ANSWERS TO ACTORS'
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Always remember that sometimes there is neither rhyme nor reason for what actors should or should not do. So sift through all the information you get, and ultimately decide what is best for you.
HOW DO I GET AN AGENT?
There are many different ways to obtain representation.
First... you should decide what KIND of representation you want, and if you're ready for it. You can get represented by a commercial agency, a theatrical (film/tv/equity) agency, a voiceover agency, and/or a print work agency. So you can possibly have up to four different agents.
Decide what is the most important field for you. Commercials? Television series? Modeling? Then focus on getting that kind of representation.
Screen Actors Guild (SAG) will give you a list of franchised agents, free of charge. You can also obtain a book on agencies at any theatrical bookstore. Some of them give a description (specifically, one called "The Agencies").
Also... "Working Actor's Guide" contains a list of agencies. You can buy (or just look at) "Working Actor's Guide" at Barnes and Noble, and other good bookstores.
Once you've made a list of agencies you wish to submit yourself to, get your photos and résumés together.
If you don't have any connections to any agencies, you'll have to do a mass mailing to the agencies. If they like your photo, they'll call you in (and that photo better look like YOU!).
Ultimately, the best way to get an agent is to be referred to one through a friend who is already represented by that agency. Ask people in your acting classes, or people you meet socially, if they'd mind if you used them as a reference when you send your letter and photo to their agents.
If, after you've done your mail-out, you do not hear back, make a phone call (I teach you how in my book!). Remember to call agents after their receptionist leaves - at 5:30 or 6:00 PM.
WHAT ARE COLD READING SHOWCASES AND SHOULD I DO THEM?
Cold reading showcases cost money, but will get you in front of casting directors. That's your objective, no?
At a showcase, you will be asked to read a few pages of "sides." Sides are part of a script. You will have about 15 minutes to study the script, and will then perform with a partner.
Do anything you can possibly do to meet casting directors. Some of them are in it for the money, but others will bring in actors they meet, if they like their work.
Questions? E-mail Lizzie, and she'll answer them here.