Actors entertain by portraying roles in film, television, radio, and stage productions.

Specialisations: Mime Artist, Voice-over Artist.

You need a high level of acting skill to work as an Actor. Formal qualifications might be useful but aren't essential. Actors often have a bachelor degree.

Tasks

  • Reads scripts and undertakes research to gain understanding of parts, themes and characterisations.
  • Learns lines and cues, rehearses parts, and applies vocal and movement skills to the development of characterisation.
  • Prepares for performances through rehearsals under the instruction and guidance of production directors.
  • Acts parts and portrays roles as developed through rehearsals into film, television, radio and stage productions.
  • Travels between entertainment venues.

All Actors, Dancers and Other Entertainers

  • $1,366 Weekly Pay
  • Strong Future Growth
  • Lower unemployment Unemployment

Actors

  • 1,500 workers Employment Size
  • Very high skill Skill level rating
  • 35% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 44 hours Average full-time
  • 37 years Average age
  • 46% female Gender Share

The number of people working as Actors (in their main job) stayed about the same over 5 years:
from 1,600 in 2011 to 1,500 in 2016.

  • Size: This is a very small occupation.
  • Location: Actors work in many parts of Australia. New South Wales and Victoria have a large share of workers.
  • Industries: Most work in Arts and Recreation Services; Information Media and Telecommunications; and Education and Training.
  • Full-time: Less than half work full-time (35%, less than the average of 66%), showing there are many opportunities to work part-time.
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 44 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 37 years (compared to the average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 46% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Arts and Recreation Services54.9
Information Media and Telecommunications20.7
Education and Training9.4
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services5.7
Other Industries9.3

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateActorsAll Jobs Average
NSW40.831.6
VIC36.025.6
QLD11.220.0
SA4.27.0
WA5.610.8
TAS1.52.0
NT0.21.0
ACT0.41.9

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketActorsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-193.2-5.05.0
20-2412.8-9.39.3
25-3429.1-22.922.9
35-4421.8-22.022.0
45-5417.6-21.621.6
55-595.4-9.09.0
60-644.5-6.06.0
65 and Over5.6-4.24.2

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS, ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationActorsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate6.9-10.110.1
Bachelor degree43.0-21.821.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma15.9-11.611.6
Certificate III/IV5.7-21.121.1
Year 1220.4-18.118.1
Year 112.9-4.84.8
Year 10 and below5.1-12.512.5

You need a high level of acting skill to work as an Actor. Formal qualifications might be useful but aren't essential. Actors often have a bachelor degree.

Membership with the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance may be useful.

Thinking about study or training?

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Search and compare thousands of higher education courses, and their entry requirements from different institutions across Australia at Course Seeker website.
  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Creative Arts and Culture VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

Useful links and resources


The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Actors, Dancers and Other Entertainers who have strong people skills, can communicate well with diverse audiences and are reliable.

Filter Skills & Knowledge

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Fine Arts

    83% Skill level

    Compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

  2. English Language

    67% Skill level

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  3. Communications and Media

    54% Skill level

    Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.

  4. Psychology

    51% Skill level

    Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.

  5. Sociology and Anthropology

    45% Skill level

    Group behaviour and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 27-2011.00 - Actors.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Filter Work Environment

Demands

The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

  1. Work With Work Group or Team

    93% Important

    How important is it to work with others in a group or team?

  2. Contact With Others

    92% Important

    How much do you have contact with people (face-to-face, by telephone, or any other way)?

  3. Physical Proximity

    92% Important

    How physically close are you to other people?

  4. Face-to-Face Discussions

    87% Important

    How often do you talk with people face-to-face?

  5. Public Speaking

    85% Important

    How often do you have to talk to a group of people?

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 27-2011.00 - Actors.

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