Picture Perfect

Agents receive a minimum of 350 pictures a week. Casting directors the same unless they are casting a project–then the total could be a thousand or more. What is going to make these business savvy professionals stop as they ?ip through these hundreds of photos and consider your picture?

Before they even consider your resume and experience something about your picture must grab their attention. Continue reading

Imagination

The other night I was watching an episode the new sit-com, Guy’s with Kids.  In this particular episode one of the characters is presented with an anniversary gift of a 60 inch flat screen TV.  As it is being uncrated he calls his children in to see his gift.  The two boys run in and joyfully exclaim, “Wow, a cardboard box.”  The next we see the very large cardboard box it has been converted into a space ship. Continue reading

Follow Your Bliss

Bliss was a short film made long ago by the filmmakers brining you Stages. It really has nothing to do with the article...except that following Bliss led us to doing lots more amazing work...

Bliss (noun): Complete happiness.  I like the sound of that – COMPLETE HAPPINESS!

What gives me complete happiness is teaching.  I can’t go a day without teaching.  If I am not teaching I fill the void by writing.  Teaching is truly my passion.  It’s my bliss.

What is your bliss?  What gives you complete happiness?  What is that something that when you are doing it your world seems complete?  Whatever it is, do it.  Don’t deny yourself your happiness.

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Letting Go of Fear

Sometimes, even David Stott gets scared...he is producing his first feature film, with support from many of us at StageSuccess. You can support him by liking it! (Click pic above!)

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

That is probably the most famous quote of the twentieth century.  It was proclaimed by president Franklin Roosevelt at the beginning of World War II.  Never were truer words spoken.

Fear has been described as an acronym: False Evidence Appearing Real.  Translated, fear is the result of the unknown or perceived.  Giving into fear creates a roadblock to any and all goals.

Fear surfaces our insecurities: What if I?m not good enough?  What if I fail?  What if there are others better than I am?  What if I don?t have talent?  What if…?

Let?s eliminate from this exploration of fear the words “What if.”

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Q and A: Do You Need to be SAG or AFTRA?

Since writing this post, SAG and AFTRA have merged into SAG-AFTRA.  It’s one union…

Q: [Our son] has been doing some work as an extra and we have been asked if we are members of SAG of AFTRA. Do you recommend one and do you need to be a member of both to be able to work on a SAG project or AFTRA?

A: To simplify as best I can: if a production is signed under a union agreement, you need to be part of the union to work on that production.

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7 Simple Ways for Actors to Jumpstart Momentum

  1. Set a new goal. Choose an action you can take that you are in control of, and can work towards…big or small.  And then begin.
  2. Read.  Read plays, novels, short stories, the newspaper…acting is storytelling.  Let yourself be affected and inspired by stories and how they are told.
  3. Watch a movie…but watch it with intention.  Don’t just veg out in front of the TV.  Is there an actor you like?  A character you’d like to play?  Study the performances; develop a critical eye…what did you like, and why? Continue reading

You Never Walk Away Empty-Handed

I just returned from my second convention in three weeks. They both were exhilarating and taxing at the same time. What affects me the most at these conventions is the sadness of the contestants that believe they are losers. I want to personally console and then assure each and every one of them that they are winners just by being there.

But I didn?t win anything…

Every one of us at one time or another will experience both sides of this coin. We will be winners and losers. Continue reading

It’s Off to Work We Go

By Adam Hill

Recently I had the guilty pleasure of viewing, for the first time in many years, Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.  What a delightful experience.

I especially got a kick out of the seven little men and their joy of life.  In particular was their daily march off to work.  They sang as they strutted through the forest “Heigh-Ho, Heigh-Ho, it’s off to work we go!”  Arriving at the mine wasn’t the end of their enjoyment only the beginning.  While there they “whistled while they worked.”

Acting is work.  It is a job.  It is true that acting is an art, but who ever said that art wasn’t work?

For those of you interested in a career in acting, it is important to remember this.  Acting Continue reading

Know Thyself: How to Maximize Your Training

By Joy Farmer-Clary

One of the simplest and most profound ideas from the great Greek philosophers is from Socrates, who recommended that we “Know thyself.”  What phenomenal advice for us actors!

Knowing thyself is useful on many levels: we need to study our physical and vocal instruments, analyze our thoughts and feelings, and attempt to understand our motivations in our own lives.  Only in this way can we fully craft the complex lives of the characters whose stories we tell.

Unfortunately, many actors fail to apply knowing themselves to getting the most out of their training.

Let’s face it, training is expensive. When you are spending precious time and money on your training, how do you ensure that you are getting the maximum benefit from it?  Know thyself.

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Objectives, Objectives, Objectives

It’s all about objectives. The first thing we learn in Acting 101 is that the most vital acting tool is the objective. Without an objective there is no theatre. There is no play, movie, or television show. The objective makes theatre possible.

So what exactly is an objective? An objective is what the character wants. Each character has a series of wants that connects to more important wants, that connects to the most important want. That most-important over-arching want is called a super-objective. Continue reading