Advice for Beginning Actors Part 4 – What do you love the most about being an actor?

Special thanks to the actors who have taken time out of their busy schedules to graciously provide advice for new actors for Wannabe Pride, including Regen Wilson, Chris Pentzell, David DeBoy, Ken Arnold, Mercedes Rose, Gabriel Voss, Brittany Baratz, Laura Hunter, Lance Carter, Stephon Fuller, and Rachel F. Hirsch.

What do you love the most about being an actor?

The constant surprise of what those words on paper sound like when you say them out loud. – David Deboy (email) (website)

Playing off of another good actor — especially with comedies.  And craft services. –  Chris Pentzell (email)

The work itself. The interaction between two people on stage or on camera where it just seems right and everything works. You get this feeling of euphoria. Kind of like chills up your spine because you know that moment was real and there will never be another just like it. It’s an amazing feeling. – Ken Arnold ( STUDIO BOH)

The attention. Duh. –  Mercedes Rose (Imdb)  (website)

Telling compelling stories.Gabriel Voss (website, imdb, facebook, twitter)

I love connecting with a large body of people, the audience.  – Brittany Baratz (website, twitter, Knuffle Bunny National Tour)

Learning. Actors are in a constant state of education, whether or not they are in school. For instance, I had an audition a few weeks ago that required a Ukrainian accent. I had barely any time to prepare, as I got the call for the audition only two or three hours before I had to actually be there and perform. It was for a very good role in a television show, and I wanted to do well… but I’ve never done a Ukrainian accent! So, I spent the next hour and a half drilling the lines and learning the accent from various websites and YouTube videos that I found. The first thing that the casting director said to me when I finished my audition was that my accent was great. I never would have had a reason to learn such a thing if I wasn’t an actor.  – Laura Hunter (email, website, twitter, facebook, youtube, contributor to NonSociety.com)

A couple of things actually. The first is that I love the feeling that you get when you finish a scene and you know you nailed it. Greatest feeling in the world. I also like the fact that one day, you’re hustling; looking for your next job. Then next, you can get an opportunity that could keep you employed for months at a time.   – Lance Carter website, twitter, Facebook)

The community. There are a finite number of people that follow their dreams, and within that group there is an even smaller circle whose dream is to be an actor. Only those pursuing this career know what it’s like. When we get in a room together we don’t have to say a word to know that we have a mutual understanding.  – Rachel F. Hirsch twitter, website, acting website, website)

 A great audition, booking a job, knowing I have a great team on my side, working with other artists, getting paid and earning a pension doing it, traveling for work…in first class, lol!- Stephon Fuller (twitter, blog, website)

 

Advice for Beginning Actors – Part 3 – What Inspired You to Become an Actor?

Special thanks to the actors who have taken time out of their busy schedules to graciously provide advice for new actors for Wannabe Pride, including Regen Wilson, Chris Pentzell, David DeBoy, Ken Arnold, Mercedes Rose, Gabriel Voss, Brittany Baratz, Laura Hunter, Lance Carter, Stephon Fuller, and Rachel F. Hirsch.

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ACTOR?

I don’t know that I had a choice. Even as a small child I never thought the actors on TV were real – I always knew they were performing. And I knew I wanted to perform just like them.– David Deboy (email) (website)

I don’t recall.  I started acting when I was four and it’s as inseparable from who I am as my own skin.- Regen Wilson (website)

My father was a theater history professor at the University of Toledo.  Going backstage was such a thrilling thing when I was a kid. –  Chris Pentzell (email)

I have always liked challenging things. Things that not many people get to do at a high level, and do well. So when I was looking for something to challenge me after my professional baseball career was over, I chose acting. It was something I had never tried and once I did, I was hooked. I love the continuing pursuit of getting better, trying to push yourself beyond what you have previously accomplished. That is what inspires me. – Ken Arnold ( STUDIO BOH)

I like the attention. I am only sort of kidding. I love to perform- acting, stand up hosting, modeling- whatever makes people look at me. Making a person laugh is a drug to me. The fact that I get paid for it is a total bonus. –  Mercedes Rose (Imdb)  (website)

I started out doing it for fun but fell in love with being on set and bringing meaningful stories to life that I could share with anyone. – Gabriel Voss (website, imdb, facebook, twitter)

Singing is my first joy, and Musical Theater is my favorite genre to sing. I came into acting a bit backwards. Through music, I learned to love acting.  – Brittany Baratz (website, twitter, Knuffle Bunny National Tour)

I’ve wanted to be an actor since I was about 4 years old. It is a little funny thinking that all of the time, money, and frustration I’ve gone through for this career has been based on the decision of a 4 year old! I was very, very shy as a child. My school put on a play each year, and they put everyone in the class in the play. When I was on stage, I didn’t feel shy–I felt connected to everyone in the audience in a way I couldn’t explain. I fell in love with that feeling and never lost it.  – Laura Hunter (email, website, twitter, facebook, youtube, contributor to NonSociety.com)

