Is this a good idea?!?

  • Mark Lisseman

    Actor

    Hi guys - my first post here!

    Over the last year (I graduated last summer), I have been in four productions where headshots were displayed in the foyer/lobby/etc of the venue.

    Now, like a lot of people I wrote to a number of agents as I was (am) seeking representation, inviting them to come along. But, what is the best way of indicating to /other/ agents (those that other cast members have invited, those that come along on spec, etc) that you're looking?

    I've always thought it might be an idea to have a small, discrete sticker on one of the bottom corners of your headshot (i.e. 'Seeking Representation'), or even to add it to the end of your bio/blurb in the programme.

    Any thoughts?

    Cheers, Mark

    • 14th Mar 2012
    • 3416
    • 26
  • David Hopper

    Actor

    If an agent comes to see you at a show and likes the look for you. They will go home and do their research on you. They will be able to find if you are represented or now. The idea of telling people that you are seeking representation might draw away from your headshot.

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 1
  • Mark Joseph

    Actor

    Don't put a sticker on your headshot, don't put it in your blurb.

    Send a follow-up letter/email to the agents in question.

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 2
  • Mark Lisseman

    Actor

    Ok - fair enough.

    However.. I'd like to just clarify that I'm talking about agents that may have been invited by someone else, or have turned up 'on spec' - i.e. those that may assume (without having any reason to suppose otherwise) that I'm already represented..

    Mark

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 3
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Mark,

    Personally, I think it is quite a good idea and I would think it would in no way be detrimental to what you are trying to achieve.

    I would be extremely surprised if any agents looking at your head shot would be offended or consider a discreet sticker, stating that you are looking to be represented, to be in any way unprofessional.

    Nobody on here can categorically say what an agent will or won't do in any situation....or how they determine their selection process.

    If there was an absolute and precise blueprint of how an agent approaches the process of taking on an actor for representation, none of us would need to come on here and ask for advice would we?

    :-)

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 4
  • Blake J Askew

    Actor

    There ARE actors who put "seeking representation " on their blurb and agents bite and offer them representation .

    Same as gate crashing an audition- what have you got to lose??? I gate crashed Les Mis a few years back , they saw me and were extremely good natured !!!

    You may have what the Yiddish call "chutzpah " and it could very well mark you as the man amongst the boys.

    What have you got to lose????

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 5
  • Mark Joseph

    Actor

    "Same as gate crashing an audition - what have you got to lose??"

    Getting blacklisted.

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 6
  • Blake J Askew

    Actor

    Mark,

    I had agents previously who had clients gate crash and they ended up getting the job.

    Richard Evans the CD discusses how to gatecrash in his book . I just don't agree with you. You can't do it all the time, of course , but there are times it does work.

    If you gatecrash every job then yes, you will be blacklisted . But musicals in particular seem more open to it than other mediums.

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 7
  • Sam Lucas Smith

    Actor

    Gatecrashing an audition seems a little strange to me... If you're brave enough go for it. I definitely don't think I would be.

    Perhaps it depends on the type of Audition. If it is a large scale casting crawl with semi-open auditions then perhaps, but I can't imagine a casting director/assistant walking out to a waiting room to confirm names and call times would be overly delighted to hear someone say "Oh yeah you didn't call me, I just thought I'd drop in and chance my arm"

    Most castings are given specific calls for individual actors. If it's a general call it might be slightly less odd, but still - in my opinion - cheeky.

    You're essentially saying "Yeah you decided that I wasn't right for the role and did not want to see me but YOU'RE WRONG!"

    Besides most likely being a waste of time, I think it'd be detrimental to your career and any progress you hope to make. You could jeopradize not only your own but your agents name too. No doubt there are one or two people who might have secured roles through such boldness - and many congratulations to them! ...but I'm willing to bet they are part of a significant minority.

    Everyone wants to get noticed. Just make sure it's for the right reasons... Don't give them an excuse not to call you when a role you are actually right for comes up!

