If you have been considering getting into acting, or are looking to take your current acting career to the next level, you might be asking yourself about acting coaches and acting classes. You’ve had friends suggest it or even share their experience attending an acting class or two. Perhaps you know someone who had some success once they started taking classes but you aren’t exactly sure what to expect from an acting coach or how they can help you.
When people ask me what I do, I tell them I coach actors. Sometimes I refer to myself as an acting teacher. I’ve wondered what the difference is between a coach and a teacher and two thoughts occur to me. A coach focuses more on the student than the bits of wisdom they are trying to instill. I think a coach is also more focused on the student as an individual and their particular skillset level and natural talent, and takes those into consideration when instruction is given.
At the studio, I and my assistant coaches, April Hartman and Logan Ferguson, coach actors on scene study and character analysis. In addition to doing this in a class environment, we also do the following:
Audition Coaching – Actors will often come to me for help with an audition. This might be for a commercial, film, short film, play, web series or a TV role. I will coach them using the requested material following any given instructions and character description. It may be for a live audition but just as often, I will also do the video recording and submit the material.
Give Career Advice - Often actors will come to me needing advice on headshots, resumes, reels, agents, and auditions. I do my best to point them in the right direction. I also make it a point to shine a light on their strengths and work extra hard on their weaknesses. They will often need advice regarding certain roles they have been asked to audition for and whether it is something they should do and will further their career.
Coaching On Set- Another common reason to hire an acting coach is after you’ve landed the big gig and want to be sure you are staying true to the character, helping the writer tell the story as authentically as possible and making the director look good. While the audition went well, once you get to the set, there are multiple producers, other actors, and distractions, and often actors can lose their confidence and focus. An acting coach is your advocate for that job.
Instill Unshakable Confidence - I once read that success comes from confidence and confidence comes from preparation. This is a coaches most important task. Creating a safe space and environment to be as prepared as possible. Whether you are preparing for a big audition, or looking to walk on set with zero doubts, an acting coach is your best weapon. Coaches can give you the edge you need to give one of the best performances of your career, and get casting directors, producers and directors to notice.
Introduce You to Other Actors - Lastly, as professionals in the industry, acting coaches have a lot of contacts. Many of them work with other actors, directors, and talent agents helping you connect with other like-minded professionals that can get you in the door.
If you are looking for an acting coach, or for more resources for acting check out our studio. TBell Actors Studio is local to Dallas, Texas, providing adult acting classes and coaching to the community of actors in Dallas. Request an appointment to watch a class or contact us for more information.
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