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Choosing Musical Theatre as a Career Path

For many actors, the big screen simply doesn’t call to them. They dream of performing under the bright lights of the stage, relishing the thrill of live performance and the musical stories enchanting the captive audience before them. If this sounds like you, you may want to consider a career in musical theatre.

Choose Your Focus

Take inventory of your talents, and consider a career in musical theatre that focuses on your strongest points. For example, those who have a passion and talent in their body’s movement may choose a path as a dancer or choreographer. An actor in musical theatre must be well rounded; this career path requires excellence in not only acting, but in singing and dancing as well.

Learn Your Trade

Take every opportunity to learn and study your craft. Attend a diverse range of performances, speak with professionals already working in musical theatre, and, if possible, find a mentor in your field who will be able to give you one-on-one guidance. Because musical theatre requires such a broad skillset, taking acting and voice lessons or enrolling in musical theatre classes is invaluable to gaining the skills needed to succeed in a musical theatre career.

Getting the Part

As with any type of acting, professional-looking headshots are an essential part of the musical theatre auditioning process. Make sure your headshots are flattering, but accurate; casting directors want to know what you’ll look like on stage, not in a over-processed photograph.

When auditioning for parts, be prepared for whatever the casting directors may ask you to perform. Have a monologue prepared, as well as a vocal piece. Auditions can be incredibly nerve-wracking even for those with experience in the industry, so be sure to know your prepared pieces backwards and forwards – practice, practice, practice!

Remember that while Broadway may be your goal, very few musical theatre performers get their start there. Be prepared to audition anywhere you can at first. Community productions can be a great starting point to get your feet wet as well as to make contacts in the industry. Any opportunity to perform can be excellent for gaining experience that can benefit both your skillset and your resume.

Still Have More Questions?

KD Conservatory has acting, musical theatre, and film production programs to help prepare students for careers in the entertainment industry. Contact us with any of your questions, or check us out on Facebook for ongoing updates and information!

Photo via Flickr

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