Business of being an actor. – Intermediate
Intermediate Actor – Checklist
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. Last month I talked about what a beginning actor can be doing. This month, let’s discuss the intermediate actor.
As I cited last month, 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 intermediate actor, 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 build credits, make connections, and foster your network. If you consider yourself an intermediate actor, see how you compare to this list.
Intermediate Actor: (2-3 years)
- Takes a class at least once a week.
- Has two monologues prepared.
- Has 6 -12 scenes that have been completed.
- Is involved in a theater situation where there are audition possibilities, play readings, and productions.
- Has a good headshot.
- Is building a resume of experience, including plays, student films, videos, non-union projects, and web series.
- Works regularly with friends on camera for on-camera experience.
- Reads the trades, signs up and has a working knowledge of casting services. Makes a practice of submitting for anything and everything they are right for.
- Auditions as much as possible for parts they are right for, understudies plays or performs on stage as much as possible.
- Has or is seeking an agent or manager.
- Has taken a commercial workshop and has (or is seeking) a commercial agent, and auditions for commercials.
- Reads at least 2 plays per month.
- Sees at least 1 play per month.
- Sees 3-4 movies per month.
- Works on ways to get tape on themselves, either by a project already worked on, or self-produced.
- Networks in showcases, theater, scene nights, play readings, and projects that can “put them out there” to be seen and gain experience.
- Web series can be good opportunities to get experience, tape, and make contacts. Should have at least one with a substantial role.
- Works on getting featured and co-starring roles in television and film.
- Is working on or has gotten in the unions, SAG, and maybe EQUITY.
- Has a good resume for gaining work and representation.
I think at this level the intermediate actor should have a good reel of their work. If you don’t have a good reel from a job that you did, then it’s worth the investment to have one professionally made. You also should be seeking or have representation. When seeking representation, make sure your photo is a good representation of you and that you are happy and proud of the reel that you have. It’s important to find an agent that can meet you where you are, meaning getting you out for roles that you are ready for.
At this level, if you’re auditioning on a regular basis, or going out to meet casting directors and agents, you might be having some frustration when jobs or contacts don’t work out for you. Here’s a great quote that I think is appropriate for this time.
“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm” – Winston Churchill
Next month I’ll talk about the advanced actor.