Here is Part 3 of BEING A WORKING ACTOR.
Part 1 was all about embodiment. Owning the room. Living in the world as a star now. Training. Doing CI embodiment work.
Part 2 was all about Self-Generation. Reaching out to people in your circle, and making things happen, get inspired by your fellow creators, staying in touch with people you’ve worked with.
Now for Part 3: Agents and Managers.
Those of us that have agents often sit back and live in hope and prayer. Hope that we are at the forefront of our agent’s mind. This leads many to a sense of powerlessness. It also leads us to reach out to our team (yes they are your team) with desperation.
“Anything for me?” “Nothing yet.” “Ok, cool.”
Then you decide some chit chat would be good. So you ask them how they’re doing.
They respond, “Super busy right now.”
Your mind: Whaaaaat? What about me?!
Then, as you cave in on yourself, you say: “Oh, that’s good. Busy is good.” You do a weird laugh, and say in a strange high pitched voice, “I’ll talk to you soon.”
Result: both parties get off the phone not feeling so good.
So, this is where embodiment comes in. Literally doing any of the Committed Impulse exercises you’ve learned in class or from the Committed Impulse Online Program, like The Series or The Isolations will get you in your body and out of the desperation our minds often generate.
I strongly suggest getting connected to your body, if you are in your head having, “I’m unsure” thoughts. Breathe, See, Feel, and “I’m Back” are great to do before a call.
Embodiment is key in any kind of business meeting. It’ll keep you present, off auto-pilot, and you’ll be able to take the attention off yourself.
Remember: We have to nurture our agent/manager relationship and approach it like a partnership. It is a partnership. You want to come to any interaction like a professional. A supportive force, a creative presence. Not a desperate troll.
Truth be told – I’ve done both. Trust me, the desperate troll isn’t the way to go.
Many times as actors we get caught up in a hierarchical mindset – and put ourselves below our team. This does not serve anyone.
How excited can your agent get about you if you position yourself like a begging sloth.
Well, at least you’re cute.
WHEN YOU DON’T HEAR FROM YOUR AGENT:
Yesterday I reached out to one of my awesome agents so he could give me some thoughts about what an actor should do when things are slow. He said he doesn’t mind explaining to his clients what is going on when it’s slow. He said, I’m just honest with them. He also said that, as a general note, you have to feel it out as when to call. Go with your intuition on this – not your desperation.
He also said that you have to trust that your agent is out there doing his or her best. After all, they get paid when you get paid.
Now, I know a lot of actors don’t have agents. It took me YEARS to get an agent.
I actually got myself cast in a Broadway show before getting an agent. That’s another story. But the short version is I was doing everything I could. Readings, little shows (often in basements), training in every class that inspired me… And then someone who saw my work in a hole-in-the-wall showcase told a stage manager that casting should get me an audition. Boom. Did the Broadway show for 2 years, and the show won the Tony. The play was I’m Not Rappaport.
Along those lines, here’s what my agent said to do if you don’t have an agent…
Get busy. Do everything you can. Do plays, web series, create your own work. Get tape/film on yourself that you feel great about. Train in classes. Yes, he even said – train in Committed Impulse.
Come to CI – or any other class that inspires you – keep the juices flowing. When you get your shot – you can’t afford to not do your best work.
Ultimately you want to generate material that you can show an agent or manager.
When you have something you’re proud of – whether it be a play you’re in or tape/film then it’s time to reach out.
Make a list of agents/managers you want to meet.
Find their contact info.
Do your embodiment practice.
Reach out, follow up, set up a meeting.
Expect to be uncomfortable, embarrassed, and feel all that childhood trauma. Then COME BACK.
Reaching out may feel like the last thing you’ll want to do.
That’s the indication that you must do it.
PLEASE – get started!
You can be a working actor. If I can do it – you can!
The planet needs YOU!!!!
The planet needs your work.
I truly hope this was helpful.
I look forward to working with you