Acting in Plays, Singing/What should I do?

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Question
Hello,
I need some advice and you seemed very knowledgable on this field. I am a freshman in highschool and have decided to become a professional broadway actress. This is not some stupid and childish dream, I have been thinking for years and have finally come up with my decision to have this as my career. I love theatre with all my heart but I have no idea where to start. What do I do to prepare for a challenge as this? I plan on going to a musical theatre college up in New York for my bachelors or masters degrees. Do you recommend double majoring in something else other than theatre? I have done a couple of little school plays that include South Pacific and the wizard of oz. I was also wondering if you could give me any idea of the chances I have on actually fulfilling my hope and getting to broadway. The more I research the more I here that it woul be insane to even try. So is it even worth it? I hope I have not taken up too much of your time or thought, I am just trying to figure this out now. Thank you for any and all answers you can give me, I look up to an appreciate all that you are and stand for.

Thank you,
Bethany Eribarne

Answer
Actually, from what you have described, you are doing everything exactly right. You should continue your studies through college - and graduate school, if you can - and continue to do shows, no matter at what level, just for the experience.

It *is* true that the odds are, initially, against you from the start - relatively few aspiring professionals actually manage to make it to the Great White Way. However, the ones who do are the ones utterly dedicated to making it work, and willing to give 200% to make it happen. The best way to tell if you are ready to make the commitment is this: for the true actor/professional, to not act/perform is to die. If this is you, follow the dream, and be ready to sacrifice literally everything for it.

That being said: don't dismiss the idea of having to work entry-level and/or blue collar jobs until you make it - there are plenty of aspiring actors earning their livings, initially, as secretaries or restaurant wait staff. And make sure you develop a "thick skin" - you are, most likely, going to get plenty of rejections before "hitting it big." Remember that it's not personal; it's more likely that you just don't match what the director envisions, no matter how talented you are. In that case, in the words of the old swing standard, you have to be able to "pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again."

Break a leg, and let me know how you do!

-- Spyder

Acting in Plays, Singing

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J. Spyder Isaacson

Expertise

Especially the Seattle theatre scene. Seattle is the number two theatre city of the nation, having more theatres than any other city (including Chicago!) except New York. I know the reputations of most of the local theatres, have worked with quite a number of them, and am currently earning the majority of my livelihood through live theatre. Beyond that, I have been a working professional for the past 10 years (after a long career in an unrelated field), have done just about everything in the field, and have done every possible type of theatre. Currently, I am also pursuing a new (and unexpected!) career as an animated film producer. (PLEASE NOTE that I am NOT an expert in music!) ***DO NOT*** ASK ME QUESTIONS REGARDING AUDITION SONGS OR MONOLOGUES - the answers require way too much information to be passed along by the All Experts system.

Experience

I have been an award-winning actor, singer, playwright, director and administrator (on various levels, all categories) for the past 30 years. A large part of my expertise has been with live theatre, although I do have a minor connection to filmed theater. I have done musicals, straight dramas, straight comedies, and experimental theatre.

Organizations
Theatre Puget Sound Magical Mystery Troupe Centerstage Theatre Conservatory Board of Trustees (former) Express-Theatre Northwest (former) Snoqualmie Falls Forest Theater

Publications
Unrelated trade publications

Education/Credentials
B.A. in Theatre Arts, Gonzaga University M.Ed. in Education and Technology, Western Governor's University (in progress)

Awards and Honors
Mutiple awards (ask for specifics), Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival Valley Community Players, Best Supporting Actor

Past/Present Clients
C's Animation Studio Productions, LLC

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