When I first started acting, I used to get Backstage from the newsstand at my local mall. Thank God it’s online now, because it’s SO easy to browse through auditions and job listings. But I absolutely loved flipping through the pages and circling auditions with a red pen.
Just FYI, I don’t currently have a subscription with Backstage since I am on a personal hiatus from performing, but I do miss searching for auditions. The thrill of the hunt!
For those who are unfamiliar, Backstage is the premier trade publication for those that want to start or maintain a performance career. Actors are able to post their photo and resume, allowing casting directors to find you. The first feature length movie I did, the direct found me through backstage!
The educational value alone is worth the subscription, alone, in my opinion. Yes, you can probably find a lot of the auditions in listed in Backstage for free, but will you have the ability to submit to them with just one click?
Large Number Of Casting Calls
As the premiere industry website, there are literally thousands of casting calls at any given time. You could literally be able to submit for one every day! When I was working a lot I was submitting to at least 3 projects a day. You can search casting calls based on any number of factors, including age range, location, gender (male, female, transgender) and you can save your searches so you don’t have to reenter all your information over and over again. The Audition Calendar is another feature that will help you filter through results that best fit your schedule.
Backstage allows users to private message each other. You can message directors, agents, professionals, and other actors. Communication within the industry has never been easier or more accessible.
Finding monologues for casting calls and auditions is always a pain. You have to search through a variety of sources and read a ton of plays to find the one that is right for you. Monologuer is the Backstage solution to finding monologues. It is a large database of monologues that users have access to, and you can search based on age and keyword. When you find one you like, you can read the play that it’s from as part of your preparation.
Backstage users get profiles that industries professionals have access to. Here is mine, but it hasn’t been updated with new photos in awhile since I am not currently working or active. When you submit to casting notices, your profile with your headshot, resume and reel are sent right to the person who needs to see it. You can even upload your voiceover reel!
Casting Notices Sent To You
New casting opportunities appear on Backstage regularly. When you sign up for an account you have the option to subscribe to new casting calls that meet your criteria. The app also sends you notifications when a job is posted that matches your preference. Just boop! Right to your inbox!
Support For When You Need It
Huge Database of Industry Professionals
The Backstage website includes a database of industry professionals. If you want to find information on someone specific, all you need to do is search the database. For example, if you need to send a thank you note after an audition, you can enter the casting agent’s name and find their point of contact.
Professionals Can Find You
A lot of people like the ability to find professionals on Backstage but don’t realize that the website works both ways. Your profile serves as a way for industry professionals to find you. Sometimes a casting agent has an exact idea of what they are looking for in mind. Your headshot and resume are available for casting directors to search, which is helpful if they are looking for a specific type in a specific region.
The blog on Backstage is TEEMING with advice that you need to start a career in acting or to further an existing career. Specialists at Backstage and guests are always writing helpful articles full of advice for the novice to professional.
Huge Success Rate
Many actors and actresses have found their path to success on Backstage. This is because industry professionals use the website regularly and it is set up to encourage and nourish success for both sides of the equation (the actor and the agent). Chances are that if you put the effort in, you too will have a good chance of success.
The annual membership (the best deal IMO) works out to just $12.50 per month (billed yearly). When you compare that to some of the sites who charge PER submission, it actually works out to be quite affordable and often cheaper depending on how many castings you apply for.
The website is a bit cumbersome, which is understandable as there is SO MUCH there. It takes awhile to get familiar with it and learn the ins and outs, but as stated above, the tech support is top notch.
Is it legit? Should I subscribe?
100%, and YES.
Backstage.com is one of the best resources and tools available to aspiring performers. Next to honing your craft, auditioning is the main part of an actor’s job. You cannot book a gig if you don’t audition. A membership allows you to keep up with opportunities that become available in your area, especially if you don’t have an agent yet.
Don’t keep your dreams waiting!
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