After working and living in 3
different countries around the world, a lot of actors approach me
and ask “how can I live and work abroad?”
My answer is always the same.
It depends. It depends on where do you want to go, how
much of the world you want to see, and how long you want to stay?
Here’s how actors can work and live abroad:
Working Holiday: Go on Vacation
and work it!
Who’s up for a “working vacation”? When I say
working I don’t mean getting hired and paid. You can get into serious trouble
working in another country without their permission.
When I say “working vacation” I mean going to another
country and work it.
Why not meet up with agents and other industry
professionals? You never know what could come out of it, especially if
you are dancing with the idea of eventually moving their.
There is no harm in asking for advice and building yourself
up to become great.
STUDY or TRAIN ABROAD:
If you are in need of a quick
fix, consider taking a master class or workshop during your
A lot of reputable and internationally recognized
professionals will run and teach workshops.
This may be just the right setting to expand your circle of
friends in an intimate setting, feed your creativity, and have an unforgettable
Want to stayLonger stay:
If you’d desire to stay for a longer period of time
perhaps look at enrolling or apply to an international acting program.
There are so many great programs in the US, Canada, England, and
Just make sure you do your research to find a highly
recognized acting program.
Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to apply to the program, audition,
and go through the visa application process.
GET HIRED TO TRAVEL:
Audition and submit yourself for touring shows. A
lot of tours travel through North America, Europe, and Asia.
Traveling shows can be anything from musicals,
children shows, puppetry, movement, dance, cover bands, concerts, and so
I’d suggest looking for traveling shows of the past, then
research the cast and investigate the casting companies or even agents. Then
figure out how to submit yourself for an upcoming show.
All aboard! Cruise ships hire a lot of actors,
dancers, and singers. Contracts vary and so do the routes.
What tickles your fancy? The Caribbean, the
Mediterranean, Latin America, Australia, Hawaii, Scandinavia, or Alaska.
Contracts are only for a period of time and then can be home
again or extend your contract. It’s up to you.
Just make sure you do your research on cruise lines, the
routes, and ready employee reviews. Not all ships, directors, and cruise lines
will have what you want. Do some homework.
Honey, I’m home!
If you are looking for a more permanent change
then first start with an immigration lawyer. Often the first consultation is
free but double check, different countries have different rules.
After a short encounter, I managed to inspire Noli Beke to
live abroad. She is currently living in London.
An immigration lawyer will help you look at your visa
Don’t be afraid to shop around. The first lawyer you find
might not be your first choice, plus not all lawyers are created equal.
Each country has different rules, regulations and
requirements when it come to visas. Visas vary from country to country and
paperwork as well as systems run differently. Don’t every expect it to be done
fast and quickly.
Consider applying for work visas, visitor visas,
artist visas, and student visas just to give you example.
Make sure you investigate what you need to do in order to
fulfill the requirements.
The other thing that is important to realize is some
visas must be renewed every year or every other year. If you want to be
there for a long time just plan ahead for the next round of visa to save
yourself the stress each year of being approved.
Apply for Citizenship
Were you, your parents, or grandparents born in
another country? Look to see if you can apply for citizenship.
Sometimes there will be an age limit and/or a language
I would again advise you to contact a lawyer and see if you
can apply. As a citizen there are often little or no restrictions
but it can be a much longer process.
Also make sure you don’t have too many citizenship’s for the
country you currently live in. Some countries only permit one unless under
special permission while other countries have little restriction or limit the
number of citizenship’s one person can possess.
I am a retired university theatre professor and program director. I worked as a SAG actor for ten years. I advise aspiring actors for free. I have a free ebook on how to prepare for an acting career. Find it on my web site: http://tao-of-acting.org