Acting is like any other activity—the more you do it, the better you get at it. But it’s not enough to just practice in front of your mirror. You need feedback from someone that’s more advanced than you are like an acting coach.
An acting coach works with you to strengthen your acting skills. This isn’t like going to school—your acting coach won’t lecture you about the right or wrong way to do something. Rather, your acting coach can help you navigate your acting journey.
Working with an acting coach can be a terrific experience. But there are some questions you should ask before you hire one…
What Is the Coach’s Background?
If your goal is to go to Broadway, you could learn from a film coach. But you’ll learn a lot more if you choose a coach that has a history of working on Broadway and has connections inside the industry.
Who Will You Work With?
Sometimes, the best way to work with a coach or even multiple coaches is to join an acting school. This can be a terrific way to stretch your skills and be exposed to different coaching styles.
But keep in mind that when you’re looking at an acting school, you may audition with one coach but work with another. This can be frustrating if you felt a strong connection with the first coach or really liked their style of teaching.
Who Are Past Clients?
Coaches that are reputable can easily give you a list of their best students. If a coach refuses to disclose this information, he (or she) may not be legitimate. A good coach will want to share their success stories with you.
Don’t be afraid to ask how many of their students go on to land acting work. Typically, a coach should be able to give you a percentage number. It won’t be 100% because there are many factors in play here. But then number should be close to the 70-80 percent.
Does the Acting Coach Have a Good Reputation?
Once you’ve met a coach that you think will be a good fit for you, start asking around. See if other producers or writers know of the coach. Have they worked with actors that were taught by the coach?
You can also ask former students what their experiences were like. Ask what they learned and how they grew as a result of the coaching. Do they feel the experience was worth the money and time invested? What do they wish they’d known before they began working with the coach?
Can You Audit a Class?
Every coach has a unique personality and style. Sometimes, you’ll recognize whether you want to work with a coach after seeing them in action. If possible, try to audit a class or seminar where your coach is teaching.
Which Acting Coach in New York does AFT Recommend?
James Hallett Studio is our #1 recommendation. He has an excellent reputation in the industry and many of his students are now accomplished actors. You can see his website here.
Which Acting Coach in Los Angeles does AFT Love?
Again, our pick is for Jame Hallett Studio. While learning from him in person is an AMAZING experience, he also has Skype sessions that are perfect for our students in LA.
Remember, choosing an acting coach is a big decision and you don’t want to rush it. Take your time and do you research before you make a commitment. After you’ve signed up, lean into the learning process and try to soak up as much knowledge as you can!
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