Show cover of ACTRA Spotlight

ACTRA Spotlight

ACTRA Spotlight is a podcast from ACTRA Toronto about performers, by performers. Join us as we chat with notable Canadian performers about their stories and work in the industry.


From the ACTRA Spotlight Archives: Bruce McCulloch, Vance Banzo and Tim Blair
Join host David Gale in a funny and insightful episode of #ACTRAspotlight as he chats with Bruce McCulloch of The Kids In The Hall, and Vance Banzo and Tim Blair of TallBoyz. This episode was originally recorded in February, 2020, just before the pandemic hit and the world shut down. As such, we did not feel it appropriate to release at the time. However, since our recording The Kids In The Hall have produced their new season, and the TallBoyz second season debuted. The conversation with David is a compelling listen after two years, as Bruce reflects on his past with The Kids In The Hall, and working on the launch of TallBoyz. Vance and Tim then share stories about their show, and working with Bruce.
60:53 6/2/22
Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald of The Kids in the Hall
Join host Thom Allison in our latest episode of #ACTRAspotlight as we chat with Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald of The Kids in the Hall. Hear about what brought The Kids back for the new series, writing and developing new characters for the show, working together again, advice for sketch writers and performers, and more. Don't miss this great conversation and don't miss the new episodes of The Kids in the Hall on Amazon Prime! If you enjoy this episode, please check out other ACTRA Spotlights, where we've had in-depth discussions with Canadian performers including Bilal Baig & Fab Filippo, Jo Vannicola, Jean Yoon, Cara Ricketts, Karen Robinson, Peter Keleghan, Rick Mercer, and more.  Watch The Kids in the Hall on Amazon Prime: Watch this ACTRA Spotlight episode on YouTube:
41:23 5/21/22
Bilal Baig and Fab Filippo
Join ACTRA Toronto President David Gale in our latest episode of ACTRA Spotlight, where we chat with Bilal Baig and Fab Filippo, creators of the new CBC and HBO Max comedy Sort Of. Give a watch to the wonderful Sort Of, now streaming on CBC Gem!
43:53 10/5/21
Joanne Vannicola
Join host David Gale for an inspiring conversation with Emmy award-winning actor, author and activist Joanne Vannicola. Listen as Joanne discusses being a non-binary performer, their memorable acting roles over the years, becoming an author, their work with ACTRA Toronto as the chair of outACTRAto, and more. Read more about Joanne's memoir, All We Knew But Couldn't Say: Watch outACTRAto's Queer Your Stories PSA:
43:02 6/23/20
Cara Ricketts
Join host David Gale as we have a wonderful chat with the ACTRA Award-winning Cara Ricketts! Listen as Cara chats about life during COVID-19, reflects on her background in theatre, her time at the Canadian Film Centre, her award-winning role on Anne with an E, being second on the call sheet on Street Legal, video game performance in Far Cry, and more.
59:17 5/22/20
Jean Yoon
Join host David Gale as he chats with former ACTRA Spotlight host, co-star of Kim's Convenience and 2020 ACTRA Award of Excellence recipient, Jean Yoon! This podcast was recorded in front of a live audience at ACTRA Toronto's Winter Conference in February 2020. In this episode Jean chats with David about her role as Umma on the smash hit Kim's Convenience, her past roles in stage and screen, living around the world, and more. As mentioned in the podcast, Jean gave a wonderful speech at the ACTRA Awards, which shortly followed the recording of this podcast. You can give it a watch here:
53:22 3/31/20
Peter Keleghan
In our first ACTRA Spotlight of 2020, join host David Gale as he chats with former ACTRA Award of Excellence recipient Peter Keleghan. Peter is one of Canada's most well-known faces, having been the first Lloyd Braun in Seinfeld, plus starring in many famous Canadian shows including The Newsroom and The Red Green Show. Peter discusses his famous family connections, the origin of his name, how he helped instigate the creation of the Creative Arts Savings and Credit Union, and more!
38:49 1/6/20
Karen Robinson
Join host David Gale as he chats with the wonderful performer Karen Robinson. Karen is perhaps best known recently for her role of Ronnie Lee on the hit comedy Schitt's Creek, but has appeared across stage and screen in a career spanning more than two decades. In this episode she talks about her newfound fame thanks to Schitt's, her family life, her start in the business and her thoughtful perspectives on diversity in the film and TV industry.
35:11 11/29/19
Eric Peterson
Join host David Gale as he has a funny and engaging chat with the wonderful, award-winning actor Eric Peterson. Eric, a remarkable defender of Canadian content, has had many iconic roles over his career, including Oscar Leroy in Corner Gas and Leon Robinovitch in Street Legal, plus is the co-creator of the internationally successful Billy Bishop Goes To War. In this episode, the past ACTRA Award of Excellence recipient discusses his long career in film and theatre, his current acting work, the importance of telling Canadian stories, and more.
44:36 10/9/19
Joey Klein
Join host David Gale as he has an lively conversation with ACTRA Award winner-turned-filmmaker Joey Klein. Joey is the director of Castle In The Ground, a new feature (starring Alex Wolff, Neve Campbell and Imogen Poots) which is having its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2019. In this episode David and Joey talk about his latest film, his filmmaking process and what it is like to be a part of the festival circuit.
