By Richard Lawrence-Allen
Last month we met with RSVP Artists’ Agent Assistant Laura McKenna, to learn more about one of the faces behind RSVP’s fabulous in-house agency. This month, we are going straight to the top and are talking with Charlie Platt herself, our Head Agent and the woman behind the success RSVP Artists and its many talented clients.
Charlie is a consistently busy woman, juggling submitting clients for roles, liaisons with casting directors and scheduled trips between our London HQ and Manchester office to meet with her Northern-based clients there as often as she can as well. Thankfully, Charlie was kind enough to take time out of her busy week to answer a few questions for us:
1) So, tell us a little bit about yourself in your own words?
Charlie: Oh what a question to start with. Erm, I’m from Essex, not really important hahaha. I’m hard working, I enjoy helping others and I laugh a lot!
2) What did you want to be when you grew up?
Charlie: A midwife.
3) When did you decide you wanted to be involved in the performing arts industry?
Charlie: I was never someone who dreamt of being an actress from a young age. I started to enjoy drama at secondary school and it was whilst at college that I started to take it seriously as a career.
4) What sort of work have you done in the past?
Charlie: I was lucky to have been involved in a range of things as an actress, from a McDonald commercial, to Edinburgh Fringe, playing a working class mum in the award winning short film ‘Indoor’. One of my biggest achievements was playing Carole Kelly in ‘Call the Midwife’ and also having one of the plays I wrote performed at the Park Theatre Finsbury.
A couple of Charlie's fabulous headshots from her time as an actor.
5) How did you come about working for RSVP Artists and running the agency?
Charlie: In 2016, I was feeling and thinking that after acting for over 10 years I was definitely losing my love for it however I desperately wanted to remain in the industry somehow. I began applying for intern jobs within acting agencies and I then saw that RSVP was starting a new agency and I thought “Eeeekkk. Could I run that?” I applied and the rest is history as they say.
6) How old is the agency now?
Charlie: The agency will be 2 in July. That probably seems a long time however in agency terms we’re still in the toddler years.
7) What has been the most challenging part about starting the agency from the ground up?
Charlie: One of the biggest challenges has been creating relationships with industry folk. Getting them to trust us and to trust our clients takes time and can be tricky. Being selective on who we submit for jobs has allowed the trust to develop though and is something that continues to grow.
A queenly Lego version of herself guards Charlie's desk, just to remind everyone who's in charge!
8) The agency is made up entirely of staff from RSVP, but apart from that, what makes RSVP Artists different to other industry agent?
Charlie: Taking 0% commission is a massive bonus. Also, the call centre is filled with actors who are of different nationalities and have a range of skills to offer. If a casting director is looking for the blonde haired actress who’s half Egyptian, half American and has circus skills- We’ve probably got them!
9) You are based in our London HQ, but we obviously also have clients based in our Media City branch up North at RSVP Manchester. Do you find it difficult juggling clients across two different cities?
Charlie: Representing clients both in London and Manchester hasn’t proven too tricky so far. Every 3 months, we travel to Manchester to see our clients up there and check in with them. Communication is so important, so as long as our clients stay in touch and keep us posted on things then no issues really come up.
10) What is the most rewarding thing about working for RSVP Artists?
Charlie: Seeing clients grow. When we get a client their dream audition or when a client gets offered a job and you know it could potentially lead on to other exciting things or it’s a new experience for them. Also, when a client shows there appreciation and thanks you for your help, it’s lovely to know you’ve made a difference.
11) How do you see the agency growing and where would you like to see it in 10 years?
Charlie: I honestly think the agency has the potential to really grow and become successful. As long as there’s support behind it to flourish, it could be awesome in 10 years’ time.
12) What is your favourite show of all time?
Charlie: No my goodness there’s far too many, I can’t choose!
13) What have you seen recently on stage that has really inspired you and would inspire other actors?
harlie: Does it have to be one piece? I have a list… ‘Yerma’ by Simon Stone (Young Vic), ‘Hamlet’ at the Almeida starring Andrew Scott and Juliet Stevenson. ‘Love’ at the National Theatre. There’s so many more, I could go on for hours.
14) What is the most important piece of advice you would give to someone looking to pursue an acting career?
Charlie: It can take time for things to move forward. If the passion is there, stick with it.
Motivational quotes care of our great light box change monthly at the RSVP Artist's hub at London HQ to keep everyone driven!
15) What is the best career advice that you have ever received?
Charlie: Research is key! It should never feel a hassle learning about this mad yet brilliant industry. If you don’t know the artistic director or creative team for a particular theatre or programme then do you really deserve to perform and be involved in it? NO!
16) If you could make your life into a movie what style of movie would it be, who would direct and why?
Charlie: That’s tricky. Erm, probably a comedy. French and Saunders would be cool gals to have as directors.
17) Who do you think should play you?
Charlie: Someone with a potty mouth! Can I say that? And obviously someone with ginger hair! Catherine Tate? Patsy Palmer? I always used to get told I was Bianca’s younger sister.
"Hello RSVP Artists, Charlie speaking." Charlie, always working. I hate to tell you, that's not the office phone Charlie!
A huge thank you to Charlie for taking the time to speak with us, keep up the incredible work! We hope to catch up with you again soon.