The road to stardom can be full of ups and downs, and it can be helpful to keep some go-to mantras in mind to help you get through some of the tougher times. Whether you’re a beginner or an avid professional, here is some food for thought on what it takes to be a performer and eight mantras to keep in your back pocket:
1. It’s Not Always About Talent
Being the best singer, actor or dancer is not always the way to win the role. Sometimes, being a fully well-rounded person with a positive attitude and excellent work ethic can trump talent. Also, check out the following great attributes listed below:
2. Always Do the Work
Want to succeed in show business? Do the work. Whether it’s going to school, practicing every day, auditioning or creating your own work, it’s all part of having a thriving life as a performer.
3. Don’t Complain
Choosing a career and the life of a performer (whether a singer, actor or dancer) is your choice. It’s not an easy life, nor is it a linear one where you can predict how things will go and where your talent and jobs may lead you. Working hard is required, but so is keeping a positive attitude while you’re hustling to achieve your goals and dreams. No one likes being around or working with a complainer.
4. Make Goals
As a performer, you should always have something you’re working toward, whether it’s a dream job or role or working at a particular theatre or as part of a specific dance company. It’s a way to stay focused, disciplined and constantly upping your skills and talents. Speaking of making goals, here’s a great chart from Christie Zimmer to help you to achieve them:
5. Art Ain’t Easy
If being a performer were easy, we would all be standing on a stage right at this very moment, enjoying the audience’s applause and laughter. But alas, we are not. This profession requires persistence, dedication, constantly improving your craft, networking and so much more. As Tom Hanks says in “A League of Their Own,” “It’s the hard that makes it great.”
6. Success = Preparation + Opportunity
Is there a role you’re dying to play? Want to perform on Broadway? These are great goals, but you must be prepared for them so when the opportunity strikes, you’re ready. And, keep in mind that the funny thing about the universe is that typically, when you focus and prepare for specific goals, the universe brings them to you. What work have you done to prepare for your goals?
7. Be On Time
Whether it’s auditions, class, performances or anything else related to your performing arts career, remember that early is on time, on time is late and late is never be hired again. This cartoon from q2qcartoons reiterates this sentiment:
8. Look ‘Em in the Eyes
The job of an actor is to communicate with your scene partner or the audience. Look into their eyes. See them. Speak to them with your words, your eyes and your heart. Honest communication is key to a great performance.