“Keep on keeping on.” We can thank Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for that phrase he uttered in a 1964 speech…a phrase many consider redundant and perhaps hackneyed several decades later, and yet still has a lot of meaning for the struggling actor. I have heard many actors talk about giving up because they feel their training and the ton of auditions have led to little or no recognition from Casting Directors, let alone bookings. I also know many actors who have persevered and have been successful.
My experience has shown that even at my advanced age, good things happen if you persevere. However, it wasn’t always that way. When I put away my microphone as a broadcaster nineteen years ago and moved to Texas, I found that I needed to be active to feel alive and useful. I thought about going back to my first love, which was acting, but thought that age 60 was way too old to start again. However, to quote another hackneyed phrase, I decided to throw caution to the wind. I continued training and joined others much younger than me in workshops and classes. There were times that nothing seemed to be going my way and I was ready to just give up on my love of acting, but I loved the craft so much that I decided to keep going.
The first few years brought little success; maybe an occasional role as an extra (which should never be added to your resumé), however, I continued training and managed to land an agent in Austin. During the past twelve years, I have booked co-star roles in five network series, to include a role in an NBC pilot that was to be a recurring character. There have been supporting roles in a couple of indies and a few short films and, after moving to Florida five years ago, a lead role in a Hallmark film and, post-pandemic, a co-star role in a series for the Disney channel. Eighteen years ago, I found it difficult to get an agent. Today I am represented by agents in Orlando, New York, Honolulu, and London.
I am 79 years-old and have no thoughts of leaving the business that I love so much. I will continue to audition, and I will continue to accept rejection until that next booking again happens.
I will keep on keeping on.