We have previously spoken about offbeat careers for creative people as well as jobs in the media and entertainment industry. Today’s job market offers opportunities for everyone who is willing to dedicate themselves to their passion. Making a full-fledged career after a formal degree in performing arts wasn’t exactly everyone’s cup of tea a few years ago. However, we live in an age where content is king, entertainment is at an all-time high, and careers are aplenty. If performing arts is your passion, you can either be on the stage or a part of the production crew that makes it all happen.
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What is Performing Arts?
Performing Arts are the arts that are performed for an audience. Music, dance, and theatre are some of the popular examples of performing arts.
Performing Arts Courses and Colleges
You can take up a Bachelor of Performing Arts. The programme focuses on the three main parts of the entertainment industry: music, dance, and theatre, and allows students to specialise in any of these areas. The course teaches students how to perfect their skills and become professional performers in any of the three types of performing arts: dance, theatre, or music.
Miranda House, Lady Shri Ram College For Women and Loyola College are one of the top three colleges in India for Performing Arts as per the NIRF Rankings 2021.
In the meantime, here’s a list of career options you can consider in the performing arts space:
In the Limelight
Being in the limelight and performing for an audience is something every artist truly lives for. Today, social media provides a platform for all artists to showcase their talent to the world and reach out to millions of people. If you’re good at what you do, it won’t take long for a talent scout to spot you and give you your big break.
The downside to this is the fact that performing artists are not scarce and it is rather difficult to “make it big”. Performing artists like actors, singers, dancers and models need consisten good projects to make it to – and remain in – the limelight.
Here are six tips to kickstart your career in performing arts:
Show off your talent.
Use social media to your advantage.
Invest time in perfecting your craft.
Get a good agent or talent manager.
Get a secondary job to support yourself between projects.
You may not always get the kind of roles you want, and it may take some time for you to figure out your niche. But remember to work hard, set realistic goals, and not give up when the going gets tough! You need to know that most strugglers do not make it as big as they dream about being. In fact, there are grimmer stories and everyone who dreams of glamour should know about the harsh realities of entertainment before getting into this field.
Opportunities Behind the Scenes
Love performing arts, but can’t be the centre of attention? There’s still a job for you in this field! There’s an entire production crew who makes the magic happen, and the actors wouldn’t make it to the stage (or screen) without them. Additionally, there are those who use performing arts to heal people! Here are a list of career options for you to consider:
A production manager coordinates with the cast, crew and performers on set. As a production manager, you would also look after wardrobe, set design, scene changes, sound and lighting, managing props and set dressing. You’re the one who coordinates with theatre managers and front-of-house staff. They take care of cues for lighting, sound and for performers.
Even if an actor brings their best foot forward, the performance would fall flat without the lack of a story. And who comes up with that story? The scriptwriter comes up with the storyline, packs in the humour, builds scenes that tug on your heartstrings, and enables the actors to showcase their talent to the world! If it’s a small-sized production, the scriptwriter also ends up directing the whole show. This would involve casting the perfect actor for each role, training them to bring the script for light, deciding how the music, lights and sets would come together for a magical performance.
Got a flair for design and a love for entertainment? Combine the two passions to pursue a career as a set designer! You’ll be the one who goes through the script to come up with sketches and models of what the set in each scene would look like. You would then coordinate with a set construction crew who creates the final design as per your models and sketches. As a theatre set designer, you should build sets that can be easily shifted and replaced between scenes.
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Did Farah Khan, Ganesh Hegde or Remo come to your mind when you read the title? They may focus on films, but films aren’t the only form of entertainment involving music and dance. Ever watched Broadway Musicals? You’ll notice how the elaborate song and dance sequences come to life. There’s a talented choreographer behind each of those! Choreographers also coach students in perfecting their dance moves, which is something you could do between gigs to keep the funds flowing.
A drama therapist helps people dealing with mental issues and trauma using techniques used on stage as therapy. These techniques include improvisation, storytelling, role-play, script work, devising and presenting performances. Drama therapists also use equipment such as imagery, props, puppets, etc., to help their clients overcome personal issues and setbacks, and help them feel better by encouraging self-reflection and awareness. They work with doctors, therapists and psychiatrists to make the therapy sessions work for their clients.
Just like a drama therapist, a music therapist uses music to help clients overcome mental health issues, personal setbacks and loss. They enable clients to explore music as an option for self-expression and soul-searching. Music therapists also work with doctors and other therapists. They use music, musical instruments and even encourage clients to sing for soothing themselves and dealing with their issues.
Both drama and music therapists share their assessments and notes with the clients’ therapists, and optimise the results of the sessions.
All set for a career in performing arts? Click here to figure out which of these careers would be best suited for you, and get started!
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