research them.
- Has their own website where there is video, photos, and media on them. A place where directors, agents, and casting directors and find more about them.
- Understands their “Brand,” what they have to sell.