I attended my first ACTRA Awards last night as an official guest, (I didn’t even have to sneak in like this guy!).  Opening with a lavish assortment of food stations (mini burgers & fries, pastas, mac n cheese, sushi & soba noodles) and a drink ticket, the crowd was hustled into the CARLU’s auditorium 30 minutes behind schedule.

The award show was hosted by comedienne Elvira Kurt who ranted on actor’s rights for about 20 minutes, followed by rousing speeches by former president, Heather Allin, and newly elected president, David Sparrow. And then finally, THREE actual awards were doled out.  Shannon-Kook Chun who took home the award for best Voice Performance in Requiem for Romance, an animated piece set in feudal China where he plays a love-struck kung fu student of sorts.  (I met Shannon years ago on set, it’s amazing to see how far he’s gone. I’m beyond impressed with his latest project ‘The Conjuring’, a horror flick that has been making the Comic-Con rounds). The other award recipients were Tatiana Maslany for Outstanding Female Performance in ‘Picture Day’, and Shawn Doyle for Outstanding Male Performance in ‘The Disappeared’.   Following another musical interlude, a  lifetime achievement award was given to activist and actress Shirley Douglas who gushed for a good 15 minutes about her love for actors and the union.

And that was it. I was a little disappointed that the award for Best Hair Performance had been yanked this year (juuustkidding!) but I was proud to have sat through what was possibly the longest ACTRA awards show on record. Nobody was more eager to GTFO of that room than myself, and the other thousand people I sat with.  The night ended with desserts, drinking and possibly the most entertaining “dad dancing” I’ve seen since I passed the age of bar mitzvahs.

(Click and scroll through images for hi res)


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