Writing Your Resume in Four Easy Steps

sample resume

When you start filling out your NTSA application, one of the first questions asks you to upload your resume. “Wait a second!” you might be thinking, “I don’t have a resume!” You might not have one right now  — but you can create one in ten minutes or less using these simple steps.

1. The Basics

Every resume starts off with some basic information: your full name, your email address, and your phone number. In case your resume gets separated from the rest of your application, we still want to be able to contact you. If you have a website or a professional social media account (like a YouTube channel or Instagram account where you exclusively post footage of yourself performing), you can also include that address at the top of your resume as well.

2. Previous Roles

You may only have a few previous roles on your resume. That’s completely alright. You don’t need a lot of experience to have a lot of talent! List any production from your high school, college, or a summer training program under Educational and list any production from a community theatre or professional regional theatre under Professional. If you’ve had any Film, Television, or Commercial experience, you can list those in their own individual sections. Again, if your only experience has been in your high school theatre department, and you only have an Educational section on your resume, that’s great! There’s nothing that gets us more excited than discovering brand-new talent from across the United States! Just be honest and up-front about the work that you've done. Never invent productions to make yourself look more impressive than you actually are. We just want to be impressed by your audition videos!

When you list your credits, you want to start with the title of the production (ex. Little Shop of Horrors), your role/position in the production (ex. Seymour or Costume Designer), the company that produced the show (ex. your high school or the community theatre), and the director’s name. Always list the director’s name on the off-chance that the casting director or someone else on-staff has heard of her/him. Maybe we’ve heard about your high school drama teacher and know that she has a particularly rigorous program. That tells us you’ll probably be able to handle the intense day-to-day schedule at NTSA. 

3. Training

You can also divide your training into sections: specifically Acting, Dance, and Vocal. Just like with previous productions, make sure to list the names of your instructors, just in case we’ve heard of them. Only list training that you've completed over a sustained period of time. For example, a musical theatre boot camp that you attended for an entire week (with eight hours a day of instruction) would be worth putting down in the training section. A one-hour introduction to stage combat that you attended at your local Thespian Festival would not. You can also list speciality units that you’ve completed at your high school. You shouldn't create a list of the basic acting skills that everyone learns during high school here (ex. scene study, script analysis, etc.); you should only be listing units that you’ve completed that are particularly unusual or relevant to the production that you're auditioning for (ex. theatrical clowning, commedia dell’arte, physical theatre, devised theatre, etc.).

When you list your dance experience, make sure to list every type of dance you’ve taken (ex. ballet, hip-hop, modern, etc.), along with how many years.

You may also want to list your vocal range here (ex. soprano, mezzo-soprano, alto, etc.)

4. Special Skills

Never underestimate the ability of the Special Skills section to help you out during an audition! We want to know about everything you can do that might come in-handy onstage or offstage. Have you been sewing your own clothes for years? Put that down! (If you can list the types of sewing machines that you feel comfortable working with, even better!) We want to know if you’re an experienced photographer who’s taken all of your friends’ headshots, if you're the captain of your school’s cheerleading team and an expert at floor gymnastics, if you did all of the vocal arrangements for your high school’s a cappella group, if you play the accordion in the community polka band, or if you speak six languages (and can say “hello” in at least seven more). You never know what might be useful in a show, so list anything and everything that a director might find interesting!

Definitely make sure to list the following:

  • Gymnastics and cheerleading experience
  • Artistic skills
  • Technical theatre skills
  • Photography/videography skills
  • Foreign language proficiency (including ASL)
  • Musical instrument proficiency
  • Stage combat skills
  • Athletic skills (especially martial arts, kickboxing, etc.)
  • Circus skills

Make sure you only list skills that you know you’re outstanding at! We don’t want to know about your beginner French — but if you’ve placed in the National French Contest for three years running or you’re currently enrolled in AP French Language, definitely write that down!

If you have any questions about creating your resume or just need a little extra support, feel free to email us. We're looking forward to receiving your NTSA application!

Posted on Oct 23, 2017 in Auditions  

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