Year in Review 2016 presented by Christopher Toyne, Co-chair

APP-NW Holiday Meeting, December 1, 2016
Year in Review 2016 presented by Christopher Toyne, Co-chair
2016 has been a year of change for APP-NW. Some might call it APP light – a lighter touch.
With a tail off of participation, the 2016 Board decided to organize fewer Actors’ Happy Hours (AHHs!) and combined them with grassroots Workshops.
We spent a lot of time considering long-term plans, both at the Board Retreat and at bi-monthly Board meetings. Enthusiastic new Board members Suzanne Duval and PK Glazier; along with Darius Pierce continuing that thankless job of Secretary; Michele Mariana representing us on the SAG-AFTRA Board; Linda Gross, our meetings guru; Yolanda Porter as chair of communications and maintaining a vibrant website; and Elizabeth Zimmerman, with out-reach to film schools and grade schools alike, while sharing the Co-chair with me [Christopher Toyne] as the not-union representative. Congratulations to Elizabeth for recently joining SAG-AFTRA. We are actively supported by our two past chairs who now make up the Advisory Board: Harold Phillips and Chrisse Roccaro.
The three areas we have decided to concentrate on, and invite the 2017 Board to continue:
1) To utilize our newly achieved 501(C)3 status, now fully filed (and paid for!)
2) To create a comprehensive online Actors Resource list of all services and vendors appertaining to an actor’s growth and marketing: acting-class teachers, headshot photographers, reel cutters, make-up artists, etc. Elizabeth Zimmerman is initially undertaking this gargantuan task.
3) To expand the growth of the Alliance of Professional Performers brand, initially with our brethren in Seattle.
The last is perhaps the most exciting. Harold Phillips and I [Christopher Toyne] attended a core-group meeting in Seattle led by Ric Deskin, the SAG-AFTRA local Board president and John Patrick Lowrie. The fact that we have created a template with a substantial Modus Operandi and Articles of Association, while achieving Federal and State charitable status, will allow us to create APP-Portland and APP-Seattle, while keeping APP-NW as the umbrella.
Three AHH! combined workshops are especially worth mentioning. In January “How to get ready for an audition” was led by Lori Lewis, principal at Free Spirit Casting.
In May, held at the Lucky Lab, preferred producer Erich Dermerath of Man Vs. Film and Robin Vada, Ian Stout’s partner in Professional Acting Reels (.com) lead a superb interactive workshop on creating, “The perfect show-reel” – while offering on-going discounts for APP-NW members. The raffle was a success too; both Erich and Robin gave free reel-cuts to the lucky! In September saw another terrific workshop: “Fight Right: Fight Direction and Set Safety” lead by theater specialist Kristen Mun and screen fight director Jerry Buxbaum. Again, free classes were raffled off. Linda Gross has achieved her OLCC Alcohol Server Permit on behalf of APP-NW and set up a mean bar.
The only sadness was the low attendance at both of these workshops. Of course we appreciate that there are so many classes etc. happening mid-week. We have polled the class teachers and found that Thursday has the least going on. Those that did attend raved about the events, but the new 2017 Board must really probe into the three “W”s: what does the membership want; when and where.
So where do we go from here in 2017? More Happy Hours combined with workshops? Support of the OMPA Annual Awards on March 20, 2017 when APP-NW will organize the judging of the Actor Awards with the credit “OMPA Actor Awards Presented By APP-NW?” Creation of APP-Portland and APP Seattle? Creation of a comprehensive Actors’ vendor and services on-line list? A big 501(c)3 Gala event to replenish our depleted finances?
Remember, we are still an organization – presently with a roster of 368† – without membership dues and depend on contributions, workshop fees and raffles, while receiving some support from SAG-AFTRA.
To this end I call on the membership to step up and volunteer to serve on the Board. Help make this adventurous slate happen. Because of term-limits and attrition there are four (4) or more Board Member positions open. Please consider putting yourself forward. The Board now meets every two months, with occasional planning committee meetings in between.
Finally, please remember our Preferred Producer’s program. Visit the “Producers” button on the website. If you have a good experience on set with a production that respects our seven core Standards, persuade them to sign up. We advertise producers that “sign-up” on the web page. The key phrase: We encourage our Preferred Producers to add the phrase “Our production adheres to APP-NW Standards” to their casting notices. Preferred Producers are also free to use the APP-NW logo as an on-screen “bug” in association with their productions.
Let us make 2017 even more memorable – it is down to you the members and a vibrant Board!
Christopher Toyne
2016 Union Chair
A further 36 new members signed in at our successful Actors’ Holiday Happy Hour, Dec 01’16

June’s Actors Happy Hour recap, we can call it a success!

