What’s The State of YOUR Industry, Actors? Tell Us At #ActorsHappyHour on August 18!

Downey_ArticleA recent guest-column published in the Oregonian has provoked quite a bit of conversation in Oregon’s film and TV industry.

The column’s author, Sam Downey, calls industry backers, legislators, and investors on the carpet for not doing more to grow a sustainable industry.

“There is no reason why we shouldn’t have a thriving film industry in Oregon. Our own industry,”  Downey writes.  “There are so many distribution avenues now that a film is no longer slave to a movie theater. This would mean that instead of a small percentage, all of the money made from the projects stay in our state… Every year politicians and investors are shown the incredible revenue that the entertainment industry brings to this state. And how do they react? The politicians make us schlep to Salem each year and grovel for a pitiful increase in tax incentives to keep our struggling industry alive another year, even though our film office can show how much potential revenue our state lost because our incentives are used up almost immediately.”

So, what do you think, Oregon performers?  Several projects and shows have recently wrapped, and several others are just beginning another season of production (plus there are lots of smaller projects always in the works!)  “How’re we doin’?”  What’s happened so far this year​?​  Did it meet our expectations​?​  ​What would add to our appeal as a place to produce quality work to increase our work opportunities?  We want to hear your thoughts at August’s Actors Happy Hour   and from your friends in the industry, too… anyone who performs, creates, produces, crews, casts or markets is invited.

While you’re at it, why not take a moment to invite your state legislators (and those running for their seats!) They’re the people who decide what sort of film incentives Oregon should offer to producers… we’d love to hear their take on things, too!

Join us at Foster-Powell’s Bar Maven from 6-9 next Monday, August 18, share a drink and a smile, and let us know what YOU think the state of Oregon’s film and TV industry as summer 2014 draws to a close.  As always Bar Maven’s owner, Bashar Farrah, is offering special discounts to APP-NW members (remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door) so 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:

  • A Tazo Tea travel mug to help you wake up for early-morning call-times
  • Discounted bookkeeping services from The Bookkeeping Company to help you get your finances in shape
  • A six-month subscription to PerformerTrack, the #1 career management tool for performers

Don’t forget, raffle tickets are $1.00 each or SEVEN for $5.00 – and if you bring a performer who’s never attended an #ActorsHappyHour we’ll 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 industry worker (and legislative candidate) 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 Monday!

When’s The Right Time To Break The “4th Wall?” Share Your Thoughts with us At #ActorsHappyHour June 16!

Source – brentcoltharp.com

The story of actor John Lacy’s firing at Repertory East Playhouse in Santa Clara, CA spread like wildfire through social media last week.  Lacy was terminated for jumping off the stage and physically removing an inebriated heckler who had been yelling anti-gay slurs from the audience during a production of Cat On A Hot Tin Roof; the production closed soon afterward when at least one cast member resigned in solidarity with Lacy.

Anyone who has performed for any length of time has encountered uncomfortable situations – and how we deal with those situations often help to define us as professionals (or not.)  That same week, for instance, Kevin Spacey stopped a performance in Baltimore to scold an audience member.

Incidents like these have provoked a lot of conversation on social media channels; some understand an actor’s need to take action, while others agree behavior like this is inappropriate (and that, in Lacy’s case, termination is warranted.)

What’s your take, Portland-area performers?  We want to hear your thoughts about these episodes and others like them at June’s Actors Happy Hour!  Join us at Foster-Powell’s Bar Maven from 6-9 next Monday, June 16, share a drink and a smile with your fellow performers, and let us know what you would have done in those situations… or what you did in similar situations!

As always Bar Maven’s owner, Bashar Farrah, is offering special discounts to APP-NW members (remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door) so 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!  Don’t forget – raffle tickets are $1.00 each or SEVEN for $5.00, and if you bring a performer who’s never attended an #ActorsHappyHour we’ll 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 get a big group of performers together to discuss this VERY important topic!  We’re looking forward to seeing you next Monday!

Northwest Performers Say “Gimme Shelter” At May’s #ActorsHappyHour

May 19 was a sunny day in Portland – so sunny, in fact, the proprietors of Bar Maven in Southeast Portland opened the side-wall doors to let in some fresh air.  It seemed an odd day for professional performers to discuss shelter from the elements… but that’s just what happened at the May 2014 #ActorsHappyHour.

If you don’t like Northwest weather, the saying goes, just wait five minutes – it’ll change.  This topic was on many of performers minds that Monday evening…  Even though it was temperate that evening a thunderstorm had blown through the area one week before, and temperatures had surpassed 90 degrees the week before that!  Time is precious on professional sets, so the assembled performers agreed that if they were to do their best work a safe place out of the elements – with chairs to sit on and a secure place to store valuables – needs to be provided.  This allows them to focus on the work at hand, and not on how hot, cold, or wet they’ve become before production staff is ready for them.

“But how,” many asked, “do we bring this up with production?”  The best time to discuss this need is obviously before the production begins – by asking if that production will conform to APP-NW Standards.  Those standards lay out the need for shelter from the elements, a chair, access to a bathroom and drinking water, and a secure place to lock one’s valuables.

If a performer finds him or herself on a set without these things, however, everyone agreed s/he shouldn’t be afraid to pull the Assistant Director or Stage Manager aside to discuss the need for them.  Everyone on a professional set wants the same thing – to create an amazing production that will wow the audience and make all involved proud of it.  There’s nothing wrong with performers reminding production staff that secure shelter is a must if they’re to do their part in reaching that goal!

After everyone came to agreement on that point, they agreed on something else: it was time for APP-NW’s monthly raffle!  Take a look at what these lucky performers took home with them:

Congratulations to Yolanda Porter, who won a Tazo teapot!

 

Congratulations to Dominic Cicero who won a hair care package from The Phix Hair Studio!

 

Congratulations to David Emerson Jackson, who won an Actors Holdon Log!

Remember, #ActorsHappyHour is presented from 6-9 on the third Monday of every month by The Alliance of Professional Performers – NW, a movement of non-Union and Union performers committed to improving and increasing the level of professionalism within our industry and to protecting performers through the establishment of workplace standards. Be sure to mark your calendars for next month’s #ActorsHappyHour on June 16! We’re looking forward to seeing you there and keeping the conversation going!

NW Actors, What do YOU Call “A secure Place To Rest and Get Shelter From The Elements?” Tell Us At #ActorsHappyHour May 19!

It’s that magical time of year, Actors… spring is giving way to summer, and you know what that means –

It’s shooting season in the Northwest!

While film and TV production has been booming year-round in the Northwest, it really ramps up during the summer when filmmakers head out to capture our region’s dramatic scenery.  It’s no secret, though, that Northwest weather can be unpredictable… a bright, sunny day can turn into a downpour in an instant, and an overcast day can shoot up to 90 degrees before you know it!

Everyone on set wants to do everything they can to get that important shot “in the can,” but performers have a hard time focusing on their work if they’re cold and wet, overheated and sunburned, or just plain exhausted from standing all day!  That’s why it’s crucial that professional productions have a secure place for performers to rest and get shelter from the elements!  It’s not uncommon for this need to slip a producer’s mind, though – and knowing who to talk to (and how to talk about it) can be a challenge for performers “on the day!”

Come out of the rain (or the sun) at Foster-Powell’s Bar Maven from 6-9 next Monday, May 19 and tell us how YOU’VE brought up the need for secure shelter on the set.  Share a drink and a smile with your fellow performers and let us know what you call a “secure place to rest” – and what you’ve experienced that didn’t quite fit the bill!

