There are many young people who, while watching a movie or going to the theater, wonder how to become an actor because they too dream of the limelight. With our article we will try to shed light on an often hazy world and we will give you the right tools to understand how to become a film, theater or television actor .
The job of the actor
First of all, let’s try to define the job of the actor . The actor is a professional who plays a role or a part in a film, theatrical or television show. His working tools are his voice, his body, expression, posture and his facial expressions, which all together contribute to making the character portrayed truthful.
Since acting is one of the artistic professions , many will wonder if it is not just talent or natural personal inclination that makes an actor a true professional . In reality, if it is true that natural gifts represent an undoubted advantage, to become an actor one must necessarily follow a training path , combined with study and technical and physical preparation (agility, correct diction, use of the voice, breathing, mimic skills, improvisation) useful for configuring the profile of a multifaceted professional ready to play any role in a script.
The training path to become an actor
The training path to become an actor professional does not have a single point of departure or a single point of arrival. Speaking of the actors of the past, their training has often been that of the apprenticeship in the show or in the radio broadcasting, but today to become an actor it is really advisable to attend the National Academy of Dramatic Art of the AFAM system (Higher Artistic, Musical and Coreutica) or another theater course . In this second case, best if organized in a school with a solid reputation and a range of established alumni who can testify to its value.
Attending such a school allows you to learn the techniques of the trade and deepen the study of the history of cinema, theater, dramaturgy, foreign languages. Access to these schools requires aspiring students to have a upper secondary education diploma and often requires passing a preliminary admission exam . In Italy there are several theater schools that combine acting and dance and singing courses for actors.
Observe the great actors
Observing great actors , for many talent scouts, is an essential operation to be carried out on their journey to become actors. In fact, alongside a canonical and structured training course, there must also be initiatives taken personally to speed up the process of becoming an actor. For all beginners, then, it is important to observe those who are already experts to have a practical example to follow in addition to the theoretical notions that are given to the courses. Therefore it is advisable to often go to the theater and cinema and observe the great actors by analyzing their interpretations. Streaming platforms have also been offering excellent products for some time now and so you can continue studying while staying at home.
Watching the scenes that hit the most in a film or show, paying attention to how the actor moves, the tone of voice, the looks, is certainly a way to draw on inexhaustible sources of tips and practical demonstrations .
How does an aspiring actor find a job?
At this point you may be wondering how an aspiring actor gets a job after completing a training course. After school, the aspiring actor usually prepares a photographic book to be attached to the curriculum vitae to propose himself to entertainment agencies that deal with the promotion of film actors and actresses, theater, television and advertising at production companies.
We warn you right now: to reach the first engagement and get the first job, the aspiring actor will have to participate in numerous castings and auditions which represent, especially at the beginning of the career, a good opportunity to be known by a director, a casting director and colleagues. Regardless of the result, therefore, these are the real concrete opportunities to try to get noticed in an extremely competitive world.
In addition to contacting agencies, theater or film companies directly, it is useful to research online to find job offers for actors and actresses. You can start by accepting small parts in short films or video productions made by smaller companies. Thanks to these minor roles, your CV will begin to take shape and configure itself more and more like a business card for a candidate who has already achieved various work experiences.
One aspect not to be underestimated is that of compromise: especially at the beginning of one’s career, in fact, it is necessary to be open to accepting roles that you never thought you would cover. For example, it may be useful to consider singing and dancing as well. Musicals may not be your main focus, but trying to interpret them you may find you love this form of entertainment. And even if this is not the case, having acquired skills that can also be very useful in the field of acting, represents an added value that should not be underestimated:
- dance teaches you to control your movements and coordinate them;
- singing provides an excellent vocal setting and teaches how to modulate the voice.
An actor’s employment contract
Entering into the specifics of the employment contract of an actor , he can work as a freelancer, project collaborator or temporary employee in:
- indoor and outdoor film sets;
- set of fiction and television series;
- theater stages;
- acting schools.
The profession requires availability to work in unconventional hours , during holidays and on weekends . It also leads to often moving from one’s home city and living long periods away from home (see for example theater tours or filming a film). These are also aspects to consider when deciding to take the path that will lead to becoming an actor .