I've always wanted to become an actor, But at times I'm scared!!! Please Help!!?

Hi, I'm 22 years old and I've always wanted to become a great actor all my life since I was about 4 or 5..I've had such a strong passion for it and I act every single day on my own time alone and I find myself doing a great job! But problem is, I freeze when it comes to acting in front of people that i'm not comfortable with! Thats where I have doubts, but at the same time I can't stop desiring acting! I totally put myself in the characters shoes when watching movies. And I even act out all my favorite movies and find myself getting immersed and being so blown away by great performances that totally inspire me!

So everyday I constantly dream on and on about being that awesome character that inspires me in these movies, even creating my own hero character, or evil character, becoming a supporting actor, lead actor. I even try to become a variety of different personalities all the time! I've been doing this for years and years! But I always hesitate to do it in front of people because I've never been used to acting in front of people! :/ Only alone. I wish I could get that comfort I have with myself when I'm alone and use that acting ability in front of people.

I used to act in a high school movie making class and the people that were my friends were pretty much in that class so I felt comfortable acting in front of them since they were all my friends. And I and one of my friends made a movie and practically directed it ourselves, I was the main actor and the movie won first place at a competition! I was confident in making that movie and somehow it turned out to be a success in high school! Now I was thinking of taking theater in college to knock the fears of acting in front of people out of me... So would that be a good idea? I wanted to start small so that I can get used to it until I find myself confident enough to take on bigger things so that I can be in the movies that I've wanted to be in! Would this be a good idea? Thanks.


ummm.. if I didn't want to act gisellesparrow, I wouldn't be on yahoo answers asking anyone for some advice now would I? An NBA player had a passion to play in the NBA, but there most likely was a time where he had doubts of ever making it cause it's such a huge leap! And i've heard of many famous actors who said that auditioners would tell them "Your not good enough!" Or "You'll never make it!" And the actor ends up doing the exact opposite! He makes it and then some! So please don't sound like those auditioners! If I had this passion all my life, I DEFINATELY want to act, I just need a first step to get rid of my fears of acting in front of strangers. I pleased with my acting when i'm alone. but am afraid in front of people..Can anyone help me?

I've been acting all my life, just not in front of strangers... I love acting. I just need to know if going to college to take theater would remove my fears of letting out that side of me that only comes out when I'm alone.

5 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    It's harder than it sounds, but the secret is to know that you can do it and stop worrying about it.

    Improvisational master-teacher Keith Johnstone writes about this in his book Impro for Storytellers. He says that people overthink things and make them more complicated than they have to be.

    For example, place a plank one foot wide on the ground. Make it about 100 feet long.

    Walk it.

    It's easy, right? You can walk it, even run it without fear and without mistake.

    Now, take away the ground, put the 100-foot plank over a ravine 400 feet deep and what happens? You can no longer walk it. You freeze. You doubt yourself and your ability. Even if you can muster the courage to walk it, you move slow and ploddingly (you'd actually probably do better moving faster because your automatic muscle memory takes over, but you just can't get your legs to move). A minute ago you were running it, but now you're scared of what failure means.

    Earlier, failure was a stumble, a scraped knee; now it is death.

    But, the secret is: failure doesn't mean much. Not in theater. You AREN'T going to fall 400 feet. You AREN'T going to die. At most, you don't get cast. Then you go away, rehearse some more, come back, and try again. No loss.

    So the key is to always pretend--TO KNOW even--that the plank you are so scared of . . . it's always on the ground.

    It never left the ground.

    You did.

    Once you can see that, you can run again.

    Trust yourself, take a deep breath, don't fear what you want and love, don't over think it. Yes--practice, rehearse, work hard and often at it, but don't put more weight on it than it is worth. That's what makes it scary. Try out often, watch other plays and study their acting, take classes in acting and speaking and improvisation. Dedicate yourself . . . but don't overthink it. Make it always fun, always on the ground, always doable and you can and will do it.

    I really encourage you to study some improv if you can find classes in your area (even outside of the college at a local theater or comedy club). It helps take away the fear of mistakes, because they become opportunities. Chances to enhance the monologue and add character. And once you know how to deal with the unexpected, you can deal with a stumble and get back on track easier, instead of worrying how the stumble came across. It builds confidence that you can handle any situation with ease and a nimble adaptability.

    And yes, take some acting classes. Everyone will be in the same boat of nervousness and inexperience. And just taking a class or two doesn't mean you have to perform, just learn.

    If you want this, do this. Period. Face your fear, take some risk, and make it happen. No one EVER succeeds by NOT trying.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I think that you are on the right tract. I love acting too and do all the same things I used to get nervous but the more you get in tuned with a character the less nervous you get. At least that is what i believe you just need to be more confident in yourself and you will be great I believe in you. The thing you have to remember most is to have fun with it don't let your nerves take over if you are having fun you won't be as nervous. Taking acting classes in college is always a good idea b/c you won't know anyone in the class it would help you be more confident in front of people you don't know. Hope this helps and that your career skyrockets. lol

    by the way i am 18 been acting since i was 5

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  • 1 decade ago

    You sound like you have a passion for acting remember most actors use stage fright to fuel there acting i have been acting since i was about 8 years old i started small in grade school and now i own my own professional dinner theatre company my motto is its never too late to learn how to act i am constantly auditioning 20-40 year olds with no acting experience and within a few months u would never know that they were beginners as a director i can tell you go for it but understand being an actor is hard sometimes u get paid sometimes u dont sometimes u have work sometimes u dont also try both theatre and film acting they are different from each other u will also learn what talents u have like singing character acting dancing heres what i think try it and see what ya like break a leg out there!

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  • 1 decade ago

    Sure it's a good idea. If you want to attempt to have a career as an actor you are going to have to dispense with your fear one way or the other. Whether it's theater or in front of a film crew you are never going to not have an audience. As a film producer I can tell you right now that I nor any director I know would have the patience for your shyness. As a professional you need to get over yourself and get on with it. Everyone suffers a crisis of confidence, that's nothing new, it's all about how you keep it moving.

    Source(s): Film producer
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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    You say you freeze up when you have to act in front of a crowd?

    Then you don't want to act.

    Acting in its fullest extent should be a passion.

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