An Introverted Actress

"I'm 15. Is that too late to get into musical theatre?"


This might be in my top ten of most asked questions. If the question was "I'm 98. Is that too late to get into musical theatre?" then I'd understand the concern. But even then my answer would probably still be the same because I believe the age old saying is true. 

It's Never Too Late

It is never too late to begin doing something you're passionate about. To start a journey that can only lead somewhere good because it makes you happy. If something makes your heart soar then you should find a way to do it. Even if the steps you take are small. As small a buying a musical theatre soundtrack and singing it in the shower until you know every note and lyric. It's a start. Joining community theatre and am-dram societies or just expressing to a parent, friend or teacher that this is something that would make you happy. If something stirs your passion then even small steps towards it will be worth it.

But let's get onto the really interesting and slightly frustrating part of this question. The asker in this case is 15. What on Earth have we done in society in order to make anyone think that at the age of 15 we are "too late" for anything? Could it be the incessant asking of "what are you going to be when you grow up?"? A question we ask to toddlers, as if they're supposed to know and that answer is never supposed to change. Then again it could be the pressure put on teens as if their time at school cements the next 50 years of their lives. It might be constantly getting told to "grow up and stop acting like a child" when in truth we've lost all sense of what being a child really is and how old we were when we stopped feeling like children. I for one am 28 years old and still feel like a kid, guessing my way through each day of adulthood. 

So is 15 years old too late? Let me put this into perspective...

Alan Rickman (Snape!) didn't apply to drama school until he was 27 and didn't get his first role until he was 32. If you started acting now you've got a 12 year head start on Alan Rickman

Harrison Ford (Han Solo + Indiana Jones) became a carpenter after he tried acting and gave it up. He got back into acting at 38 and landed Star Wars. So you've got a 23 year head start on the guy that flies the Millennium Falcon! 

Most of the actors I work with now don't join drama school until they're 18 and even then I've known people who have gone to drama school in their mid-late twenties and still made it in the profession with as much ease as anyone else. 

I don't want to sound patronising but the simple fact is...15 is still very young. FAR too young to worry about having missed the boat. There are boats coming by every few minutes and it's up to you when you want to get on one. But if you don't get on one now, no biggie. The next one will be along shortly. 

xxx




4 comments

  1. This is a really interesting take on things! I definitely agree that 15 it very young. They can definitely get a good start in the industry. I'm 25 and only just figuring out what I want to do.

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  2. Thank you Carrie! This is something I continue to tell myself everyday. Im 34 and finally pursuing my Musical Theatre career after 15 years of running scared from the thing I both feared and loved the most! One day I hope to work alongside you on the West End! :-) Keep being amazing!

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