Is it too late for an Acting Career?

by Guest9304  |  earlier

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I am a 25 year old female who lives in Chicago, IL. I do not have any acting experience except for pure natural talent! I know I have what it takes to be GREAT! Is it too late to peruse my dreams? And if not, do I need to start with a degree in acting? And if so, how long realistically does it take to make it. I know the odds are against me, but if by a small inkling of a chance that they are not, is it years before you could be discovered?

Thank you so much for your time!

Sincerely grateful,

Jaiden Rose

 Tags: acting, career, late



  1. John

    Hi Jaiden

    I just answered your other questions and some of those answers apply here. Read that answer first - it will cover some of these questions. Really, it is not too late too late for you to start.

    But talent alone is not enough. Acting is an art and a craft and, as in any career, you need training to learn the skills and techniques you will need to do the job.

    You do not necessarily need a degree in acting, although a university theatre training program is, in my opinion, certainly the best place to get your training. But there are other acting schools that give classes, as well as community college programs that can give you some basic skills. Some places are full time programs (such as universities) others do give individual classes that may be easier to fit into the schedule of a busy wife and mother. A university program is 4 years for a BA in theatre arts. If you want to pursue it further then another 2-3 years for an MFA in acting, music, directing, whatever focus you want. Individual classes can be spread over a number of years while you are also auditioning and getting some experience. It is up to you.

    As for making it \"Big\"... Forget it!!!! If you are going into acting to make it Big, for glamour and excitement, for fame and fortune, you are going to be tremendously disappointed. Look at the statistics in my last answer. Less than 98% of all professional actors even make a living as an actor alone, much less \"make it big.\" Of that 2% only the tiniest percentage of them actually become those \"stars\" that you think of as \"making it big.\" That is not a realistic goal. For over 99% of all actors, it's simply not going to happen.

    The only reason to go into acting as a career is that you have a passion to act, that you can not imagine a life without acting in it. You need to accept that, while it is *possible* that you *might* make it big, the goal is to act, not to be famous. If you need to act, and if you have talent and are willing to work at your skills and your career, then you will be able to act. No one, I do not care who they are, can tell you that you will make it big. And almost no one is \"discovered\" any more than a successful businessman is \"discovered\" when he finally begins to do well. They work for years, building their skills, their knowledge, their experience and their contacts until they begin to be recognized for their talent and their work. It only seems to us, the public, that they are \"discovered\" because that is when we begin to see them more prominently, and since we never saw their years of work in study and in small theatres and films, they seem to \"suddenly\" become a \"star.\" Ask them, they'll laugh at the word and tell you of all the work that went into being \"discovered.\" For the tiniest few who are actually \"discovered\" without previous exposure, it is a fluke and has nothing to do with their talent, training or work. It has to do with luck and being in the right place at the right time. And there is absolutely no way to predict that.

    So, how long does it realistically take to make it big? Most of the time, never. Occasionally, very occasionally, years. Once in a blue moon, instantly. There is no way to predict it.

    How long does it realistically take to become a working actor? Even this is impossible to predict. Much depends on how much time and effort you are willing to give to your career. Many people who go to LA or NYC (AFTER they get their BA and, possible, their MFA) give themselves 5 years to build a career before they quit. Some do it and become working actors. Others go home and do something else that will make them happy. Some stay longer and continue pursuing the dream while working a day job because the love acting so much that it does not matter to them whether they are earning a living by it as long as they can act. It's up to you what you want. But there are no guarantees in this business. Even if you are great, your timing might be wrong.

    An acting career needs talent, passion, training, experience, hard work, perseverance, determination, sacrifice, focus, and the willingness to continue in the face of failure, frustration, rejection and disappointment. Becoming a working actor also needs luck, networking and building good contacts.

    It is not easy! But if you want it enough, it can be worth it.

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