It seems that everyone in theatre has a side gig, side hustle, side hobby or day job. What if your non-theatre experiences actual could help your career in the theatre? Wouldn’t that be a perfect world? If you look for unconventional ways to further your career, your next job might be just around the corner. Here are some ways that your time outside the theatre can be time well spent:
1. Website Design
It’s vital for every working actor to have a website. Most actor websites have headshots, resumes, dance reels, press articles and other information that help you sell your brand as an actor.
Having quality photography skills is always helpful in the theatre. You gain knowledge about what looks best on camera, so you don’t make rookie mistakes with your own headshots. Plus, you can earn extra cash on the side by taking other actors’ headshots or productions’ publicity photos.
This is a must. From broken shoes to ripping your pants 10 minutes before curtain, you should always be prepared with a small sewing kit to help repair any emergency costume problems. Plus, if costumes need alterations, you are prepared to volunteer to help. Your friends will thank you!
It’s not just about being flexible and strong, although that is a fantastic result of doing yoga. Most importantly, yoga trains you to have control of your breath. Keeping focused on your breathing and diaphragm coordination can do wonders to help you sing an aria or deliver a lengthy monologue. Learning how to listen to your body and how it moves is very important for actors. Remember, your body is an instrument. And speaking of instruments…
5. Musical Instruments
Having the ability to play a few musical instruments will only help your chances of getting cast. From the musicals “Once” to “Bandstand,” you never know when you will have to play a musically talented character. Gaining knowledge about music will only help you in your musical theatre endeavors. Plus, you can get a lot of side gigs as an accompanist for your fellow actors or yourself.
If you find the makeup aisle dangerous for your wallet, you might be able to put that passion to use. Experiment with different types of stage makeup, and one day, you could find yourself getting a job as the makeup artist for a show. With so many fantasy shows such as “Shrek” currently playing in regional and community theaters across the country, the theatre needs people with a knack for makeup.
Eating well is very important to keeping yourself in top shape as an actor. Know how to eat the best foods to power through your two-show day. Study what makes you feel good and what keeps your voice healthy and strong. This knowledge will give your acting career more longevity if you remember to always take care of yourself. Make being healthy part of the job!
What are some special skills that helped you get a role or a job in the theatre? Let us know in the comments below…
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