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How do I know if an agent is reputable?

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Although the business has changed in recent years and submitting auditions by tape, rather than in person, has become very common, agents are still very regional. I suspect this will also change but it hasn’t yet. Agents represent new talent that live in a geographical area in close proximity to the agent’s physical location. As an actor builds their resume or physically moves to places like New York City or Los Angeles, it is common to get representation in the larger markets. Generally you start with the most reputable agent in your area.

comedy_tragedy_1629 (1) How do I know if an agent is reputable? How do I know if an agent is reputable? comedy tragedy 1629 1How do you know if they’re reputable? Check out their talent. Usually one can find out who an agent’s clients are by looking on their professional website. See what kind of work their clients are booking. If you are outside a large metropolitan area most likely the local agents have relationships with agents in larger markets and the majority of their clients are mainly meat and potatoes actors and are traveling long distances for work.

Having an agent should be a mutually beneficial relationship. We do not have a signed contract with our children’s talent agent. As I type this, I just heard a rather famous actor on set today say, “Any agent or talent agency that makes their talent sign a contract isn’t worth their salt.” Our team consists of a local agent in Raleigh, an agent in New York and a Manager in Los Angeles. None required a signed contract. Agents and managers want to work with talented people who want to work with them. Our team works tirelessly for us even when they go long stretches with no commissions. Agents work for the hope that you may be successful. There are no guarantees for anyone. To help keep it mutually beneficial, it’s important to pay your representation promptly.

There should be little to no cost to get started and you should never pay to audition or for representation. The cost of Headshots should not be greater than a couple hundred dollars especially to start. I paid far less than that. Travel expenses for auditions are paid by the actor(parents) unless you are being flown in by a production to meet producers and the director or for a screen test. Another possible upfront cost is training and this should be reasonable. Don’t fall for the scams where they offer you a contract if you pay for thousands of dollars worth of training. Our local agent grows talent by occasionally offering legitimate workshops with casting directors, managers or coaches at a reasonable cost.

 

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