Sunday, February 11, 2018

Simple Everyday Activities You Can Do to Be a Better Actor

Simple Everyday Activities You Can Do to Be a Better ActorOf course we at the New York Acting School believe it’s always good to be in classes and working with coaches to better your skills. But what if you’re not ready to commit to a class and still want to improve what you know? Can you become a better actor on your own time? Well, while there’s no substitute for learning from the pros, there are still things you can do during everyday life to help you become a better actor.
First of all, what’s better for diving into character than getting into their worlds with your mind? Acting - really talented acting relies on the ability to stretch your imagination. To embody people and their personalities. The best way you can practice this is to read. Read novels. Classics. Anything. But notice the descriptive ways stories are told and see how you can imagine being the different characters in the story as it develops.
Listen. Next, I’d suggest listening to your relatives, or to the people at your favorite restaurants. Talk to people and hear them tell their stories - from the stories about their days to the stories of the years that have gone by. Watch how they express natural emotion and and carry you along in the suspense and curiosity! There’s a lot to learn from here.
Listen to music and notice the lyrics in the songs. Music is quite an untapped resource into character development for actors. You have the chance to lean in and listen to someone tell their story of joy or heartache in poetic form, full of emotion magnified by instruments and dynamics. Can you get into the head or life of the songwriter or the persona they’re singing as? What have they been through? Can you practice feeling and thinking from that space?
Binge on your favorite stars. It never hurts, if you have an actor that you can relate to or who’s path you aspire to follow, to binge watch their greatest movies or performances. Want to be better at improvisational comedy or extreme emotional silliness? Have a weekend of only watching Jim Carrey Movies and see what you can learn. Take it further and have a few acting friends over where you all watch the movie and choose to embody a character whom you act as for the evening. This is well worth doing!
Lastly, don’t forget to have a life of your own. Get out into the world, into different cultures and doing different things. One of the best ways to better yourself - as an actor or simply as a person - is to get out and live. Be an enjoyer and observer of life. Go on adventures. Love. Laugh. Learn from everyone and everything.

Because really, life is a stage, isn’t it? And your character is front and center. Give it your best. 
And when you decide it’s time to dive into classes or your personal coach, simply reach out to the New York Acting School for Film and Television and we’ll make sure you find the class that’s just the right fit for you.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Simple Tips to Making Your Acting Audition a Killer Success

Simple Tips to Making Your Acting Audition a Killer SuccessLet’s be honest. You’re going to go to so many auditions during your acting career. Some will cast you and many will not. Even if you’re talented. But wait, you say. Aren’t you supposed to be sharing tips with me? Of course! See part of the process is realizing that you aren’t going to win them all. You need to master the ability to accept that and still keep trying. Resilience. Endurance.Because you love it that much and are that committed. Right? So if you are, then I want to share with you some simple ways to maximize your audition with confidence and professionalism. Use these tips, keep them in mind and blow them away.  
Don’t be so serious. Have fun. This really is a fun industry. Too many actors turn the audition into scary and dreadful situation. They know they have to audition, but the hate it! So they paint a smile over their grimace and dive in. Here's the problem. Avoiding failure is not the same as the pursuit of success. If you walk into an audition thinking the directors are looking for you to fail, it's almost a given that your audition will plummet. Success and failure are self-fulfilling. Half of getting cast has to do with the energy you take into the audition. So have fun!  Bring excitement into the room.
See it first to become it. There have actually been many scientific studies on the benefits of creative, or positive visualization.  It's the same as what the Olympic athletes do. You've got to imagine yourself winning. Do it each day that you can, even twice a day, before the audition.  It's great to picture yourself entering into the room and the people in the room relaxing.  They already totally like you! You already know that you will deliver a powerful audition, so be proud of yourself and be thankful and smile at the other actors in the waiting room as you depart. Imagine the auditors smiling at you as you enter the room; they respect you and they know you are talented whether you get the role or not.

Experiment and go bold. You don't need to play it safe! Casting directors have an idea about what they want, so stick with that idea but take it to the next believable level. Get into the mind, body and emotions of your character. Become them.

