Special Guest Blog: Performers and the Pandemic: How to Survive
By Emma Grace Brown
Many professionals who work in people and public-centric occupations have been displaced by the pandemic — particularly those in the performing arts. With venues closed or offering limited performances, it creates a challenge, not only for performing your craft but for financially supporting yourself. Fortunately, for many impacted during the pandemic, technology is helping people get back to work. In the meantime, you can keep performance skills in dance fresh and sharp with Heart and Sole Performing Arts classes.
Work You Can Do From Home
The word “Zoom” is now synonymous with the ability to work anywhere and anytime, doing virtually anything. Consider creative ways you might be able to apply your craft remotely. For example, if you’re an actor, you might offer virtual acting lessons, and if you’re a singer, live-streamed performances could help you expand your reach into a whole new direction. Consider this an opportunity to widen your audience and expand your skill sets.
Private Parties and Events
Some special event venues are beginning to reopen, which could provide an opportunity for socially distanced one-man or -woman shows. Many comedians have been taking to venues like drive-in theaters or remote stage-based performances. Look for opportunities to entertain remotely at corporate events, weddings, community performance pavilions, or outdoor festivals. New venues are popping up everywhere.
Be an Artist-for-Hire
Online job boards have been going gangbusters since the pandemic started, with companies and organizations looking for top talent and professionals looking for new ways to work. You might be surprised at the volume of opportunities available for performers. For example, if you have the best girl voice ever, you can find freelance voice-over opportunities with media companies and corporations. Writers are in demand for scripting work, while actors are being solicited for a variety of projects, ranging from corporate videos to Indie film projects.
Expand Your Repertoire
The pandemic has forced a lot of people to find ways to alter their careers, making adjustments as necessary and being willing to take slightly different paths than they might have intended in the past. You could find that when you start looking at ancillary opportunities connected to your skill sets that you discover a new passion or path to pursue. Be open to opportunity, ask for recommendations and referrals, and join virtual artist communities to support one another through this unusual point in time. The Displaced Artists Fund can also be a resource while you’re getting back on your feet.
Work as a Consultant
Many people are turning to consulting as a way to get through the pandemic slowdown, and some are even finding it to be a fulfilling and lucrative venture they want to pursue full time. For example, you might be a consultant for an art gallery in designing live and virtual shows, manage a tour, teach, or write a blog about the best tips in your line of work. Keep in mind that, even if you don’t want to do this type of work long-term, it can be a viable way to earn money and build connections in your industry over the short term.
It’s not easy to feel displaced from a profession you love, especially when it’s a situation beyond your control. Continue looking for creative ways to practice your craft. You’ll be poised and ready to go when the world starts to get back to a normal tilt and people begin to crave the mental and emotional stimulation that only comes from the performing arts.