Friday, March 8, 2019

How To Wow Your Crowd Into Begging For an Encore!

How To Wow Your Crowd Into Begging For an Encore!No matter what your reason for being on stage, your number one priority should be to captivate. As long as you’ve got their attention, the sale and the scene are yours for the owning. But if you lose it? Getting it back is harder than keeping it in the first place. So no matter what kind of performance you’re set to deliver, from dramatic to educational, you need to be the center of their attention and that’s where we’re focusing today. And keep in mind, this isn’t about arrogance, it’s about choosing success. Instead of simply hoping for the best, make sure that your best is so magnetic that your audience can’t help but take their eyes off you.
Before you can really master this art, you need to make a choice to release the parts of you that will sabotage your sale (let’s be real, all performance is about sales). You can’t bring the doubting, insecure or scared side of you on stage. It’s about setting that all aside and embodying the character that gets the big applause. Ask yourself who you need to be to get there. What do you need to say and what energy do you need to communicate?
The next step is full embodiment. When you’re on stage or in front of the camera, only the character should be seen and known. The audience should feel they’ve entered another world completely with you as the leader that takes them out of reality and into the world you’re painting.
As a side note, this tip goes for presenters as well. Imagine you’re giving a talk sales or success. You need to fully show up as the successful person they most want to be like. Stand with confidence and finesse as you bring their imaginations into what’s possible if they choose to enter the world you’re inviting them to.
Important as that all is, the flip side is mastering keeping the inspirational parts of you present and known in your character. Remember, it’s your character’s emotions you’re expressing, but your experience of those emotions will be what brings your character to life. Your parents, your history, culture, friendships, traumas, socioeconomic status, and education all add up to give you a rich background to draw upon. Each actor’s approach to the circumstances of a role is different. If you use yourself, you are using your rich background.
Think hypnosis. Focus on taking your viewers for a ride and don’t be afraid to go above and beyond with this. The actors who ditch playing it “safe” to fully lose themselves in their roles are the ones that get noticed; as well as the standing ovations. Embody the character, feel the full emotions and then throw them at us.
Tired? No time for that. You’ll have many performances that require you to work when you’re exhausted and you can’t let that affect your performance. Tiredness can cause you to underact and lose your audience - as well as the connection you’ve made.
Keep it real. As much as you don’t want to underact, you don’t want to over act either. This crosses over into dramatic, which can be entertaining - but it won’t cause the audience to get lost in your story.   
Follow these tips and you’ll see a dramatic difference in how the audience engages with you! For more help like this, please contact us about joining one of our classes or to find out more information on finding an acting coach. We are waiting for your call!

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

How To Become A Better Actor - No Matter How Busy Your Life

How To Become A Better Actor - Just By Living Your LifeOk, obviously we think you should be in class and working with a coach - but sometimes you’re schedule is just too full and there’s no room to add more to your plate. Can you still better yourself as an actor? You can! It’s not a forever fix, but it makes a big difference and keeps you on your path! 

So today, we’d like to share a simple way for you to improve your acting skills while keeping to your busy schedule whether you’re at school, walking in your neighborhood, on vacation, out with your friends or even catching the train.   

It can be summarized like this: 

“No matter what you do, do it with your eyes wide open.” 

Think about how you move through your day. You’re busy and going from point A to point B and you’re doing it all on auto pilot, right? You’re not even thinking about where you’re going and somehow you’ve gotten there. You’re checked out and there’s a world around you waiting to be seen. Class is in session, open your eyes.

Welcome to the art of people watching. You may feel like you know what I’m going to say, but I want to propose it to you in a new way. Have you ever stopped to really watch how people talk to each other? How people cry or argue? Have you stopped to notice how different people hand stress?

For you to really learn from the experience of people watching, you need to keep your eyes open and in tune to their whole body expression; what is expressed and what is felt.

Take the time to observe their body language, their posture, the details in their eyes or lips. This is called sensory acuity; where you take the time to find the micro expressions that tell a bigger more internal story that the normal big expressions we’ve come to rely on.

