Frequenty asked questions (FAq)
What does an agent actually do?
The role of a drama agency such as Centrestage is to find professional work for our artists appropriate to each individual performer’s skill-level and profile. We are the first point of contact for casting directors and producers who are looking to cast a particular role and it is our job to know where each of our artist’s abilities lie so that we can put forward the right person for the right role.
It is our job to arrange auditions for the artist and to ensure that they have all the necessary information to audition well. Once the performer has been offered the role, then it is our responsibility to ensure that the terms of employment and fees are satisfactory and abide by industry standards.
A good agent will also take the time to build a relationship with their actors so that they are in a position to guide each performer along their chosen career path.
What’s the difference between a theatrical agent and a casting director?
A casting director does not represent actors. They are employed by the producers of a particular project to organise and carry out the casting process.
How do I know Centrestage is a reputable agency?
Centrestage's director Ian White is a member of the Australian Drama Agents Association – an industry body that exists to regulate and promote proper practice amongst drama agents. Their aim is to promote a minimum professional standard of operation for theatrical agencies and to ensure that their members comply with certain ethical guidelines.
Do your research. Talk to people that are already members of our agency or ask casting offices such as Chameleon Casting, Nick Hamon Casting, or Casting Sugar about us.
Does my child have to take classes at Centrestage School to be considered for the agency?
No. While we encourage all of our actors to continue training throughout their careers, we do not place any restrictions on where they are able to train. It is advisable if possible to take classes at Centrestage as then teachers and agency staff can have a first-hand knowledge of each child’s development and can talk to casting directors with confidence about your child's ability levels. Speak to our agents for other recommendations of reputable training facilities in your area.
Is my child guaranteed work?
Unfortunately no. When we offer representation with our agency, we do try and choose children who are not only talented but who we also feel will be in demand for the current market. However, the industry is very unpredictable and goes through highs and lows We cannot always predict which children will find work over the course of a single year. We are honest with parents about their child’s prospects and we ask parents to keep in mind that a career in the performing arts is usually not created overnight and that it may take several years of hard work and patience on your part and ours before we are able to see significant results. We suggest parents contact the agency from time to time to check in on their child’s progress. We are always happy with time permitting to give feedback and share your child's submission tracker from our database so you can view the types of jobs your child has been put forward for throughout the year.
What sort of work will my child be put forward for?
For younger children, television commercials constitute the majority of work. These can be a great learning experience and lots of fun. Older children will find themselves auditioning for film and television roles, theatre and musical theatre roles, training films and documentaries. We often will also send through reputable unpaid opportunities as well to help expand your child's experience and gain footage for showreels, such as student films and short films.
What about modelling work?
Centrestage is a drama agency and not a modelling agency. While we do receive briefs for all television commercials, we are very rarely approached with catalogue or catwalk work.
Are there fees to join Centrestage Children’s Agency?
Yes. See JOINING for more information.
What commission do you charge?
Centrestage Agency charges the industry standard – 10% (+GST) for all film, television and stage work and 15% (+GST) for all Commercial work.
Do I have to sign a contract?
Yes. All performers will be asked to sign a contract under the terms of which they agree to be represented by Centrestage for the period of one year.
Why does my child have to be on SHOWCAST and CASTING NETWORKS?
In this age of technology, almost all our briefs from casting agents come via email and 90% of those come through the Showcast or Casting Networks websites. If your child is not on these sites, we cannot put them forward for that particular job.
Also, casting directors often use Showcast as a searchable database, so it is important that your child’s details are always up to date. For instance, they may be looking for a 12 year old girl who plays soccer and speaks French. If your child plays soccer and speaks French but these details aren’t listed on the site, they won’t be able to find her.
How much will my child earn?
Fees are dependent upon the type of work.
Television commercials can pay well with a child in a speaking role (LEAD) expecting to earn between $1000 and $3000 depending on the size of the role and how long the commercial is aired. For featured or smaller roles fees can start from around $500 – $800 per commercial.
Film and TV pay less well and under MEAA rulings children in Victoria are only guaranteed 50% of the adult rate. However, as a proactive and reputable agency, Centrestage always strives for our actors to paid at 75% of the adult rate, though unfortunately we cannot guarantee this. Also, as performers gain experience and profile, Centrestage is able to negotiate higher fees on their behalf.
How many actors does Centrestage represent?
Centrestage Agency generally represents between 150 and 200 children ranging from ages 4 to 19.
As an existing member of Centrestage Children’s Agency, am I guaranteed entry into Ian White Management when I turn 20?
No. Entry into the adult agency will depend upon your skill level, training undertaken and our assessment of your professionalism. Some concessions are made for young performers – both by us in the agency and by industry professionals in general – but those concessions do not extended to professional adult actors. We therefore have to be sure that you are ready to follow through your commitment to performing as a career and that you will represent the adult agency in a positive and professional light. The majority of IWM actors are graduates of three-year acting degree courses such as NIDA, WAAPA, and VCA, and therefore the competition level increases exponentially. Decisions are made on an individual basis.