Written by Josh Orlando
Actors sometimes panic when it comes to auditioning, which makes sense because auditions can be incredibly nerve wracking. One thing you can do to alleviate some of the inevitable nervousness is to make sure you’re prepared. Along with your prepared audition piece, you will be expected to submit a resume and headshot. This article will guide you as you build your acting resume. Here’s how to look polished and professional on paper.
Your personal information should head the resume. I suggest starting with your name typed above your personal contact information, I always make sure to add my gender pronouns as well. To follow, you should include the agency or the union you belong to. If you are a member of Actor’s Equity Union (AEA), Equity Membership Candidate (EMC), Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC), or Screen Actors Guild (SAG), you’ll want to list it on your resume. Most theater companies cast a specific amount of equity and non-equity actors for productions each season. Note that you can and will still get cast if you are a non-equity actor. If you want to include personalized information about your aesthetic appearance, you can list that next. Depending on what you are auditioning for, sometimes it is helpful for casting directors to read about your physical appearance during the casting process. Of course you’ll have your headshot to go with your resume, but listing things like weight, height, hair and eye color can help directors gets a sense of what you look like on paper.
Beneath the header, you typically want to address things from the casting director’s checklist. They will be looking for your acting credits, specialized education and training, and relevant awards and accomplishments. Acting credits should typically highlight the production, your role in it, the theater, and the director’s name. As you gain more acting experience, amateur credits can be eliminated. Keep in mind that you always want to show off your biggest assets and accolades. Professional credits should go first, then college and university credits, followed by community theater credits. Lastly, you can list your special skills as a performer. Always check for spelling errors and typos. I suggest giving your resume to a fellow theatre artist for peer review.
Your acting resume is the first thing that casting directors see, along with your headshot. Think about making an impactful first impression. Keep it simple, but thoughtful. Use the outlined template below as a guide and feel free to arrange, personalize, and reorder your acting resume as you see fit.