One of the most difficult tasks for an aspiring actor in Los Angeles is finding theatrical representation. From my experience, here are the most effective ways to find a theatrical representation:
The most effective way to get theatrical representation is by personal referral. Find out if you know anybody in the entertainment industry willing to give you a referral. You will quickly find that “its all about who you know”.
Most theatrical agents in LA won’t consider taking you on unless you are a member of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG). If you aren’t part of SAG it’s harder for television shows and feature films to hire you because SAG fines them for hiring non-union actors. This makes it harder for you to get called in by casting directors, which lowers the possibility of commission for the agent.
If you are one of the fortunate actors who already have television/film credits, you are way ahead of the game. Casting Directors are more likely to call you in for roles if you have credits under your belt. This increases your chances to work and makes you more enticing to an agent. Remember, they get paid when you get paid.
A theatrical agent will usually want to see what you look like on screen. Do your best to get some film experience and put a short reel together to show your range as an actor. If you don’t have any television or film credits don’t worry. You can accomplish this by acting in a well-shot student film or a friend’s film project you trust.
Find out what agencies you’re right for and target them. There are tiers of agencies in LA based on the status of their clients (from Brad Pitt to unrecognizable TV co-star). Study all the agencies in LA and find out what they’re clients work on. Based on your experience and training, mark the agencies that you would have the best shot with. Be honest with yourself.
Show your talent. Find showcases that are attended by agents you want to be seen by. There are several theaters and networking venues that hold showcases. Look out for them on casting websites and theater bulletin boards. Also do theatre plays. Agents often go to plays to look for talent as well.
Ask your actor friends if they have heard anything good about the agencies you’ve found or if they like the agent they are with. You’ll cut through a lot of the junk agencies if you seek them out by word of mouth.