A contract stipulation most often used in repertory theatre companies, which states that an actor will be cast by the director or artistic director as deemed appropriate during the rehearsal process rather than being cast in a specific role at the time of hiring. The “as cast” stipulation has come under criticism in recent years as it allows directors to place actors, specifically actors of colour, into smaller, non-speaking roles, or to compel actors to play roles that reinforce negative stereotypes or which they might otherwise be uncomfortable playing. Due to the conversations ignited by the #inthedressingroom campaign, initiated by Black staff and artists on the Stratford Festival’s social media in 2020, the Canadian Actor’s Equity Association (CAEA) has acknowledged the harm that the “as cast” stipulation has caused and has committed to abolishing it from future contracts. For more, see tweets by Stratfest, CAEA, and actor E.B. Smith. See also Fricker and Maga.
Sources and Further Reading:
Fricker, Karen, and Carly Maga. “The Stratford Festival Admitted its Own Systemic Racism and Gave Black Artists a Chance to Speak Out.” The Toronto Star, 20 Jun. 2020, www.thestar.com/entertainment/stage/2020/06/10/black-like-me-a-theatre-company-wrestles-with-its-white-guilt-and-gives-artists-of-colour-a-chance-to-speak-out.html.
@starringeb (E. B. Smith). “LONG THREAD, PLEASE READ: re: @stratfest’s #inthedressingroom…” Twitter, 5 Jun. 2020, www.twitter.com/starringeb/status/1268778150659588098.
@CdnActorsEquity. Image of CAEA’s statement on “As Cast” and commitment to BIPOC members. Twitter, 9 Jun. 2020, www.twitter.com/cdnactorsequity/status/1270536734749667331.
@starringeb (E. B. Smith). “UPDATE!!! Great talks with @acimolino_sf and @chrisjabraham about the abolishing As Cast…” Twitter, 9 Jun. 2020, www.twitter.com/starringeb/status/1270423545567498241.
Stewart, Marcel. “The Scarcity Mindset Has a Deathgrip On Casting.” Canadian Theatre Review, vol. 193, Winter 2023, In Publication.