 We want to thank Elizabeth A. Zimmerman for taking the time to write a recap of our last Actors Happy Hour.

                                                                  Self Marketing

Damon Jones said,

MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE BEST POSSIBLE HEADSHOT YOU CAN GET.

This is the Number One tool you have to market yourself. Besides needing it to submit for roles, it goes on your website, your IMDB page, your business cards, your emails. This is where you do not scrimp on quality or price! And it must look like you!

Create a professional Facebook page for your fans. Get lots of Friends.

Be sure you have a business email. Link it to your personal email if need be, but make sure it sounds professional. No one ever booked a role from sexygirl23@hotmail.com !

Purchase a domain name. https://www.godaddy.com will walk you through this. It is inexpensive and easy. If the name you want is unavailable, it will suggest alternatives. Then create a website. A good website lets the industry know you are serious about your career. Here you can control your own content with on- set photos, clippings, reviews, etc.

Have a YouTube channel. Post some submission or audition videos if the script is not DND.

Have a Twitter account. So much inside information is sent from the set this way!

Consider having Periscope and LinkedIn accounts as well.

 

Keep in touch with the various casting houses in town by emailing them periodically with updates. Do not use bulk email or ‘email all’. It will go into their SPAM. No emails more often than every other month. Do not send snail mail. Do not phone. Don’t be a nag. Do not pitch yourself. No hype. Keep it simple. Let them know of any training you are doing, a part you nailed in a TV show[tell them when it airs and what time you’re on]. If you are doing a workshop or play, let them know there are free tickets at the box-office for them if they RSVP you. Do NOT ask them to come see your show. Send a SHORT message and attach your headshot in the body of the email.

How to: I opened my headshot jpg, made a copy of it, put it in a Word doc, then copied that and emailed it to myself with both Outlook and Gmail to test the size. It ended up about 2”.Say anything in the email. Hi, it was nice to talk to you at the ____event last night. Keep it short. They will not remember the message, but they will remember your photo when they need a specific look.

There are only four casting agents in town. How many production companies are there? Use the Source Oregon directory. Find them. Tell them you loved their last commercial, short film. Still reluctant? Take a marketing class at a community college.

Harold Phillips said that this is not about the next job. It is about the next year-decade-lifetime. You are creating a body of work. Not sure of your brand? Take smaller roles until you know. Do you consistently play the same kind of character(Geek, Mom, Bad Guy)? Work in the same genre (Sci-Fi, Horror, Comedy)? You are creating a brand. Make your materials consistent. Brand needs to be who you are. Do not try to be someone you are not. And consider the actor who got caught in a back-alley scandal. We the audience are stunned and disappointed. We thought we knew who that actor was. We knew his brand. Your brand will come in handy when your films are released. Distributors need a recognizable product.

Volunteer, volunteer, volunteer. Film festivals. Industry events. Meetups. It makes schmoozing much more comfortable, plus you have all that “Hi, I met you at the last event” material.

Lyla Foggia spoke at length about PR, as that is her job. See www.foggiapr.com It may be premature for some of us, but nonetheless useful information. She said to be sure you have a terrific bio on your webpage. Don’t just list the parts you’ve played or the films you were in. She said she has had people simply list the films they were in. Not even the part. Useless! People want to know about you. Where did you grow up? How did you get your training? Who are your idols? Try to have someone else write it, for objectivity. Have a long version and a short version. Think about it being in People Magazine. When you go forward in your career, it will be!

Make sure the photos on your site are magazine quality-no smaller than 5 mg. These can then be pulled and blown up by newspapers or magazines. You may see one on the cover someday! Be sure the photo link is your site. Extra traffic that way.