Don’t focus on being what you think you need to be, but show them what they will get if they cast you. Be creative, but stick to the part you’ve been given. Do your own thinking. It’s not your casting director’s job to get you into character it’s yours. So go ahead and jump right in. Make strong choices, like addressed above.  If they like your approach and how you deliver, they may still want to see another acting choice and if they want, they’ll ask you to do it again with some slight adjustments.

As for timing, go with the energy. The best audition slots are mid-afternoon and mid-morning.  If at all possible, try to avoid scheduling your auditions before or after lunch, as your team will either be hungry or maybe just need to get back in the groove of the audition.  Not to mention, as the morning progresses, the team will begin to have a better idea of who the character is supposed to look like.  Now, if you're able to get in during the mid-afternoon, then all the better!  Not only will they have a better an idea who they are looking for, but also the day is drawing to a close and they are anxious to get the role casted. Just don't be last.  By then, the role is likely cast and your team is too tired to give it their full observation. 

Acting is a fun career choice with endless opportunities. So open your eyes and expand your horizons. Join us at the New York Acting School and see what our classes and coaching options can do to boost your dream career!

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Not Sure How the Casting Call Process Works? Let’s Clear Up the Confusion.

Not Sure How the Casting Call Process Works? Let’s Clear Up the Confusion. Casting calls. They are absolutely necessary but a lot to handle and can be overwhelming. What we don’t understand or can’t handle, we avoid. And you shouldn’t be avoiding casting calls if you want to succeed in your career. That’s a given. So let’s  take the confusion out of the process by looking at the basic process of a casting call:

• The producers of a soap opera just received the script for an episode set to air next month.
• The producers call the casting director that they have used for years and describe the character role needing to be filled.
• The next morning, every agent reads the "Breakdowns", which is a publication that lists every role that is currently being cast. The agent goes through his files, searching for clients who would be right for the role He selects several photos and sends them to the Casting Director.
• The Casting Director receives envelopes from all these agents and will then have to through many photos looking for face for the role. However, even if a photo looks great, the casting director will still need to review the actor's resume and then narrow it down to around 30 of the best candidates to arrange for an audition.
• Next, each agent will call their client and inform him or her about the audition. He may either send her the sample script (slides) or have them come to his office to pick them up.
• Then the actor will go to the audition dressed as they feel the character would.
• After waiting and hopefully not pacing nervously, the actor will be called into the audition room and sit across a table from the casting director and the casting assistant. If the actor has read for that CD before, they may talk and catch up for a moment before starting the audition. The assistant will then read the other character's lines as the actor auditions.
• Assuming the actor has read with confidence, it will all go smoothly. The Casting Director will watch the performance closely, noticing everything.
• After the reading, the Casting Director will thank the actor and ask for another copy of their headshot and resume. The actor does as asked, smiles, then walks out past all the other actors still waiting for their chance to read.
• Then the actor will go home and live life as usual. After all, auditions come and go, sometimes you are called back and sometimes you are not. But if your agent DOES call you and inform you that they want to see you again, you know it's starting to get more serious. This is your callback. Sometimes there will be several callbacks for one role and sometimes just one.
• After narrowing down the hopeful candidates down to about ten, those actors will be called back for another reading. It's smart for the actor to wear the same clothing and act the same way. They should get into the character they believe the role calls for; which should be the same as the first reading. The casting director may ask the actor to do the same scene but slightly different, so see what else they are capable of and to see how they take direction.

This process could happen over and over again. And you could be just right for the part, but be passed up just because you're too short or too tall. But that's the way it goes. The beauty of it is that you did well and left a great impression on the casting director. But this is the way careers are made. You may not get every role you try out for, but if you do your best and behave like a professional, people will remember you and want to work with you. So work hard and be the best actor you can be. You'll get your big break soon enough.

For more information, coaching and classes, contact us at the New York Acting School for Film and Television and we will be happy to help you out!

