Don't Be a Stage Mom

Have you ever heard the term “stage mom”? When you think about that, what's the first thing that comes to your mind? Something positive or negative? In this business when someone says “stage mom” it's usually not a good thing.

I'm an acting coach in New York City, as well as an actor. I've been on a lot of sets, and I'm grateful to say that I’ve had a lot of kids as my scene partners. I know what it looks like when a good parent is on set and when a very nervous parent is on set. Those nervous parents are kind of new to what's going on, and they often get labeled “stage moms”. Here are some tips, tricks, and do's and don'ts for performer parents. Make sure you read to the end because my last tip is a bonus tip, and that one makes all the rest of them better.

Make Sure Your Kid Isn’t Hungry

When you are on set, there are a few things you want to make sure to do so that your kid is ready to work. The first thing you want to do is to make sure that your kid is not hungry. Now, there is always Craft Services on set but some kids are picky. There are probably things that your kid or teen just does not want to eat, and we know when kids don't eat, they get hangry. And we don't want them hangry. So, you should have a bag of food with you, the favorite snacks that you know they're going to want and enjoy. This is especially helpful after a very long scene or when they need to sit and wait for a very long time.

Keep Your Kid Busy

The second thing you should do is make sure that your child is not restless. There's a lot of rushing and then waiting. You have to be on set at a certain time -- you have to be ready, you have to look perfect, and then you have to sit. Sometimes for a very long time. The younger you are, the harder this is to do, so you really want to make sure you have games, toys, or other activities for them to focus on. Homework is the perfect thing to do on set.