To The Parents of Performers

by | Apr 1, 2024 | 0 comments

Normally our blogs are targeted towards SSPA students, prospective students, or any young artist considering a career in performance.  This month however, in a change of pace, we’re writing to you, the parents/adults/grown-ups of young artists.  

Firstly, thank you, we see you.

We see you driving every hour under the sun to evening and weekend classes.  We see you waiting in the halls, the car parks, under shelters while class finishes.  We see you sewing (or learning to sew) any and all kinds of costumes and figuring out all manner of hairstyles for any production.  Being the responsible grown up of a performer is a full on side-hustle, so from all of us, thank you for coming along for the ride too. 

We understand the importance of parental encouragement and support in nurturing the talents and aspirations of budding young actors, dancers, and musicians.  We also totally get the concerns any adult might have if their young person said ‘I want to be an Actor’. In this blog-post we’ll explore the numerous benefits of pursuing a career in the arts and provide practical tips on how you can support anyone along their creative journey.

The Lucrative Industry of the Arts: 

Contrary to common misconceptions, the arts industry in the UK is a thriving and lucrative field. From West End productions to film and television, there are abundant opportunities for talented individuals to excel and find success. According to recent statistics, the creative industries contribute billions to the UK economy annually, offering stable and rewarding career paths for those with a passion for the arts. So rest assured, supporting dreams in the arts can lead to fulfilling and financially sustainable futures.

Transferable Skills for Future Careers: 

Beyond the stage and screen, training in performing arts instills a wide range of transferable skills that are invaluable in any career path. From communication and teamwork to creativity and problem-solving, young performers develop skills that are highly sought after in today’s competitive job market. Whether they pursue a career in acting or choose a different path, their training in the performing arts will serve as a solid foundation for success in any field they choose to pursue.

Long Lasting Social Connections:

To this day, my friends and peers from my amateur dramatic days remain my closest network of fantastic individuals.  Within that group there are now West End performers, agents, directors, producers, radio hosts, business owners, voice over artists, all enjoying incredible success and all ready to jump in and support one another when needed.  The arts fosters a sense of community like no other through a mix of shared passions and values.  That kind of network is invaluable in setting you up for future success.

Personal Development and Growth: 

Perhaps the most significant benefit of pursuing a career in the arts is the personal development and growth it fosters in young performers. Through their experiences on stage, they learn resilience in the face of challenges, confidence in their abilities, and the importance of self-expression. The arts provide a platform for young individuals to discover their voice, explore their creativity, and develop a strong sense of identity and purpose. As parents, witnessing your child’s personal growth and artistic journey is truly rewarding and enriching.

Ways to Support Young Actors:

At its simplest, showing up for your young person is enough.  You can do that, in a number of ways:

  • Encourage and nurture their passion for the arts by attending their performances and showcasing pride in their achievements.  
  • Provide opportunities for them to participate in workshops, classes, and extracurricular activities to further develop their skills and network with other aspiring artists.
  • Advocate for their artistic pursuits by engaging with teachers, mentors, and industry professionals to support their aspirations and access opportunities for growth.
  • Foster a positive and supportive environment at home where creativity is celebrated, and challenges are seen as opportunities for growth and learning.
  • Take an interest in their performing interests, look up things like the Oscars, Olivier and Tony Awards.  Watch a National Theatre at Home production one night.
  • Help them strike a balance between their artistic pursuits and academics, ensuring they have the time and resources to excel in both areas of their lives.

Trust us when we say we understand there may be some anxieties about any young person pursuing an artistic career, especially in the world today, but now more than ever the world needs artists and even if someone doesn’t become the next DiCaprio or Streep, posing that dream can be so incredibly rewarding in the long run.


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