Make friends with the Still Photographer on the set. He’s just standing around waiting for a good photo opportunity. He will be delighted to send you shots that you can then post. Find out who the Unit Publicist is. You have created a media pack, right? It has your headshot and bio. She would be delighted to have it! You’ve just done her job for her! Is the show set in Montana? She would be glad to find out you’re from Montana. It would be a great hook. And you get publicity.

Is your film in a local film festival? Mount your own PR campaign. Take out ads. For Your Consideration. Congratulations to.. You will need to get the studio’s permission, but they rarely turn you down. You’re doing them a big favor! Everyone sees those ads! When you do get your big break ( a small role in a major picture), consider hiring a publicist. Remember the actors who were nominated for Emmys and Oscars for a ten minute performance? They had a publicist.

Brian Gotts of Serenity Studios http://www.serenitystudiosvideo.com/ spoke on self-submitting. He said if any of us need to have a taped audition, he can help. No mention of prices, though.

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Elizabeth A. Zimmerman.

APP-NW Reaches First Fundraising Goal at Actors Happy Hour!

APP-NW Reaches First Fundraising Goal at Actors Happy Hour!Mar12_FundraisingThermomete

Actors Happy Hour! on Tuesday, May 19, at Mother’s Bistro, was a rousing success on all fronts, given that APP-NW had an ambitious agenda for the evening. As you know, Actors Happy Hour! always features a conversation on a topic of interest to our members and this month the topic was OPIF/iOPIF, Oregon’s film incentive programs. Before that conversation started, however, APP-NW gave a report on its efforts to acquire true, 501(c)3, not-for-profit status.  More about that in paragraph six!
Nathaniel Applefield of OMPA gave a great report on the current status of legislation in Salem to improve and extend the Oregon Production Incentive Program and the Indiginious Production Incentive Program. Applefield gave us a comprehensive explanation of how the programs work and how they are designed to grow.  He pointed out that Oregon’s plan is to control the growth of the program to match the growth and training of Oregonians to fill the jobs on OPIF projects.  Nathaniel noted that other states with much larger incentive packages and/or no caps on the number of projects are finding that their infrastructure does not keep pace and usually have to import crew and other personnel.
Applefield emphasized the overarching goal of this year’s legislative push was to extend the sunset of the program to 2024 and to increase the overall pot of funds available for the tax credits.  He urged all in the community to contact their state legislators with their own personal stories of what our industry means to them and how their lives are affected by the availability of work right here at home.
Tim Williams, Executive Director of Oregon Film, was also on hand to give his perspective on the bright future of the Oregon film industry.  We were honored he was able to take the time to join us.
To round out the discussion of OPIF/iOPIF 2015, Lara Cuddy of Reverie Films shared her experiences with the programs from the producer’s prospective.  As one member pointed out, the more our performers know about the whole process of getting a project made the better able we will be to make a meaningful contribution to that project’s success.  It’s rare that we as performers have a window on what goes into putting a project together, so Lara’s remarks were eagerly received.
But the biggest surprise of the evening came as Nathaniel Applefield led an impromptu “paddle raiser” to collect cash and pledges to fund APP-NW’s filing fees to acquire 501(c)3 status.  His enthusiasm put us well over the top and we will be filing the paperwork – with the required fee – very soon!  At the top of the evening, APP-NW presented a progress report on its efforts to become a real, “grown up” organization.  Paperwork had already been completed to register as a non-profit corporation with Oregon and to get a Federal Tax ID Number (EIN).  The last step of the process was filing for 501(c)3 status, which required a substantial fee. We anticipated collecting the money at AHH! over the next few months.  We were surprised, delighted and humbled at the level of commitment and support shown us on Tuesday as we more than met our goal and our total filing fees for the entire process are more than covered.
Achieving 503(c)3 status does a number of things for APP-NW.  First, it makes the organization the responsible party, rather than an individual.  The generous soul who had been lending his Social Security Number to the organization has heaved a huge sigh of relief! But most important, APP-NW will be able to solicit tax deductible donations that will allow us to go forward with our plans to increase the number and complexity of the educational and training opportunities for our professional performer community.  After all, in addition to creating work-place standards, APP-NW exists to improve and increase the level of professionalism in our community.
Singer Cyndi Lauper said her father told her: “Da more ya loin, da more ya oin!”  (learn/earn – for those who don’t speak Queens, NY) That’s our philosophy here at APP-NW, too.  Come learn with us. The sky’s the limit.