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 8
  • Mark Joseph

    Actor

    I know nothing of the world of musicals, so can't comment on that.

    I'm not necessarily talking about being blacklisted by the CD, although that could happen, but if I was an agent, and my client was crashing auditions, I would be furious.

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 9
  • Mark Joseph

    Actor

    Sam, I don't think crashing would ever involve owning up to crashing. The theory would be to make them think you were called but there's been some kind of mistake and your name isn't on the list for some reason. The assistant often won't know who's been called in, so will add you to the list.

    Either this or to crash at the end of the auditions, own up, and see if they have time to see you. This way seems preferable.

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 10
  • Blake J Askew

    Actor

    Agents do support it at times , but they officially "don't know about it".

    You do it occasionally . I've done it for les mis buti wouldn't just do it willy nilly. That was after 5 years of them not seeing me. And I was terrified .

    • 24th Feb 2012
    • 11
  • Kate Stirling

    Actor

    Just to add, I did a workshop last year where the casting director said that say, for example, you're doing an audition at Spotlight and you manage to find out there there is a casting for a character matching your casting you've got nothing to lose by asking the assistant whether the CD would see you. I personally don't think I'd have the nerve to!

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 12
  • Blake J Askew

    Actor

    And Kate-

    That's exactly the way I did it. You are polite and ask.

    She went in with my stuff and said that they would see me.

    No one is for a second suggesting you go in there all guns a blazing , full of entitlement and arrogance .

    Casting directors would audition everyone who's right if they could. Just cos you're not seen doesn't mean you're not good, it just means you're one of hundreds and sometimes people get seen for reasons that are beyond comprehension . In musicals , it's sometimes just because you fit the costume!!!! But that's the product driven side of long running shows that one could debate is theatre at all....

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 13
  • Mark Kempner

    Actor

    Absolutley do that...nothing to worry about at all..as long as you are tactful & sensitive to a rushed off their feet casting director etc....and you are right for the role. I met a mate at a casting he was at....in order to have a coffee after....the casting director asked me out of the blue to read for another role!!

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 14
  • Blake J Askew

    Actor

    Exactly

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 15
  • Mark Lisseman

    Actor

    Well, guys..

    Thanks for all the feedback - food for thought!

    Cheers :-)

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 16
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    I was in Spotlight for a casting for an overseas commercial, 'twas nothing particularly exciting.

    In the next casting room I could hear lots of shouting and threatening dialogue taking place, as a succession of hardy looking male actors, some of whom I recognised from TV, lined up outside. As we were all sharing the same space, we were, of course all checking out the competition, and I realised that these guys who were here for the exciting gritty tv/film thought I was going for it as well. I suddenly thought, why not have a word with the CD and see can they fit me in? Did I do that? Of course not. I was a good conforming little actor and didn't step out of line or rock the boat. If that same situation was tomorrow I'd be in there like a shot.

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 17
  • Alison Fitzjohn

    Actor

    Hi mark,

    just to add to the pot when i have been looking for representation and other actors are too I have compiled a pack together with everyone's CV within it and sent it out.

    This way every agent knows who is looking and they can see who they are interested in. I also think this way more agents are likely to attend because there are more people on offer so to speak.

    Good luck on ya hunt!

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 18
  • Peter Halpin

    Actor

    Glenn, I can relate to that as well. Also at Spotlight, a couple of years ago, I was early for my time slot and had been waiting about 10 mins when a CD approached me saying, "David?", in a 'come in now please' tone. I said, "Peter...?" "Are you not David?" "No." And it was left there. She apologised and I went into a usual hello/goodbye commercial casting. On my way out I saw it was for a TV programme that, if I was there again now, I would absolutely say, "No, I'm not David, but if I fit the brief would it be ok to have a shot at it?" Absolutely I would.

    • 25th Feb 2012
    • 19