INSTRUCTORS: FILM ACTING SCHOOL

Toronto Academy of Acting for Film & Television instructors

ANDREJ ACIN

(DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS)

From his early beginnings of his successful professional artistic career as a film producer on variety of film, music and television projects that he created during the past twenty-two years, Andrej established his well recognized highly artistic signature not only in Europe but worldwide. At the age of 17 he started as a multi awarded musician and film composer (Composer of the year in 2002) and over the time developed his professional craft and artistic skills to become one of the most influential directors and producers of a new film and television generation in Europe nowadays. As someone who is highly experienced in high budget productions (directed 85 episodes of drama TV series JELENA 2004/.2005 and independent productions (won 9 international awards for best film directing) Andrej brings invaluable knowledge and experience to share with young directors, producers and actors taking their first steps in the film & television industry.

SHEILA MCCARTHY

(INSTRUCTOR FOR FILM ACTING DIPLOMA PROGRAM)

SHEILA McCARTHY is a multiple Genie, Gemini, and Dora Award-winning actress in the classic Canadian films I’ve Heard the Mermaids Singing and The Lotus Eaters, McCarthy has appeared in films such as Die Hard 2, Being Julia, Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, The Day After Tomorrow, and Sook-Yin Lee’s Year of the Carnivore. Most recently McCarthy can be seen starring in the feature film Antiviral, the directorial debut of film scion Brandon Cronenberg. She also just finished starring in Murdoch Mysteries for CBC and two independent films called Public Service and Algonquin both to be released next year. She is about to start shooting ICE GIRLS, a feature film with Damian Lee. She has a television half hour in development called DEPARTURE LOUNGE with EONE and CBC.

A lead in CBC’s hit series Little Mosque on the Prairie, which just completed the shooting of its sixth and final season, Sheila McCarthy shines on the screen and stage with many credits including Die Hard 2, Disney’s Paradise, I Was a Rat, Roxana, Picket Fences, Wonderland, and Road to Avonlea. In Stratford, McCarthy played ‘Sally Bowles’ in Cabaret ‘Helena’ in Midsummer Night’s Dream and ‘Miss Adelaide’ in Guys and Dolls. McCarthy also wrote, produced and acted in Virtual Mom. She received Best Actress Gemini Awards for her roles in Emily of New Moon and Sesame Street. Sheila McCarthy is also a supporter of Canadian Feed the Children.

Sheila has coached at Humber College, teaching Comedy in Film and television to the senior students. She also coaches at The Canadian Film Centre and National Theatre School annually. She will be directing SWEET CHARITY at Sheridan College in January 2016. Sheila coaches privately whenever she has the time between her other commitments.

RUSSELL FERRIER

(INSTRUCTOR FOR FILM ACTING DIPLOMA PROGRAM)

While studying communications at Toronto’s Seneca College , Russell’s acting instructor suggested he seriously take up an acting career. From there he auditioned and got accepted in a summer program which was being offered by The University of Toronto in conjunction with Theatre Ontario. Following the end of that program he went to Los Angeles for one year and did some private studying and theatre performance. After returning to Toronto, Russell spent three years at a private acting studio where he was mentored in classical studies varying from Italian Comedia, Comedy Francais and British Farce and drama.

After a short period of performing, he again returned to his studies at the world renowned “Second City” and completed their six level program in improvisation. Russ’ career has allowed him to work with varying directing/acting luminaries such as James Cameron, Paul W.S. Anderson, Peter Deluise, Sturla Gunnarsen, Mario Azzopardi, Jason Statham, Rick Moranis, Richard Dean Anderson, Henry Winkler and many more. Russell now makes Toronto his home and has appeared in over thirty-five lead and large principal roles for union film & television projects together with over fifty national commercials.

VLADIMIR BONDARENKO

(INSTRUCTOR FOR FILM ACTING DIPLOMA PROGRAM & PART TIME FILM ACTING COURSES)

Vladimir Bondarenko is a director, producer, writer,actor and teacher.He has won several prestigious awards which include: Canadian Gemini award Nomination for Best Direction in a Documentary Program or Series for “Speaking of Courage”1994 CTV Fellowship Award.Twice recipient,Banff Television Festival.1996,1994 Gold Cindy(Cinema in Industry) Award for “Speaking of Courage”,USA 1995 Silver Apple Award for “Speaking of Courage”,National Educational Film and Video Festival,USA 1994 Silver Cindy(Cinema In Industry)Award for “Vigil of Hope”,USA 1998.

Principal and Actor roles in television dramas and feature films.Leading and supporting roles at Stratford Shakespearean Feastival and Canadian regional theaters. On-Camera spokesperson/presenter in over thirty television commercials.

JOY JUCKES

(INSTRUCTOR FOR FILM ACTING DIPLOMA PROGRAM & SPECIALTY COURSES)
“CAMERA-READY VOICE”
“WORKING WITH DIALECTS”

Joy Juckes has a Master of Fine Arts from York University in both Acting and Voice Teaching. For over 20 years she has developed curriculum and courses in Acting, Voice and Speech, Presentation Skills, and Dialects for several Universities, Colleges, Schools of the Arts and Acting studios.

Joy has delivered many courses in communications and voice for Corporate and Sales Professionals which have been customized for successful training projects with TD Bank, Royal lePage, Investors Group, Ministry of the Environment, The Pingway, and The Farm. She has also served as a media consultant and private coach for public and political figures.

A professional performer since childhood, over the years her involvement in theatre has included singing, dancing, acting, writing, directing, composing and recording. Acting credits include: “Louise” (principal) in feature film “Lemon Crackers”(currently post-production), “Miss Tick” in Murder on Sunset Boulevard for Mysteriously Yours Dinner Theatre, “Crazy Annie” in Spaces for 4-Letter Productions, “Tardy” in Elizabeth Rex for Brampton Theatre , “Gail” recurring character in Smart Woman’s Survival Guide on Wnetwork, “Ma Ubu” in Ubu Roi for Rhoma Spencer, “Agrafena” in Bankrupt for Max Hancock.

KENNETH MCGREGOR

(INSTRUCTOR RUNNING SPECIAL WORKSHOPS FOR TORONTO ACADEMY OF ACTING IN NEW YORK & LOS ANGELES)

The Toronto Academy of Acting for Film/Television is pleased to have Kenneth McGregor,a well known professional actor as the director of the Toronto Academy of Acting for Film and Television.

Kenneth McGregor a professional actor and director has worked with Harvey Keitel, Tom Cruise, Ms. Piggy, George C. Scott, Denzel Washington, Norman Jewison, Jennifer Dale, Martin Scorsese, Hercules, Xena and many others. He has taught classes all over the world to more than 500 students and many of them now have careers.Many of you have seen him in feature films such as The Corner Dreamers, X-Men, God, The Hurricane, Marciano, Trail of a Serial Killer, Prom Night IV, Primal Scream, and Cocktail.
Kenneth’s phrase: “Acting is the ability to be private in public”.

To see Kenneth in Feature Films Such as The Hurricane, Cocktail, and others click on the below link. Click me to to see Kenneth’s Film Credits (offsite)

CHRISTINA COLLINS

(INSTRUCTOR FOR FILM ACTING DIPLOMA PROGRAM)

Christina Collins has been acting for over twenty- five years. She started off playing Laura in The Glass Menagerie in Stamford Connecticut, and has never looked back.

Ms. Collins studied acting at Circle-in-the-Square Theatre School in New York City. She has performed at a wide variety of theatres across Canada and the United States. Christina Collins is an actress, known for Truth in Advertising (2001), Extreme Measures(1996) and The Marriage Fool (1998). She has more than 45 credits to her name. Some of her theatre highlights include: Kate in Taming of the Shrew, Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Charlotte in Night of the Iguana, Margherita in We Won’t Pay! We Won’t Pay!, Libby in I Ought to Be in Pictures, and the lead role of Darlene in Balm in Gilead.

Ms. Collins also has numerous films and television credits to her name. Some highlights include principal roles in: Dead Ringers, Glory, Glory, E.N.G., Women in Prison, Between Love and Honor, Holiday Affair, Deep Water Black, Extreme Measures, Thanks to a Grateful Nation, Reversible Errors and the lead role in the film, The Dinner Party. In addition, she has appeared as a recurring cast member on the BBC/Disney produced series, I WAS A SIXTH GRADE ALIEN. She has also appeared on many Canadian Television series such as; DOC, KEVIN HILL, BLUE MURDER, THIS IS WONDERLAND, REGENESIS and DEGRASSI, SECOND GENERATION to name a few. As well as her acting work, . Ms. Collins has been delighted to be among the teaching staff for the Film and Television Program at Humber College in Toronto and is now part of the teaching staff at the Toronto Academy of Acting for Film & Television . She also freelances as a director, and frequently directs commercial auditions at Jigsaw Casting, Power House Casting, Gloria Mann, Brian Levy and Fade to Black.

DAVID HUBAND

(INSTRUCTOR FOR TEEN PROGRAM)

David Huband a performer of 21 years has performed at regional theatres across Canada, such as The Manitoba Theatre Centre, Prairie Theatre Exchange, Theatre New Brunswick, The Arbor Theatre, and The Stratford Festival, and a member of The Second City.

Some of his television credits as a supporting, principle and actor are included from The Strain, Republic of Doyle, Insecurity, Little Mosque on the Prairie, Traders, Flashpoint, Murdoch Mysteries, Saving Hope, and the acclaimed BBC mini-series, The State Within.

He has also appeared in a number of feature films recently including, God & Country (Shaftesbury Films/ Directed by Ken Finkleman) Republic of Love (Triptych Media/ Directed by Deepa Mehta), Cinderella Man (Universal Pictures/ Directed by Ron Howard) and Police Academy 3, Tommy Boy, The Lookout, Breach, The Ladies Man, Wrong Turn, Cube Zero, The Diamond Fleece, That Same Old Feeling.
Dave can also be seen in the web series “Getting Down” on funnyordie.com which he also wrote.

PASHA PATRIKI

(CINEMATOGRAPHER)
(INSTRUCTOR FOR DIGITAL FILM MAKING & TELEVISION PRODUCTION DIPLOMA PROGRAM)

11 years in the business, Pasha Patriki’s expansive body of work includes over a dozen of dramatic feature films and numerous feature documentaries. He’s also framed up more than 50 shorts and countless music videos and commercial spots. Films composed in Pasha’s lens have screened internationally and won awards in the United States and Canada.

His most recent “Best Cinematography” awards come from the NYC Independent Short Film Festival, the Wildsound Film Festival, and a nomination at the Schweitzer Lakedance Film Festival. Music video for a popular band “Down With Webster” has been nominated for Best Pop Video of The Year at Canada’s Much Music Video Awards. Starting by shooting on film 11 years ago, today Pasha continues to upgrade his skills with ever – changing technology. Proud owner and contributor of the latest industry’s technological advances, Pasha’s skills are shown with most recent cutting edge filmmaking tools and digital technology.
Click here for Pasha’s bio on imdb

GEORGE D’AMATO

(FEATURE FILM, TELEVISION AND COMMERCIAL FILMMAKER AND DIRECTOR)
(INSTRUCTOR FOR PART TIME FILM ACTING & FILM MAKING COURSES FOR ADULTS & TEENS)

Informed by extensive global travel, his unique visual style has garnered television clients such as The National Broadcast Company (NBC), National Geographic, The History Channel, and Discovery. A notable award-winning director and producer, he has had a roster of Fortune 500 clients: Apple Computers, General Motors, AT&T, The Ford Motor Company, IBM, Volvo, Budweiser Brewing Company, Molson Brewing Company, and ESPN.
In 2017 In pre-production, “Swipe Right” is his second feature film that explores the world of online dating via Tinder, the downloadable dating app. “BLUR”, set for release in 2017, is D’Amato’s feature film debut as director, producer and co-writer. Additional directing awards include the Gold Cleo, the One Show, Gold Bessie, Bronze Bessie, and Craft Award for Directing, Directors Guild of America, Golden Marble, and Two commercials in the Museum of Modern Art permanent collection.
Demo Reel: Click here.