A great example to glean from would be the TV series, “Lie to me”, where the whole show is based on solving mysteries and detecting lies through reading people’s micro expressions and body movement. You can watch this show to get a real idea of how to portray your character as true to life as possible, in ways that many of your peers won’t even think of.

Once you’ve watched the show, take it to the streets. Go throughout your day and your commute, not tuning the world out, but tuning more closely into people’s interactions, emotions and situations.

Lastly, bring it home. Write notes of what you observe and then come home to review them. Notice your true to life micro expressions as you have a conversation with your boss, friend or spouse and see if you notice theirs as well. Try practicing them in front of a mirror as well, to really see what they look like from the observer’s perspective.

Learning by seeing and doing.  This is an old method that's been tried and found to be true.  For more information on classes and taking your career further, visit us at the New York Acting School for Film in the heart of New York City; where dreams come alive!

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

How to Use Your Body to Be a Better Actor!

How to Use Your Body to Be a Better Actor! Do you feel confident in your body language as an actor? Do you have more to learn? Most people do, but don’t know where to start in their efforts to improve their skills and many people make up for the lack of training by simply being more dramatic. But let me be clear, more drama doesn’t communicate the way you think it does. Talent shows up when you can use your face and body in subtle believable ways. Max DuBowy, musical theatre performer and content specialist, wrote a brilliant article for The Science of People on this very topic and we felt it was so good, that we had to share it. So read on and let us know what you think! And of course, if you’re ready to put it into practice, our classes and coaches are right here waiting to get you there.

Every day, thousands of actors attend auditions and interviews to land a role. We are always auditioning and looking for the next job. We stand in front of a panel of directors, casting agents, choreographers, and influential industry experts who determine whether or not we will get the part.
As an actor or professional in your industry, I can tell you:
Hope is not enough to land the job.
Even credentials and connections are not always enough. Instead, you can increase your odds of receiving a casting offer by presenting hireable characteristics. To nail every audition and interview, you must use the right set of tools and techniques. Body language plays a critical factor in whether or not you will land the job. In order to stand out in a crowd of hundreds (if not thousands) of actors, you must take control of your body language so casting directors will remember you.
To audition or interview successfully, use body language to your advantage. First, observe how you currently use body language and nonverbal communication. Here are a few questions to ask yourself:

  • How do I prepare my body and voice before an audition?
  • What facial expressions do I make in the audition room when I’m not performing?
  • How does my voice inflect when I introduce myself to casting directors?
  • What did I do in my last audition to land the role?
  • Did body language contribute to my last rejection? What did I do and how can I change it?
Once you have done some self-diagnosis. Use these body language hacks for actors:

1. Master Your Space

Keep yourself in social-consultative proximity with the casting director. This is usually 4-12 feet away from the other person. Determine this distance when you enter the room. You should be close enough to be heard, and also have your whole body visible. Don’t stand too close to the director so she can look up your nostrils, and don’t stand too far away so she can’t hear you.

2. Use Microexpressions

The correct facial gestures can make or break an actor. There are two ways to use microexpressions in an audition:
  • Smile genuinely. Directors want to be around positive, happy people. The physical characteristics of a smile include raised cheeks and showing your teeth. In order to smile, think of a joke or scenario that makes you giggle, or bite the center of a pencil and part your lips (Don’t hurt yourself!). Ingenuine smiles are spotted easily, so make sure your smile is genuine and coming from a place of true happiness.
  • Avoid displaying sadness, anger, or disdainful microexpressions when you walk into and leave the audition room. The only time you can display sadness, anger or disdain is when you’re acting.
  • Use the correct facial expressions as you act. Memorize the 7 microexpressions so, like a Swiss Army knife you can use the correct one in the correct scene no matter what script you are handed:

3. Launch Stance

Practice your launch stance. A launch stance is the way you stand that makes you feel relaxed, comfortable and confident. For most people, this includes both feet planted on the ground (don’t shift your feet!), head up, shoulders back, and your knees ever-so-slightly bent. Get in your launch stance after you determine where to stand.

