Musical theatre types didn’t lack for community connection during the pandemic lockdown. Big Girl & Friends’ Ryan Kelly and Chris Wilson hosted a nightly live stream fundraiser for the AFC on YouTube with a different musical performer each night. Many ACTRA Toronto members were guests including Thom Allison, Alana Bridgewater, Louise Camilleri, Lana Carillo, Michael De Rose, Bruce Dow, Gabi Epstein, Jake Epstein, Donna Garner, Kelly Holiff, Gavin Hope, Chilina Kennedy, Jeigh Madjus, George Masswohl, Charlotte Moore, Tracy Michailidis, Valerie Stanois, Astrid Van Wieren, and many more, each of whom end their episode with a song.
Big Girl & Friends also hosted a dialogue with performers of colour on June 6, 2020 with members Saacha Dennis and Andrew Prashad, and Karen Burthwright.
Over approximately 70 episodes, Big Girl & Friends viewers donated nearly $30,000 to the AFC. You can watch the episodes on YouTube and you can still donate. Go to: https://afchelps.ca/ Big Girl & Friends is going on a summer hiatus but they’ll be back in the fall with new plans!
Here are Just some of the many illustrious ACTRA Toronto guests: