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College Showcase Breakdown

Air Date: 1/18/2024

College Showcase Breakdown


          I’ve had a bunch of interactions with many actors in training from colleges, universities and professional training programs of late. It’s typical this time of year, for many of these schools to “showcase” their graduating talent. Often, the schools rent space in New York, or LA, Chicago or elsewhere and offer an hour or so of their aspiring talent to perform for invited agents, managers and casting directors. The purpose is to expose the actors to industry professionals who might be interested in working with them. This is usually a very exciting, intense, and frightening experience. After all, this is a coming-out party for students who want to enter the profession. We need to break it down and explain the truth behind the college showcase experience without having a breakdown! On this episode of Casting Actors Cast!


What the showcase is:

A.    Usually, an hour of various material specifically suited for each actor in the class

B.    A way for graduating students to get professional exposure

C.   An opportunity for industry to find new talent for their agency/projects

D.   A method for training programs to showcase their school’s training

E.    Satisfying the professional development requirement for schools (promotional)

What a showcase is NOT:

A.    A place to get discovered

B.    A way to show everything you can do

C.   A singular event to launch an acting career

D.   The end of your relationships with your class (you are now on your own)

E.    To be taken too seriously or too lightly

What you can do to make this meaningful:

A.    Remember it is a moment in time (careers are not built on one event)

B.    Do not be in competition with you fellow classmates

C.   Getting an agent/ meeting is not he goal-making an impression is

D.   Speculation on the effect the showcase will have is a waste of energy

E.    Remember your acting is emotional your being an actor self is as a professional


          There are so many reasons to question the impact of a showcase. On the other hand, to dismiss the opportunity as, “no big deal” is not to appreciate the possibility of creating opportunities for your talent. Having a clear perspective and breaking down reality into manageable bites will be the best way to share your talent and even enjoy the journey you are on. When you can break it down, you avoid a breakdown!

          Jeffrey Dreisbach, Casting Partner, McCorkle Casting LTD-New York, NY

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