|TH 4130 -
Instructor: Bruce Cromer
MWF 3-4:50, T131 CA Office Hours: MWF 12-1 (other times available by appt.); T148K CA
Office Phone (Messages): 775-2430
Course Objectives: To enable BFA acting majors to make informed goals, plans, and first steps toward their future
acting careers. Marketing tools (headshots, resumes, cover letters, postcards, audition packages, web-sites, etc.),
marketing strategies, and relocation plans will be discussed, researched, and prepared. Significant aspects of the
profession will also be discussed and/or researched, including primary market areas, unions, contracts, agents,
combined auditions (SETCs, OTAs, MWTAs, URTAs, etc.), stage work, film and t.v. work, industrials, etc. A major
emphasis of the course is making students aware of helpful information sources regarding the profession — especially
the “inter-network” of PATP alumni across the country.
Tentative Course Outline:
Week One (August 31, Sept. 2, 4) The Way It Is
Week Two (September 9, 11) Professional Objectives, Obstacles, and Tactics
Week Three (September 14, 16, 18) What You Will Need
Week Four (September 21, 23, 26) What You Will Need
Week Five (September 28, 30, Oct. 1) Your First Decisions
Week Six (October 5, 7, 9) Establishing Yourself; Audition Package 1
Week Seven (October 12, 14, 16) Establishing Yourself; Research Project #1 due
Week Eight (October 19, 21, 23) Presentations
Week Nine (October 26, 28, 30) The Casting Room
Week Ten (November 2, 4, 6) Other Opportunities
Week Eleven (November 9, 11, 13) Unemployment, Taxes, Civilian Jobs (Jen Joplin teaches Wed. and Fri.)
Week Twelve (November 16, 18, 20) Additional Training; Audition Package 2 (on Monday)
Week Thirteen (November 23) Audition Package #3 (Showcase Scenes)
Week Fourteen (Nov. 30, Dec. 2, 4) Research Project #2 Due: Presentations (Jen Joplin teaches Wed. and Fri.)
Week Fifteen (December 7, 9, 11) Personal Considerations (Jen Joplin teaches Wed. and Fri.)
Professional Skills (Attendance and Attitude) - There are 27 classes in this semester; missing 6 will earn you an F
for the course. Missing 3 = D, 2 = C, 1 = B, and 0 = A. There are no excused absences for this course. Two lates
constitute one absence. You are expected to be prompt, prepared, and professional in attitude: active in discussions
and exercises, open-minded, quick to take notes and to give opinions, considerate of the instructor and your peers.
Criticism should be constructive and specific, rather than negative and general. All electronic devices should be turned
off and put away during this course, unless requested by the instructor.
Written Work - Aside from written assignments you will do in class, you are expected to turn in typed copies of your
acting and non-theatrical resumes, your general cover letter, text-work for three audition packages (two contrasting one-
minute pieces in each), and two research projects:
Research Project #1 (due Oct. 16) - This will contain collected research regarding the area of theatre you'd like to
pursue. These should be contemporary research sources, about American acting/performance work done in the past
two years. The more specific the topic for the paper, the more valuable it will be to you in the future. (Children's Theatre,
Chicago Theater, Children's Theatre in Chicago, Stand-Up Comedy in New York, the Renaissance Faire circuit,
Industrial Films in Los Angeles, Feminist Theatre in San Francisco, Gay Theatre in Seattle, Film Production in Atlanta,
the Voice-Over Market in Minneapolis, etc.) A four-page summary (typed, double-spaced, 12 point font), including a
bibliography of your sources, must preface your collected materials. These materials should be organized in a binder,
indexed, and at least forty pages in length.
Research Project #2 (due November 23) - This will contain collected research regarding the area where you plan to
relocate to pursue your professional career. You should research the current cost of living (rent, utilities, groceries, etc.)
there, the desirable neighborhoods, professional districts, driver's license laws, theatres, film production companies,
talent agencies, etc. You should obtain a map of the city, perhaps get a copy of the major newspaper there, browse
through regional magazines in the library, and perhaps purchase a tourist's guide. A four-page summary (typed,
double-spaced, 12 point font), including a bibliography of your sources, must preface your collected materials. These
materials should be organized in a binder, indexed, and at least forty pages in length.
ACTING PROFESSIONALLY, by Robert Cohen and James Calleri (7th Edition).
NEW TAX GUIDE FOR WRITERS, PERFORMERS, AND OTHER CREATIVE PEOPLE, by Peter Riley.
BACKSTAGE GUIDE TO WORKING IN REGIONAL THEATRE, by Jim Volz.
Recommended Reading (some are in bookstore):
REGIONAL THEATRE DIRECTORY, by Tumielewicz.
DIRECTORY OF THEATRE TRAINING PROGRAMS.
SUMMER THEATRE DIRECTORY.
THEATRE DIRECTORY, edited by Theatre Communications Group.
CHOICES, by Shad Helmstetter.
CREATIVE VISUALIZATION, by Shakti Gawain.
THE ARTIST'S WAY, by Julia Cameron.
THE PATH OF LEAST RESISTANCE, by Robert Fritz.
BACKSTAGE, AMERICAN THEATRE --- publications available in the Theatre Dept. office.
*THE ACTOR’S HANDBOOK TO NEW YORK, by Silverberg.
*AN ACTOR PREPARES TO LIVE IN NYC, by Craig Wroe.
The Life of an Actor---
BEING AN ACTOR, by Simon Callow.
CAUGHT IN THE ACT, by Don Shewey.
*ACTORS’ LIVES, by Holly Hill.
General Acting Biz Books---
THE ACTOR'S BUSINESS, by Reilly.
BACKSTAGE HANDBOOK FOR THE PERFORMING ARTIST, edited by Sherry Eaker.
THE ACTOR: PRACTICAL GUIDE TO A PROFESSIONAL CAREER, by Eve Brandstein.
*ACTING AS A BUSINESS, by O’Neil.
*HOW TO AUDITION FOR TV, FILM, AND COMMERCIALS, by Hunt.
*THE CAMERA SMART ACTOR, by Brestoff.
*THE ART OF VOICE ACTING, by Alburger.
Actors' Equity Association
AEA Casting Call
Screen Actors' Guild - American Federation of Radio and Television Artists
Theatre Communications Group
Society of American Fight Directors
Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETCs) Auditions
Mid-West Theatre Auditions (MWTAs)
New England Theatre Conference (NETCs) Auditions
Ohio Theatre Alliance Auditions
University Resident Theatre Association (URTAs) Auditions
Unified Professional Theatre Auditions (UPTAs)