Today we’d like to introduce you to Morgan Tyler.
Morgan, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I got my start in acting looking through the newspaper one morning, There was an ad for auditions for a Missoula Children’s Theatre production of Red Riding Hood. I was ecstatic and knew I HAD to audition. I got the part of Sisterhood (the sister of Red Riding Hood of course) and I fell in love with performing.
I auditioned for every production at The Crighton Theatre in Conroe that I could. Those were the most idyllic times I had as an actor. The theatre was beautiful and had these Romeo and Juliet balconies. The dressing rooms were stacked three stories high on the sides of the stage. The theatre even had its own ghost story. Whether my fellow castmates made it up on the spot I don’t know. I remember just having the time of my life singing in the chorus of all the musicals and being thrilled whenever I got a single line to say. There was no pressure or expectation, just fun.
Eventually, I focused more on singing, thinking I wanted to be an opera singer when I was older. I took voice lessons for years and choir became my focus all through school. But eventually, in college, I changed my major to theatre. I dropped out a little while later to take private acting lessons and save up money to move to Los Angeles.
I think what really solidified acting as a career choice were the private lessons I took with Connie Cooper. She taught me how acting was less about pretending and more about truth. She taught me how acting could heal, express, humanize, and search for truth.
After living LA for a bit, I got cast in my first film role by Houston director Chuck Norfolk. I came back home for a month to play Hilary in Getting Schooled, a horror spoof of The Breakfast Club. After that, I did several more indie film and short film roles.
Eventually, I found my way to Playhouse West. It’s after years of work there that I really feel like an actor. I spent four years studying with Wolfgang Bodison and Chris Liebe and gained a craft. Those skills and connections led me to the theatre company I work with now, Will and Company with director Colin Cox. We tour plays to schools all over LA and to colleges throughout the US.
Where I am now is a very transitional period. I’ve been paid to act before, but I am transforming from a student into a professional. All within the last six months, I’ve worked as a professional voice-over artist, theatre actor, and after years, I’ve finally begun to audition for big-budget movies and television.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The road of an actor is never smooth. I’ve struggled with anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. I’ve had industry people insult my acting, my face, and my weight. I once received a laundry list of all the things that were wrong with my appearance as a rejection. You will be belittled, dismissed, and insulted.
For anyone starting out on this journey, I’d say the two things. Know what your “why” is. You need to be able to remind yourself why you want to be an actor when times get hard. The second is really devote yourself to learning the craft of acting. I think people get the impression that you can learn to act in a six-week on-camera intensive. In those classes, they are usually teaching you “what” to act, not “how.” Developing a solid acting craft takes years, and sometimes your theatre degree isn’t enough. That’s why the Brits and Australians are kicking our butts because a lot of times Americans don’t learn a craft before they try to be actors.
I can tell you looking from the other side, I’m not afraid of what someone can say to me anymore. After you go through an intensive acting program and you put yourself out there enough in front of industry people, you’ll experience enough that if you don’t quit, you won’t be afraid anymore.
What do you do, what do you specialize in, what are you known for, etc. What are you most proud of? What sets you apart from others?
As an actor, I do the best job I can every time. I show up on time, I’m easy to work with, I’m prepared, and I’m flexible. Every director I work with comments on my work ethic and commitment. I pride myself on the fact that almost every director I’ve worked with has asked me to come back and work with them again.
Finding a mentor and building a network are often cited in studies as a major factor impacting one’s success. Do you have any advice or lessons to share regarding finding a mentor or networking in general?
Having someone to guide you through the craziness of the entertainment industry is really important. I remember when I decided I was going to pursue acting as a career, I bought a book, research being my go-to method of coping, and it said train and find a mentor. You can usually find good acting coaches through recommendations from industry people. I would really encourage anyone to start out to find an excellent acting school that will help you develop your acting craft from the ground up.
- Website: http://morgantyleractor.weebly.com/
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: morgan___tyler
Audrey Moore (the one with me smiles and wearing glasses), Ty Dobbertin (the ones from plays), All others are my private photos