4. The Power of Leaning

Lean with purpose. Sometimes, directors give actors a note to improve their audition or ask a question about their resume. In these situations, lean towards the person speaking to you. You should also point your feet and torso in their direction. This shows the director you are open and activity listening. Make sure you apply their suggestions. Doing this makes you a likable person instantly.

5. Vocal Power

You want to keep your vocal chords relaxed, while still projecting power. To do this take deep breaths. Before you start your monologue, song, or dance routine, take several deep inhalations and exhalations. Deep breaths calm your nerves, grounds your body, and makes other people feel at ease as they mirror your calm breathing.

6. Purposeful Gazing

Use purposeful gazing and eye contact to your advantage. When you enter the audition room, keep your head up and look in front of you. After you plant yourself, look at who you’re introducing yourself to. Don’t shift your eyes too much and never look at the floor.

7. Harness Confidence

Confidence is your ability to show others that you believe in yourself. Your ability to display confidence increases trust and comfort levels with others. You can build confidence with your body language in many ways. Here are 5 tips to build confidence before your next audition:
  • Wear flexible clothes you feel comfortable in.
  • Listen to music that gets you pumped.
  • Think of a time you felt most proud of an accomplishment.
  • Power pose and take up space. Do this in front of other people, no matter how silly you look.
  • Call a friend or family member who makes you feel good.
  • Do a success routine…

8. Success Routine

Before you even walk out on stage you need to do a success routine. Success routines help increase your influence in front of new people, such as casting directors and talent agents. Some ideas for your success routine:
  • Favorite music playlist
  • Funny or inspirational YouTube videos
  • Calling a Pep-Talk friend
Now is the time to take action. Use these body language hacks to your advantage when you prepare for your next audition. Whether you hate or love auditions, body language is a major key to audition or interview successfully. If acting is your passion, I recommend you learn to love auditions. Take your fears about auditions and toss them out the window. When you present yourself as a focused, charismatic and confident actor, you are guaranteed to set yourself up for success.

What did you think? Good stuff, right? Now take that extra momentum and join us for classes and extra training at the New York Acting School for Film and Television today!

Monday, February 11, 2019

7 Easy to Follow Audition Tips For Actors

7 Easy to Follow Audition Tips For ActorsWhen you’re new to the trade and ready to start auditioning, you want to make sure you’re prepared so you make a professional first impression. There are a lot of tips out there from well meaning people on how to have a better audition, but sometimes they’re less helpful and more of a hinderance.
For example, some will tell you that if you haven’t memorized the material, that you should just improvise and make something up. However, nothing could be more false. If you have the material, memorize it. That’s great. But if you can’t, don’t sweat it. It’s more important to perform the proper material given to you than hear you make up stuff just to prove that you tried (and failed) to memorize the material (remind me to tell you about the time an actor added a few lines to a Tony Award winning playwrights monologue to kill time while he tried to get back on track).
See what I mean? It might seem like good advice to wing it, but that’s not a fail proof idea and it usually backfires.
Now that the picture is getting clearer, let’s cover a few more do’s and don’ts to get you on your way to stardome.
First of all, most importantly - you always need to bring a photo and resume to your audition. Don’t just show up or swear you’ll send it over later. First of all, what are the odds that you’ll remember? Solution? Always carry it with you! Whether it’s in your purse, laptop bag, or car - have it.
And if you don’t? That leads us to the next tip: Make no excuses. That goes for your headshots as well as your performance. If you’re sick, tired, stressed out… do your best anyway. You’re a performer. Perform.
Start strong. The first 15 seconds are the most important when it comes to making a first impression. Think about the last time you met someone and how many judgements, feelings or opinions you formed and how fast. That’s how long it will take to happen to you. Make them count.
On that note, if there are audition options earlier in the day, grab them. Casting is not an easy process, and at the end of the day, a creative team is grumpy, tired and wants to go home.  The early actor gets the part.
Confidence is key. This goes for first impressions as well as performing. So if you forget your lines or fumble, keep moving forward. Sure, you’ll feel self conscious, but fight through it.  It probably wasn’t as bad as you thought. You’re likely more aware of your mistake than anyone else.
Lastly, don’t pull a Cinderella. Time and time again, people assume that because they have an agent, they don’t need to leave any contact information. Wrong.  Even if you have an agent, put an email address where you can be reached directly on your resume. This way, if anything changes, you break it off with your agent, or they drop the ball, you’re still reachable and better - able to be booked. You always want some piece of contact information to be accurate so someone can find you fast.
In the end, the best way to get the part is to practice being seen . And the best way to be seen is to audition… as often as possible. Sure, you might feel nervous, but eventually you’ll get numb to the nerves.  The key is to master your trade and hopefully with these tips as well as our coaching and class offerings, you’ll be well on your way.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Make Your Audition Impressive and Memorable, So You Can Get Booked!

