Basic Organizational Information: The Twin Cities Actor Consortium seeks to address the unsustainability of actors' financial lives through a partnership between Twin Cities Equity theater companies and members of Actors Equity to provide a cohort of actors each year with annual full-time salaries and benefits now unavailable to them as freelancers, while increasing pay for all other working actors.
In an unusually cooperative and eager collaboration, Artistic Directors and Equity Actors from 16 Equity theaters have worked together for the past year to craft a new, innovative model to support the sustainability of actor employment in the Twin Cities. Since the collapse of the repertory theater model, where a troupe of actors was steadily employed for a full season, theater companies have focused their funding on administrative staff, providing full time salaries to marketing and development staff, leaving even the most experienced actors to cobble together individual contracts with individual companies each year in hopes they can support themselves and their families.
For the pilot phase, and based on input from actors, artistic directors, and union representatives, the Twin Cities Actor Consortium will provide a cohort of five diverse and experienced actors with salaries of $50,000, as well as four weeks paid vacation, health insurance, and pension contributions, in exchange for 40 weeks of performing and/or understudying work at any of the 16 participating theaters. Additionally, the participating theaters have agreed to redistribute the funds they would have spent on these cohort actor salaries to all other actors in their season, providing actors hired alongside the cohort with a bonus each year.
Each summer, a year in advance of the season they are casting, Artistic Directors of the 16 participating theatres will gather to review the actor cohort applications. AD’s will rank their preferences, and five actors will be invited to participate in the cohort based on their experience and artistic excellence, their ability to be cast in enough shows across the season, and the diversity of the cohort. The Twin Cities Actor Consortium will pay their salaries biweekly once the season begins, and all theaters hosting a TCAC actor will agree to redistribute the offset costs by increasing pay for all other actors in their season.