A stage manager apprentice acquires apprentice credits in recognition of experience gained while working on productions governed by Equity’s scale agreements or engagement policies. Apprentices must be sixteen years of age or older and not a member of any professional performing artists’ association or union. The COA, OPA and VOA all provide for apprentice stage manager credits.
Apprentices with questions about first, subsequent and/or retroactive credits, or about any aspect of joining Equity, are encouraged to email membership or call the National Office and ask for the Membership Administrator.
Equity supports that an engager should endeavour to remunerate a stage management apprentice with a fee commensurate with the work they are responsible to undertake and engage an Apprentice Stage Managers according to the applicable provincial Employment Standards legislation.
A first apprentice credit may only be acquired for participation in productions governed by the COA, OPA, VOA or one of Equity's scale agreements. The artist must file a Registration Form for each eligible apprentice credit (per production).
An engagement permit counts as a first apprentice credit.
Acquiring a Second and Subsequent Credits When Working under an Agreement or Policy
An Apprentice may acquire subsequent credits under the COA, OPA, VOA or any theatre, dance or opera agreement that provides for the engagement of Apprentices. They may also work under on productions outside of the umbrella of Equity, without consequence, in order to gain experience.
Upon application to Equity, an artist who has completed their first apprentice credit, may be granted subsequent credits in recognition of work on productions governed by an engagement policy (Artists' Collective Policy, D•O•T, Festival Policy and INDIE 2.2), including retroactively, where:
- 50% plus one of the participants are Equity members and two-thirds of the performers are Equity members; and
- the stage manager and director are Equity members.
An apprentice, who has graduated from an accredited post-secondary theatre program and who has completed their first apprentice, may retroactively apply for an additional apprentice credit:
- to recognize completion of stage management training at an accredited university, college or conservatory theatre program; or
- to recognize work done as a stage management apprentice on a professional production while enrolled in an accredited university, college or conservatory theatre program.
An artist working in stage management, who has completed their first registered apprenticeship, may retroactively apply for an additional credit in recognition of receipt of a certificate of completion from the training program SMArts | Stage Managing the Arts.
Apprentice credit recognition for professional work done outside of the umbrella of Equity (“body of work)” credit, shall be considered upon application to the Executive Director.
An apprentice credit granted for stage management training or "body of work" does not count as a different engager credit.
Apprentice Credit Fees
Apprentice credit fees expire three years after the start of the associated engagement but the credit remains in perpetuity.
If extenuating circumstances prevent the acquisition of apprentice credits to join in a timely manner and avoid expiry of contributions, an artist may apply to the Executive Director to have the expiry period of the contributions extended. A $25 extension fee applies.
Non-member stage managers may acquire a maximum of eight apprentice credits, where those credits have been earned with a single engager, or a maximum of ten apprentice credits, where the credits have been earned with multiple engagers.
Where an undue restriction (geographical or other) prevents an artist from completing the required number of apprentice credits, an artist, at least four credits, may apply to the Executive Director to join the Association without reference to a contract.