How Matt And I Agree About Show Business Realities

Hey, there!

If you’ve ever heard me talk about how important understanding the business side of VO is to our success, you know how passionate I am about it.

Apparently, I’m not the only passionate advocate of acquiring a clear understanding of our business.

Matt thinks so too.

Matt Newton, an actor and acting coach in New York, wrote an article for Backstage called 6 Things They Don’t Tell You In Theater School.

And each of the 6 things he shares with you, from “You aren’t special” to “You need to master the room” have the exact same weight in VO as they do in on camera acting.

And some of it eerily echoes the very words I use when I talk about business versus art in show business.

I see actors (and VO people) making the same mistakes over and over: expecting their artistry alone to get them in the room and get them booked, refusing to understand that identifying their brand is important (because, of course, they’ve been told they can and should audition for absolutely everything), and to be convinced that if they sully themselves with understanding how business or technology works, they will somehow lose their artistic prowess.

[tweet_box]”I don’t want to touch the filthy lucre.” Heh.[/tweet_box]


I’m not alone. Matt agrees. You should go read this. And then send this article to all of your friends who act like this.

(Or, don’t. Then you don’t have to worry about the additional competition.)

Here’s the full article.

Hope this helps.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.



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  1. Read that article the other day. Loved it. Matt keeps me sharp when I am in NY. Great teacher. He recommends your Rehearsal app to his students too!

  2. David,
    Matt’s and your encouragement to cultivate great business skills is right on, for sure. Because as actors we have unprecedented access to info via the internet and ability to “cut out the middleman” by creating and submitting our own auditions, mastering technology will continue to create a great divide.

    Generally speaking, utilizing and mastering technology is creating the generation gap of our time and with it, our ability to be successful or not. (Historically, it might have been college degree vs high school diploma, speaking English or only an immigrant’s native language, the restrictions of caste, class, religion, ethnicity.) Now one is either continually challenging themselves with technology’s ever-changing learning curves or becoming a dinosaur. (In the content distribution they say, “Adapt or die.”) Ouch, I know.

    So thoroughly convinced, let’s go from philosophy to practicality please. Anyone want to offer exactly what they do in the midst of their workday to be that astute business professional? Offer a tip on your routine? What have you done with the info you’ve mined from the internet so it successfully turns it into paid work?

    1. Here’s a simple one.

      Want to know who makes the decisions on what talent to hire?

      Watch the credits. Don’t jump to the next item on the DVR.

      See who the writers, producers and programming executives are: they are your customers. Get to know them.