There are many career paths, which one can take in the world of performing arts. Broadly they can be split into two categories: on stage and off stage. Many people who initially thought that they wanted to be on stage have ended up behind the camera, or curtain, after discovering their passion or skills actually matched these roles better.
No matter what you want to do in the performing arts industry one must be prepared for the fact that it is a very competitive industry. Though it may appear financially lucrative, very few people make it to this level, but that isn’t to say that you can’t make a comfortable life from performing. Experience is key here and when you start out you really should take any work you can get offered. Broadway and West End star Ruthie Henshall famously got spotted for a role when she was doing the stand in, where another actor takes the role for purposes of technical rehearsal for big stars, for a big name at a concert rehearsal.
There will probably be periods in your career where you won’t have work and you need to make sure that you have the ability to earn money some other way. This could be teaching, working front of house in a theatre, or perhaps you have another talent or skill that you can harness when work isn’t coming your way. Just be prepared. What is also very important is to keep your training up when you are not working, especially if you are a singer and a dancer. While life experience is great from an acting perspective, it won’t help your time steps if you’ve been out of training for a while. You can attend classes, practice at home or even teach at a local theatre school or community center to earn a little cash and also stay in peak performance condition.