 

The Alliance of Professional Performers – NW moves to formalize status as a 501(c)3.

At its recent Board retreat, APP-NW’s Board of Directors defined acquiring formal non-profit status as its foremost goal for 2015/16.  Armed with Board approval, Co-Chairs Chrisse Roccaro and Christopher Toyne headed to a consult with Oregon Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts,  at which Attorney Bryan Wasetis, with Aspect Law Group, LLC, laid out the steps we needed to take. Christopher began the process and, in a remarkably short time, got us 3/4 of the way to the finish line.

First, we had to incorporate as a Non-Profit through the Oregon Secretary of State.
Next, we registered for a Federal Employer Identification Number.
Third, we registered with the Oregon Department of Justice/Charitable Division.  It was necessary at this point to designate a Registered Agent, and we chose to hire the Aspect Law Group, LLC for that purpose.

The last step is to file the Federal 1023-EZ form to apply for tax exempt status.  The paperwork is filled out and all that’s needed now is the $400 filing fee!  Needless to say, we’ll be putting our noses to the grindstone to raise that money in the next few months.  We’ll have our donation jar out at the next AHH! (Mother’s Bistro, Tuesday, May 19, 6 – 9 PM!) so you can drop in a dollar to get us closer to our goal.

As you know, part of our mission is to improve and increase the level of professionalism within our industry.  We are starry-eyed with the possibilities for enhanced educational and training programs for performers that your soon-to-be-tax deductible donations will make possible.

Again, our thanks to our wonderful Board of Directors – Linda Gross, Lanie Hoyo, Lorelei Kennedy, Michele Mariana, Darius Pierce, Yolanda Porter, Priscilla Prosser, Chrisse Roccaro and Christopher Toyne; our Advisory Board leaders, Harold Phillips and Nathaniel Applefield; Oregon Volunteer Lawyers For the Arts (www.oregonvla.org); Bryan Wasetis and The Aspect Law Group, LLC; and, especially, YOU, our performer members, for your continued support and participation.  It really does take a village.  Onward and upward together!

What’s The State of YOUR Union, NW Actors? Tell Us At #ActorsHappyHour January 20 (At A New Location!)

President Barack Obama Addressing Congress At The State Of The Union Address
Photo: OregonLive.com

On Tuesday January 20 president Barack Obama will give the US Congress, and the nation, his State of the Union address.  This yearly ritual, full of pomp-and-circumstance, isn’t just a chance to report on how things have gone in the past year – it’s a chance for the president to announce bold new initiatives and goals for the future in an effort to move the country forward.

You may not have thought about it, but we professional performers have a similar ritual at the beginning of each year – we look back on what’s worked (and what hasn’t) in the previous year, and we set goals for the coming year that will move our lives and careers forward!  We don’t generally announce these goals in front of national television and a joint session of Congress – but we know that keeping these goals to ourselves can sometimes “let us off the hook…” sharing our goals with others help us to solidify them in our minds – and even helps to keep us accountable to ourselves.

So, NW performers, we’re asking you to share YOUR 2015 state of the union with us at the first #ActorsHappyHour of the year at a new location: Wine Up on Williams in at 3037 N Williams St. in North Portland.  Join us from 6 – 9 pm on Tuesday January 20 and let us know how you’re going to build on the successes you shared with us in November!

The president’s State of the Union speech will be playing on the televisions upstairs, in case you need inspiration, and Wine Up on Williams has prepared a special happy hour menu for APP-NW members (remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door!)  After the speech, join us downstairs in Wine Up’s special event room and tell us how you plan to move your career forward in 2015!

We’ll also be raffling off some tools to help start your year off right, including

  • One hour of free tax consultation from The Bookkeeping Company – a Bookkeeping and tax service that “gets” the special needs of performers
  • An Actor’s Holdon Log – the perfect “paperware” tool from the makers of PerformerTrack to help you track your auditions, callbacks and bookings in the year to come!

Don’t forget, raffle tickets are $1.00 each or 7 for $5.00 – and if you bring a performer who’s never attended an #ACTORSHAPPYHOUR we will give you a free ticket for the raffle!

Please RSVP at our Facebook page so we know you’re coming – and be sure to share this post with every actor on your list!  We’d love to give you a free raffle ticket – and we’d love to hear your goals for the coming year!

