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    Posted December 2, 2010

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SF Bay Area Membership Meeting, Oct 25

On October 25th, 2010 the Membership of the Greater San Francisco Bay Area met up at the Zeum Space in San Francisco for the Fall General Membership meeting of AEA.

As has been the history of the Bay Area the Fall General Membership meeting had a fabulous showing of support and attendance yet again. Members of BAAC, (The Bay Area Advisory Committee) and volunteers under Hospitality & Event's sub-committee chair Michael Patrick Gaffney (with a gracious donation of Wines donated by AEA Terressa Byrne via her Husband Joseph Foss at Sebastiani Winery). provided a pre-meeting reception of light eats and libations. The official meeting was held on the set and in the house of ACT's MFA production of "Facing Kate", at Zeum space and over 60 AEA members and Stage Managers were in attendance along with Western Regional Director Mary Lou Westerfield and Bay Area Business Representative Bethany Umbach.

A special presentation on Health Care options was presented by Dan Kitowski of the Actor's Fund. AEA Members - Rinabeth Apostol and Esperanza Catubig announced the Inaugural production of The One-Act Comedy Workshop by the newly organized Ferocious Lotus company. Founded by AEA members whose mission is to produce work primarily employing professional Asian American actors.

Meeting Slideshow
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As a result the membership discussion period focused primarily on Organizational efforts with AEA and Media outreach to support these efforts in the regions. Specific concerns voiced centered around recent stalled organizational efforts with Broadway By The Bay in San Mateo to obtain a seasonal agreement and the clarification of the status of the Willows Theatre in Martinez which no longer has an AEA seasonal agreement in place. At present neither one has an AEA Agreement but talks are ongoing and members are encouraged to audition whenever possible to gain more awareness of the value of the AEA actor in the Bay Area Theatre Market.

Encouraging Organizational News was shared of Hapgood Theatre in Antioch's jump to full AEA contract even in this economic climate, along with Northside Theatre in San Jose and the newly formed Asian American BAPP Companies, "Ferocious lotus" and Stir Fry Theatres.

Members were also encouraged to utilize and distribute the BAAC, "How to Hire Me" outline to producers to educate them on the ease of engaging a Union member and to dispel myths about the prohibitive costs to engaging AEA Actors and Stage Managers.

The Spring Membership meeting will be held on April 25th 2011 at the Ashby Stage in Berkeley. Mark your calendars!

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