Sorry, the whole agent thing..but this time, not having one!

  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Ok, i'll try to keep it brief cos i have a tendency to ramble (there i go already!) but i graduated from drama school in may & left without an agent. Ive subscribed to every possible casting website going (no really!), get PCR, The Stage etc and have had quite a few auditions and a couple of jobs from those. However, whilst i enjoy and value the work i get from these..predominantly student films, T.I.E. etc..I do feel cut off from an entire section of the industry through not having an agent to get me more "high profile" auditions etc. I am seriously considering doing applying for one of those crazily-priced lunchtime showcases to try to get agent exposure but wanted to know if people think this would just be a complete waste of time..not to mention money, which doesnt exist yet anyway!I know that having an agent is not the be all and end all, and I have been lucky enough to have got more work on my own than some friends with agents, but i really feel like i cant find a way in to certain castings and areas of the industry.

    • 11th Jan 2006
    • 3482
    • 28
  • Caroline Boulton

    Actor

    Ive had great jobs, tv and adverts which Ive found all on my own. It is possible just keep at it and it will slowly get better. x

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 0
  • Alexander Helm

    Actor

    Hello Aimi

    Sounds like you are doing all the right things from my experience. The basic problem is that there are a lot of people competing for a limited amount of jobs. At least you have got the expense of a drama school out of the way. I am afraid its a matter of 24hr round the clock grafting away looking for work. At the moment I am doing community theatre which is getting me some recognition in the local press. With regards to showcases I would do a bit of research on that. This is a great community to get good feedback might be worth even going to the next social whenever that is and get feedback from other people.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 1
  • Simon Nader

    Actor

    Hi there,

    Before I went to drama school, I was part of a showcase at the Soho theatre and although I didn't get picked up by an agent I think three people out of about fifteen of us did get spoken to. I think if you do decide to do one, consider where it is, what time of day and who is organising it, before you commit, but it is another way to be seen after all.

    After drama school, I was one of the people who didn't get signed immediately, but had a loose working relationship with Barrie Stacey. After contacting agencies endlessly and working for exposure in a few productions, I got lucky and another agent contacted me having seen my profile on several casting websites. I went in for a meeting, and after we got to know each other, I was signed. Unconventional I know, but it did happen! I guess the best thing is just to keep doing what you are doing; plugging away and hopefully you'll fit the bill for an agency that wants someone with your look.

    Sincere best wishes for the future,

    Simon

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 2
  • Fintan Cullen

    Actor

    Hi Aimi,

    Agents are so different in many ways. Before you give up on them completely please consider the following. Some agents work far harder than others. For example I forward copies of all projects to my clients so they know exactly what they are being put forward for. I also work very late hours and cover a wide area within the industry to include the ususal casting opportunities through Spotlight.

    I also assist visiting production companies in the UK and Ireland and have become the first choice of contact by these companies. Sometimes actors are very difficult to contact for a variety of reasons and this means that some casting agents get a little annoyed after putting their clients forward for a role to be succesful for the casting opportunity and then to disappear fora few days without telling or answering their agents calls

    What im realy saying is things are not always what they seem. You are a very attractive young lady and our agency will always give opportunities to our various clients to allow them to gain the experience they need.

    Have a nice new year Aimi and indeed to all castingcallpro members and those visiting Now.

    Regards,

    Fintan Cullen

    The Entertainment Factory

    UK and Irish actors agency

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 3
  • Alexander Helm

    Actor

    Hello there

    Its very encouraging that some of you have got work through casting websites. The thing about having a good agent is that it takes some of the pressure off you. It is hard enough developing your skills whilst constantly sending out letters and phoning people. I did this for many years when I was a dancer whilst having a full time office job which was backbreaking. It also meant it slowed down the progress at which I had time and energy to look for work. Fortunately this prompted me to rethink my career and hence I returned to acting. However, I do see the value of a good agent if you can get one.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 4
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Hi all,

    Im sorry it's taken me so long to respond, and thank you all for doing so promptly.

