What is an equity actor?

What is an equity actor?

What is an equity actor?



An equity actor refers to a professional actor who is a member of a labor union known as Actors’ Equity Association (AEA). This union represents actors and stage managers in the United States. Being an equity actor comes with certain benefits and responsibilities, which we will explore in this article.

What is Actors’ Equity Association?

Actors’ Equity Association, commonly known as Equity, is a labor union that represents more than 51,000 actors and stage managers in the United States. It was founded in 1913 and is dedicated to advancing the careers of its members and ensuring fair and safe working conditions in the entertainment industry.

Becoming an Equity Actor

To become an equity actor, an individual must meet certain eligibility requirements. These requirements include accumulating a certain number of weeks of work in Equity productions, either through a specific number of contracts or by earning enough points through the Equity Membership Candidate (EMC) program. Once an actor has met the eligibility requirements, they can apply for membership and become an equity actor.

Benefits of Being an Equity Actor

Minimum Compensation: One of the significant benefits of being an equity actor is the assurance of receiving a minimum level of compensation. Equity has established minimum salary requirements for its members, ensuring that actors are paid fairly for their work.

Health and Pension Benefits: Equity provides health insurance and retirement benefits to its members. This is particularly important in an industry where job security can be uncertain, as it offers a safety net for actors during periods of unemployment or retirement.

Safe and Fair Working Conditions: Equity works to ensure that its members are provided with safe and fair working conditions. The union negotiates contracts with producers to establish standards for things like working hours, breaks, and safety protocols.

Job Security: Equity actors have access to a wide range of job opportunities. The union negotiates contracts with theaters, both on Broadway and across the country, providing its members with a network of employment options. Additionally, being an equity actor can enhance an individual’s professional reputation and increase their chances of being considered for roles.

Responsibilities of Equity Actors

Being an equity actor also comes with certain responsibilities. Equity members are expected to adhere to professional standards of conduct and performance. They must attend rehearsals and performances punctually, maintain a high level of professionalism, and treat their fellow cast and crew members with respect.

Equity actors are also required to pay union dues and fees, which contribute to the funding of the union’s activities and services. These dues help support the various benefits and resources provided to members.


In conclusion, an equity actor is a professional actor who is a member of Actors’ Equity Association. Being an equity actor offers numerous benefits, including minimum compensation, health and pension benefits, safe working conditions, and job security. However, it also comes with responsibilities, such as adhering to professional standards and paying union dues. Overall, being an equity actor provides actors with the support and resources they need to thrive in the entertainment industry.


Actors’ Equity Association: www.actorsequity.org