HOW PERTH FILM SCHOOL TURNED MY RESOLUTION INTO A REALITY- By Tonya Gastev
I had always been interested in acting but never thought that I would actually pursue it. I was comfortable at playing it safe and not really taking a chance, the thought of failing terrified me so it kind of held me back from many things. However, I decided that I didn’t want to live like that anymore. So after a few too many drinks on New Year’s Eve 2015, I did my research and called Perth Film School. It truly was, the best decision I have every made for my future. I spoke to Nicole and Cassandra about the course, how to enrol etc and it was so easy. Also, because my money situation at the time was a little tight, they even sorted out a payment plan for me which was so helpful.
I started out with the beginner’s course that ran for four weeks which is designed to give you the basics and see if you would want to continue. Because I didn’t want to stop acting I decided to enrol for the eight week Hollywood Package course as I would get the opportunity to star in my own showreel at the end. I’ll admit I felt a little out of place being surrounded by students that did have a rough background in theatre or screen acting. A couple of them already had agents! Which surprised me because this was a course for beginner’s. I now know that it doesn’t matter what level of acting you’re at, there is always going to be more to learn.
The classes themselves were always enjoyable. I was taught first by Nicole, and then by Steven. Both brilliant teachers who never make you feel stupid for asking the wrong question. Because there are no wrong questions, everything can be magnified and explored when it comes to acting.
One of the many things I love about Perth Film School is the people and the opportunities we get. The talent agency Now Actors came to the school and everyone (whether you’re a student or not) got the opportunity to present a monologue to the representative. Usually when it comes to audiences I get incredibly nervous, but that day I just felt so happy. I knew in that moment that this was my career. This was my life. A few weeks later I got an email from Now Actors saying how they loved my audition and want to represent me. I still remember when I got that email. I was on my lunch break and I just screamed and cried. One of the girl’s even bought me flowers because she knew how badly I wanted this. I would have never gotten this opportunity without the help from the school. I am still so new at this, and they help me with every step of the way.
Due to me now working part time, they even offered me an internship at the school. My hours working there go towards any future courses that I choose to do. Already I have worked with voice acting coach James Hagan, I have done a two-day workshop with Myles Pollard and I have met and auditioned for the casting director for Neighbours, Thea McLeod. The first two student short films that I auditioned for, I was casted in and I got the chance to be an extra in a commercial on television. In almost one year I have achieved all of this and I feel so grateful everyday for it.
If you have ever thought about screen acting, it is never too late to try. I have met the most wonderful actors, all of different ages and backgrounds. Some do doubt themselves, but because of the amazing support system at Perth Film School, they keep moving forward. Acting is hard and there is so much work involved. Although, if you love it, if it makes you happy, don’t wait anymore like I did. It may have taken one too many glasses of wine for me to pick up the phone, but what matter’s now is what lies ahead.