Toronto – September 13, 2021 – ACTRA Toronto Council has approved a name change to their juried performance awards as follows:


Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-Conforming or Male Voice   
Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-Conforming or Female Voice


Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-Conforming or Female

Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-Conforming or Male 

Gender non-conforming performers can be submitted based on the gender of the character or as the performer identifies. Should a gender non-conforming person win, they can choose to have the award engraved and announced as simply, for example: Outstanding Performance – Voice.  

Options to make the juried awards more inclusive of gender non-conforming performers were considered by President David Gale, V.P Rebecca Applebaum and Jo Vannicola, chair of ACTRA Toronto’s queer committee, outACTRAto. ACTRA Toronto hopes the change and clarified understanding will also feel more inclusive for trans and non-binary performers. All who worked on the change, especially including members Heath Salazar and Em McCourt, celebrated it as a good first step.

“One of the things the committee felt strongly about was the change should not require members to be outed,” said President David Gale, a member of the queer community. “There is still a great deal of transphobia and homophobia in our industry.  I’m pleased this change provides options and flexibility for gender non-conforming performers. Still, there is much work to be done around creating and casting more queer roles.”

As we enjoy TIFF, ACTRA Toronto reminds members that the deadline for submissions to the 2022 awards is Hallowe’en. Submissions re-open for the following year on November 1st.

ACTRA Toronto is the largest organization within ACTRA, representing more than 15,000 of Canada’s 27,000 professional performers working in recorded media in Canada. An advocate for Canadian culture since 1943, ACTRA is a member-driven union that continues to secure rights and respect for the work of professional performers.

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Media contact:

Karen Woolridge,, 416-937-1437

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