FAQs for Unrepresented Performers on Spotlight
The world of performing can be a challenging and rewarding one but what if you have to, or choose to navigate it on your own, without an agent? Whilst young performers must have an agent to appear on Spotlight not every performer needs or wants an agent.
So what does Spotlight ‘look like’ when you appear as a ‘c/o Spotlight’ (unrepresented) performer on our platform? Please note: Young performers cannot appear on Spotlight unless they have an agent.
- On your profile next to your name, Spotlight’s contact details will show in place of an agent
- Appearing ‘c/o Spotlight’ doesn’t mean Spotlight will work as your agent but it does mean that, like everyone else on the platform, your profile can be seen and searched by all our casting professionals.
- We will pass on any professional casting enquiries directly to you
- Being c/o Spotlight also means you can now submit yourself for work via the Spotlight Link Board
We have some useful advice about working without an agent and being unrepresented means you have to be proactive in promoting yourself. Take a look at our tips for starting out and making your own work. In such a competitive industry it can take some time to be approached about roles or be invited in for an audition so please don’t be disheartened if this does not happen immediately.
What is the Spotlight Link/The Spotlight Link Board?
Performer members have access to the Link Board which is used by casting professionals to send out their latest casting requirements (breakdowns) to agents, and directly to performers. You can see these breakdowns in your jobs feed when signed into your account.
Getting ready to use the Link
There are a couple of things you need to check on your account
- Controlling how you want to be notified about jobs.
- Setting your filters so you only see the kind of jobs you want
Go to ‘My tools and Settings’ where under email alerts you can choose the frequency of alerts or block them completely. Don’t forget you can always see the jobs feed when signed into your account.
Updating your profile
Keeping your Spotlight profile up-to-date is always important but more so if you are self-represented. You never know what a casting director is searching for or how you might catch their eye so making sure your profile looks professional is key. We have lots of advice about how to manage your profile, top tips on headshots and lots of advice on showreels.
How do I suggest myself?
Always read the breakdown very carefully and only suggest yourself when you meet all the criteria outlined. Make sure you are available for all the dates (casting and shoot dates), and don’t submit yourself if you’re not available. To suggest yourself click on the specific breakdown and then click on ‘submit profile’. You can also include additional information in the accompanying text box that you feel is important but remember to keep this concise and relevant.
If you would like to check the roles you have submitted yourself for you can do this by going to your jobs feed and selecting ‘Breakdowns with submissions’ from the dropdown box. Here you will see a full list of breakdowns you have submitted yourself for.
How will I be contacted?
If you self-submit for a role on Spotlight, you will be notified each time that you are sending your email address to the casting director with your submission, so they can get in touch with you directly if they want to take your submission further. Alternatively, if a casting director finds you in a search of our database and wants to get in touch with you with audition information or an availability check etc. then they will be prompted to contact Spotlight so it’s really important to keep your email and phone number up-to-date on your account.
We provide an initial forwarding service for professional enquiries and will send an email to your registered Spotlight email address. If you have also opted-in to receive SMS text messages from us, we will send a text message to your registered number alerting you to check your emails. So please make sure we always have your most up-to-date contact details.
Once you have received the email from us, please reply directly to the casting director and you can then liaise with them. Please note that passing on an enquiry should not be seen as our endorsement of the company concerned - we forward on presumed professional enquiries only. Please also be aware that by replying to their email/message they will now have your contact information - Spotlight never provides your contact details to an enquirer and we recommend you never give out further information such as your home address. For more information please see our Terms.
Auditions and your safety
Some auditions will be in person but more frequently initial auditions may be by self-tape. We have lots of advice on the dos and don'ts of self-taping as well as practical technical advice. If you attend a physical casting then you must always ensure it’s at a bona fide studio or office. If in doubt take someone along with you.
If you don’t have an agent to negotiate on your behalf, it’s really important that you make sure you only sign a contract when you are absolutely sure it’s right for you. We have some practical advice and tips for understanding contracts to help you on your way.
Adding a new agent to your profile
If you gain new representation, you will be able to manage which agents appear on your profile from your account. You will be able to search for the agency and then add them yourself and it will appear immediately on your profile. Once a new ‘main agent’ is added to your profile, you’ll no longer be ‘c/o Spotlight’ and your access to the Link Board will automatically revert to ‘read only’ until or unless your new agent changes this setting for you. Agents have the option, on a client by client basis, to provide access as ‘read only’, ‘nudge, or ‘full access’ where you can self-suggest.
Benefits of Spotlight
It is worth noting that the Spotlight Link is only a part of your Spotlight membership. Don’t forget that casting professionals also conduct hundreds of thousands of searches across the platform, searching not only by name but also by skills, accents, languages, previous credits and if you publish video and voice etc, and that is why we always advise you to keep your profile up-to-date!
If you are looking for a new agent, a photographer or a showreel provider a great place to start is Contacts. Also, don’t forget to check out our news and advice section where you can find articles on how to create your best Spotlight profile, a podcast on your working rights, plus videos on achieving the perfect headshot and showreel and much more!
We also offer free career advice sessions, where anything is up for discussion, including photos, profiles, showreels, casting directors and agents (however, it is not possible for us to recommend agents). These sessions are released on the 20th of each month for the following month.
If you have any further questions you can email us at [email protected] or give us a call on 020 7437 7631. And don’t forget to follow us on our social media channels too. We’re here to help.
Here’s a handy reminder of our office hours.