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Career and Education Opportunities for Actors in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Actors can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Winston-Salem, North Carolina area. About 370 people are currently employed as actors in North Carolina. By 2016, this is expected to shrink by 6% to about 350 people employed. This is not quite as good as the national trend for actors, which sees this job pool growing by about 12.8% over the next eight years. Actors generally play parts in stage, television, or motion picture productions for entertainment, information, or instruction.

The average wage in the general category of Theater, Film, and Television jobs is $23 per hour or $47,920 per year in North Carolina, and an average of $29 per hour or $64,430 per year nationwide. Jobs in this field include: acrobat, aerialist, and illusionist.

There are four schools within twenty-five miles of Winston-Salem where you can study to be an actor, among eighteen schools of higher education total in the Winston-Salem area. The most common level of education for actors is less than a high school diploma. You can expect to spend only a short time studying to be an actor if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Actor

Actor video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, actors play parts in stage, television, or motion picture productions for entertainment, information, or instruction. They also interpret serious or comic role by speech, gesture, and body movement to entertain or inform audience.

Actors study and rehearse roles from scripts so as to interpret, learn and memorize lines, stunts, and cues as directed. They also attend auditions and casting calls so as to audition for roles. Equally important, actors have to work closely with directors and playwrights to discover the interpretation most suited to the role. They are often called upon to learn about characters in scripts and their relationships to each other in order to optimize role interpretations. They are expected to portray and interpret roles, using speech and body movements so as to entertain or instruct radio, film or live audiences. Finally, actors coordinate with other crewmembers responsible for lighting and props.

Every day, actors are expected to be able to speak clearly. They need to articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for actors to promote productions using means such as interviews about plays or movies. They are often called upon to sing and/or dance during dramatic or comedic performances. They also construct puppets and ventriloquist dummies, and sew accessory clothing, using hand tools and machines. They are sometimes expected to read from scripts or books to narrate action or to inform or entertain audiences, utilizing few or no stage props. Somewhat less frequently, actors are also expected to ready and perform action stunts for motion picture or stage productions.

Actors sometimes are asked to write original or adapted material for dramas or other performances. They also have to be able to introduce performances and performers so as to stimulate excitement and direct smooth transition of acts during events and perform original and stock tricks of illusion to entertain and mystify audiences, occasionally including audience members as participants. And finally, they sometimes have to ready and perform action stunts for motion picture or stage productions.

Like many other jobs, actors must be reliable and believe in an agile approach to problem solving and deal with change.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Winston-Salem include:

  • Artistic Director. Audition and interview performers to select most appropriate talent for parts in stage, television, or motion picture productions.
  • Choreographer. Create and teach dance. May direct and stage presentations.
  • Dancer. Perform dances. May also sing or act.
  • Director. Interpret script, conduct rehearsals, and direct activities of cast and technical crew for stage, motion pictures, or radio programs.
  • Fine Artist. Create original artwork using any of a wide variety of mediums and techniques.
  • Music Composer. Write and transcribe musical scores.
  • Music Director. Direct and conduct instrumental or vocal performances by musical groups.
  • Musician. Play one or more musical instruments in recital, in accompaniment, or as members of an orchestra, band, or other musical group.
  • Producer. Plan and coordinate various aspects of radio, television, or motion picture production, such as selecting script, coordinating writing, directing and editing, and arranging financing.
  • Program Director. Direct and coordinate activities of personnel engaged in preparation of radio or television station program schedules and programs.
  • Singer. Sing songs on stage, radio, or motion pictures.
  • Technical Director. Coordinate activities of technical departments, such as taping, editing, and maintenance, to produce radio or television programs.
  • Writer. Create original written works.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Actor Training

University of North Carolina School of the Arts - Winston-Salem, NC

University of North Carolina School of the Arts, 1533 South Main St., Winston-Salem, NC 27117-2189. University of North Carolina School of the Arts is a small university located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 881 students and an admission rate of 44%. University of North Carolina School of the Arts has a bachelor's degree program in Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts which graduated eighteen students in 2008.

High Point University - High Point, NC

High Point University, 833 Montlieu Ave, High Point, NC 27262-3598. High Point University is a small university located in High Point, North Carolina. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,384 students and an admission rate of 74%. High Point University has a bachelor's degree program in Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts which graduated three students in 2008.

North Carolina A & T State University - Greensboro, NC

North Carolina A & T State University, 1601 E Market St, Greensboro, NC 27411. North Carolina A & T State University is a large university located in Greensboro, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,148 students and an admission rate of 56%. North Carolina A & T State University has a bachelor's degree program in Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts which graduated ten students in 2008.

Wake Forest University - Winston Salem, NC

Wake Forest University, 1834 Wake Forest Road, Winston Salem, NC 27106. Wake Forest University is a medium sized university located in Winston Salem, North Carolina. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,862 students and an admission rate of 38%. Wake Forest University has a bachelor's degree program in Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts which graduated one student in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

AmSAT Certified Teacher: Certified Alexander Technique Teachers have completed a 3 year, 1600 hour course at an AmSAT certified teacher training center.

For more information, see the American Society for the Alexander Technique website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Winston-Salem, North Carolina photo by File Upload Bot

Winston-Salem is situated in Forsyth County, North Carolina. It has a population of over 217,600, which has grown by 17.1% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Winston-Salem, 83, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Winston-Salem cost $76,600 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, 1,032 new homes were built in Winston-Salem, down from 1,706 the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Winston-Salem are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, health care, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 30.3% of Winston-Salem residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 11.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Winston-Salem is 9.0%, which is less than North Carolina's average of 10.6%.

The percentage of Winston-Salem residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 50.4%, is more than both the national and state average. Wachovia Arbor Church, Mount Zion Church and Hope Church are all churches located in Winston-Salem. The largest religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Moravian Church in America.

Winston-Salem is home to the Stafford Center and the Dixie Classics Fairgrounds as well as Forest Park and Mineral Springs Park. Shopping centers in the area include College Plaza Shopping Center, College Village Shopping Center and Club Haven Shopping Center.