ACTRA Toronto Council creates committees for various reasons. Some committees are set up to work on recurring branch initiatives (e.g. Awards Committee, Conference Committee, Labour Day Committee). Others are set up for the purpose of reporting to Council on matters of concern to members in various categories (e.g. ACTRA Additional Background Performer Caucus, Apprentice Caucus, Stunt Committee) or to do research on complex issues and provide Council with recommendations for appropriate action (e.g. Finance Committee). Still others are set up to advocate for members whose work opportunities are restricted by ageism, racism and or sexism (e.g. Act Your Age, Child Performers, Diversity Committee Toronto ACTRA Women’s Committee).
Click on a committee that interests you to get more information about its members, activities and mandate. Contact the chair of the committee if you’d like to get involved.
The ACTRA Additional Background Performer (AABP) Committee gives background performers (who are not Full or Apprentice members) a voice within the union. The committee advocates to improve the terms and working conditions of AABP performers on set. Les Williams, Chair
Act Your Age (AYA) is a volunteer committee that has been formed by some of our union’s senior members, for the following purposes:
Jennifer Higgin, Chair
The Apprentice Caucus makes recommendations to Council on issues of concern to ACTRA Toronto Apprentices, including work opportunities, respect on set, preference of engagement and relationships with talent agents and casting directors. Joe Doran, Chair.
The Archives and Legacy Committee has overseen the digitization of hundreds of hours of interviews with founding members, preserving in the process a priceless oral history of Canadian Performers and of ACTRA itself. In addition, the Archives and Legacy Committee, at Council’s behest, has been racing against time to expand our institutional memory by conducting more interviews and collecting other important material from ACTRA Toronto’s 70+ years. Joel Keller, Chair.
The Awards Committee produces the ACTRA Awards in Toronto, manages the peer jury process, and produces the show, the party and the après-show dance. The ACTRA Awards in Toronto is the showcase event for ACTRA Toronto members each year, and the show just keeps getting better! Maria Del Mar, Chair
ACTRA Toronto’s Child Advocate helps parents understand the ins and outs of the business. Introductory info for parents of child performers who are just starting out can be found here , practical advice for child performers who have landed a job is here, and a Stage Parent Survival Guide is available at ACTRA National. Former ACTRA Toronto Child Advocate, Tabby Johnson and ACTRA National Child Advocate Theresa Tova teamed up to produce another valuable resource – the Ask Tabby & Tova video Q & A series. From time to time, ACTRA Toronto offers information sessions especially geared to parents as well as opportunities for children to develop their professional skills. Christina Collins is ACTRA Toronto’s Child Advocate
The Conference Committee plans two conferences a year offering members a plethora of professional development sessions from diverse members of the entertainment and other related industries. The conference is designed to help build members’ knowledge, connections and involvement in their profession, their union and their community. Nicole St. Martin, Chair
We envision a better working environment and more opportunities for Physically and Culturally Diverse ACTRA members. Our long term goal is an industry and union that is inclusive of all performers.
Sedina Fiati and Farah Merani, Co-Chairs
Jani Lauzon, ACTRA Toronto Diversity Advocate
The Finance Committee develops and reviews budgets. Our annual audited financial statements are posted on the website. As well, the Finance Committee reviews our investment portfolio to gain the highest possible returns while maintaining the lowest possible risk. David Macniven, Chair
The Full Member Background Committee makes recommendations to Council on issues that affect work opportunities of Full Members working as Background Performers, including preference of engagement, relationships with agents and casting directors, online casting databases and contract bargaining objectives. Constantine Meglis, Chair
The Member Services Committee advises Council on Member Education, Health and Safety and Member Benefits.
The Parades Committee organizes ACTRA Toronto’s involvement in the Toronto’s Pride (usually in early July) and the Labour Day Parade (Labour Day is the first Monday in September). John Nelles, Chair
The ACTRA Toronto Stunt Committee brings stunt performers and stunt co-ordinators together to discuss current challenges on-set, and issues facing stunt performers. Robert Racki & Alicia Turner, Co-Chairs
TAWC explores key issues faced by female performers. We envision a future in which contributions by female artists are properly recognised, valued and supported. To that end, we are creating ongoing initiatives to encourage women of all diversities to create work and to advocate for a more realistic representation of roles between the genders. Freya Ravensbegen, Nicole St. Martin, Co-Chairs
The Voice committee makes recommendations to Council on issues of concern to ACTRA Toronto Voice Performers in order to increase work opportunities for union voice performers, to promote best practices in the industry and to improve working terms & conditions for voice performers working under ACTRA’s collective agreements. Linda Ballantyne and Shauna MacDonald, Co-Chairs
The Young Emerging Actors Assembly (YEAA) is a committee of ACTRA Toronto performers who play between the ages of 17 and 30. YEAA unites young talent in Toronto’s screen-based entertainment industry. Together, we forge a powerful community for networking and sharing resources, and stand out as a fresh new voice promoting Toronto’s rising stars and a Canadian star system. Kristina Esposito & Clara Pasieka, Co-Chairs