    I guess I just need to relax a little and not fixate on getting an agent. As many of you have said, whilst there are obvious benefits, the industry is not a closed book without one. Maybe I am still smarting from a tiny sense of failure through not getting one, which my logic and professional mind tells me is rubbish, but my ego doesnt!

    But you have all also reminded me of the huge element of luck that exists in our industry and that 'right place, right time' could be around the corner at any given time.

    Thank you, i feel better and have also now got more ideas of ways of going about it.

    Also, with regards to showcases, I will look onto it further although my main concern is financial and whether or not it is justifiable or wise to spend such an enormous amount.

    But, again, thank you all..onwards and upwards, or maybe just onwards for now!

    Happy New Year,

    Aimi

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 5
  • Sally Beaumont

    Actor

    Don't waste your money on showcases (I did) it's generally a waste of time. Agents want to see that you're working, so consequently a good investment. Most can't be bothered to go to showcases unless they're very prestigious.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 6
  • Alexander Helm

    Actor

    I think my approach with finding an agent is basically researching the artists they represent and what kind of work that are able to obtain. I have quite a clear idea of the area of work I would like to do and parts I am most suitable for. I mean I have done a few jobs this year purely for financially reasons but have also done projects that totally represent the kind of work I want to do. I think its wise to really focus on yourself and have a sense of direction before taking the next step towards an agent the same as with looking for work. Mind there is so few jobs and so many people looking for work at the moment it can be hard to be picky.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 7
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Yeah, you're right although, as u said, i cant afford to be too picky at the moment! Also, i feel i need to get as much experience as poss before i can have a clear idea of exactly which kind of work I want to do or are most likely to get. Still at the stage where i want to try a bit of everything..though obviously certain areas and roles appear to me more than others - lead at the National for example!!! No, really, I agree about checking out what kind of work agents are getting their clients. What's a good place to start..on their websites or someplace else??

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 8
  • Nicholas Obileye

    Actor

    hi there Aimi, well a good place to start is this site. There's a good cross section of agents who represent actors on here, so if you have an idea of an agent you want to look up, check them out here, see what kind of clients they have, and check out their C.Vs. It may not be entirely representative of work they get their clients, but it gives a bit of an idea. Hope that helps with the search, and good luck. Nick

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 9
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Good idea..dont know why i didnt think of that b4!! Thank you! Think i'll do that when it's not 12am tho..feel like im always on the internet! x

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 10
  • Nicholas Obileye

    Actor

    Know the feeling exactly, spend more time trawling the web than actually doing anything in the real world, so tiring, but got to keep looking, and hopefully we find the one golden nugget amongst all the dross. Later, Nick.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 11
  • Alexander Helm

    Actor

    Well its a good time to start looking up stuff as Contacts2006 and the Actors Yearbook2206 is due out.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 12
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    I did a showcase with debut productions their sight is www.debutproductions.co.uk and I got alot out of it. It wasn't too expensive £240 for two days at the soho you also get rehearsals with an idependant director and they do all you publicity and mail outs however you are adviced to mail out yourself. Obviously with these things you never know if agents will turn up, I do think however it is easy for them and all we had was positive feedback from agents and casting directors themselves as sometimes they don't have time to sit through a whole play the showcase gives them half an hour in their lunchbreak. I was able to get my new agent from this showcase and a number of people who did it got interest. However getting an agent doesn't mean you can sit back you will still have to put yourself up for things and keep searching it is a waiting game and if you really want it you will wait, I know it is really hard I have times of feeling really down coz you just don't get anything from the thousands of letters you send. But stick at it you will get there!!!

