A successful actor doesn’t necessarily mean becoming famous and earning millions. In fact, the average salary for an actor according to Salary.com, is just over $57,000 annually. While the definition of success can only be defined by the individual, it generally means being able to make a living doing what you’re passionate about,
While earning enough to make a living as an actor isn’t easy, it can be done with a lot of hard work and the necessary skills, including these.
Your voice should be worked on just like you’d practice an instrument. It needs to be flexible enough to embody any character that you take on. You might be a Nashville actress performing in a community theater, or you could beat the odds and end up starring in major Hollywood films. This is key to being able to play a wide range of characters while bringing them to life for your audience. Can you play a character who speaks much quicker than you do? Someone with a strong accent? The more diversified your vocal talents, the more roles you’ll be able to take on. Working with a professional voice coach can help if it doesn’t come naturally.
Stage or Screen Presence
Presence, whether you’re on stage or screen, is incredibly important. Think of all the top actors, Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Day-Lewis, Anthony Hopkins, Robert DeNiro, Jodie Foster, Meryl Streep – they all have incredible confidence that captivates the audience, keeping their fans coming back again and again to watch their performances. That includes both charisma and the ability to be fully immersed in their characters. Some actors naturally have charisma while others find it later, and some are lucky enough to have both from the start.
If you want to work on your stage or screen presence, it’s important to be original, authentic, and relaxed, which results in clarity of expression. When you’re intentional with your actions, you’ll draw your audience in like a magnet.
If your memory skills aren’t good, you’ll need to start practicing to develop them. Fortunately, this is something just about anyone can improve upon. Do a Google search on improving your memory for general ideas, and when it comes to your lines, you’ll want to read your script multiple times. Write your lines down, word for word, then say them out loud and write them down again, repeating the process until you can do it without looking at the script.
Confidence is extremely beneficial, but it’s also something that can be learned through practice. It comes from the belief in your own abilities, and experience. You’ll need to be confident to get through auditions and to deal with the constant criticism and rejection. Then, when you do get that role, when you’re up on stage or on the screen, if you don’t have confidence in yourself, no one else is going to have confidence in what you’re doing either. Fortunately, as you develop your abilities through practice, you’ll become more secure in what you’re doing and your confidence will grow too.
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