Training – Again and Again and Again

Just when things couldn’t seem to get worse …hardly any auditions for feature films, commercials ..the Aussie dollar …there is a flurry of Training Schemes under way for actors, wannabes et al.

All most essential for those who want to pursue a professional career as an actor.

The seeming scores of of US master teachers casting  their very experienced  eyes over Aussies and following through once back in their home towns is to be commended (yes I concur that if they are here someone must be paying for them..good country to come to of course and hopefully some of their money stays here)

The proliferation of Acting schools/classes/Workshops seems to be unjustified considering this deficit in money and work…who can promise work at the end of each course?  Why bother to Train?

What’s this you say?  Well, I am also teaching , my speciality is Auditioning for the Screen, which covers the immediate spectrum of teaching people to know what they’re in for – the business side, the rejection, the tenacity required to be in a lifelong/ ongoing competition , and then, concentrate on finding the “talent”,  with  scripts,  monologues, chats to camera, presenting  and so on.

In the meantime – .not long ago I teamed up with Ben Parkinson Casting  (Brisbane) to deliver some Workshops and Seminars.  What I considered the most valuable was the Seminar in which we explained to professional actors, mums and dads and their children just exactlywhat the “Biz” was about in a hour of visual and practical advice. I found it amazing that parents had not read the brief and wanted to drop their kid/s off ( the babysitting syndrome)

Also not long ago I taught a structured course for Film TV I ( Brisbane) run by Craig and Dominique McMahon – they  opened their Brisbane school earlier this year and I went to the first Graduation for 30 weeks’ training recently.This is called “Fast Turn Around Television” and a load of tv actors and trainers were present (from Sydney and Melbourne as well as Brisbane) to support this concept.

I have taught Audition Techniques for the screen for The Actors Workshop (Brisbane) for the past eleven years and will do so this October for  Lyn Kidd (the Principal).  This School is the leading private provider for acting Training in Queensland, and Lyn has been very active  for many years in the Industry in the belief that she cannot promise work but very good training.

Craig and I discussed  the fact that as this is a small Industry, we need to work together, we have  have different methods of teaching, we need to make sure that Queensland can  be included in briefs from National Australian Casting Directors  …Who would have thought there was a dearth in work? Well, indeed in Queensland apparently ..most of the grads were off to Melbourne!

We also  discussed the merits of actors staying in Queensland but how could they if there’s no incentive?  What hope can Screen Queensland give us?

Are some  training organisations – and I  have to include Agents – just ripping off potential actors /fifteen minutes of fame actors ? because there is no work in Queensland ?

Should QUT close it’s 3yr Drama  Course because there is no work here? No – because it trains actors for global work.

I think that everyone who wants to be in the Industry needs to be much more aware of their rights and obligations by doing their research into what the many and varied courses are/ how much/who are the teachers / Agents’ qualifications etc.

I would like  to receive comments ….why do you think you have to train, train and train? Is it because there’s a promise  of work? Is i t because you need to always keep learning?    To me it’s about always being on the look-out by actors  to develop their skills …again and again and again….