Updated: Sep 18, 2018
By Erin Scott
Applying for the entertainment industry can be a daunting task. Each potential job requires a unique resume and seems like a guessing game. How does one get noticed? How does one even make it past the first cut and actually get a chance to interview or audition? Here are some tips on how to create an entertainment resume.
First, make a master resume. This one incorporates everything about you. Start with a header that includes your name and contact information. Be sure your email seems professional (it’s not the time to use the email firstname.lastname@example.org). Most entertainers also include their height with their eye and hair color because some employers have artistic needs for certain physical features.
Next, list all your performance experience. Use the show title, role, location, and year. Think about your plays, television appearances, recitals, and competitions. Maybe you performed at a Spurs Game? Or, perhaps a live performance at your church? Did you choreograph a routine? Direct a play? What about community performances?
Most professionals have a section dedicated to training. They list the year, school name, teacher’s name, and style. Besides your schooling, think about conventions, workshops, and masters classes. You will also want to include a portion for other education, such as if you were a teaching assistant.
Awards and Honors follows education. Use the title of the award, who funded it, and the year. Be sure to include scholarships and specialty awards.
The last section lists your special skills. Sometimes you will get the audition based on your unique talent. Probably 15 people can dance or sing, but who can also roller skate or ice skate? Or speak Spanish? What about riding a unicycle or tumbling? Available for international travel? Experience in stage-fighting or martial arts?
When it’s time to actually apply for the entertainment field, limit the resume you submit to only one page. While your master may be 10 pages, you want to hone in on the education/awards/skills for the job you desire. Is it a musical theatre position that would require jazz, tap, and voice, or a lyrical company that appreciates ballet, modern, lyrical, and contemporary background?
If it is a dance or musical theater resume, place a small headshot relevant to the production at the top right.
You have spent years training and you have what it takes, but when it all comes down to it, your resume is your foot in the door. Make sure your resume is as great as you are.