As always Bar Maven’s owner, Bashar Farrah, is offering special discounts to APP-NW members (remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door) so expect some fine food and drink while we have a lively discussion!  We’ll also be raffling off great tools that will aid you in building a better career as “shooting season” gets underway (Remember, APP-NW members, raffle tickets are $1.00 each or SEVEN for $5.00 – and if you bring an actor along who’s never attend an #ActorsHappyHour we’ll 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 get a big group of actors together to discuss this VERY important topic!  We’re looking forward to seeing you next Monday!

We Asked “What Makes A Professional Performer” – And You Told Us At April’s #ActorsHappyHour!

Casting director Lori Lewis shares her views on what makes a performer a professional at the April 2014 #ActorsHappyHour. For more photos, visit our Facebook page.

Northwest actors, April’s Actors Happy Hour was a barn-burner indeed!

As you may recall, the topic of the evening was “What makes a performer a professional?”  In addition to one of the larger crowds we’ve seen at an  #ActorsHappyHour in recent months, the event was graced by the presence of casting director Lori Lewis, director/ producer (actor/ acting coach/ etc.)
Mike Prosser, and representatives from the Portland Belly Dance Guild – all of whom contributed invaluable insights on the subject of professionalism from their particular points of view.

Common themes developed over the course of the discussion, led by APP-NW Board member Todd Robinson.  All in all, it boiled down to a few simple things:

  •  Be on time;
  • Don’t be difficult to work with;
  • Do your job well;
  • Remain humble when you start having success.

Toward the end of the discussion, the point of fair wages came up, and examples of when it is acceptable to donate one’s talents were discussed.  It was agreed nearly unanimously that “compensation” can be defined in myriad ways, but that the performer should always receive something of value for his or her work.

Board member Dennis Fitzpatrick brought the discussion home by pointing out how important it is for professional performers to get a contract for their work – and to honor the agreements they sign.

Of course, these were just the points brought up at Monday’s #ActorsHappyHour – we know many of you weren’t able to attend, and we still want to hear from you about what traits you think a professional performer should have!  Leave your thoughts in the comments below or on our Facebook page… your ideas might just end up on a list of standards Northwest producers should expect professional performers to uphold on their sets!

Remember, Actors Happy Hour is presented from 6-9 at SE Portland’s Bar Maven on the third Monday of every month by The Alliance of Professional Performers – NW, a movement of non-Union and Union performers committed to improving and increasing the level of professionalism within our industry and to protecting performers through the establishment of workplace standards.  Be sure to mark your calendars for next month’s #ActorsHappyHour on May 19th.  We’re looking forward to seeing you there and keeping the conversation going!

NW Actors – What Makes YOU A Professional? Tell Us April 21 At #ActorsHappyHour!!

It’s an age-old debate, Northwest actors: when is a performer a “professional?”

Is it when s/he books that first paying job?  When s/he makes a certain amount of money in his or her performing career?  Or is it something about the way a performer conducts him or herself – in the workplace and elsewhere?

How is it that we often struggle to define “professionalism,” but we know a professional when we see one… and we can spot unprofessional behavior when we see it?

As you know, The Alliance of Professional Performers NW is dedicated to increasing the level of professionalism within our industry – and professionalism is just what we want to focus on at our next Actors Happy Hour!  We’ve already outlined a list of standards professional performers should expect to be upheld in their workplace… but what standards should the producers in our region expect from professional performers like us when we show up on set (or before we even get there?)

Join us at Foster-Powell’s Bar Maven from 6-9 next Monday, April 21, share a drink and a smile with your fellow performers, and let us know what’s on your professional code of conduct!  As always Bar Maven’s owner, Bashar Farrah, is offering special discounts to APP-NW members (remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door) so expect some fine food and drink while we have a lively discussion!

