Recently, I was lucky enough to go to the opening night of ‘In the Next Room or The Vibrator play’. It was a wonderful night with a few of Australia’s stars of theatre out to see the show and enjoy a few drinks together afterwards. But while I was in the corner with my glass of bubbly, standing next to my parents, a question arose in my mind – how do you go about making connections with other people in the industry? How do you even go about introducing yourself to Cate Blanchett who just made a speech and seems to not be talking to anyone at the moment? Or congratulate Jacki Weaver on her Oscar nomination without looking like a crazed fan?
Here are some of the things I have learnt, nothing is concrete or gospel, just ideas.
People you have never met but admire, those who are famous, or working in the industry. These people are a thrill to meet and it can often be quite intimidating to approach them, if you are unsure, wait for a moment when they are not taking part in a conversation. Remember, they are just people, like your friends and family. I say this for two reasons, one so you will be confident to approach them and two to avoid the gushy, ‘I’m your biggest fan’ moments. Obviously, be polite, introduce yourself and speak to them for a few moments and excuse yourself, after all they will want to speak to their friends.
Always speak to people who you have met before, for example, you attended a workshop that they were teaching at. They may need reminding of who you are but to chat, even for a moment can help strengthen the connections you have already made.
Friends and peers, people you have trained with or know through other ways. These people will be your peers for quite some time. Introduce them to the people you have already made connections with and hopefully they will do the same for you. Social networking away from the computer.
Going to an event is not the only way you can develop these connections. The workshops and open classes that you hear about can also be really good development tools. These events are there to develop the skills you need to work in the professional industry and if that isn’t enough reason to go to as many as you can, you get to work with your peers, and industry professionals who can offer you invaluable knowledge about the industry. Often at these events you will get more than, point your toes more or instruction on your vocal control, those who run workshops will also share their knowledge about being in the industry.
Making connections within the industry is so important. These networks can help you when you’re in a bind, provide friends in a new job or even help you to get that job. We all know how hard it is to break into this industry and that a lot of your previous work can go towards helping you get your next job so if you can make sure that people know you when you are auditioning for that job then it just might help. It can’t hurt.
By Alexandra Chamber

Related Posts