Getting into Acting

My name is Peter and I am doing my Gold Arts Award with Peshkar. This is my Unit One Part D Form and Communicate a View.

Getting into Acting

I have been acting for a while and would really like to get into doing it fulltime but have found it really difficult. It seems to be a lot easier if you have relatives in the acting business. So I want to know why it is harder for me. The argument of this piece is that it is difficult for people from Northern working class backgrounds to get into the acting profession if they have not followed a conventional educational route.

I have found some views from the internet:

'First of all, no one who approaches you in a mall is legit. Period. All they are looking for is their next mark and if you bite and show up at their 'screen test' then they get paid.

Your mom does not know how the business works. Legit agents do not require any upfront fees, they only get paid when you do HOWEVER you do need photos etc. and that comes out of your pocket. Your training also comes out of your pocket so you need to look into professional training and building your resume. You need experience so look up your local theatres and see what they have going on. Classes, workshops, auditions, etc. Auditions are ALWAYS free. Classes will always cost. You should always ask about the class, the instructors, etc. Make sure you know what you're getting and you're happy about that before signing up.

Also, Disney is not a starting point. Most people start with commercials, student and indie films, under 5's (bit parts) and it does not matter what network or studio they're for. It's experience that goes on your resume. Get on ActorsAccess.com and backstage.com neither are totally free but this is where you begin. They are industry standards and mom has to be supportive or this will not work. She should be the one to help you set up accounts online because you are a minor (Yes?) and should not be putting your personal info on the web without her consent'.

This was taken from Yahoo Answers but perhaps shows more of an American Perspective on the debate.

I have found getting into acting very difficult and seems to be a lot easier if you have relatives in the acting business. So I what to know why it is harder for me. The argument of this piece is that it is difficult for people from Northern working class backgrounds to get into the acting profession if they have not followed a conventional educational route.

I have found some views from the internet:

'First of all, no one who approaches you in a mall is legit. Period. All they are looking for is their next mark and if you bite and show up at their 'screen test' then they get paid.

Your mom does not know how the business works. Legit agents do not require any upfront fees, they only get paid when you do HOWEVER you do need photos etc. and that comes out of your pocket. Your training also comes out of your pocket so you need to look into professional training and building your resume. You need experience so look up your local theatres and see what they have going on. Classes, workshops, auditions, etc. Auditions are ALWAYS free. Classes will always cost. You should always ask about the class, the instructors, etc. Make sure you know what you're getting and you're happy about that before signing up.

Also, Disney is not a starting point. Most people start with commercials, student and indie films, under 5's (bit parts) and it does not matter what network or studio they're for. It's experience that goes on your resume. Get on ActorsAccess.com and backstage.com neither are totally free but this is where you begin. They are industry standards and mom has to be supportive or this will not work. She should be the one to help you set up accounts online because you are a minor (Yes?) and should not be putting your personal info on the web without her consent'.

This was taken from Yahoo Answers but perhaps shows more of an American Perspective on the debate.

Here is another perspective

To become an actor you have to love acting. You have to do it for the right reasons, not because you want to be famous. (Anyone can be famous: you can put something silly on YouTube and get thousands of hits; you can lock yourself in a house and get national attention). But it's not fame that will get you work. It's craft. And craft will serve you far more later on than a hunger to be popular.

Have a look around your community for acting opportunities. In the little county town where I grew up I joined as many amateur acting groups as possible; I joined a young people's group but I also joined an adults group. Expose yourself to as many different opportunities and genres as you can and you can only learn.

10 Tips on Breaking into Acting: brentstreet.com.au

I also noticed that there are lots of articles at the moment on how there are lots of actors in films at the moment that are from upper class background and have been to schools such as Eton and Harrow. A Daily Mail article from 2015 stated that 1 in 10 actors in the industry today are from upper class backgrounds. James McEvoy has also been in the press recently talking about how he thinks that opportunities for young people from less privileged backgrounds are harder to come by.

Final argument

Having researched this issue, I have found that most of the articles back up what I have thought.

I think that it is possible for working class people to get into acting but it is much harder.

You have to have decided straight away from being 14 years old that acting is what you want to do for your career and that isn't always the easiest thing for someone of that age to do. You also have to be prepared to work much harder.

The older you get, the more money becomes an issue and the increased tuition fees have also made money more of a problem for younger people and anyone who doesn't have much money.

If there was some way to get agents quicker and if more agents or production companies visited smaller local drama schools in regional areas or even amateur dramatics companies then this would make the process easier and fairer for people who have not been able to go through traditional drama school.

I think there should also be something similar to Job Clubs that you have at the Job Centre for actors and other people looking to get into performing arts or media to be able to meet directors, agents and producers to break down the process and make it more accessible.

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3 Comments

  • samah khalil

    On 29 May 2016, 10:08 samah khalil commented:

    I think it is really interesting to see your thoughts on why It is more difficult to get into acting if you do not follow the conventional route. Also I think a job club for actors would be really helpful

  • On 30 May 2016, 09:56 [Deleted User] commented:

    Some really interesting ideas have been put forward in this and I can tell a lot of research has gone into it. Really brilliant research and personal views that could help a lot of people

  • Bhavesh Jadva

    On 30 May 2016, 12:39 Bhavesh Jadva Voice Team commented:

    Excellent points here! I think that it is difficult for people from the north not to be typecast into certain roles. It's also very true that there are more foolproof ways to get into drama than others! With greater access to drama workshops and stuff from a young age would mean that we would see more equality among the communities which up and coming actors are from. Really good blog!

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