46:46 9/5/19
Amy Jo Johnson
Join host David Gale as he chats with ACTRA Toronto member Amy Jo Johnson, director of the new feature film Tammy's Always Dying, which is having its world premiere at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival. Amy Jo is very well known for her roles in such iconic shows as Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Felicity and Flashpoint, and in this conversation she talks about her transition from performer to filmmaker, her life in the business, and more.
28:04 9/5/19
Julian Richings
Join host David Gale as he chats with one of the most recognizable faces in Canada, Julian Richings. Julian has had an incredibly successful and diverse career, with a particular focus on the horror and fantasy genres, being very well-known for playing 'Death' on Supernatural. In this episode he talks about this role and others from his career, including Doom Patrol, Patriot, Kingdom Hospital, The Time Shifters, John Woo's Once a Thief and more. Hear as Julian discusses his early family life in Oxford, England, his start in theatre and what led him to settle in Toronto. David and Julian chat about memorable roles, including what may be Julian's favourite of all time, in Bruce McDonald's legendary Hard Core Logo (described as This is Spinal Tap's "nasty little cousin"), and working with Academy Award-winning director Guillermo del Toro on Mimic. And Julian takes us behind the scenes as a performer, talking about self-taping for auditions and his valuable relationships with fans of Supernatural.
54:11 7/30/19
Jennifer, Tamara and Sarah Podemski
Join hosts Jean Yoon and David Gale chat with Jennifer Podemski, Tamara Podemski and Sarah Podemski! These three sisters have all had extensive careers in performance and filmmaking across Canada and abroad. Jennifer is a past ACTRA Award of Excellence recipient, a performer in such features as Dance Me Outside and Empire of Dirt, which she also produced, and founder of Redcloud Studios. Tamara is a performer, artist and musician, who has performed in the Broadway show of RENT and TV shows such as Coroner and Heartland and who is the writer on Jennifer's documentary series Future History. Sarah is a performer and filmmaker, whose series credits include Mocassin Flats, The Border, Cashing In, Between and Tin Star. David and Jean chat with Jennifer, Tamara and Sarah on a wide range of interesting subjects, including their family background and growing up together, their careers in the business, memorable projects and stories over the years, their work helping nurture artistry among Indigenous youth, and their favourite comfort foods (Matzah Ball Soup!). You won't want to miss this wonderful and rich conversation with these treasured Canadian performers.
77:33 7/8/19
Mark Little
Join hosts David Gale and Jean Yoon as they chat with the ACTRA Award-winning comedian and performer Mark Little. Mark has an extensive career in comedy and animation, including Cavendish, Picnicface, Gary and His Demons and Cupcake & Dino: General Services. Hear about Mark's favourite comedians, his background in comedy and improv, the video he created which got over 32 million views and attracted the attention of Will Ferrell, and more!
53:19 6/19/19
Colin Mochrie
Join hosts Jean Yoon and David Gale as they chat with the wonderful and funny Colin Mochrie. Colin is a comedy star, famously known for his work on the TV series Whose Line Is It Anyway? In this episode, Colin talks about his start in comedy and some of his early influences, tells some great stories from his extensive career and discusses his charitable work, family and involvement with ACTRA Toronto. And there's even some impromptu improv with Colin, Jean and David!
42:08 6/4/19
Bryn McAuley
Hosts Jean Yoon and David Gale chat with the recent ACTRA Award winner of Outstanding Performance - Female Voice, Bryn McAuley. In this episode she talks about her start in the industry, her involvement with ACTRA Toronto and the Young Emerging Actors Assembly (YEAA) and even gives us a sample of some of the amazing voices she has performed in animation over the years.
34:05 5/21/19
Rick Mercer
Join hosts Jean Yoon and David Gale as they chat with the legendary Rick Mercer on ACTRA Spotlight. One of Canada's most recognizable personalities as host of the Rick Mercer Report, Rick discusses what he is up to nowadays, along with reminiscing about memorable stories and moments from his extensive career.
49:16 5/7/19
Wendy Crewson
We are thrilled to chat with the wonderful Wendy Crewson in the latest episode of ACTRA Spotlight! Wendy is one of Canada's most successful performers, a past recipient of the ACTRA Award of Excellence, Earle Grey Award and Canada's Walk of Fame. Join host David Gale as he chats with Wendy about her start in the business, some of her memorable roles and co-stars, her ACTRAvism as a supporter of Canada's cultural industries, and more.
31:46 4/1/19
ACTRA Award of Excellence Recipient Jayne Eastwood
In our inaugural episode of ACTRA Spotlight, join co-hosts Jean Yoon (Kim's Convenience) and David Gale (Vice-President of ACTRA Toronto) as they chat with 2019 ACTRA Award of Excellence recipient and Canadian screen legend Jayne Eastwood. Jayne talks about her start in the business in the famous Goin' Down the Road, to her time with SCTV, her favourite roles and more.
37:28 2/21/19