Last weekend I had a stroke of luck. Where I accidentally walked into an actors convention. It was genuinely purely coincidental. I happened to be in Manchester for an audition, this audition was being held at the Royal Northern College of music. When I walked in I was confused and disappointed as there was a line of actors going out the door.
Although I was invited to this audition it was being held as an open casting call which I call cattle calls. That's what it feels like herding a load of actors into a cramped space who all have big personalities and even bigger hair.
Anyway tangent over, back on track. Turns out half of the que was to get into the conference itself which I had to get through to get to my audition upstairs.
I already experienced some luck that morning as I was the second one in the audition room, although my time was at 11:30 me and another actor just happened to be sitting next to and talking to the casting director who just brought us straight through.
After the audition I went to see what all the fuss was about downstairs. It was called Surviving Actors, a company that hosts acting conventions and trade shows they hosts several of these conventions but this was to be the final one in Manchester after 6 years.
On today's agenda was a series of seminars and workshops by various actors, writers and casting directors as well as the open casting call and career advice sessions for actors. In between those you could have a walk around, network and visit the stands, which varied from actor training, voice over work, headshots and theatre book stalls.
I found this all really interesting! There's only so much research you can do about the business online but when people are talking to you and explaining what they do, it feels so much more personal, I find comfort in that. You can tell if someone doesn't know what there on about when you’re talking face to face, it's harder to tell over email.
I spent a good couple of hours walking around, talking to people, exchanging details and cards. Abit of good old unexpected networking. I would advise any actor to go to a Network Event like this. I believe Surviving Actors are hosting another convention in February in London, but don't quote me on that double check on their website or with good old Google.
Being an actor can be abit isolating and you can get stuck in your own ways. This is just about exchanging ideas, being open minded and you never know who you might meet ;) xxx