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How to Join Acting Industry in Kenya

The Kenyan acting industry has experienced exponential growth since the days of Tausi, Vitimbi, and other pioneer TV shows.

We are now talking about our Kenyan content going global on streaming platforms like Netflix.

Such significant strides prove that Kenya is a home of talent.

Even the rise of YouTube and other social media channels has improved things.

Kenyans are spoilt for choice when selecting content to watch. 

The acting industry has produced great talents; you could join them if you have a passion for the screen.

Becoming an actor/actress in Kenya is very simple.

 Instead of waiting to make it to the local TV shows and Netflix, you can start with what you have by creating a YouTube channel or posting short videos on Facebook or Instagram.

It is the easiest way to land acting roles because you already have something to show for it.

So, which qualifications do you need for acting?

Qualifications for acting in Kenya

When venturing into the Kenyan acting industry, you need to meet specific requirements because the industry has stiff competition, hence the need to do several things to stand out.

Below are the most important things you should pay attention to for you to meet the demands of the Kenyan acting industry:

You need an acting background

 Enrolling in an acting school is one way to attain acting knowledge.

One can join several acting schools in Kenya, such as Invisible Crown in Kileleshwa, Kenya Film School, and Africa Film & Television Talent Training Institute (AFTTI).

Another way of creating an acting background is by creating videos and posting them on social media channels.

The online exposure and viewers’ feedback will help prepare you for more significant acting roles as you will work on your weakness and maximize your strength.

Acquire extra skills

In addition to acting, work on possessing different skills. What happens if you encounter an acting role that requires you to drive, yet you’ve never done driving lessons?

What about swimming? It is crucial to have such extra skills because they place you at a competitive advantage when auditioning.

Be versatile

Be versatile or simply be someone who can play different roles.

It helps when you can play the villain, hero, outgoing, mean, timid characters as they come.

 There is no doubt that certain specific roles suit some actors very well, but you need to prove that you can pull off several characters when required.

You never know when a particular actor will fail to show up during shooting, and the casting director may contact you to fill in. 

List of Acting Agencies in Kenya

Now that you know what it takes to kickstart a groundbreaking acting career in Kenya, how about familiarizing yourself with various acting agencies in Kenya?

Acting agencies act as a linkage between actors and producers or directors.

They find suitable actors for multiple roles as requested by directors.

Most acting agencies also double up as modeling agencies.

Below is a list of acting agencies in Kenya you can link up with for a chance to venture into the acting industry:

  • Msafi Modelling Agency
  • Bicfest Kenya Talent Academy
  • Aftermath Modelling Agency
  • Versatile Model & Talent Kenya
  • Eyez Modelling Agency

How to find the latest acting auditions in Kenya

Finding acting auditions in Kenya should be easy now that we live in a digital era where information is made available online in a snap of a finger.

Here are several ways to find acting gigs:

  • You can find acting auditions advertised in newspapers and radio, but the Internet is more reliable. You can follow social media pages that post acting openings and auditions to take advantage of all opportunities. You can also subscribe or sign up on websites (Star Now, Medioq, etc.) that post audition information to get timely notifications. 
  • Get a casting agent: You can link up with a casting agent whose responsibility is to inform you when suitable roles arise so that you can attend the auditions. That way, you will stay updated on any openings and jump into action.
  • Network with like-minded people and professionals in the acting industry. Attend events that unite Kenyan actors and exchange contacts as you network and make new friends. Through networking, you can learn of the latest auditions and act swiftly. 

How to get an audition on Netflix in Kenya

Netflix has penetrated the Kenyan market, and there is no going back.

You can be part of the change if you successfully audition on Netflix.

Netflix relies on Kenyan production companies that hire casting directors to find suitable actors for various characters.

You need to use the tips shared above on finding the latest acting auditions to audition for Netflix. 

How much do Kenyan actors get paid?

The Kenyan acting industry is still growing, indicating that the pay may not meet Nollywood’s or Hollywood’s expectations, but it is on an upward trend.

Local TV actors in Kenya reportedly make between 5,000 and 25,000 per episode.

The pay is factored by experience, influence, budget, and TV station. Citizen TV, for example, pays more than NTV, KTN, and KBC.

 Leading actors in Kenyan movies allegedly earn between 100,000 and 150,000, while supporting actors make 60,000.

On the other hand, Netflix actors earn depending on how much it pays for a licensed African film.

The global streaming platform reportedly pays African countries between $5000 and $70,000 per film.

Kenyan child actors earn almost as much as adult actors. 

How do actors remember their lines?

Acting may seem complicated when remembering lines and sticking to the script.

However, you get used to it as your acting career progresses.

Actors remember their lines by reading and repeating them severally.

Others achieve it by recording themselves, reading their line, and listening to them out loud.

Another way actors remember their lines is by reading the whole script and borrowing it down to their lines. 

Kenyalogue Contributor

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