Actors – How To Get A Talent Agent

Shante Abdo

Many aspiring actors imagine the first step in building their showbiz careers is to “be discovered” by a talent agent. While a talent agent will eventually be important to your career, there are several very important steps you must take before an agent will even consider working with you. In this article, I’ll examine the very first step: training.

While it may seem like an obvious first step, many aspiring actors fail to consider training. I suppose they think they’ll develop their acting skills once they’ve been “discovered” and are on the set of their favorite Disney channel show. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works. You must first learn to act before anyone will hire you.

Think about it this way: You would never expect to play basketball for the Los Angeles Lakers if you had never picked up a basketball, would you? The steps to playing professional ball are exactly the same steps to becoming a professional actor.

First, you learn the game. You work with coaches. You develop the fundamental skills by practicing every day, day after day, for years. Nobody would expect to be hired by the Lakers with no experience and then learn to play basketball “on the job”, would they? That sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it?

And yet that’s exactly what many aspiring actors expect. They dream of being discovered by a high powered agent and skyrocketing to fame before they’ve even learned how to act.

Step One: Learn to Act

Acting is just like everything else we do in life… it takes practice to do it well. Talent and desire are important, but without training, an actor will never survive in cities like Los Angeles and New York, where competition is fierce. Every day you’re competing against the very best of the best. You think your desire for acting success is greater than everyone else’s? Well, your competition in the big cities not only has the desire, they’ve also spent years training.

They’ve studied acting for years, they’ve done countless workshops, they’ve worked with acting coaches, they’ve appeared in numerous unpaid “independent” films, they’ve done hundreds or even thousands of performances. If it sounds intimidating, well… don’t dismay. Even the biggest stars in Hollywood were beginners once. The most important thing is to take action. Sign up for an acting class. Join a workshop. Volunteer at a local theater. It’s good to dream about a successful showbiz career, but don’t let it end there. You must take action.

The most successful actors continue to work with acting coaches well after they’ve begun making their living at it. Even the actors on Seinfeld worked with “dialogue coach”, Judy Kerr. When you realize that even the actors on one of the most successful shows of all time are working to improve their skills every day, you’ll begin to understand the importance of training.

Before you worry about signing with a “big shot” talent agent and becoming a star, first begin training. Work every day to improve your skills. Practice every chance you get. Work with teachers and coaches and directors. You absolutely must develop strong acting skills to succeed in showbiz.

Imagine a young Shaquille O’Neil saying, “I want to play in the NBA one day, so the first step is to get an agent!”

If he’d said that instead of going out and practicing his skills, he would never have made it.

First, learn to play the game.

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