But wait- that’s not all!  April 15th will be in the rear-view mirror when we gather for Actors Happy Hour, and we’re betting some of you could have done a little more to prepare for tax-time!  Well, there’s no time like the present to get organized for next year’s tax season, and we want to give you the tools to do just that.  Join us on Monday for the chance to win:

  • A free one-hour consultation with The Bookkeeping Company to get you set up right for next year’s tax season, or…
  • A free one-hour consultation with financial advisor Andrew Pollack to help you set financial goals for this year, or…
  • A free six-month subscription to PerformerTrack, the #1 organizational tool for professional performers!

Remember, APP-NW members, raffle tickets are $1.00 each or SEVEN for $5.00 – and if you bring an actor along who’s never attend an #ActorsHappyHour we’ll 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 get a big group of actors together to discuss this VERY important topic!  We’re looking forward to seeing you next Monday!

NW Actors – Where Will YOU Spend #ActorsHappyHour On Monday?

actors-happy-hour-St-PaddysNorthwest actors know what to expect on the third Monday of every month – The Alliance of Professional Performers NW’s regular Actors Happy Hour at SE Portland’s Bar Maven!

It’s a chance for Northwest performers to share a drink and a smile at the “no-host bar,” reconnect with their fellow actors, discuss issues important to their industry  – and even win a raffle prize that can boost their careers!

Monday March 17th will be a little different, though… because it’s St. Patrick’s Day! 

People have their own St. Patrick’s Day traditions, and we don’t want to get in the way of them.  We also don’t want to get in the way of our host at  Bar Maven, Bashar Farrah – he’s  most likely looking forward to a big night on Monday! 

So, rather than asking you to join us on St. Patrick’s Day we thought we’d ask where you’re planning to find your Beannachtaí na Féile Padraig – where’s your favorite St. Paddy’s Day spot?  Leave your answer in the comments below, and don’t be surprised if a few of your fellow performers show up to raise a glass with you (be sure to wear your APP-NW pins so you can find each other!)

Don’t worry, Actors Happy Hour will be back on Monday April 21st – and we’ll have lots to talk about!  For now, though… Lá Fhéile Pádraig Sona Daoibh!

APP-NW Kicked Off 2014 Right At January’s #ActorsHappyHour

APP-NW Co-Chair Lanie Hoyo leads a discussion of goals for the new year

It’s a whole new year, and APP-NW members are ready to take 2014 by storm!

Northwest performers gathered at SE Portland’s Bar Maven on Monday, January 20 to share a drink and a smile with their fellow actors at APP-NW’s #ActorsHappyHour, and to discuss their goals for the coming year.  Among the goals we heard from assembled performers were

Monday’s conversation didn’t just focus on individual performers goals, though – the assembled actors also discussed methods to achieve those goals.   A goal, after all, isn’t the same as a resolution.  A resolution is an idea (“This year I’m going to lose weight/ stop smoking/ exercise more”) while a goal is a specific target with measurable steps the goal-setter can take to achieve that target.  Everyone has their own goals, but the actors at Bar Maven agreed that there were certain steps to be taken to make those goals reality:

  • Checking what’s been accomplished in the previous year and setting a goal for this year to surpass that
  • “Checking in” on a goal throughout the year to see how much progress is being made
  • Adjusting a goal, if necessary, to accommodate unseen factors
  • “Focusing on the win” – even if a specific goal isn’t achieved, celebrating what has been achieved and setting another goal to surpass that

That last point brought December’s #ActorsHappyHour to mind, when we asked Northwest Performers to celebrate their successes with us.  Everyone has their own definition of “success” – as most professional performers have learned, allowing other people to define success for us is a trap that can lead to madness and despair.  Following through on specific goals (or focusing on the successes that have come from following those goals) allows a performer to see just how successful s/he has been… and we’re really looking forward to hearing how successful YOU’VE been when we have another celebration of your success in December of this year!

After this stimulating and productive conversation it was time to conduct APP-NW’s monthly raffle – and just look at what some of the evening’s attendees walked away with:

Congratulations to Priscilla Prosser for winning a package of hair care discounts from The Phix Hair Studio!