So you can act. I believe you. But you’re one of many and the only way you’re really going to be seen is to be seen in a way that most people aren’t. You have to stand out. You have to make such a great first impression that they can’t help but remember you and call you back for more.

How To Make Your Audition Impressive and Memorable, So You Can Get Booked!Do you know how to do this? We at the New York Acting School for Film and Television pride ourselves in elevating talented performers to a level of skillful professionalism that they quickly land roles and move up the red carpet ladder with ease. Of course, you’ll get the most out of our classes and coaching services, but in the meantime, here are some tips to help you make that impressive and memorable audition first impression!

First of all, be on time. You’re one other people’s watches and coming late says this isn’t a priority for you. It really doesn’t matter what the emergency was. Even if you have to plan to arrive 30 minutes early, don’t be late.

Second, is come prepared. No one has time to waste on someone that’s late or scrounging to prepare. Have everything ready and keep your attention on the audition.

Third tip? Dress appropriately. This isn’t a party or an evening hang out with your friends, just as much as it isn’t a black tie event. Don’t over or under dress. Come clean, smelling nice (ease back on the fragrances) and look neat and modern but casual.

Fourth tip for you today is to be professional. Know who you’re around. Say hello, please and thank you. Let people know you appreciate their help, even if it’s just the secretary. When people feel appreciated, they remember you and want to know more about you.

Fifth and final tip we want to share is to be respectful as you take direction. Sometimes auditions can be chaotic and confusing. Remember that everyone is doing their best. Be respectful and patient with the hustle and bustle. If you’re not sure what you’re supposed to do, kindly and calmly ask for clarification and then immediately take direction.

There’s a lot going on in each audition and the feeling you want to communicate is that you’re easy to work with and know how to be a kind and respectful human, on top of the talent you clearly have. Nail these; focus on them deliberately and you’ll stand out leagues above the entitlement you’re surrounded by.

Enjoy these tips and so many more; visit us online to find out more about our classes, coaching and special events in the heart of New York City, where performance comes to life!

Friday, January 25, 2019

How to Be A Magnetic Actor in Any Scene

How to Be A Magnetic Actor in Any SceneA good actor has the power to pull the audience into an instant plot trance and deep emotional experience, regardless of whether you're the good or the bad guy. This isn't a skill that comes naturally though. It has to be learned and mastered over time. However, I'm happy to tell you that there are a couple tricks I can share with you to help you get a boost on this incredible career boosting skill. 

