Social media has spawned entirely new industries and job titles. And its impact is also felt in some of the world’s oldest and most storied professions. For actor and singer Paul A. Schaefer — a veteran of Broadway and television productions — social media has created new ways for performers to showcase their talents even before that first audition. That’s a powerful shift, but it’s also added to the already lengthy list of expectations for how and where performers are expected to operate.
Paul has been performing since his youth, and his professional resume includes over a decade as a cast member in “The Phantom of the Opera,” Broadway’s longest-running musical. In the show, Paul performs in a variety of roles, including The Phantom and Raoul, as well as a member of the ensemble.
And while Paul has seen countless changes in audience demographics and interests during his time on Broadway, social media’s growing impact on the actor’s day-to-day life is perhaps even more pronounced. How can (and should) actors present themselves online when the camera isn’t rolling and a live audience isn’t tuned in? In the age of social media feeds and live stories, does the actor’s role as a performer ever really stop?
We tackle these questions (and many more!) in this episode of The Media Mindset!
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Special thanks to Paul A. Schaefer for the wonderful conversation!