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).
Watch our video and click on a committee that interests you, from the listings below, 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.
Mike Sheridan, Chair
AYA (Act Your Age)
Act Your Age (AYA) is a volunteer committee that has been formed by some of our union’s senior members, for the following purposes:
- To celebrate our talents by embracing the history, dignity, and richness of our stories of survival
- To provide opportunities through an active actors’ gym to keep our skills facile and our focus sharp
- To educate the industry and marketers, over time, on the needs and concerns of senior performers
- To establish strong liaisons with other ACTRA Toronto committees, such as YEAA, Diversity and TAWC
- To explore and spotlight the new reality of what it means to be a senior
- To advocate for a change in the perception of senior performers – from invisible and easily dismissed, to capable, hireable, and fun
John McGrath, 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.
Bree Ali, Chair
Archives & Legacy Committee
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.
Joy Tanner, 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 with only 7 Awards, it’s the best industry party in town!
Maria Del Mar, Chair
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.
Diversity & Inclusion Committee
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.
Lisa Michelle Cornelius and Samora Smallwood, Co-Chairs
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.
Richard Young, Chair
Full Member Background Committee
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 outACTRAto Committee is dedicated to raising awareness about LGBTQ+ performers, our stories and our place in the industry and society. We value diversity and equality and we aim to be recognized, supported and valued as LGBTQ+ performers. We aspire to educate and inform our industry about realistic LGBTQ+ representation on screen as we seek a more accurate and balanced reflection of our rich and multifaceted community. We denounce and will work to end harassment and stereotyping of any kind. We will work to achieve true-to-life LGBTQ+ onscreen visibility of our culture and our stories, and to realize change in our industry.
Joanne Vannicola, Chair
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.
Steve “Shack” Shackleton, Chair
Stunt Women’s Committee
The ACTRA Toronto Stunt Women’s Committee is open to all stunt performers who identify as women or as non-binary. The committee is currently looking at:
- Strengthening the role of women stunt performers to build a stronger stunt community
- Increasing opportunities for training, networking, mentorship and work
- Improving work conditions
The committee has regular monthly meetings, generally on a weeknight at 6pm.
Question, inquiries and suggestions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Toronto ACTRA Women’s Committee (TAWC)
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.
Joanna Swan, Chair
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.
Cory Doran, Chair
Krystal Meadows and Scott Farley, Vice-Chairs
Young Emerging Actors Assembly (YEAA)
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. Kira Murphy, Chair.