National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2021 Version 1.0


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53121 - Actors, comedians and circus performers

Actors, comedians and circus performers perform roles and circus skills in circuses, motion picture, television, theatre and radio productions to entertain a variety of audiences. They are employed by motion picture, television, circuses, theatre and other production companies. This unit group includes acting teachers employed by private acting schools.

  • Illustrative example(s)

    • acrobat
    • acting teacher - private or studio
    • actor/actress
    • circus performer
    • clown
    • comedian
    • drama teacher - private or studio
    • narrator

    All examples

  • Inclusion(s)

    • standardized patient
  • Exclusion(s)

    • Announcers and other broadcasters (See 52114 Announcers and other broadcasters)
    • Dancers (See 53120 Dancers)
    • Drama professor - university (See 41200 University professors and lecturers)
    • Musicians and singers (See 51122 Musicians and singers)
    • Other performers (See 55109 Other performers)
  • Main duties

    This group performs some or all of the following duties:

    Actors and comedians

    • Study and rehearse lines, gestures and expressions to interpret a role
    • Portray roles in video or motion picture productions, television shows, theatre productions, radio dramas, commercials and other productions or perform the narration
    • Sing or dance as required by specific roles
    • Perform comedy acts in nightclubs alone or as members of comedy troupes
    • Improvise a role.

    Acting teachers

    • Train students in interpretation of scripts, speech, movement, and dramatic theory
    • Prepare acting students for specific auditions and performances.

    Circus performers

    • Perform a variety of acts intended to amaze, thrill, and engage audiences
    • Conceptualize and choreograph original performances
    • Study and perform acrobatic and aerial skills required by specific circus shows.
    • May participate in the development of a director or ringmaster's vision
  • Employment requirements

    • Demonstrated ability, based on an audition or previous acting or circus roles, is an important hiring criteria.
    • Circus performers and acrobats may require a period of study at a circus school.
    • Acting programs are offered at universities, colleges and private acting schools.
    • Acting teachers usually require experience as actors.
    • Membership in a guild or union may be required.
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