 I don’t know if inspiration is the right word for me. I’ve just never really been interested in anything else. I never wanted to be famous, I just wanted to be an actor. You can tell the difference. – Lance Carter website, twitter, Facebook)

I saw my first musical at 4 and never looked back. It was a tour of Cats that came to town, and from my seat in the audience it became clear to me right away that I was meant to be on stage like those performers. I loved the costumes and lights. The dancing and music. All of it seemed like a dream, and that stage seemed like the happiest place on Earth. 2 years later I enrolled in a musical theater summer workshop and performing immediately became everything to me. I was incredibly shy, and playing characters allowed me to express myself. It gave me the safe outlet I needed to figure out who I was. – Rachel F. Hirsch twitter, website, acting website, website)

 I come from a family of fun, funny people.  Why not? – Stephon Fuller (twitter, blog, website)

 

Advice for Beginning Actors: Part 2 – Advice for a First Audition

Special thanks to the actors who have taken time out of their busy schedules to graciously provide advice for new actors for Wannabe Pride, including Regen Wilson, Chris Pentzell, David DeBoy, Ken Arnold, Mercedes Rose, Gabriel Voss, Brittany Baratz, Laura Hunter, Lance Carter, Stephon Fuller, and Rachel F. Hirsch.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE A NEW ACTOR ON HIS/HER FIRST AUDITION?

Expect to be nervous. Nerves are natural. And nerves are good; they are a signal from your body that all of your senses are operating at full capacity – your blood is pulsing, your brain is working faster, your 5 senses are all optimized. So welcome the nerves – it means you’re ready to win that role. – David Deboy (email) (website)

 Aside from memorizing the sides if possible, know that you’re auditioning from the moment you walk in the door until you leave, regardless of whether you’re on camera or not. People want to know not only that you can play the role, but also if you’re someone they’re going to enjoy working with for the duration of the shoot. – Regen Wilson (website)

Stay in action and don’t limit yourself to one thing. Do improv, do stand-up, write, whatever. You never know what’s going to hit. Drop all preconceptions of how you think your career is going to go. Even if you’re getting loads of auditions, stay active creatively. Auditions aren’t creative or rewarding in and of themselves — they’re simply a means to an end. You need to keep sane. – Chris Pentzell (email)

 Most definitely be prepared. From having your headshot and resume, to being on time, having professional wardrobe appropriate to the role, and following directions. Do those things and you will book a lot of jobs. And most importantly once it’s over forget about it. Don’t dwell on what you did wrong, how they treated you, how great it was. Move on, look for the next opportunity.- Ken Arnold ( STUDIO BOH)

Be yourself. So many actors go in “performing”. Just relax. Be prepared and have fun. And be sure your headshot and resume are stapled. Mercedes Rose (Imdb)  (website)

Go in expecting not to get the part. It’s not because you won’t get it, but the odds are against you and if you ignore trying to book it, you can be yourself which is what they want anyway.Gabriel Voss (website, imdb, facebook, twitter)

 Do what you do best. Sing a song/do a monologue that you love and that comes from your heart; don’t pick material just because you think that is what the auditors want to see. Try not to be nervous; auditors are people too and they want you to do a great job in your audition – it makes their job easier!– Brittany Baratz (website, twitter, Knuffle Bunny National Tour)

For a first audition, I would just say “get through it.” That’s the most important thing, that you’re there and you’re seeing how it goes. Many people never even take that step. Also, be overly prepared. Know your lines, what you’re planning to do with them, and how you might react in specific situations. I spent a little time working in casting (which is something I highly recommend for actors) and the biggest thing I learned from that experience is that the only thing you can really do “wrong” in an audition is let the casting directors feel like you are uncomfortable or don’t want to be there. If you’re going to be an actor, make sure you enjoy acting–auditioning is part of acting. Laura Hunter (email, website, twitter, facebook, youtube, contributor to NonSociety.com)

Be prepared and take it seriously.– Lance Carter website, twitter, Facebook)

Auditions teach you about the business. You should use that time to learn the names and faces of casting offices. By reading audition notices you can learn about regional theaters, what’s coming to Broadway, and who the leading players are. Allow yourself to get to know other actors and become a part of the community. That’s why you go to auditions. It’s not just to get hired.

I once waited 10 hours before getting seen at an audition, only to finally get in the room for 30 seconds with nothing to show for it in the end. Three years later I know that audition wasn’t about booking the role. It was about getting in front of a particular casting team for the first time, getting my name and face out there, and learning something new about how to audition. – Rachel F. Hirsch twitter, website, acting website, website)

Be as natural as possible; do less. Have a beginning, middle and end to your work; at least within yourself. Know where the character came from and where he/she is going. It all may not be on camera and that is okay. – Stephon Fuller (twitter, blog, website)