Do You Need to Have Acting Experience to Audition for a Part?
Are you wanting to become an actor but are concerned about your level of acting experience? Wondering how to get into acting with no experience at all?
An acting career is possible in the film industry no matter your experience level, but there are an array of things to take note of in terms of making connections, sourcing auditions, and adding to your acting resume. With patience and hard work, you’ll soon be on your way.
In this guide, we’ll answer some of the most common questions asked by actors just getting started in the industry.
What Types Of Actors Are There?
If you enjoy musicals and live performances, these actors live in the theatre, such as on Broadway.
Stage actors have a unique and special set of skills that differ from screen actors such as needing to project their voice and memorise huge amounts of dialogue – there’s no redoing live scenes!
These actors primarily work in film, TV shows, commercials, or on the web. They often work very long hours and are required to re-do scenes again and again. Many screen actors begin in stage acting before progressing to the screen.
Ads, cartoons or animations, video games, or audiobooks can include voice actors. Voice actors are incredibly skilled at conveying meaning with nothing more than their vocal skills as their physical presence is never seen by audiences.
Study The Acting Industry
Becoming a successful actor sounds like a pipe dream to many, but it is possible to become an actor with no experience. However, to better advance your acting career, you’ll need to know the film, entertainment, and TV sectors. Start analysing and observing what you watch.
Do you have an acting teacher or mentor? If not, we recommend that you begin a range of acting classes at a dedicated acting school.
One to two classes per week is ideal and we suggest focusing on mastering a particular skill every few months as casting directors are often looking for specific abilities. Think juggling, horse riding, accents, languages, drawing – you name it, all of these can help you score a role.
Whether it be through university, online or private mentorship, this is your bread and butter to get started. This will also go a long way to helping you learn your craft and make valuable industry connections.
You should also take steps to:
- Learn about your nearest talent agent
- Observe other actors
- Study student films or other actors
- Research how to find casting calls
- Engage in performing arts by taking acting classes – you’ll learn more by doing
- Watch films across every genre
Ultimately, you should be soaking up every resource available to you, because over time you’ll be able to sharpen your acting skills and industry knowledge.
Create A Professional Profile
Creating a professional profile is key to looking the part. Part of this is getting a great headshot to include in your audition application. You want to appear as a professional and casting directors want to know what you look like!
Secondly, as an aspiring actor, you’ll also need to create a reel of acting footage to upload to your socials and your professional account on IMDb (which we suggest you have). This acts as a sort of online resume for anyone who happens to search for you.
Consider tweaking your social media accounts such as LinkedIn, Tick Tock, or YouTube too, you want to get noticed and to show your acting skills.
Remember, other aspiring actors will be building a solid portfolio to showcase their abilities so you need to ensure your acting resume stands out even if you feel you’ve little to no experience.
If you’ve accomplished a top-notch performance at home or in community theatre and managed to get it recorded, add it in. Featured in commercials or as a film extra? Include this information too, it shows you have experience in front of the camera. Include as many relevant things as possible to show your dedication and expertise.
Hoping to audition with no experience? Wanting to go for theatre auditions? Set your sights on a first audition and gain experience. It doesn’t matter if you’re a high school student, most actors find that getting experience early on in their career and finding talent agencies are great for the acting resume.
Remember what you’ve learned in acting class and acting workshops because your acting techniques will only improve through practice.
How Do I Find Auditions And Casting Calls?
It’s often not what you know, it’s who you know and this absolutely applies to the film industry.
Find open casting calls online by calling a talent agent in your local film office and take advantage of social media connections such as talent agents’ Instagram or Facebook pages. Local casting directors guide aspiring actors in the right direction.
What Should I Expect At An Acting Audition?
Casting calls are over, now it’s time to show you can play the part! Many actors have nerves at this point, but you need to have a rough idea of the part you’re auditioning for. Exercise your voice and recite your lines, get a feel for your character, and recall the scene or story.
Every single actor will experience rejection at some time or another, particularly when starting out. Don’t let it put you off auditioning for more roles. Persistence is key.
As an actor with no experience, you may only book one in every twenty auditions you attend. Even the best actors may only book one in every five. The key is to put it down to experience and continue to apply for as many auditions as you are comfortable with. The more you apply, the better your chances.
How Do I Market Myself As An Actor?
Do you want to get the attention of casting directors, grab onto acting jobs and ease into the major market? Marketing yourself in the entertainment industry can be the most intimidating part of the acting career, but it’s important to track down the right agent and get signed.
Some agents will not consider you without relevant experience, but others may be more open to signing you. Just as with auditions, if one agent rejects you, seek out another until you find the right fit.
If you’ve created an online IMBd profile, now you can start joining relevant Facebook groups or online acting workshops, follow directors, create a website portfolio, and join more agencies!
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how many minor roles you’ve done so far, or even if it’s home footage. It’s one step closer to that bigger project.
How Much Do Professional Actors Make?
Many aspiring actors dream of earning the big bucks, but how much they can earn depends on a variety of factors including the type of job, size of the role, the budget of the film/show, how long the shoot is, acting experience and ability, and more.
Many actors work side jobs for additional income to support themselves while they pursue better-paying acting gigs. Even Chris Hemsworth worked in his local pharmacy before his acting career took off!
How To Gain Experience And New Skills As An Actor
Ultimately your career progression as an actor is going to largely depend on your skills and experience. The best way to achieve this, other than scoring roles, is to attend acting classes.
At The Actors Pulse, we specialise in teaching the Meisner technique which is highly favoured across stage and screen. With decades of experience and a genuine desire to see our students achieve their acting dreams, we support you to stand out and guide you through the process of finding your place in the acting world.
To learn more contact The Actors Pulse today on 0414 475 515.
Billy Milionis is one of the few Australians to have ever studied under the legendary master teacher, the late Sanford Meisner. Billy has also studied story structure and scene analysis techniques with John Truby and later at UCLA. He has also spent several years doing improvisation in Hollywood with the L.A. Connection. In addition, he trained in the technique of Stella Adler, Practical Aesthetics and Lee Strasberg’s method.