 

Congratulations to Neil Wade Freer for winning a one hour financial planning session with Ameriprise Financial advisor Andrew Pollack!

.

Congratulations to Nidal Kahl for winning a one hour coaching session from Kristina Haddad and The Actors Lab!

#ActorsHappyHour is presented on the Third Monday of Every Month, but next month will be a little different… rather than holding our standard Happy Hour event APP-NW is inviting you to its Annual Meeting, where you’ll have the chance to hear about the movement’s progress, have your questions answered, and learn the results of our Board of Directors elections!  More information on that event is coming soon, but mark February 17, 2014 from 6-8 on your calendar and make plans to join us!  Don’t worry, though – Bar Maven will still be open after the annual meeting!

NW Actors – What Are Your Goals For The Coming Year? Share Them With Us At #ActorsHappyHour!!

Source: KTUL.com

Did you have a good holiday season, actors?  Did you make merry with friends and family as you saw 2013 draw to a close?

We sure hope so… but 2013 is so last year!  2014 is undiscovered country, just waiting for you explore it… and we want to hear how you plan to do that!  What are you goals for the coming year – how are you going to make new success stories like the ones you shared with us in December?

Come join us at Foster-Powell’s Bar Maven from 6-9 PM on Monday, January 20 for APP-NW’s regular Actors Happy Hour, and tell us your goals for the coming year!  What are you going to achieve in 2014?

As always, Bar Maven’s owner, Bashar Farrah, is offering special discounts to APP-NW members (remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door!)  Share a drink at the “no-host bar,” meet up with your fellow actors, and let us know how you’re going to move your career forward in 2014!

We’ll also be raffling off a free one-hour coaching session from The Actors Lab and other prizes to help kick your year off right – and if you bring an actor along who’s never attend an Actors Happy Hourwe’ll 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 get a big group of actors together to share their goals!

Northwest Actors – Show Us Your Clips and Celebrate 2013’s Success At The Final Actors Happy Hour of the Year!

Source – Destin.com

It’s been a great year, Northwest actors – and we want to celebrate your success at the final Actors Happy Hour of 2013!

Join us at SE Portland’s Bar Maven on Monday, December 16 from 6 – 9 PM and share your success stories from the year that’s been – did you live up to (or surpass) your goals for 2013?  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?  We want to hear all about it!

We want to SEE your successes, too!  Our good friend Bashar Farrah, Bar Maven’s owner, has invited APP-NW members to screen a DVD on one of the establishment’s televisions – so let us see what you’ve worked on this past year!  To appear on this special 2013 DVD:

  • Check with the projects producers to make sure public display of the clip is authorized (the clips will only be played at Bar Maven on December 16, and no admission will be charged.)
  • Find 15 – 60 second clips in the project that features you prominently and note the time code.  Keep in mind that no sound will be played at Bar Maven – and raw footage is just fine… we just want to see you!
  • Send as many .MP4, .MOV, .WMV or AVI clips as you like (no Youtube or Vimeo links, please) to info@app-nw.org by 4:00 PM Saturday, December 14.  If your clips are too large to email, use a service like http://www.sendthisfile.com to send them to us.
  • Be sure to note the time code of the clip you want played, your name, the name of the project, and your web site’s address so we can include them on the DVD.

We’re not looking for your reels – we’d just like to see clips from projects you’ve worked on this past year.  We can’t guarantee that everything you send us will make it onto the final DVD… but we’ll try and get as many clips on there as we can!  We’re looking forward to seeing what you’ve done over the past year!

But wait – there’s more! As always, Bashar is offering special discounts to APP-NW members (remember to wear your APP-NW pins, or get them at the door!) We’ll also be raffling off some great gifts for northwest performers – an Actor’s Holdon Log, a gift certificate for a PATA Citywide Audition Prep workshop with noted actor Tim True, and other prizes!

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 get a large group together on Monday night to celebrate this fantastic year before we turn the calendar to 2014!