ACTRA Toronto takes the safety and well-being of its members very seriously in all aspects of a Performer’s workplace. Whether it’s an Audition, on set or in the promotion of a Production, a Performer always has the right to feel safe and supported.
While progress has been made over decades of negotiating our collective agreements as well as the brave individuals who spoke out as part of the #MeToo movement and beyond, ACTRA is still hearing reports about Productions asking Performers to do things in Auditions that contradict the protections we have fought so hard to secure in our Independent Production Agreement (IPA).
In this new landscape where there are both virtual and in-person Auditions, please know your rights before booking an Audition to ensure you can safely present your best self.
When a Performer receives an Audition notice, there should be as much information as possible in the notice and breakdown so the Performer can make an informed decision about whether or not they would like to Audition for the role.
Notwithstanding the length of the material provided in advance of an Audition (IPA A2801), the Performer should also be made aware in advance of the Audition if any nudity, simulated sexual activity, or love scenes of any kind are a requirement of the script. (A2401a)
A Performer should not be asked to disrobe in whole or in part, or provide a nude photo, in a first audition. A Performer may only be auditioned as a Performer in a first audition. (A2401(b)) If a Performer receives a callback requiring them to appear nude or semi-nude, they should be provided in advance with as much information as possible of what is required and ACTRA must also be advised. (A2401(d))
At no point should auditions be held in a private hotel room or a residence where a Performer is left alone with an individual from Production. (A2809)
Should a Performer be required to attend a callback where they are asked to disrobe, they should know their rights by understanding the conditions in place under the IPA. These conditions are intended to ensure Performers have adequate notice of what is expected and an opportunity to provide meaningful consent, and that measures are in place to ensure their safety and protect against abuse.
- Performers should not be required to perform in the nude or semi-nude at a callback Audition. Such audition is solely to view the Performer’s body. (A2401e)
- Callbacks should be closed and limited to only necessary individuals up to a maximum of 5. These individuals have to demonstrate a direct professional or artistic relationship to the Production and Audition. As a Performer, you have the right to request a personal representative and/or an ACTRA representative to be present as well. (A2401f)
- Photos, filming or other preservation of the audition is not permitted without the prior written consent of the Performer, and access to such material should only be given to individuals with an essential business purpose. (A2401g)
- A Performer should not be asked to perform any sex acts. (A2401h)
- A Performer cannot be asked to Audition in the nude or semi-nude on more than one occasion and a Production can only request this once in a callback. A2401(i)
And remember, ACTRA is always here to support you. If you are unsure of something that is being asked of you in an Audition, please contact us!