The Librarians Are Coming! The Librarians Are Coming! Join Us For A Special Viewing Party December 7 at 8:00!

TNT's New Shot-in-Portland Series The Librarians

 

In case you haven’t heard, Electric Entertainment’s The Librarians, the newest addition to the filmed-in-Portland television lineup, will premiere on Sunday, December 7 at 8 PM on TNT!

The Alliance of Professional Performers – NW, the Oregon Media Production Assocation and SAG-AFTRA are itching to party down for the occasion! Once again, as he did for Leverage, Chris Joseph of Portland’s Morrison Hotel Bar (719 SE Morrison St., 97214 – click here for a map) has graciously invited Portland’s film and TV community to a no-host viewing party!

The Librarians promises laughs, adventure and great special effects as a secret society of Librarians battle supernatural baddies to keep us all safe.  And The Morrison Hotel Bar promises good food and drink for the price of, well, good food and drink!

*** To be entered to win a door prize, bring a non-perishable food item for the Oregon Food Bank! ***

Be sure to RSVP on our Facebook page, and join us for the fun and cheer on your fellow performers.

Who knows? It might even become a regular Sunday event!

It’s Time To Give Thanks For Your Successes in 2014, NW Actors! Join Us At #ActorsHappyHour November 18!

Celebrate 2014It’s been a great year, Northwest actors – and we want to hear about the successes you’re giving thanks for at the final Actors Happy Hour of the year!

In January, we asked you what your goals for the coming year were… well, it’s time to look back at the “year that’s been” and see if 2014 matched – or surpassed – your expectations!  Join us downtown at Cassidy’s Restaurant on Tuesday, November 18 from 6 – 9 PM and share your success stories from 2014 – did you make connections with important industry players?  Did you spread the word about APP-NW‘s professional standards, and help your fellow performers do their best work on professional sets in the Northwest and elsewhere?  Did you reach a new career milestone, or help someone else build a stronger career?  Maybe your year went in an entirely unexpected direction, and you had to re-assess those goals you made back in January – what ever happened, we want to hear all about it!

Be sure to wear your APP-NW pins (or get them at the door) and expect some fine food and drink while we have a lively discussion… and do remember to bring a few extra dollars for our monthly raffle, where we give you the chance to win prizes that can help build your professional career like:

Don’t forget, raffle tickets are $1.00 each or 7 for $5.00 – and if you bring a performer who’s never attended an #ACTORSHAPPYHOUR we will give you a free ticket for the raffle!

Parking at Cassidy’s might require some pre-planning; we recommend that you take public transportation if you can, park at the SmartPark on 10th Ave, or leave plenty of time to look for metered parking.

As mentioned above, this will be our final #ActorsHappyHour of 2014 – but don’t you worry, we’ll be back after the holidays!  Be sure you’ve subscribed to our mailing list so you’re among the first to hear about our next #ActorsHappyHour location in January 2015!

Please RSVP at our Facebook page so we know you’re coming – and be sure to share this post with every film and TV worker on your list… we’d love to give you a free raffle ticket AND get a big group together to celebrate YOU!  We’re looking forward to seeing you next TUESDAY!

Don’t Forget, There’s ANOTHER Election Coming Up! Join Us At An Open Board Meeting Monday November 10!

So, how was YOUR election night, APP-NW members?  Still celebrating – or reeling from – the big national and local news?

Well, we wanted to remind you that there’s ANOTHER election coming up – and we need you to participate!  If you’re thinking of running for the Alliance of Professional Performers – NW Board of Directors so you can make a difference for performers in the Northwest’s growing entertainment industry, we’d love to see you at our first Open Board Meeting of 2014!

We need your energy and ideas to keep APP-NW growing – and we want you to know what’s involved with serving on the APP-NW Board and its committees.  Please make plans to join us Monday November 10!

Board meetings aren’t formal affairs – you don’t have to worry about putting on your ties or fancy shoes.  These meetings are generally held from 6:00 – 8:00 PM (though members are encouraged to arrive a half-hour early so they can get re-connected and perhaps grab a bite to eat at the meeting location.)

To find out more about the meeting and its location send an email to elections@app-nw.org  (and please put “open Board meeting” to the subject line.)

