Being a child or a teen performer can be very stressful with high levels of anxiety for both parents and the performer. The passage of time between childhood and teenage years and teenager to adult is also a difficult and emotional transition.
Your young performer maybe very talented and love to perform but is unable to handle rejection, stage fright, competition and/or working in a group. As the parent, you need to make sure that your child wants to be in show biz as much as you want them to be in show business, or that they maintain their love for the art. Some children may want to please their parents and get their approval more than they actually like to perform.
Here are some warning signs that your child may want to leave the entertainment industry to pursue other interests or is unable to handle the stress.
1.School grades start to fall.
2. Procrastinates before getting ready for an audition or forgets to bring items they are responsible for to bring to the audition.
3. Has stomach cramps or are too tired to go to audition.
4. The child tells you their acting/dance instructor picks on them.
5.Never wants to practice….always has an excuse, it is never the right time.
6.Stays in their room more….wants to be alone.
7.Easily angered and more argumentative.
8.Signs of possible drug/alcohol usage.
These warning signs need to be addressed and here are a few ways to find the right solution that meets your young performers needs and desires.
1.Have a meeting with their teacher for their assessment.
2.Talk with acting/dance/vocal teacher to see if they are having difficulty with your young performer.
3.If there is a talent agent/manager, talk with them about any changes of behavior.
4.Thoroughly check their room for drug/alcohol which can now be deadly.
5.Have a doctor do a physical for drug use or other medical complications.
6.A mental health professional could be helpful.
7. Have a grandparent or close family friend try to communicate with the child.
8.Last but not least, sit down with your child and inform them that you will love them whether they are a performer or not. It is totally their choice. Not everyone is cut out for the life of a performer, just as not everyone could be a doctor or a math professor!
Nancy has worked in many different capacities within the arts and entertainment industry from being a dancer in New York to operating a school of performing arts in Los Angeles to producing 3 Off Broadway musicals. Nancy was contracted by the City of Los Angeles to create the NoHo Arts District in North Hollywood to develop the district as a mecca for young performers to learn their craft. She has counseled hundreds of young dancers, actors and vocalists in training choices combined with career guidance. Also, Nancy has been with WCOPA for 20 years focusing on the WCOPA Boot Camp and Judging division.