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career in performing arts

Update on 2024-04-15

Career in Performing Arts & its Opportunities

Do you have a knack for creative and artistic activities such as acting, dancing, singing, playing instruments, and so on? If you are passionate about any of these art forms and wish to pursue a career in them, then an undergraduate course in Performing Arts would be an apt career choice for you. There are many colleges in India that offer specialized performing arts courses to students. Admissions to these courses are usually based on the merit secured by the candidate in the qualifying examinations, however, many reputed institutions also conduct university or institute level entrance exams to admit the most qualified and talented students.

Performing Arts are one of the oldest career paths in Indian history however this career option is still looked down upon by society as it is perceived as a less intellectual career field. Most Indian Parents want their children to pursue a career in fields like medicine, engineering, law, corporate, and so on. They perceive performing arts as a career that has zero or minimal scope. In this article, we are going to discuss Career in Performing Arts and its Opportunities.

What is Performing Arts?

Performing Arts are the form of arts that an individual can perform in front of an audience. These types of arts are different from visual arts which are usually about painting and designing. Performing art is a career that dates back to ancient times when dances, plays, comedies, and music were the only source of entertainment for common people. The performing artists were highly respected and rewarded in ancient India by the Kings and emperors. Besides this, We as cultural diversity, are losing the essence of a performing arts career by perceiving it as an unsustainable career choice.

Is Performing Arts a Good Career Option?

Yes, Performing arts is indeed a good career option however the career scope in performing arts is determined by the talent and passion possessed by an individual for their respective art. By pursuing a performing arts degree or certification, one can only just polish their pre-existing talent and skills. The education certifications and courses are only intended to train novice aspiring artists and nurture their talent with the required guidance and theoretical knowledge, so they can start their journey in the industry. 

In India, the Performing Arts is one of the unconventional career fields. However, if you possess the talent and determination to become a successful artist, then you can enhance your knowledge and skills by pursuing a formal degree in performing arts. 

Many Colleges and renowned universities in India offer UG, PG, and Doctoral degrees in the performing arts field. Below we have mentioned the names of the Top Performing Arts Colleges in India:


Top Performing Arts Colleges in India 


Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, Gujarat


Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi 


Presidency University, Kolkata 


University of Mumbai, Mumbai 


Delhi University, Delhi 


MIT Art Design & Technology University, Pune 


NIMS Jaipur


Amity University, Noida


Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), Mumbai 


Savitribai Phule Pune University

Top Career Options in Performing Arts 

Performing Arts are mostly categorized into three  - Music, Dance, and Drama. These three art forms facilitate numerous career options in the entertainment industry. Those who are interested in building their career as performing artists can get employed in the Media Entertainment industry. Below we have listed the names of the top career opportunities in performing arts:

Career in Performing Arts & Its Opportunities 




Prop manager


Drama coach

Stage Manager 


Sound Engineer 

Stunt Performer 

Broadcasting Presenter

Set Designer 

Talent Agent 

Arts Administrator

Performing Arts 





About Top Career Options in Performing Arts 

  1. Actor:  Becoming a TV or Film actor is really a lucrative career choice but there are many people who choose to work as theatre artists to give voice to their talent after considering the competition and the low chance of getting an acting job in TV or Bollywood. The job of an actor is to bring the character to life by expressing the emotions of the character through their acting skills. Although it may sound flashy to become an actor, it is equally difficult to achieve success in this field. There is a cut-throat competition in the entertainment industry and only the ones with zeal, passion, determination and adequate talent are able to come out with flying colors. 

Unfortunately, Acting is not a secure career choice, there is an immense struggle in this field unless you have good resourceful connections. The duration of the career is also short-term, especially for female artists. 

