Alec Ebert recently graduated from AFTT’s Acting course, so we caught up with him to find out, why acting?
“When I was a tiny human, I used to watch Sesame Street. There was a talk show host, Guy Smiley. I used to perform sketches as Guy Smiley for my family in the living room all the time. I would also constantly mimic ads and television shows, almost as soon as I could talk, much to my mother’s despair. Sorry, Mum. I loved performing for people and making them react to what I was doing and that has never gone away.
My goals when I started at AFTT were to secure a process in my craft and to be confident in myself as an actor (and as a person). Reflecting back over these two years I feel I have come to a place where I do not need to prove that I am an actor to myself or others. I have come to a place where I can call myself an actor. For security of process I have learned many skills under many great tutors from voice to dance to stage combat to singing to script analysis and much more; I am more comfortable expressing myself physically and emotionally and I have learned how to contribute and collaborate with others as an artist. Most importantly, the college has taught me to take risks and challenge myself constantly, to take responsibility for your own process, to learn discipline and that hard work reaps rewards - the place of learning is a place that is not always comfortable! All this has prepared me to a point where I feel I confidently walk in to an audition and show them what I can offer. While I feel learning a skill like acting takes a lifetime, this has been the best beginning and I count myself very fortunate to have studied here.
Our graduation production at the Belvoir Theatre was a real thrill, and a highlight of my time at AFTT - to perform at an iconic theatre and work with our director, Luke Rogers, cemented for me that this is what I was made to do. It was an experience that took us beyond the walls of college. I mean this with great respect to our school - it has been a great place of learning for securing the processes, confidence and skills needed for life after graduation. Going to Belvoir to rehearse made the world of life after graduation a little more real to me - being at a theatre with Belvoir's history was inspiring, but also crystallised for me that the training we have done for the last 2 years is to equip us to not just dream of working at a place like this, but to see it as an achievable goal. It was a taste for me of things to come!
However, all of our performances were a highlight for me - so much practical experience can never be enough. And not forgetting, the lifelong friendships made and the opportunity to meet and work with so many new people (students and wonderful tutors) who share a passion for this industry has been amazing to me.
My plan is to be working and acting in the US in 5 years’ time as a stage, film and theatre actor. I have a great love of all these different forms and want to be in the thick of it. So, for now, I’m working on getting as many auditions as I can! Next month I’ll be heading to LA with fellow graduates Meg, Danen and Jasper from AFTT to perform a few shows of Arthur and Marilyn, a play written by Jasper and directed by Danen.
I’m also in rehearsals for an upcoming production of The Winter’s Tale, directed by Sean O’Riordan, that is running from the end of September to early October. I was worried about not having anything to do at the end of college, so I had a plan to make sure I was working. I think the plan has worked well so far!
A tutor once gave me the advice: Be big, bold and beautiful. To my mind that means make bold choices, take risks and be yourself with all your perfect flaws. Once you find that, you have to keep working for it, keep giving yourself permission to do that. That takes commitment and discipline. I learnt that you have to take responsibility for your craft and your career. No one else will. This is a craft that requires an athlete’s focus and the curiosity of a child. It is as challenging as it is rewarding.
I would advise students looking to get into acting to just try it out. There’s only one way to find out if this is the thing for you or not and that’s by throwing yourself in and being willing to take a chance. If you do want to take a chance, throw yourself in with commitment and generosity from day one. Finally, enjoy the ride - learning this amazing craft is a lifelong journey. Be big, bold and beautiful.”
Best of luck in the future Alec, we can't wait to see the incredible things you accomplish!
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Watch Alec perform: