Celebrating the 2023 Outstanding Performance Nominees

“In 2023, we will applaud the outstanding performances by our members in everything from short and feature films to web series, animation and narration as well as honour the career excellence of our Stunt Award recipient.”

David Gale, ACTRA Toronto President

Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-conforming or Female Voice

AJ Bridel

Pipp Petals in My Little Pony: Make Your Mark, “Izzy Does It”

AJ Bridel is honoured to be nominated this year as the voice of Pipp Petals in My Little Pony: Make Your Mark. Most known for her work in theatre, AJ has starred in productions across Canada such as Anne of Green Gables (Charlottetown Festival), Kinky Boots (Mirvish) and, most recently, Rock of Ages (The Elgin Theatre/More Ent.). AJ’s voice can also be heard in recurring roles on shows such as Caillou, Blue’s Clues & You, Glowbies and many more. Her work in film/TV is featured in Murdoch Mysteries, Odd Squad, Private Eyes and other upcoming projects. You can learn more about her professional goofballery at www.ajbridel.com or follow @ajbridel on Instagram.

Ellen Dubin

Narrator in Dance Me to the End

Award-winning, multi-nominated stage, film, TV and voice actress Ellen Dubin has enjoyed a unique and diverse career. Since her start in ballet and theatre, Dubin has become a cult figure in the sci-fi world as the iconic Giggerota in the international hit Lexx, received a Gemini nomination for her lead role in The Collector and delighted audiences in Napoleon Dynamite. Her powerful voice led her to work in videogames, including BTVA-winning Fallout 4Skyrim and World of Warcraft. She has received SOVAS nominations for SkyforgeAdam Ruins Everything and Solve. She is honoured to be nominated for an ACTRA Award for narrating Alison Acheson’s novel Dance Me to the End (ECW Press Ltd.). Currently, she can be heard in M3GAN, 65, the Oscar-winning Dune, Pixar’s Oscar-nominated Turning Red, and the Emmy-nominated Star Wars Resistance and Elinor Wonders Why. Ellen is a proud member of ACTRA, Women In Animation, ASIFA, and SOVAS. ellendubin.com

Ana Sani

Izzy Moonbow in My Little Pony: Make Your Mark, “The Traditional Unicorn Sleepover”

Ana Sani is a talented actor, writer and voice actor who has worked on a variety of film, TV and animation projects. She has lent her voice to many beloved characters, including Izzy Moonbow in both My Little Pony: Make Your Mark and My Little Pony: Tell Your Tale as well as Strawberry Shortcake in Berry in the Big City. Other notable voice credits include Mysticons, Angry Birds: Summer Madness, Bakugan and The Dragon Prince. Ana has also showcased her range and versatility as an actress in popular series such as The Boys and Ruby and the Well.

In addition to her voice acting work, Ana is an animation writer and coordinator. In her free time, Ana enjoys indulging in her passions for gaming and video editing. She can often be found tinkering away at the piano or causing mischief with her beloved feline companion, Aero. @anasani14

bahia watson

Misty in My Little Pony: Make Your Mark, “The Traditional Unicorn Sleepover”

bahia watson is a writer, actor and creator. theatre credits include: Uncle Vanya (Crow’s Theatre); MASHUP: pon di road (paul watson productions); The Virgin Trial; Bakkhai, The Last Wife, The Diary of Anne Frank (Stratford Festival); The Seagull (Crow’s Theatre/Company Theatre); pomme is french for apple (paul watson productions); Someone Else (Crow’s Theatre/Canadian Stage); The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre);and A Raisin in the Sun (Soulpepper). she wrote the book and music for MASHUP: pon di road; co-created pomme is french for apple, and is currently developing her next show, shaniqua in abstraction, and a new online radio show for storytellers, program sound FM. film and television credits include: The Handmaid’s Tale (MGM/Hulu); The Expanse (Amazon); and Star Trek: Discovery (CBS). bahia can also be heard voicing animated characters on My Little Pony: Make Your Mark (Netflix); Strawberry Shortcake (Wildbrain), Total Dramarama (Cartoon Network); Clifford the Big Red Dog (Amazon) and Mysticons (Nickelodeon/YTV).

Louisa Zhu

Bonz-Eye in Transformers: BotBots, “Lone Bot and Carb”

Louisa is an on-camera, theatre and voice actor and occasional stunt performer who has been a member of ACTRA Toronto since 2017. Recent performance highlights include series regular roles on the Netflix animated series Transformers: Botbots and the Canadian mini-series Rising Suns (OMNI); recurring roles on Endlings (CBC/Hulu) and the new animated series Kiya & the Kimoja Heroes on Disney+; and the world premiere of Lady Sunrise at Factory Theatre in 2020. Coming up, you can catch Louisa in the film Relax, I’m from the Future, which is slated for release this year.

Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-conforming or Male Voice

Josh Cruddas

Sterling in Doomlands, “Imaginary Fiends”

Josh Cruddas’s favourite projects include Resident Evil, Anything for Jackson and Moonfall, where he played a character named “Scrawny” for some unknown reason. His debut pop EP Variety Show is available everywhere and he has conned his way into three other movies releasing this year. He’s unbelievably grateful to ACTRA, his agents Meagan and Daryl, and to the fine folks at Doomlands for letting him go wild. In addition to being a film composer, Josh also enjoys volunteering at SickKids, losing at soccer and Mario Kart, and getting absolutely roasted by his nine-year-old musical theatre students. joshcruddas.com

Cory Doran

Balloonicus in Super Wish, “Copycat”

Cory is a six-time ACTRA Award nominee and a two-time ACTRA Award winner of the Outstanding Performance Gender Non-Confirming or Male Voice Award.  As the former Chair of the ACTRA Toronto Voice Committee, Cory was a part of the creation and promotion of the Diversity in Animation and Diversity in Commercial for Voice workshops alongside several other incredibly talented and generous voice performers. The workshops have been running successfully for the past several years, and hopefully will continue to help train fellow members for many years to come.

Cory is proud and humbled to be recognized by his peers and to be showcased alongside such incredibly talented actors. Cory is grateful to cast and production crew of Super Wish for creating such a fantastic world where the villain, Balloonicus, gets to have so much fun trying, and failing, to defeat those no good Hoooomans!  A big shout out to Vanessa and Adrian for creating the show, and to Merle-Anne for allowing Cory the opportunity to play around so much with Balloonicus. ‘Every villain has a heart, right Glen?!’

Jeremy Harris

Phil in Big Blue, “Fraidy Phil”

Jeremy is a hard-working forward that leads by example and gets pucks on net. He graduated from the Theatre program at George Brown College in Toronto. He has performed extensively on stage, on TV, film and commercials, and is an award-winning actor. Presently, Jeremy is the promo announcer of CBC Radio One. As a voice performer, he has narrated numerous TV shows and ad campaigns and has played many fun characters on animated series. Playing Phil on Big Blue (a neurotic dolphin medic) has been a career highlight. Being able to work with such a talented group of hilarious professionals was an absolute pleasure and even more so to be recognized for this role. Jeremy is honoured to be included among such a top-notch group of peers. He’s also a team player that gives 120 per cent every shift, plays with passion and intensity, and isn’t afraid to muck it up in the corners.

Billy MacLellan

Narrator in Each Man’s Son

Billy MacLellan was born and raised in Cape Breton. Projects include Nobody, In the Dark, The Silence, Pretty Hard Cases, Maudie, Afghanada, the Watch Dogs videogame franchise and Far Cry 5. In addition, he has worked on Bomb Girls, Caught, Camp Tipsy, The Expanse, Defiance and Diggstown. Billy has received numerous accolades throughout his career, including a Gemini Award nomination, multiple ACTRA Award nominations, and an ACTRA Award win. He has also received recognition for his acting and writing, including Best Actor Winner (CineMuskoka); Winner, Best Supporting Actor (Hollywood North); Outstanding Performance nominee (Screen Nova Scotia Awards); Best Screenwriting nominee (Charlottetown Film Festival); and Best Screenplay nominee (Hollywood North Film Awards). Billy has been nominated three times for an ACTRA Award, this year for his performance in Hugh MacLennan’s Each Man’s Son, his first audiobook recording. He is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Ivan Sherry

Old Bennett Bramble in Saving Me, “Mind Trip”

Ivan has been a proud ACTRA member since 2001. He is not only Old Bennett in Saving Me, but is the most recent voice of Inspector Gadget, Dracula in Season 2 of Hotel Transylvania: The Series, and many other animated characters from Santa Claus to Pope Benedict XIII.

For gaming, Ivan has clocked hundreds of hours on the motion capture stage and in the audio booth for several of the world’s biggest videogame franchises. He was honoured to serve the membership twice as part of the Ubisoft negotiating team.

Ivan is grateful to be a part of the immense Toronto voice actor talent and be recognized by our union.

Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-conforming or Female

Raven Dauda

Angela McManus in Five Days at Memorial, “Day Five”

A versatile and dynamic artist on stage and screen, Raven can be seen in such shows as: Five Days at Memorial, The Hot Zone: Anthrax, Star Trek: Discovery, The Umbrella Academy, Beware of the Midwife, Falling Water, Grand Army, Utopia Falls, Hudson & Rex, Spinning Out, Nurses, Creeped Out, Murdoch Mysteries, Private Eyes, The Expanse, Designated Survivor, Heroes Reborn and Suits. Raven is a three-time Dora Mavor Moore Award winner and two-time nominee and is currently getting ready to bring back her award-winning show Addicted to the Neptune Theatre in Halifax and Teatro de la Tierra in Costa Rica in 2024.

Grace Glowicki

Robin in Until Branches Bend

Grace Glowicki is a Canadian actor and director with a focus on dark comedies. In 2016, Grace was awarded a Sundance Special Jury Award for her performance in Her Friend Adam and was later named a 2016 TIFF Rising Star. In 2019, she wrote, directed and performed in TITO, her feature-length directorial debut. TITO premiered at 2019 SXSW where it won the Adam Yauch Hornblower Award. She recently wrapped production for her second directorial project in which she performed, an experimental comedy horror film called Dead Lover.

Christine Horne

Dr. Lakeland in Ashgrove

Christine Horne made her screen debut in 2007, sharing the lead role in The Stone Angel with Academy Award-winner Ellen Burstyn. She has since worked extensively in film and television, including in Atom Egoyan’s The Captive, Paul Gross’s Hyena Road, and Sarah Polley’s Stories We Tell. She won a Canadian Screen Award in 2016 for her guest appearance on Remedy. Most recently, Christine played Jean Kerr, wife to Senator Joe McCarthy, in the Showtime limited series Fellow Travelers, which will premiere later this year. Ashgrove is Christine’s sixth collaboration (and counting) with writer/director Jeremy Lalonde.

Kiana Madeira

Aisha in Brother

Trinkets breakout star Kiana Madeira proved time and again that from comedy to drama, she can do it all.  This can be seen from leading the cast in Netflix’s horror film trilogy Fear Street, to box-office hits, After We Fell and After Ever Happy, to the award-winning, TIFF favourite Brother. On the television front, Madeira is perhaps best known for her role as Moe Traux in Netflix’s coming-of-age drama series, Trinkets.  Madeira stars in the upcoming action romance, Perfect Addiction, based on the popular YA novel by the same name, which releases internationally in April 2023.

Born in Toronto and raised in the suburbs of Mississauga, Madeira had her sights set on one thing as a child, to act alongside Danny Zuko in the hit 1978 movie Grease. Although that part of her dream was unrealistic, her desire to star on the screen never faltered. Madeira currently splits her time between Toronto and New York City.

Sheila McCarthy

Greta in Women Talking

Sheila McCarthy is an award-winning actor and director whose career has spanned over four decades. 

McCarthy stars as ‘Greta’ in Sarah Polley’s Oscar-winning film Women Talking, for which she received a Career Achievement Award at the Denver Film Festival and shares in the Film Independent Spirit Awards’ Robert Altman Award, given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast. 

McCarthy is a two-time Canadian Screen Award winner for I’ve Heard the Mermaids Singing and Lotus Eaters and was awarded the 2018 ACTRA Award for Best Actress for her role in the film, Cardinals.

Recent television credits include Star Trek: Discovery, The Good Doctor and a recurring arc on Netflix’s Umbrella Academy. Recent features include Happy Place, Broken Hearts Gallery and The Middle Man. Other notable credits include Die Hard 2, Being Julia, The Day After Tomorrow, and Martins Hagge and Night Shoot, both opposite Gordon Pinsent.

Outstanding Performance – Gender Non-conforming or Male

Constant Bernard

Flo in Rosie

Constant Bernard is a queer, franco-Ontarian actor, director and singer.  Fluent in both French and English, he has worked almost exclusively in theatre for the last 20 years and has over 30 acting and directing credits to his name.

In 2020, when theatres across the country were forced to close their doors, he shifted his focus to film and television. Since then, he has held recurring roles in Overlord and the Underwoods (CBC Gem / Nickelodeon) and Makinium (Radio-Canada). This unexpected shift also brought him to audition for Gail Maurice’s ROSIE in which he made his film debut playing the role of Flo. Earlier this year, Constant was awarded the Outstanding Supporting Performance Award at the ReelOut Queer Film Festival for his work in ROSIE.

Jonas Chernick

Jason in Ashgrove

Jonas Chernick has written, produced and starred in several feature films, including the Canadian Screen Award-nominated Ashgrove (multiple award-winner at Canadian Film Fest 2022, Opening Night Gala at Cinefest Sudbury), James vs. His Future Self (four awards at Toronto After Dark, nominated for four CSAs), Borealis (two awards at 2016 Canadian Film Fest, Special Jury Award at VIFF, Opening Night Gala at Brooklyn Film Festival, CSA nomination) and My Awkward Sexual Adventure (TIFF Top Ten 2012, Audience Award winner at Calgary and Whistler Film Festivals) for which he was also nominated for a 2013 ACTRA Award.

He won a Gemini Award and was nominated for a 2009 ACTRA Award for his work on the CBC drama The Border and can currently be seen co-starring in the Paramount+ series Rabbit Hole. Jonas wrote and co-starred with Emily Hampshire in the romantic comedy The End Of Sex (TIFF 2022) and is currently in post-production on The Burning Season, his next feature film as writer, producer and lead, coming later in 2023.

Adolyn H. Dar

Imran in Desi Standard Time Travel

Adolyn H. Dar is an actor, writer and mental health professional who loves storytelling (almost as much as the boy who cried wolf). Select film/tv credits: The Expanse, Designated Survivor, and Superman and Lois. Select theatre: Disgraced (ATP), Brimful of Asha (Citadel), Mahabharata (Shaw Fest./WNT) and, currently, The Rishta (Silk Road Institute).

Adolyn brings a light-hearted depth to his art and a unique confidence to take risks while maintaining safe and fun spaces for those around him. He received the Alberta Silver Premier Award for his work in social services and can also be seen using his cognitive science degree to support EDIAB and mental health initiatives. He is currently working with BIPOC TV and Film. 

Desi Standard Time Travel was a labour of love. He would like to thank Dunya Media for the opportunity and can’t express how honoured he is to be considered for this award. 

Araya Mengesha

Phil in Revenge of the Black Best Friend, “The One Who Dies First”

Araya Mengesha is an Ethiopian-Eritrean, Toronto-born and raised, and Canadian Screen Award- and ACTRA Award-nominated actor/filmmaker. He is deeply interested in the intersectional narratives of diasporic communities. Known in TV/Film as an actor for: Nobody (Universal Pictures), Anne with an E (CBC/Netflix), Tiny Pretty Things (Netflix), Shoot the Messenger (CBC/WGN), Mystery Hunters (YTV/Discovery Kids), Run This Town, Jean of Joneses, and Nurse.Fighter.Boy. Stage credits include Breath of Kings (Prince Hal/Henry V), Rice Boy (Stratford Festival), as well as War Horse and The Lion King (Mirvish Productions).

Recently, Araya co-directed the short film DEFUND, marking his directorial debut, which World Premiered at TIFF and was named one of TIFF’s Canada’s Top 10 Short Films of 2021. Currently in-development: feature film The Section, based on the short piece Tef that came out of Araya’s residency at the Canadian Film Centre.

Eric Peterson

Junior in Junior’s Giant

During the last 50-odd years, Eric Peterson has appeared on most major stages across Canada, as well as Broadway, London’s West End, the Edinburgh Festival and the Melbourne International Theatre Festival.

His work in Canadian film and television includes many guest-star appearances and as a series regular on Street Legal, This is Wonderland and Corner Gas.

He holds honorary doctorates from the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina, is a recipient of the Governor General’s Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award (Theatre) and is a member of the Order of Canada. 

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