IAN SUN

(WRITER, DIRECTOR, PRODUCER, EDITOR, ENG/EFP, CAMERA OPERATOR, STUDIO CAMERA OPERATOR, FIELD PRODUCER, AND SEGMENT PRODUCER)

Is an Award Winning Filmmaker who writes, produces, directs and edits his films, he has been reborn as a Digital Cinema evangelist shooting all his projects on his 4K RED camera, and on the newest generation 5K Epic that is said to rival 65mm film in resolution. Ian is the CEO of the Production and Post production company and has co produced the Award winning feature film “Anchor Baby” Ian’s body of work includes Drama, Documentary, Commercials, and Music Videos shot on 16mm and 35mm film, Tape and now RED. He has won the Canadian Reggae music award for best video and has been nominated for a Juno.

MILICA ZEC

(DIGITAL FILM EDITOR & DIRECTOR, FILM & TELEVISION, MUSIC VIDEO & ART VIDEO INSTALLATION)

Milica Zec is an Editor and Director working in Film, Television, installation, music video, and art video. As an editor, her first documentary feature film, “Fire Under the Snow”,premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival; her first narrative feature film, “Zenith”, has garnered a global following. Her television work includes the PBS series “Spain … on the Road Again” featuring Gwyneth Paltrow, and “Women, War and Peace”, as well as various consulting projects for American and European networks. For the past several years, she’s been working with the performance artist Marina Abramovic on numerous projects, including “The Artist is Present” exhibition, as well as a new, six – channel video installation for an exhibition at the Moscow Garage Museum. As a director, this past year bore the completion of a music video for Antony and the Johnsons’ “Christina’s Farm”, and a short film featuring Marina Abramovic, which was screened at the Venice Art Biennale 2011. Milica grew up in Belgrade, Serbia where she studied film at the College of Dramatic Arts. She currently lives in New York.

RICARDO DIAZ CSC

(WRITER, DIRECTOR, PRODUCER, EDITOR, ENG/EFP, CAMERA OPERATOR, STUDIO CAMERA OPERATOR, FIELD PRODUCER, AND SEGMENT PRODUCER)

Ricardo discovered the love for being behind the camera while starting out in the business as an extra on set. Ricardo is known for his talent for lighting and for his quiet and professional demeanour on set. To date he has captured magic through the lens through obtaining over 60 credits for Dramas, 46 Documentaries 18 commercials some to name are “Speaking of Courage” and many more.

He has also shot over 150 music videos. Fast forward to his experience in Film School. Like most young aspiring film makers, he wanted to shoot music videos. He graduated with high expectations. As with most professions, he had to start somewhere so he began to work as an equipment manager with a large well known production house. His experience only fuelled the fire further to succeed! Ricardo and some friends started a production house of their own. He gained valuable experience is every aspect of production. Today, he volunteers his time and energy to helping aspiring film makers. Ricardo specializes in feature films, documentaries, lifestyle T.V., commercials and music videos. He is an expert in all formats. His talents have not gone unnoticed; on the contrary, Ricardo has been recognized in the industry and has many awards under his belt such as A Silver Chris for the movie “The Matrix Reloaded”, A Gold special Jury Award for “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets”, A Gemini Award for Exhibit A for best photography.

Press Room

  • ANA GOJA

    Congratulations to our former student Ana Golja for landing Series Lead roles on “Disney’s Family Channel” hit TV Series- “Whats up Warthogs” playing the role of Laney & also on joining our former student Luke Bilyk on Canada’s hit TV Series “Degrassi” playing the role of Zoe!

  • LUKE BILYK

    Former film acting student LUKE BILYK star of De GRASSI lands 10 episodes in television series LOST GIRLS.
    Check out his website at www.lukebilyk.ca.

    Read more about Luke Bilyk and the Toronto Academy of Acting for Film & Television

    It all began here at the Toronto Academy of Acting for Film & Television.

  • SAMANTHA JO

    Congratulations to our former TAA Student Samantha Jo on your continued success!!
    You can see Samantha in action in “The Twilight Saga”: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 & “300”: Rise of an Empire (2014).

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