Student blogger Eric Henderson offers a few tips for tackling the summer job search.
“What do I do with my summer?”
“I graduate in a few months, where do I begin looking for work?”
These are all questions many of us are asking ourselves as we finish up our spring semester and begin to plan for the next step. For some of us, a job through SETC working summer stock or an internship in props, costumes, or sound has already presented itself, but for those who haven’t quite found the right job yet, here are some resources to help you make it over the next hump and into a successful summer of training and experience.
Backstage (aka Back Stage) is an entertainment-industry brand aimed at people working in film and the performing arts, with a special focus on casting, job opportunities, and career advice. Backstage publishes a full-color glossy magazine in the U.S. (also available as a PDF) and a periodic digest-sized resource directory (Call Sheet) that covers the entertainment industry from the perspective of performers (singers, dancers, comedians, models, etc.), the performance unions (SAG-AFTRA, Actors’ Equity Association, AGVA, AGMA, the American Federation of Musicians, etc.), casting directors, agents, writers, directors, and, in particular, actors. Backstage also publishes related newsletters, produces industry trade shows (such as Actorfest), and hosts various panels and screenings, along with running multiple websites, including Backstage.com, Call Sheet Online (formerly known as RossReports.com), The Backstage Message Boards, Audition Update, and Backstage University.
Playbill is a free website that offers job postings, actor interviews, Broadway history, and breaking news about the theatre industry, focusing on New York shows but including regional, touring and international stage happenings.
The Equity is an American labor union representing the world of live theatrical performance, as opposed to film and television performance. The Equity offers job postings, actor interviews, Broadway history, and breaking news about the theatre industry as well, but they cater to actors on a greater scale to increase pay and locate jobs for actors needing work.
SETC, URTA, and UPTA:
All these conventions have an application process, cost, and deadlines to meet. At these conventions you have the options to audition and/or interview with hundreds of companies to do everything from acting to stage management to scene design, and costume design. SETC’s website also offers a Job Board for its members which details all manner of theatre jobs.
For those of us seeking summer stock acting jobs, cengage.com offers a comprehensive list of professional companies with summer work for actors with links to individual websites. Check it out here: http://www.cengage.com/resource_uploads/static_resources/0495898074/24674/summer_theatre_companies.html
offstagejobs.com is another great resource.
Finally I would check with department heads and acting professors. They have been where you desire to be and would enjoy nothing more than to see you thrive!