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If anyone’s ever told you you’re too old to act, act out.

Over the past two decades, I have run into many stumbling blocks in the world of the entertainment industry. Most of those were a product of coaches and agents that thought they had the final say. I am here to debunk a series of myths in hopes that you can avoid these hurdles.

In today’s world of plastic surgery, fillers, and YouTube “Influencers,” it’s easy to cancel ourselves because of age before our culture can cancel us.

As we get older, pursuing new interests and trying to learn new things can be uncomfortable. It can also feel juvenile to do the thing you’ve been dreaming of since you were a child or teen. People of a certain age are cast aside rather than valued as in other cultures or in days gone by.

The fact is, the older you are, the more you have to offer. You have a history to pull from, and this is a gem in acting. Rich, honest characters are born of experience, pains, trials, and a deeper worldview.

Chances are you’ve had varying relationships, jobs in the marketplace, and traveled beyond your hometown. You probably have very strong opinions and likes and dislikes.

And you know who you are.

Want to act? Find out how

The real issue behind telling ourselves we’re too old to act is that we’re afraid. Afraid we’ll be ridiculed, labeled as silly, or rejected. And who wants to be rejected at this point in life?

Acting is a joyful venture but make no mistake; it takes training and a bit of commitment to work on in your free time.

The question is, is the investment of time and some money worth it? Are you worth it?

Take a look at the recent film Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris, starring actress Lesley Manville. She was 66 years of age when that film was released in 2022. In the face of monotony and grief, her character, Mrs. Harris, decides that her heart’s small but tender dream is worth pursuing.

Do you dream of stepping into the world of stories and portraying a character on screen?

The path to acting on screen is a muddled one and a muddied one. But it doesn’t have to be, at least not anymore. The tides have changed with online platforms, and you can tell a story with your camera phone in the comfort of your home.

But acting is more than a monologue or a teaching platform.

It’s purposefully getting outside your home and becoming involved in a community of storytellers and dreamers.

It’s connecting with other creative artists like yourself.

It just takes a brave heart and, literally, action.

No matter your age, complex emotions and a definitive point of view make characters relatable and interesting. Older actors show courage by allowing themselves to share from their hearts.

They remind the audience that the people in our lives who are significantly older than us are worth listening to and watching. Without older characters and, in turn, actors, our stories will lack the depth and wisdom that only come with age.

So, if anyone’s ever told you you’re too old to act, act out.

Carissa Dalton

Author Carissa Dalton

Carissa Dalton is a professional actor, writer, director, teacher and coach. As an actor, she has over twenty years of commercial, television, film and stage experience. She has appeared in projects for Volkswagen, Teleflora, Amtrak, Mitsubishi, Sony TV, National Geographic and more. As a writer, actor, and director, she co-wrote, starred-in and directed the feature film, All The Dragons. She has also directed thirty short films. As a teacher and coach, Carissa has worked with actors and directors, helping them elevate their skills through the CFTN Film Lab—a collaborative class of actors, writers, and directors working to create film organically—of which she is the co-founder and co-director. Carissa is also a well-trained vocalist and dancer, as well as an experienced improv theater performer.

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