Dee Bradley Baker's "All to Know About Going Pro in V.O."

Should I Bug My Agent for More Auditions?

“Should I call my agent and tell them I want to audition more?”

So you want to call up your agent to let them know you’d like to audition more.  What might be the best way to approach that?

First, let’s imagine you are an agent. What sort of phone call would you most like to get from one of your actor client’s? What would make you more glad that you signed them, more glad to make the effort on their behalf? What kind of call might point towards more work for your actor and hence more money for you, the agent?

It’s safe to assume all your actor clients want more auditions and work and let you know this regularly. You are very busy scrambling day in and day out to make your 10% of those few auditions that you arrange that actually book. You want nothing more than for all your clients to book work. Do you really need an affirmation that any of your actors indeed want to audition and hence book more?

Do you want to hear from your corral of actors only when they complain or try to somehow ingratiate themselves to you, hoping to get more auditions? Do you want to only hear from your actors if they want something from you? No.

What might be a better way to remind them you are alive and a good prospect for submission? What is better a way to make your agent happy to take your call?

As I suggest elsewhere on my site, acting is about giving, not about getting. I would first suggest, you first make sure you are focusing your energies on further strengthening and weaponizing your acting talents to be more competitive and irresistibly good. You are bolstering your confidence with classes, shows, projects, workout groups, seeing shows, taking in local art and culture, listening to relevant or inspiring audio books, reading, traveling, drinking in entertainment history and generally pursuing things that feed your life and your readiness to deliver your art.

You are doing your job, keeping up your end of the agent/talent arrangement by doing your 90% of the work load (for your 90% of the paycheck with 10% going to your agent). 

You apply yourself to feeding and nurturing your life, art and craft— then check in with your agent to keep them updated on your progress, all you are making, all you are learning. You demonstrate that you are on the move, laying the web, building your creative powers– that you are a smart up-and-coming pro who gets it. You’re not just sitting around and waiting for your agent to lob opportunity your way, like so many other actor clients. 

It makes sense: The kind of actor client an agent wants is the one they actually want to hear from, because they don’t waste anyone’s time with whining or worrying or being annoying. An agent wants to hear from a growing, thriving creative power that is becoming a more interesting, able and competitive. 

This kind of actor is someone who is a good bet as a business partner who will bring in money– if not today, then soon, because that’s where you’re clearly heading.

It’s fine to check in with your agent about concerns, but be sure to let them know where you are headed, how you are developing your powers. Share your momentum! That is a better way to not only up your chances at booking, but to also add favorable focus in your agent’s mind.

Never forget: You are the talent and the power that amplifies opportunity and draws work to you. Work that, share that, grow that and agents will welcome your phone calls more eagerly.

Your phone call might even bring a smile to your agent the next time you call.

2 Responses »

  1. …what is the policy on submitting demos directly to companies. I.e. if I wanted to submit my voice demo along with resume and my agent’s contact information directly to a video game company. Is that okay? Also, is there any point or are the gaming companies going to go through casting agencies anyway.

    • If you can get your demo to a decision maker who has the time and interest- great! It might work. But a demo is a generic intro to your talents and it may be easier for them to go through an agency (your agent should be able to submit or talk you up as well).

      Top gaming companies often go through agents as it saves them time and it’s easier to coordinate auditioning if the agency serves as both a talent filter and collector of the specific auditions.

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© Dee Bradley Baker 2018

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