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28 / 04 / 2021

Getting into acting

written by
Ellie Rowan


We often get approached by people asking how their child can get into acting. It may be that they have been modelling and would like to branch out into some screen acting, or it could be that it is a totally new prospect and they are looking for some advice on how to get started.

Below you can find some initial ideas on how your child can start to explore junior acting and how they can begin to turn an interest and potential, into skills and a profession!



Lots of people naturally assume that in order to be an Actor, they have to go to drama school. This really is not the case, and many very successful actors have pathed their way into acting without having attended full time drama school.

The important thing is for your child to attend classes, so that they can develop their skills and gain as much knowledge as possible.

Researching and attending local acting classes is a great way to get started. Not only will they introcduce your child to acting but they will help to build their confidence and enable them to meet new friends and work with likeminded people wanting to get into the industry. 

There are many institutes that run a multitude of courses; these include after school, weekend and summer holiday courses so they will be able to attend the classes around school and other commitments. 


Stagecoach Performing Arts is a leading body in the performing arts industry with schools across the UK. They offer acting, singing and dance lessons which are great to encourage your child to become more confident, expressive and sociable. They run weekly classes and holiday workshops.

Based at Pinewood Studios, Actors Studio runs a "Lights, Camera, Action! Young Actors’ Weekend Crash Course" which is great if your child cannot commit to a weekly class but wants to invest in a course.

For those that fancy just a a quick taster of an acting class, see if your child's school runs an after school drama club or classes that they can attend. 




Child Acting Headshots


After your child has attended a few classes and is feeling more confident, the next step is to make sure they have a great acting headshot that shows the real them. This is the first thing that any casting director will look at so you want to make sure it really is an accurate representation of them. It's great to have a selection of headshots that demonstrate different looks so they are able to submit a headshot that suits the role they are going up for. Make sure it includes a really nice smiley one!

Showreels are also really important for older children who want to be seen for acting briefs. It doesn’t necessarily matter if they haven't got any professional footage and material to begin with; what we need is to see examples of the kind of characters they think they could play; your child can do this by performing monologues or recreating scenes with friends that they may have met at acting classes. What is important is that the showreel is of good visual quality, so make sure it is made in using a good camera, is filmed in a suitable environment and is edited together well.



The first thing you need to remember when you are applying to agencies is that there are many reasons why your child may not be right and you must not take it personally if they do not get accepted to the first few you approach.  At Sandra Reynolds, we receive over 200 applications a week from aspiring actors and models and we may offer an appointment to only a small handful of these.  

Keep your child's application clear and to the point - any images should be clear and flattering and you should attach a little casting video if possible, introducing your child and have them chatting BRIEFLY about their skills - for younger children, you can ask them questions to get them chatting so we can see their personalities. 

Once your child is invited to a meeting, it is very important you arrive on time with them looking well presented and natural.  As the parent you will be making the first impression to clients on a job so will also be judged on your professionalism! The agent will assume the way you and your child conduct yourself at this appointment is the way you will come across at castings and auditions so if you arrive late with your child looking scruffy or you are unfriendly, the agent will be unlikely to want you out there representing their agency.



Spotlight is the industry's leading casting platform and your agency will want your child on here in order to get you seen for the best briefs. 


Spotlight for children


A young performer wishing to join Spotlight must be a minimum of 4 years old and a maximum of 24 years 11 months old. This means you can join as a young performer from the day of your 4th birthday and up until the date of your 25th birthday. To join Spotlight, you will need to be represented by a Spotlight registered agency who can send you a secure application invitation to complete. 

As a member of Spotlight, you'll get access to career advice, events and support tools to help you to establish and manage a successful acting career and there are also special memberships for graduates and young performers.


Knowledge is power and the more you know, the more confident you will feel when your child gets called in for that casting you have been dreaming of. 

As Audrey Hepburn said 'Nothing is impossible, the word itself says "I'm possible"!'


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written by Ellie Rowan

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