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Take Control as an Actor

Uncategorized Oct 13, 2020
 

Like it or not, as an actor you are a business. Most actors believe that having an agent or a manager means they can sit back on the sidelines while someone else takes care of their career.

This is unfortunately wrong. There is a reason agents only get a 15% commission: they only put in 15% of the work. 

You as the actor are responsible for creating work for yourself, finding training, staying ready for your auditions and self-tapes, tracking your business expenses and so much more!

Take control of your mindset!

Take advantage of all the tools around you to boost your mindset and your confidence. As an actor, confidence is key. Are you taking workshops on mindset and manifestation? What things are you doing to remind yourself that you are enough, that you are worth it, that you are proven? 

Ask yourself what you can do for YOU so that you can bring yourself to the business as authentically as possible and uncomplicated!

The thing that most agents, casting directors and...

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Creating a GREAT Self-Tape

actors audition self-tape Sep 30, 2020

Self-Tapes can be really scary if you're unprepared, or you don't know what you're doing.

It's even more vital to know how to self-tape today because everything is happening online. Self-Tapes are taking over the casting game, and I want to make sure you're prepared! 

Here are some important tips to make sure your self-tapes are really strong. 

Have a designated space

Having a self-tape set-up that is always ready to go takes away the worry of figuring out how to shoot, and means you're always ready to go at a moment's notice. 

If you can have all of your equipment set up in this space at all times, even better! If you can't do this, make sure you can set up quickly and easily.

Your space should have good lighting (if you can set up in front of a window, awesome!). Natural lighting will always look best on camera, but if you invest in good lighting that works too!

Have a neutral backdrop so all the focus is on you, and not on your cluttered bedroom! A blank wall works...

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How To Prepare For An Audition

audition Sep 14, 2020

When we don't prepare for an audition that's when self doubt starts to creep in, nerves show up, and we don't present our best selves. 

The challenge for most actors is "What is the preparation work?" The important thing here is to develop a system that works for you, and stick to it. 

1. Do not perform your script when you first get it. 

Approach your script as an investigator. Read through it (in your head) as an audience member and start to highlight some important points of the story. Then, read through the script a second time, and write down any important things you might have missed. Then, you'll want to read it a THIRD time from a director's point of view. Really pick up on all the details as well as the bigger picture. Try to stay disciplined and go through the steps one by one.  

2. Do not daydream as if you have already gotten the role. 

This puts your focus inwards. When you go into an audition, you want your focus to be on the story,...

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A Self Made Actor

Uncategorized Aug 06, 2020
I have had the pleasure of working with Anne Thornley-Brown for many years. Not only is she an inspirational go-getter, she is also a strong advocate for Black voices & Black stories on our screens and someone who has experienced racism throughout her career as an actor.

I really enjoy having her in class and she is someone I am honoured to consider a close friend.

As part of IYA's new initiative to empower BIPOC actors, share their stories, and enhance their visibility, we will be featuring a BIPOC actor each month on our blog! Here is my interview with Anne.

TB: Tell me about you & your acting career.


ATB: Well, I have been acting professionally for longer than I am willing to own considering I have a grown son. My first gig was an industrial. I did a number of industrials and then started doing some TV. Degrassi was one of my first appearances on a TV series. As Spike's counsellor, I gave her Eggbert to babysit. I worked hard at it. Took...
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Why Actors need Community

actorslife advice tips Jun 22, 2020

Being an actor can be very isolating at times (let alone during a global pandemic).

When you first get an audition, you lock yourself in a room to study your script.

When you arrive at your audition, you feel like a social outcast in the waiting room, trying to stay calm amidst a sea of other passionate artists.

When you leave an audition, you rarely get any feedback unless you book so this can also create a feeling of loneliness.

Even when you book a gig, being on set or attending the first rehearsal can feel super intimidating until you get to know people, and embrace the all-important element of community.
 
If you have been feeling alone lately as an actor, due to COVID-19 or otherwise, you are not alone.

However, even with a lockdown, we have to start embrace the power of community. (Thank you Zoom).
 
We need each other. You need other artists to remind you what's important, pick you up when you fall, and lift you up to new...
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Stop Proving Yourself, Actors!​​​​​

actors advice mindset tips Jun 15, 2020
As we approach a possible restart of our industry,  I want to take a hot second to talk about the problem that plagues actors (and would-be actors) all around the globe: the idea that we have to somehow 'prove ourselves' in order to succeed.
 
This idea is nothing new. Quick cut to Shakespeare's players delivering soliloquies amidst the barrage of tomatoes being thrown at their heads.
 
Since these early days, we as actors have subscribed to this notion, and mistaken belief, that we are somehow 'less than' and that we have to prove our worth and value on stage, in rehearsal, on set, in the audition room, at the Thanksgiving dinner table to drunk uncle Pete...you get the idea.
 
"But Tony" you say, "What about auditions? An audition is a chance to prove yourself, is it not?"
 
Let's be very clear. An audition is not about proving yourself. You are already proven or you would not be called into this room amongst a select few.
 
An audition...
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3 Steps to Scene-Study Success

techniques tips Jun 06, 2020

With the acting world at a bit of a standstill, this is a perfect time to get quiet & work on your skills before our biz gets back on its feet. 

How is your scene analysis game?

Do you struggle with breaking down your scripts?

Do you find it difficult to connect with your characters/scenes?

How easy is it for you to 'throw away' your work and surrender to the moment?

There are three parts to actor scene-study: I call them Study, Sense, and Surrender.

Study encapsulates your ability to break down and analyze a script. You are basically a text detective, finding the clues that the writer has left you.

Sense represents your ability to personalize the text. Your universal connection to the world and themes of the piece. It's the emotional part of scene-study.

Surrender illustrates your ability to let go of the work and lose yourself in the moment-to-moment discoveries & actions of the piece. This is often the hardest step but arguably the most important. 

Here...

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