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 13
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    aimee,

    did your drama school do a showcase? if so and no agent came of that, i wudnt recomend doing another one. there less likley to go to one of those paid showcases than a drama school showcase if theyre looking for young fresh talent. plus i think alot of agents just dont have the time to go to the showcase.

    it happened to my drama school showcase.. alot of the big agents we had hoped wre coming didnt show! i came away without an agent after going to the odd interview and it not working out, but then i starting working myself to get auditions and castings. and your right most of them are not the best jobs, but they do fill up your cv i guess, and i was fortunate enough to get cast as a lead in an upcoming feature film, and the production company GOT ME in touch with my agent through that, as they wanted me to have representation for the job, and aso to have done some higher profile work before i start filming with them.

    so i think it just goes to show if you stick at the hard work looking for castings etc yourself, eventualy you'll get noticed by someone who wants to represent you, or knows someone to put you in touch with.

    also, make sure you keep writing to agents every time you do some work, i know friends that wrote lots of times to thier agents before they actually got an interview!!

    good luck xx

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 14
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    aimee,

    did your drama school do a showcase? if so and no agent came of that, i wudnt recomend doing another one. there less likley to go to one of those paid showcases than a drama school showcase if theyre looking for young fresh talent. plus i think alot of agents just dont have the time to go to the showcase.

    it happened to my drama school showcase.. alot of the big agents we had hoped wre coming didnt show! i came away without an agent after going to the odd interview and it not working out, but then i starting working myself to get auditions and castings. and your right most of them are not the best jobs, but they do fill up your cv i guess, and i was fortunate enough to get cast as a lead in an upcoming feature film, and the production company GOT ME in touch with my agent through that, as they wanted me to have representation for the job, and aso to have done some higher profile work before i start filming with them.

    so i think it just goes to show if you stick at the hard work looking for castings etc yourself, eventualy you'll get noticed by someone who wants to represent you, or knows someone to put you in touch with.

    also, make sure you keep writing to agents every time you do some work, i know friends that wrote lots of times to thier agents before they actually got an interview!!

    good luck xx

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 15
  • Lucy Perkins

    Actor

    I wouldn't necessarily agree with the idea of showcases being a bad idea. H In The Title Productions (of which I'm a founding member)have produced 2 showcases at The New Ambassadors and The Soho. Both were independently run by The Company (ie, us) and we got excellent turnouts and results from each. As long as a showcase is run professionally and with the audiences needs in mind, there's no reason why they shouldn't be successful. Obviously you can't guarantee work from them, but in terms of working and exposure, it's not too different from doing a fringe production (except that fringe is generally more satisfying of course!).

    When H in the Title produce they're next showcase I'll place a notice on here with the details. They're inexpensive (approx £120), no one gains profit from them as we're all in it together and we now have a very good reputation with agents and casting directors as a very tightly run showcase.

    (this isn't a plug btw, just re-read all that and it might seem so...it's not..!)

    Lucy x

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 16
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    That'd be really cool, sounds interesting. Would definitely like to hear more about that. Thanks.

    I was supposed to meet one of the casting team from debut productions to read through some scenes with her but when I found out the money that was being asked for I had to cancel. That was the company, however, that I felt quite good about so I might get in contact again.

    Yeah, I did do a showcase at the end of the third year and I was personally quite pleased with how it went. At the very least Ive been able to think I couldnt have done any better and it's just one of those things.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 17
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    yea i know what you mean aimi,

    dont worry... just because you didnt get an agent from the showcase does NOT reflect your talent.. its just one of those anoying things .

    let us know how you get on if you do end up doing another showcase, i look forward to seeing you on stage or screen soon ;-) xx

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 18
  • Mark Tunstall

    Actor

    I just did one of those crazy lunchtime agent things and it did lead to a couple of interviews with well known agents, they are expensive, so I would make sure that whichever company you join to do the showcase has access to a database of agents, which they intend to invite, also invite as many agents as you would like to personally view your work.

    I would check the Actors Handbook and have a look at some Agents web sites and find some that you think are suitable for you personally and invite them with a letter of introduction, C.V and photo obviously and a comprehensive list of dates and times of performance, maybe ask them to email you with a reply, so you know if they are coming or not. I would even mention the scene you will be appearing in, because this will probably give them a good idea of what kind of roles you are interested in.

    As you want more profile work, maybe film and television? I would choose a piece that suited my real personality and is conversational, rather than washing blood off your hands and wailing. Anyway Good luck, but remember a good, brief letter to an agent and your photo, which is very good, can sometimes open an agents door, as I think your personality in an interview is the strongest judge.

    • 1st Jun 2006
    • 19