What is ACTRA? Why should I join?
ACTRA is the professional organization for performers who work in Canada's film, television and commercial productions.
ACTRA has many functions. Two of its most important responsibilities are to negotiate and enforce agreements and to safeguard the professionalism of Canadian performers.
Through its agreements, ACTRA fights for improved workplace standards and services for all performers who work on its sets. These agreements are negotiated every two or three years with film and TV producers as well as with advertisers and ad agencies.
ACTRA negotiates and administers agreements with producers, studios, TV, radio and cable networks
covering performing engagements.
These agreements ensure the following minimum terms and conditions for on-set work:
- ACTRA ensures members have a safe work environment.
- ACTRA ensures members are paid for both their work and the future use of their image.
- ACTRA administers an industry leading insurance and retirement plan for performers.
- ACTRA provides training and professional development opportunities.
- ACTRA ensures that performers act in a consistently professional manner
Becoming an ACTRA Apprentice Member
You can become an apprentice member of ACTRA Toronto with one qualifying credit, which can be earned in any of the following ways:
If you have qualified, the initiation fee to become an apprentice member is $75 (this will also serve as your first year annual fee as an apprentice member).
Since apprentice members don't pay union dues other than this annual fee, they continue to pay for permits for additional engagements until they become full members (the cost varies depending on the agreement you're working under).
Becoming an ACTRA Full Member
You become a full member:
1. By earning a total of three professional credits, and by taking ACTRA Toronto's membership course; or
2. Through a reciprocal agreement. If you are already a full member of Canadian Actors' Equity, the Screen Actors'
Guild or AFTRA, you can apply to become a full member of ACTRA Toronto.
Once you have qualified, you become a full member by paying an initiation fee plus your dues for the current year.
The initiation fee is the total cost of your qualifying permit fees and the course fee, deducted from $1600. This equalized initiation fee is set up this way to make sure that everyone who joins ACTRA pays the same total permit and initiation fees, at the same average amount current members paid, no matter what contract they join under.
Full members do not pay permit fees to work in ACTRA's jurisdiction. Full members do contribute dues ($195 a year in basic dues, plus 2.25% of gross earnings, which is usually deducted at source by your engager).
Becoming an ACTRA Additional Background Performer (AABP)
To join the AABP, you must prove that you have worked fifteen (15) days as a background performer within the 12-month period immediately preceding your application for membership. Please refer to our AABP page for more information. Additionally, refer to www.actratoronto.com/aabp.html for information on becoming an AABP member.
This is the first step if you are working towards 1600 hours or 200 set days to become an ACTRA Apprentice Member.
For more information, please contact ACTRA at (416) 928 – 2278 or visit their website, www.actratoronto.com.
If you want to be a professional performer, you want to be an ACTRA member.
Contact ACTRA for more details
By landing a professional engagement as a performer in a residual-earning category, in an ACTRA-adhered production, at ACTRA rates under an eligible agreement, and for which you paid a "permit" (a sum charged to non-members in lieu of ACTRA dues).
By graduating with a post-secondary acting degree. Please have a look at the separate fact sheet on this education credit if you are interested in using it. (link)
By working 200 days or 1600 hours during the past four years as a card-carrying ACTRA Additional Background Performer in good standing. (Note: Applicants using these accumulated BG hours/days as a qualifying credit must also take the Membership Training Course)
Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., Monday to Friday
Location: 625 Church Street, 1st and 2nd Floors
Toronto, Ontario M4Y 2G1