Stage Actor

Portray characters in theater productions.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
Highly Variable

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Stage Actors do?

As the saying goes, “All the world’s a stage,” and as a Stage Actor, you know this more than anyone. Stage Actors make the characters of a play or show come to life on stage. You work in theater, telling a story by using different accents, mannerisms, and costumes.

Just like a Film Actor, you have a lot of variety to your job, and there’s really no such thing as a standard day in this career. One day might find you performing a monologue for an audition, while the next might see you rehearsing with a Stage Director for your part in another show. Work in this field isn’t always consistent, and it’s not uncommon for Stage Actors to have a second job while looking for acting gigs.

After you land a part, your life gets a bit more consistent, though busier, too. You spend your evenings in rehearsal, perfecting everything from the delivery of your lines to your facial expressions to the way you move across the stage. Throughout rehearsal, you make slight alterations to your character to better express their background and their motivations. When performing in front of an audience, you want to enthrall, entertain, and transport them into the play and the story of the characters.

Depending on your level of skill and experience, where you work really varies. If you’re one of the best of the best, you could find yourself on Broadway, acting in a play that runs for months or even years. If you’re still growing your craft or waiting for your big break, you might find yourself doing opening nights in community theaters, working for only a few weeks.


Should I be a Stage Actor?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • High Achiever: You love the challenge of tackling difficult work.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.

  • Also known as: Stage Actress, Theater Actor, Theatre Ensemble Member

    How to become a Stage Actor

    Most Stage Actors have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Bachelor's degree to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9cakac&chl=no+college+%2860%25%29|certificate+%2828%25%29||bachelor%27s+%2810%25%29||doctorate+%282%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,60,60
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