What does an Agent do?

Agents represent Actors, Playwrights, Directors, Producers, Musicians, Voice-over Artists and other professionals in the entertainment industry. Agents act as the middle person between the individual with the talent and the potential employer. 

What are the main responsibilities of an Agent?

  • Arrange auditions and bookings for clients
  • Submit client headshots, showreels, demos and portfolios 
  • Networking - speaking with lots of people and exchanging information who might be able to help you in the future, either professionally or personally
  • Attending events, shows and gigs to scout for new talent
  • Negotiating contracts and fees
  • Acting as a mentor for their clients and offering advice and guidance on decisions that will potentially change their career
  • Arranging publicity and promotion, some Agents pass this to their PR (Public Relations) team
  • Handling media enquiries, fan mail and requests for personal appearances
  • Dealing with work permits

What qualifications do I need to be an Agent?

There are no specific qualifications needed to become an Agent within the theatre industry. However, it may help if you have some form of qualification in one of the following areas:

  • PR (Public Relations)
  • Marketing
  • Business Studies
  • Management Studies
  • Law
  • Performing Arts
  • Economics

Find opportunities to get into theatre here 

What skills do I need to be an Agent?

  • Confidence
  • Organisation
  • Customer service skills and verbal communication
  • Work well under pressure
  • The ability to sell products and services and negotiate 
  • Persistence and determination
  • Attention to detail
  • Ambition and desire to succeed, not only for yourself but your client as well
  • Basic computer skills
  • Strong networking skills

What does a career as an Agent look like?

You can work towards the role of an Agent through applying for positions at talent agencies directly and if you were previously a Performer you can use this experience to your advantage. Most people get their foot in the door via an internship and then working as an Agents Assistant. Your progression is dependent on building a strong reputation, and attracting top clients for your books. Some Agents then go on to work freelance or create their own agency once they’re established. Read our blog ‘How to become a freelancer in theatre’ for some helpful tips. 

How much does an Agent earn?

Agents earn a basic salary and also take commission on any work they get for their client, (this is usually 10% - 20% of what their client is paid) however they will only get a part of this and the rest goes to the agency they work for. If an Agent is freelance they can take the whole commission. 

The above is a guide. Pay, salary or fee can vary depending on the theatre or company, as well as your personal experience. National institutions or commercial productions can pay in excess of the above, with profit-share or community theatre paying less. 

You can find theatre jobs via The Stage Jobs here 


Updated: 7th June 2024

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