If you have said I want to be an actor to yourself more than once in your life, it could easily be that it is your calling!
If acting is a passion and something you want to pursue more seriously, then you will be pleased to know that there is so much education available to you to help turn that dream into a reality and rewarding acting career.
For almost all the acting jobs on the market, there are specialist courses to train you and hone your natural talent. For instance, if you feel you are destined for an acting career in the world of comedy, you could take improvisation classes. This is just one example, however, there are different types of classes for different types of acting jobs.
Some of the other types of classes you could take to kick-start your acting career include:
- Sight reading (also known as cold reading
- Scene study courses
- Acting technique courses and many others
Each acting study plays its own unique role. For instance, if you intend to focus on theatre or the works of Shakespeare, classical acting classes would be more helpful to you than for someone who wants an acting career in contemporary films or comedy.
In the same way, maybe you are not only thinking, “I want to be an actor” but you would also like to specialise as a voice-over artist. If this is the case, elocution classes would be more beneficial than movement classes.
It’s also important to remember that drama studies not only contribute towards your acting career but also towards your success throughout the audition process at casting agencies. In fact, you could even sign up for audition technique classes, which is something that most acting agencies actually recommend.
Auditions are an extremely important part of one’s acting career, which is why this article will highlight how to hone your skills for auditions, get callbacks from casting agencies, and ultimately land acting jobs.
If I Want to Be an Actor Do I Really Need Skills for Dealing with Casting Agencies?
If you are considering an acting career, or simply want to improve on your existing skills, you may be wondering if audition technique classes are even necessary. After all, if you are a professional actor with heaps of talent, why would you need to learn how to audition? You may even be thinking that your skills will be obvious to casting agencies and that acting jobs will be a certainty.
This of course, could be the case! However, because acting agencies, as well as casting agencies, hold acting jobs in their hands, it is wise to have a few audition techniques up your sleeve, especially if you are new to your acting career. In effect, acting skills and audition skills are two different things, but both are paramount to landing acting jobs.
Think of it this way, you could be an outstanding engineer, but if you are unable to motivate why you are suited to the job in an interview, you will struggle to find a job regardless of how skilled you are on paper.
The same applies if you have an acting career. In a highly competitive industry, acting agencies are inundated with talent and skill, and casting agencies work within very tight deadlines to deliver on their acting job specs. You will have very limited time to not only stand out but also convince them that you are the perfect choice for the role. This is why good techniques at hand could boost your self-confidence at auditions and actually land you more acting jobs than most!
Here are some of the reasons why so many acting agencies insist on audition-technique classes to develop the skills of their actors:
- Actors learn how to read scripts in a way that delivers a more authentic performance.
- Actors learn sight-reading skills, which is a necessary technique for auditions.
- Actors learn the importance of interpersonal skills as well as how to make a good first impression.
How Do Audition Technique Classes Benefit My Acting Career?
As you begin to research audition technique classes, you will find that content can vary from course to course. This is mainly because what is covered can greatly depend on your drama teacher or acting tutor. It may even be influenced by the syllabus that is set by the drama school you attend.
Generally, audition technique classes will focus on several areas:
- Preparation for the different stages of the audition process at casting agencies, and even acting agencies;
- An explanation of the types of auditions, for example, TV commercials, mini-series, films etcetera;
- How to constructively use feedback to further your acting career.
An important aspect of audition technique classes is the preparation of scripts or monologues in advance. For example, you could be asked to prepare one modern script and one classical script as practise for a mock audition.
When you are asked to practise scripts in advance of a class, it is key to prepare as much as possible so that you will get the most out of your course. This is also important to provide you with the best opportunity for constructive feedback. There is absolutely no doubt if you are declaring I want to be an actor, your path to landing acting jobs should include excellent audition skills.
If you are happily enrolled in a drama school but feel you would like extra audition-technique practise, or if you feel any of your other acting skills need extra help, you could find a private tutor near you. Try the Superprof website which hosts acting tutors all over South Africa and around the world. There are tutors for every level of acting ability from school-going children to adult actors, drama students, and even for those who don’t necessarily want an acting career, but simply a hobby!
One of the advantages of finding a Superprof tutor is that in many cases you could find that your first lesson is offered at no charge. This way you can find out if you connect with them or not, discuss your goals and find out about their teaching style before you commit to your acting lessons.
Finding Audition Technique Classes
Audition technique classes are a very popular type of acting class so it should not be difficult to find a tutor or group class near you. Some acting agencies offer their own audition techniques, and if not, they would certainly be able to recommend a good class or coach for you.
There are excellent drama faculties at several of South Africa’s leading universities, such as the University of Cape Town, Stellenbosch University, and the University of Pretoria who could certainly point you in the right direction.
One of the great things about audition technique classes is the diverse range of people you will find, regardless of their acting career stage. You are likely to meet:
- Beginners who are still investigating all that an acting career entails;
- University and drama students who are acting part-time;
- Seasoned performers who want to keep up with the latest requirements of casting agencies and land more acting jobs.
When looking for audition technique classes or workshops, remember that formats and content may vary. For these reasons, ask questions upfront, especially if you are concentrating on one specific style of acting, to avoid being disappointed.
Can I Avoid Auditions If I Want to Be an Actor?
At the end of the day, auditions are fundamental to an acting career. Some people thrive on them and others could do without them. Either way, your future acting jobs depend on your audition skills.
The good news is that not only are audition technique tutors highly skilled at making classes interesting and fun, but they are able to greatly boost your self-confidence.
Find out if the course you are interested in films your mock auditions because being able to observe yourself on camera will accelerate your improvement. Also, when you do attend auditions at casting agencies, these are usually filmed so you could always find out if they are willing to supply you with a copy. Acting agencies often encourage their performers to try and review the footage with a coach so that they can highlight what could be improved upon for next time.
Remember that the level of feedback and practice you are able to get out of your audition technique classes will directly result in more skills, confidence, and acting jobs.
As you can see, auditioning plays a major role in every acting career. It is truly in your best interest to find an excellent audition technique course or tutor who can add value to both your performances and self-confidence.
At the end of the day, the time and financial investment will pay off as you grow in confidence and walk out of those casting agencies with a huge smile on your face.