We’ll see you next Monday!

What Do Performers Do To Build A Strong Community (And Industry?) Tell Us At #ActorsHappyHour October 21!

Ted Rooney presents the Male Actor award to Danny Bruno at the 2014 Oregon Actors Awards (Photo: OregonConfluence)

Did you attend the Oregon Actors Awards this past Sunday, Northwest performers?  If you did, you heard a lot of speeches from the presenters and the winners – and one thing nearly all those speeches had in common was the word “community.”  Time and time again presenters and recipients talked about how amazing Oregon’s community is, and encouraged the audience to keep building a stronger community.

When many people think of the film and TV industry (in the Northwest or elsewhere) they tend to think about agents, movie stars, cameras, directors, and producers.  The term “community” doesn’t often enter their minds.  Really, what difference does a community make in the film and TV industry – and what can a single performer do to build a community… let alone have an effect on the larger industry?

We want to hear your thoughts at October’s Actors Happy Hour – how do you define “community?” What do the communities you’re part of do to help Oregon’s film and TV industry – and how can you follow the lead of Northwest performers like Danny Bruno, Ted Rooney, Harold Phillips, Jana Lee Hamlin and Duane Hanson by building a stronger community?

Come join the discussion with us at Cassidy’s Restaurant, located at 1331 SW Washington Ave between 12th and 13th, on Tuesday October 21 from 6-9 PM.  Share a drink and a smile, and let us know how YOU build a stronger community (and a stronger industry!)

Be sure to wear your APP-NW pins (or get them at the door) and expect some fine food and drink while we have a lively discussion… and remember to bring a few extra dollars for our monthly raffle, where we give you the chance to win prizes that can help build your professional career, including:

Don’t forget, raffle tickets are $1.00 each or 7 for $5.00 – AND if you bring a performer who’s never attended an #ACTORSHAPPYHOUR we will give you a free ticket for the raffle!

Parking at Cassidy’s might require some pre-planning; we recommend that you take public transportation if you can, park at the SmartPark on 10th Ave, or leave plenty of time to look for metered parking.

Please RSVP at our Facebook page so we know you’re coming – and be sure to share this post with every film and TV worker on your list… we’d love to give you a free raffle ticket AND get a big group together to discuss this VERY important topic!  We’re looking forward to seeing you next TUESDAY!

What is a “Safe Set”? Tell Us At #ActorsHappyHour On September 16th At A New Location, Cassidy’s!

Video Of A Car Stunt On An Unsafe Set That Went Viral – Click here To Watch And Find Out More About The Incident

This year’s highly publicized fatal accident in Georgia shed light on an issue we all know happens far more frequently than we hear about in the news. What is a “Safe Set”? What can we do if we find ourselves in an unsafe situation on set?

We want to hear your thoughts at September’s Actors Happy Hour – and from your friends in the industry, too… anyone who performs, creates, produces, crews, casts or markets is invited.

Come join the discussion with us at a new location, Cassidy’s, located at 1331 S Washington Ave between 12th and 13th, on our new night Tuesday September 16th from 6-9.  Share a drink and a smile, and let us know what YOU think a safe set is.  Remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door, and expect some fine food and drink while we have a lively discussion… and remember to bring a few extra dollars for our monthly raffle, where we give you the chance to win prizes that can help build your professional career, including:

Don’t forget, raffle tickets are $1.00 each or 7 for $5.00-and if you bring a performer who’s never attended an #ACTORSHAPPYHOUR we will give you a free ticket for the raffle.

As it happens, we are sharing the date of our first Cassidy’s #ActorsHappyHour with a Timbers Game, so parking might require some forethought.  All the meters on 12th Avenue and further west will be active until 10 PM.  Take public transportation if you can, or park below 12th Avenue, where the meters go “off” at 7 PM.  There is a SmartPark on 10th Ave. From there it is a short “over two up two” to Cassidy’s – a lovely walk on a fine fall evening.  Other street, lot and garage parking opportunities are in the nearby Pearl District on the north side of Burnside.

Please RSVP at our Facebook page so we know you’re coming – and be sure to share this post with every industry worker on your list… we’d love to give you a free raffle ticket AND get a big group together to discuss this VERY important topic!  We’re looking forward to seeing you next TUESDAY!