ONE: Turn up late, don’t worry, if you’re really good they won’t mind, in fact, they’ll probably thank you.
TWO: Don’t learn the lines, just sort of half learn them. It’ll give you the gist, anyway you can pick them up in rehearsal, or kind of improvise them, especially if the writer is dead.
THREE: Show a general disdain for tech people. They’re not exactly gifted, anyone could hang a lantern or paint a bit of set.
FOUR: Be rude to everyone else, it’s the only way of showing them who’s boss. Nice people never get anywhere in the arts.
FIVE: Help the other actors by giving them hints about what they should be doing, offer them little bits of direction during coffee breaks. They’ll thank you.
SIX: Treat the director as if they’re your best pal to their face, and behind their back tell people what you really think. They’ve got too much power, they don’t understand the play and they’ve got no clue about acting anyway!
SEVEN: Be very intense about everything, don’t relax for a second. Help everyone stay on their toes. Keep yourself sharp.
EIGHT: Don’t take part in the warm ups, instead have a coffee and cigarette in view of everyone, they’ll soon learn how the pros do it.
NINE: Name drop on every occasion possible, everyone loves a good anecdote.
TEN: Refuse to do anything the director suggests because the ‘character’ wouldn’t do it. Let them know who’s in charge of the acting department!
Mark Westbrook is a director and acting coach based in Glasgow, Scotland.