NOTE: Musical Theatre and Vocal Performance resumes are slightly different. There is a separate Vocal Performance post in the Vocal Performance category. Acting resumes are almost identical to this, you just drop off the singing oriented content areas. Otherwise, the rest is the same.
Your resume is your chance to show the faculty what you’ve been doing to prepare for a serious career in musical theatre. There are a couple of general rules to follow:
1) Don’t lie – REALLY!
2) Don’t exaggerate!
3) Be accurate. Double check for spelling errors and make sure you have the correct title and name of each organization/company/person
4) Don’t worry if it is short – you’re young, we don’t expect a 4 page resume
5) No more than 1 page. If you have more than one page, get rid of the small roles first, then the oldest roles, next.
What we are looking for
This varies and as in all other areas of this process, its not worth trying to figure out. For example, if you come in and sing incredibly but only have two items on your resume, we could be impressed and fascinated at how no one has noticed your talent until now. If we have a chance to get you, we will feel like we are the ones who discovered you. On the other side, if you sing, dance, and act terribly but have an impressive resume, we could possibly think you had a bad day OR we could think your resume is made up or that the companies you performed with are Pay-To-Sing programs or other low level theaters. We can read a lot into it, so don’t try to guess at what we want to see, just list the truth in an easy to read format.
There are some differences between professional and collegiate resumes. For instance, you never list years of productions on a professional resume, instead you list the director’s last name in the same position. But I like dates on collegiate resumes because it gives me some idea of how long you have been pursuing this, how your performing career has evolved, etc. While the training information is really useful on a collegiate resume, professionals are usually not as interested in who you’ve trained with unless you are just getting started out of undergrad. Professional casting directors are also not that interested in workshops and camps. However, for those of us on the other side of the table at collegiate auditions, it provides useful information.
Use the resume below as a guideline. To help you create your own, I’ve included a downloadable Word Document of the same resume that you can use to plug in your own info. If you have Film/Television experience, add that category under Theatre, same format except Show may become “PBS Kids Promo”, Company may become “WSKG” and in this case, year can be helpful. If you have recording experience, list is under a category of “Recordings”. If the recording was self produced for Grandma, Mom, Dad, and friends, leave it off. If you recorded it with your garage band and released it to iTunes, that shows business skill, list it as: Album Name (Role slot), Band (Show), Released on iTunes (Company), Year (Year). It could be a good conversation starter especially since Broadway has gone pop.
We’re really not as interested in community service, grades, or any of the other traditional resume info on your performance resume. If a school wants that information, it is usually listed in your academic file and we can easily access that as needed.