Hello Helen: Many aspiring actors begin by participating in school plays or local theater productions. In television and film, actors usually start out in smaller roles or independent movies and work their way up to bigger productions.
It takes many years of practice to develop the skills needed to be a successful actor, and actors never truly finish training. They work to improve their acting skills throughout their career. Many actors continue to train through workshops, rehearsals, or mentoring by a drama coach.
Source: US Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics - Actor
Steps to Becoming an Actor
Although the path to becoming an actor may vary, here are five steps that you can take to become an actor.
Step #1 - Take Classes
Step #2 - Gain Professional Experience
Step #3 - Acquire Additional Skills
Step #4 - Find an Agent
Step #5 - Advance in the Field
Focus on doing a good job and the pay will follow your experience and hard work, which will lead to you becoming a successful actor.
TIP: Stay humble when the fame and fortune comes.
Best of Luck to You!
Sheila recommends the following next steps:
- Research US Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook- Actor site. (This site has all the information that is pulled from the Department of Labor on the profession) https://www.bls.gov/ooh/entertainment-and-sports/actors.htm#tab-4
- Research study.com site: https://study.com/articles/Acting_Career_Information_Becoming_an_Actor_or_Actress.html
- Remember to bookmark all the sites listed in my response and the ones you come across during your research