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You are a walking business and the product is you.
How valuable are you to another business that seeks that one in a million talented person?
Do you have any skills?
No, I'm not talking about, "I'm friendly and cute. Here's my instagram, check me out @modelbabez_n_dollas87639."
I'm not even going to look up that handle, but you get the point.
Think of an agency as your new boss after you obtain a college degree. They will hire you, give you work, promote you, and guide you. You need training in order to succeed in this industry.
I cannot stress this enough. In order to properly present yourself to an agency, you need to get professional training. Whether it's through the agency or from their referrals. Learn to do everything. The more you know, the more bookable you are. Don't just go to say you went, but actually learn new things.
Learn new languages, dialects, pull from your deepest emotions, and cry on demand. The reaction you get from agents and casting directors will be worth it. The paychecks will be worth it. So will the resume credits, experiences, and being respected as a well-rounded bookable talent.
Build your resume skills to be better than anyone else. You need to be able to compete in the most competitive industry.
Hosting hundreds of auditions and open calls, I've seen brilliant talent that are raw and untrained. I've seen talent with four page resumes that have zero talent. Learn the concept of quality vs. quantity.
I have received castings like the following:
Must look like a model, but not TOO model-like. Must be able to choreograph the commercial, dance, and play the drums. Must be able to fly to Switzerland for about five days. Must have passport. Send video of model playing the drums first. Then, if we like them, we'll ask for a video of their choreographed dance. It was due in two days. That job paid about $2,400 with an all-expenses paid trip.
Can I walk into an audition with no problem and confidently book the job right now?
Do I know how to slate?
Do I have two monologues?
Do I know what a monologue is?
Does my monologue fit me?
Do I know how to do character analysis, or build a solid character?
Do I know how to memorize a script?
Do I have a perfected catwalk?
Do I have a strong model portfolio?
Do I have the right headshots?
What's a demo reel?
How do I utilize all of my tools properly?
How do I use my social media platforms to gain recognition?
How do I use my social media platforms properly?
If you answered 'no' to any of these, then this is why you pay for training. If you have no idea what to answer on these, that's also why you need training. A coach or talent manager will help you answer these questions and more with confidence, or at least know how to conquer these types of tasks.
Another reason why agencies require training is because you are being sent to clients by yourself. I want to know that my talent are behaving as professionals in an audition room and on set. Training teaches you to be more aware of yourself, your actions and what's going on in the room. If you are anxious, clueless or insecure, then you're most likely going to bomb the audition. This makes you look bad, but it also makes your agent look even worse. Brutal honesty? We don't really like that. :) Who does?
You are attempting to work in an industry that will pay you millions for one project. It's going to take some time, hard work, sleepless nights, blood, sweat and tears (a lot of tears), and thick skin!
Now, let's talk money.
a.k.a. The Barbie Mentor