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Being A PITA

September 11, 2013

Hello, everyone. Today I am here to discuss an important topic. As performers, we all have occasional doubt or insecurity in our career. Acting is unlike almost any other business- we have to sell ourselves. There is no product. We ARE the product. We are constantly being judged by our appearance, how we speak, how we act, how we move, and so on. Sometimes it is difficult to have any ground to stand on! We feel like we have no control over our careers.

Being a vocalist, I often face the same dilemma. I send out mailings, I call venues, and I drop off our press packet in person. I am constantly at the mercy of the venues. Will the owner have time to speak with me today… tomorrow… ever? Will the owner pay us enough? Will the owner end up stiffing us, and we will be forced to pay the other musicians we hired out of our own pockets? The ball is definitely in their court. We just have to hope for the best. Recently, my guitarist came up with a code word to help keep me motivated. He often texts me and reminds me to be a “PITA”. This is my definition of being a PITA:

pi·ta (ˈpētə/)

A PITA, short for Pain In The A**, is someone who fights for what they want. They are not rude or overly pushy- however they do not back down. They are consistent, friendly, and confident.

I am not one who normally pushes people. When I am not able to reach a venue owner and have called them at least twice, I begin to lose hope. A PITA would continue to call until said owner was reached, because they know they have something worth fighting for- and the owner needs to give them a chance. I often just give up on the venue. I don’t like to beg for a job. However, recently I have been trying to be more of a PITA. I am never rude or bossy- I am just consistent with my calls to the venues, and I don’t give up as quickly.

The question is, how can we do this as actors? We certainly can’t call casting directors we have auditioned for and push them to give us a job. We can send mass mailings in the hopes that someone will call us in for an audition- but with technology being as prominent as it is, how can we even be sure our headshots aren’t just being thrown in the garbage? Have you used the “PITA” tactic? What ways have you been able to apply it to your career?

The Growing Artist Signature

2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 11, 2013 4:03 pm

    Have you read any of Dallas Travers books or blogs or taken a workshop? She is really good at coaching actors to be professional and confident and consistent without being a pita. I took her workshop recently and have a whole new view on how to do this.

    • The Growing Artist permalink
      September 21, 2013 9:30 pm

      I’ve heard good things about her work. I’ll have to look into her workshops. They sound very helpful!

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