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Do i need to go to a preforming arts school to be more successful as an actor?

For as long as i can remember i wanted to be an actor, I've done auditions before, been in plays and felt really good about myself. Now that I'm close to becoming a senior i'm not sure what to do with my future in college. So what i'm asking is, is it a step that i need to take to be a Film Actor?

film-acting Acting television nyu theatre musical-theatre

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Jessica’s Answer

Hello Alex,

If you are wanting to do theatre professionally, there are several different ways to start this:

  1. Wherever you are now, get involved in theatre. This could be a show at your school or with a community group, but gaining experience in the theatre is the most important thing you can do right now.
  2. It is not necessary to get a degree to do theatre, but many performers choose to do this to gain experience and skills from a variety of teachers and coaches. You will need to look into schools with a theatre or musical theatre program. You will want to look into their programs online and once you narrow it down, visit the schools if you can to get a better feel of how their theatre program is. You do not need to attend one of the most well known or most expensive schools to get a good theatre degree. Keep in mind that many schools require an audition to enter their program, but they will make sure that you know all about that if you choose to apply.
  3. If you choose not to go to school or after you graduate, you will want to move to an area with an abundance of theatre. Most big cities will have plenty of theatre, but if you want to go to Broadway, you will eventually end up in New York City. For film, you would end up in California.
  4. You will want to get a job to support yourself while you are auditioning. Make sure to get a job that allows to go out during the day and audition.
  5. Audition. Audition. Audition. The rule that you always hear in the acting world is that it will take you 40 auditions to get a callback and 80 auditions to get a role. Do not get discouraged or think that it is your fault when you get rejected. To be an actor, you will have to be able to handle rejection. has plenty of resources to help you with resumes, audition material, and a countless other things.

This is not a definite list by far, but it is a general outline of what a lot of people do to become actors. I would highly encourage you to do some research yourself on different ways to get involved in theatre. Here are some good sites to look at:

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Rafailia’s Answer

Hi Alex,

College is the best way to get the knowledge, the connections and the opportunities.

Otherwise, you need an agent,good head shots, and self promotion from social media at least.

And of course you should hunt down auditions.