  1. Dancers: Professional Dancers are artists who use their body movements, gestures, expressions, and music to entertain their spectators. They usually specialize in one or more dance forms. They are the most celebrated artists as they bring joy to their audience. You all may agree to the fact that dance is something that signifies “celebration and happiness”,  Any celebration, function, and event seem incomplete without dance. Now people have started hiring professional dancers to perform at their wedding celebrations, events, and functions. They are also highly valued in the Film & TV Industry. As a professional dancer, you will be able to excel in your career if you can perform in an assortment of various dance styles. As a professional dancer, you can pursue your career as a choreographer, dance artist, dance trainer, background dancer, theatre artist, or performing arts teacher.
  2. Musician: Well, Music is the art that has some sort of charismatic ability. We all have known a Guitarist or a Drummer in our college or school who used to get all the attention of girls. Well, this is what Music offers you - Fame and social status. The job of a musician usually revolves around producing albums, going on tours or performing in bars for live audiences, and playing in events and theatres.  Likewise Acting, to become a successful musician,  one needs a lot of talent and determination to make their dreams come true. As a Musician, you can play various roles such as composer, lyricist, music producer, jingle writer, music promoter, and many more.
  3. Comedian: Standup Comedy in India is gaining popularity these days. We all are well familiar with the names such as Kapil Sharma, Bassi, Abhishek Upmanyu, and Aakash Malhotra. Many of you might also pay to watch the shows of these popular comedians or atleast want to. Well, Standup Comedy is not yet hit the peak of demand but it surely will soon. So what does it takes to become a standup comedian? Well, no educational qualifications are required but you must have two things: humor and no stage fear. The other prerequisites you will have to work on are your content, pauses, improvising, and audience interaction. Standup Comedy is the latest form of Performing art which nowadays is appreciated by the Indian audience, and why shouldn’t it be, a good laugh is always worth spending some money on! So, If you’ve got wits, humor, and good content, you can build a successful career in this field and who knows you may become the next Kapil Sharma of the comedy world.
  4. Screenwriters: They are not performing artists but they do play a major role in their job. Screenwriters are writing artists who create impressive scripts and screenplays for the actors. They are often called scriptwriters, screenplay writers, or scenarists as they write content for visual mediums. The dialogues delivered by the actors on camera are written by the screenwriters, Screenwriters do not have enough regular work, But if you think your screenwriting has a spark to ignite the story of the characters, then you should definitely pursue your career as a screenwriter. As a screenplay writer, you can start writing for short films, television shows, feature films, commercials, and plays. skits and TV commercials etc. To become a screenwriter, one must be creative, a visual thinker, and fluent in expressing their thoughts in words, he/she also must be focused and patient in the process. These are a few qualities that are far more important than any educational qualification. Most Screenwriting jobs do not require any such educational qualification.
  5. Set Designers: Well, Performing arts is a vast field, but apart from the on-screen/stage artists, there are many other artists who contribute to making their performances more impactful and convincing. Set Designers/Managers are one of them, They are responsible for designing and managing the sets that appear in TV shows, theatres, and films. They prepare the set based on the script and scene, it is their responsibility to ensure that the screenwriter's motive and director's vision meets the set appearance. A set designer closely works with the costume designer and producer. To become a high-in-demand set designer, one needs to have a creative flair with visual thinking, great artistic approach and creative skills, team management ability, and a good eye for detail. All these qualities will get you through the tunnel of success.
  6. Sound Engineer: Again not performing artists but they do play an important role in enhancing the audible performance of the artists, Sound Engineers manipulate the voice by using equalization and electronic effects to enhance the voice/sound of the musician/instrument, They usually work for TV shows, venue performances,  and other areas where music is required, They are an essential part of any production and they operate closely with the composer to ensure the desired outcome.
  7. Voice Over Artist: Also known as V.O Artist, their talent is used in the radio, TV, Films, theater, Advertisements, Cartoons, video games, and Jingles to create remarkable pieces of audio-visuals. Voice-over artists use their voices for off-camera or off-stage dialogue delivery, commentary or narration. The work of a V.O Artist are backstage/off-camera artist, therefore it can only be heard and cannot be seen. As a fresher voice-over artist, you can expect to earn anywhere between Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 for a mid-size V.O project. Established voice-over artists with the necessary experience and skills, on the other hand, charge a premium for their services. They can easily earn between Rs 40,000 and Rs 90,000 per month, depending on the type and quantity of work they take on.
  8. Ventriloquist: Ventriloquist is yet another unconventional profession in Performing arts. It is possible that many of you might not even have heard this term, Ventriloquism is a performance act in which the artist creates the illusion that the voice is coming from elsewhere probably from a puppet or a doll. Lately, Ventriloquism has become a quite popular performing act globally after the artists started showcasing their talent on reality shows. However, this art form is not considered a stable career option in India but if you still wish to pursue a career as Ventriloquist, then you better possess great vocal skills and good content ideas. 
  9. Musical Theater Performer: They are complete package artists, Musical Theatre Performer are highly skilled in dancing, singing and acting. Musical theater artists are highly valued and respected in the theatric world, It can be a demanding profession in the coming years considering the norm of organizing eight shows a week. If you are good in these art forms (dance, music, and acting), then there's no reason that you cannot become successful as a Musical theatre performer. However in the initial phase of your career, you might have to face some challenges and struggle a bit to find the opportunities and gain experience, but with the right skills, determination, and talent, you can excel in your career as a strong performer. 

Signing Off:

Performing Arts is indeed a road less taken but despite this fact, there is tough competition in all the fields of performing arts, be it acting, music, or dancing. However, once you succeed in your desired field, you will surely be rewarded with great remuneration, fame, respect, satisfaction, and joy. It is true that a corporate job can never offer you the satisfaction, joy, and excitement you can get as a performing artist but if you are a risk taker who is passionate about his/her art, then trust your calling and start working on yourself. 


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