Friday, January 12, 2018

Don’t Get Talent Rusty! How to Keep Your Acting Skills Fresh In Your Down Time.

Don’t Get Talent Rusty! How to Keep Your Acting Skills Fresh In Your Down Time.You aren’t going to be acting all the time. In fact, if you get a solid job and spend a good six months or even a year on it, you’re going to need some time off. Take it. It’s necessary to keep you loving your craft and in the game. And then there are the times where you just aren’t getting the call backs you were hoping for. It’s all going to happen and it’s all normal. Don’t stress. But don’t go too relaxed either. It’s vital that in the down time you keep your game strong and skills fresh. Here’s how you do that.
Go to open calls you don’t care about. Really. Even if you aren't called back, just view it as active practice. Brush up weekly on your monologues. You never know when an instant opportunity will come knocking. Who knows?  You may land something you didn't expect! How does it get any better than that? But if you don’t - you’re practicing being detached from the outcome which is good for everyone.
People watch whenever you can. And really, don’t just read expressions and emotions, but allow yourself to be entertained by them and notice why you’re entertained. All of these suggestions aim to broaden your understanding of human beings and this world we live in. A greater understanding of human nature will make you a better actor. If you take your "downtime" and use it to read, both people and script, that subsequent growth of your humanity will compensate for the loss of growth as an actor.
Read everything - and perform it as you read it. The greatest asset an actor can have, aside from talent, is the ability to read and understand the tiny nuances of what you read. Read novels and imagine being the characters. Read reviews on the internet of the plays you are reading. Read poetry. There are many beautifully written poems that are simple to understand. What's great, is these same poems will also change the way you see the world.
Use the time off to better yourself. It’s easy to get caught up the success grind of life and forget to take care of your mind and the person within. Read books on centering. Go to a yoga class. Look at art and flowers. Take time to be thankful and slow down. The more you notice, the more you’ll feel alive. You'll be so glad you did.

For more information on acting coaches and acting classes in New York City, please get in touch with us at the New York Acting School for Film and Television and we will get you moving forward!

Friday, December 29, 2017

3 Simple Tips To Selling the Scene When Acting Strong Emotions

3 Simple Tips To Selling the Scene When Acting Strong Emotions The scene is great. You love the story and you’re thrilled to have the part. Your character has been through a lot and now the story is climaxing and you want to make sure you come of strong - but real. How do you act out those strong emotions so well that we can’t help but think it’s really happening to you?
There are some fine lines to this skill and not everyone is able to find them. And if you don’t, your scene will be a wash and feel like a B level performance. That’s what you don’t want. So give me just a few moments of your time to share some helpful valuable ways to sell the scene and own the emotion of the moment.
Get physical. This is the first tip. In order to be totally convincing, you need to make sure your whole body is behind the emotion. Think about a time in your life when you’ve been in similar situation. And if you haven’t - activate empathy and imagine what your body might be going through. Would your heart race? Would your face change? Do your shoulders round forward or chest pop out? Consider the emotion you’re needing to feel and embody it in your home. What would you do right now if you were really furiously angry? Maybe you’d close your hands in a fist and stomp around. Maybe you’d freeze and look around frantically. Maybe you’d freeze in maniacal shock. Think about your character now. How might they experience those emotions in their bodies? Practice this.
Building on the first step, the second step is simple. Think of the last time you were passionately angry, hurt or even excited. Could anyone keep you quiet? What did you go on and on about? Put yourself into an emotion from a scenario and rant about it. Go off on all the reasons you feel the way you feel, on all the reasons you have the right to feel that way and all the things going on inside you. Try this with a partner.
Once that build up has happened, it’s time to get noisy. Scream. Oh yes. Whether you’re sad or angry or excited, the scream is your dam breaking and allows your body to enter into full embodied emotion.
Lastly, if you know that’s the scene you’re about to do, get all in ahead of time. So the day before, feel those feelings and become the person. Focus on your pain. Focus on your anger. Focus on your joy. Focus on being consumed by the feeling and then let it all loose in your scene… not being dramatic, but feeling it. 
I hope those tips help you take your skills further. And of course, there’s more where that came from at the New York Acting School for Film and Television, whether you choose to be coached or join a class. Contact us today to find the path that’s right for you!