If you're ready to master the art of being hypnotic behind the camera or on stage, then we at the New York Acting School for Film and Television will tell you exactly what you need to know!
First and foremost, always let the true you character shine through. This doesn't mean be yourself, but draw from yourself. No matter who you’re staring as, be sure to draw upon your own unique self to create the personality of the role. Your parents, your history, culture, friendships, traumas, socioeconomic status, and education all add up to give you a rich background to draw upon. Each actor’s approach to the circumstances of a role is different. If you use yourself, you are using your rich background.
No matter how much background material you could imagine for your “character,” no matter how many pages of background you write, your imaginary character will never match your long and complicated history. Use yourself in the circumstances of the role. It is you who are in love. You are robbing a bank. Use your imagination about the circumstances, but use yourself and your instincts to react. This keeps the role playing authentic and more believable.
Go Above and Beyond. Actors so often work with only part of their personality exposed. Why do they perform without their natural energy and humor or using their full voice? So many actors whisper, as if they were doing commercials for personal hygiene products. Don’t be boring playing it safe. Be willing to take bold chances, extending an idea from safe to spectacular should be the actor’s mission. The key here is to really embody the character, feel the full emotions and then throw them at us.
Actors risk by using all of themselves, their own passion, humor, charm, intelligence, and vitality, by making unconventional choices and by not being afraid to make fools of themselves.
Next, believe it into being and then bring that belief energy to life. Too many actors are so terrified of overacting that they underact, and no one notices them. They justify their boring performances by believing that using energy and making risky choices won’t make them seem “natural.” But too natural often bores the audience. If you are in a restaurant waiting for a friend to arrive, and you’re idly listening to the conversation of a couple next to you, you will find that nine times out of ten it won’t interest you. Everyday life may be “natural,” but it is not the stuff of drama. On the flip side, realize how natural overreacting is in our daily lives. We can overreact to things that later we realize were not important. We get so angry and passionate about the smallest things, while other smaller events can lift our spirits joyously through the roof. Look at babies. Everything they do is infused with energy and intention; we could watch them for hours!

Of course, there are many more pieces of advice we could share with you, but you’ve got a busy day ahead of you. For more help like this, please contact us about joining one of our classes or to find out more information on finding an acting coach. We are waiting for your call!

Saturday, January 12, 2019

How to Get Seen and Get Booked As Beginner Talent

How to Get Seen and Get Booked As Beginner Talent
You might be new to the game but you’re not new to the gift! You’re ready to get on set, get in front of the camera and show the world what you can do. But how does the world know you’ve got what it takes? Let’s be real. Time is money and directors need to grab their talent fast. So if you’re going to sell yourself for the role, you’ve got to be convincing from the get-go. How do you do that when there are thousands of other faces out there, possibly with more experience, wanting it just as badly as you do? How do you show them that you’re ready and have what it takes?
Well don’t get discouraged. Newbies all over have found their break, they just had to stick to some basic understandings and ways of promoting themselves to be seen professionally.  You want to fast track to being booked and seen as new talent in a flooded industry? Heed these words!
Hire or nail down a mentor.
Don’t be annoying, but be teachable. As you meet more seasoned pros in the industry, don’t drool over them, but be curious. Complement them in a dignified way and ask them questions. Ask them what they wish they had known when they got started. Ask what their biggest tips would be. And then ask them how you can be of service and help to them. Be willing to assist, be around, be of service and humble.

Have your pro portfolio on a clean polished website.
Everyone who’s anyone needs a website to share what they’re great at and what they’ve accomplished. So it’s your job to build a simple site for people to find you, be impressed by you and connect with you.  Make sure to always include recent head shots as well as your most recent and current projects. First of all, before you can share who you are with the world, you need to know who that is so they know who they’re going to get. So focus on your strengths and see that they are consistently communicated on your page.  Are you bold and confident? Are you kind and determined? If yes, know what that means to you. Then choose three colors that work together and best represent you.

Reminder for the wise:
Keep it simple.  Your site only has to be a single page, if that’s what you want and it gets the job done. Keep your photos classy and with high resolution.  People want to feel that they are working with a professional. Make sure to include a short bio emphasizing what your skills and passions are.  People are interested in your story, but more interested in what you can do. This is a good place to put one more, different head shot. If you create videos or audio samples, feel free to include these on the page as well, if there is room.

Boldy network wherever you go!
Use your social media accounts to show glimpses of the fun you’re apart of, being in line at an audition, or getting makeup done. Announce your wins; your bookings and call backs! This gets people excited about your work and adventure. As they see your progress, that circle of people will expand and more and more people will be aware of your skill.

Every experience along your path is a learning experience and will get you closer to where you want it to be as long as you remain teachable.  At The New York Acting School we want to see you succeed.  Please call us and let us know how we can help you achieve your dreams!