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Some Actors Get All The Work. Here’s Why:

Some Actors Get All The Work. Here’s Why: As much as it seems like there’s a clique of inner circle people running the show and making all the decisions, (ok, sometimes it can be that way), the truth is, there are certain characteristics, habits and traits that set the successful apart from the mediocre. And you might think, reading this, that you’re not the one getting all the work, but you are putting in all the time and effort - so how dare I imply you’re mediocre?
I don’t imply you  are mediocre. You’re great. Just like a 100,000 others out there. You’re all doing the same great things. And none of you are standing out just enough to get ahead. Frustrating, isn’t it?
But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are things you can do to stand out - show up brighter, louder and more impressionable than the rest. And when you know that list, and apply it in every creative way you can, you’ll rise. I’ve seen it happen time and time again.
Strengths. They know their strengths and play to them. They land rolls they know they can nail, to get their foot in the door and get the ball rolling.
Weaknesses. They know where they’re weak and while they’re busy promoting and diving into their strengths, they’re using their down time to improve their weaknesses and expand their skills.
Focus. There’s a zone in which all success is found. It’s called the flow zone. Where you can get into a groove that makes the rest of the world disappear and you can get fully lost in the moment of your bliss, enjoyment and the flow. The more often you can go there, the more you’ll be in the zone of reaching your goals. Which brings me to the next point.
Think positive. Maybe positive isn’t the right word. Think determined, think with expectation. The truly successful don’t feel the need to strive, or beg because they’re confident in their success. They show up, they give their best, they’re teachable - but confident and at peace. They know success is coming and they prepare themselves to receive it. They get the vision in their head for what they want, they speak it, write it, believe in it and move toward it every day.
Get lost. Actors that win the game lose themselves to it. They know how to go beyond acting and become the part; to lose themselves in the role. These actors become one with their roles they play in such a way that even when they’re off camera, in makeup or at lunch, they can stay in character. They become.
Let it go. Lastly - they don’t take rejection personally. They understand that roles come and go and your job is to keep showing up and performing as the artist they are. If you don’t get the part, who cares? There are others. Just repeat all of the above and keep moving forward.

If you’re ready to take your career further, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at The New York Acting School of Film and Television and we’ll get you set up with just the right coach or class for you.

Monday, December 11, 2017

How to Win Any Audience Over As a Top Actor!

How to Win Any Audience Over As a Top Actor! When you get up in front of an audience, you want to make sure you have their full attention. You want to wow them and captivate them so well that your performance is unforgettable. And that can totally be done with the tips below as well as through classes provided at The New York Acting School for Film and Television so read on, and see what helps you and then contact us to see which classes might help you take it to the next level.
Everyone knows that if you want to be fully prepared, it’s good to have your lines or presentation prepared ahead of time, but be sure to write it out as a performance - not a speech. Read it to yourself out loud and see where you need to add more emotion or less. Practice it well and often into an audio or video recorder so you get used to what you sound and look like to an audience. Then deliver it to a small live audience of colleagues, friends or family and be open to constructive feedback. This is a very helpful tool.
Another technique you can use is personalization. It’s a form of character acting but with twist. It's not just about taking on the character you are aiming to become, more so, it's about reaching into your own experiences and emotion to the point that the scene becomes fully yours and you fully bring the audience in.  
The next tip to really real them in is to slow things down… pause….before the climax. Wait to deliver the big punch, til you can feel they want it! Imagine you are delivering each point to one member of the audience and wait until you can see from their face that they have got it.
Lastly, believe you’ve got it. Decide that people have come to see you perform and that they’re going to love every bit of it.
And they will. Every time. Because you believing it is half the battle. Doubt yourself and they will to.

The New York Acting School for Film and Television loves to see you confidently set up for success. Whatever your need, from better presenting to on camera comfort, we are here to support you with classes and coaching. Call us today!