Archives for the month of: July, 2021

The Fairy Princess has seen a whole lot of tragic stupidity as this last year and a half have rolled by.

She has seen her business come to a standstill.

She has seen friends leave the business completely and move out of New York. Truly talented people called ‘enough’. They have now been ‘lost’ to the business because of actual living space, a regular paycheck, and a change at what life looks like when you do not have to make it to the theater by half hour.

(Half Hour is 7:30pm) (or 1:30pm) (Half hour before the show)

She has seen people in the business die. Horribly, horrible deaths from COVID-19.

HEALTHY PEOPLE DEAD – because someone came to the theater, and passed disease through their breath. They left behind families, who are now broken, all because no one knew it was around at the time.

We KNOW the Delta Variant is here – get the shot. No one cares about your ‘reasons’ for not. Death is on the line.

She has seen leadership, and lack of leadership,and then leadership again – …you know who you are.

Here is what – if you do not have a rule that all Theater Professionals and those who enter the building and those who work in the building MUST be vaccinated and show proof – we are going to experience COVID-19 Groundhog Day, THE MUSICAL!!!

More people will die.

More people will become ill and suffer lifelong weaknesses that will prevent them from living their life as a normal human.

People will get infected and ‘take it home’ to their kids under 12 that are still unable to BE vaccinated, and then THOSE children – who have not yet fallen in love with theater – could develop life long illnesses affecting vital organs.


Your personal beliefs do not matter.

Yes, that is an affront to most Americans – because we are told, over and over again, that we do matter – however…


This DELTA Variant is not plucked from the timeline – it is what happens when the environment in which the original virus is exposed, combines with local factors and becomes EXTRA deadly.

Yeah, this one is EXTRA deadly.

It’s more powerful.

It’s more easily spread.

There is no guarantee that you will not get the COVID-19 DELTA Variant, even if you are fully vaccinated but GUESS WHAT? We already know that from the flu shots.


WE ALREADY EXPERIENCE VACCINE INSUFFICIENCY from the FLU Shot – but if you have the FLU shot and you get the FLU, you will not die.

IF you have the COVID 19 Vaccination – and you get the Delta – YOU WILL NOT DIE.

You will just get sick.

Guess what? An outdoor performance in Central Park had to be cancelled because someone tested positive for COVID-19!

Outdoors is supposed to be relatively safe – if everyone is vaccinated.


Clearly, people who have been vaccinated can get the virus.

Therefore ALL performances must have masked audience members with proof of vaccination.

All “Houses” must require vaccination to work within those walls.

Will some still get sick – YES DAMMIT!

But not 600K in one year.

TFP is calling on the Theatrical Leadership to make hard, fast rules about admission into the audience, the crew, the company, and anyone who enters the buildings – that vaccination proof is required. The Unions must require vaccinations in order to work. All the Unions.


This is a note too for the Labor Unions in general – Police, Firepeople, Medical Professionals – if your members do not get vaccinated, they must be put on furlough with no pay, no ability to apply for benefits – until they show proof of immunization.

We cannot screw around any more.

People who on the signed note from a Dr who are unable to be vaccinated, or who did get the shots and are still not able to consider themselves immune from this killer virus – they need the protection, the herd immunity.

We are too smart to go through this bullshit again, aren’t we?

If you ARE NOT SMART ENOUGH to NOT go through the same damn thing – well, sorry Karen, sorry Karl – you don’t get to come to see the show.

You don’t get to work.

That’s it.

You have to think of the larger picture, and not be an asshole.

TFP does not care what kind of politics you have – this is not about politics – this is about SELFISHNESS.

This is about ARROGANCE.

Theater is not a ‘right’ – you have to earn it. You earn it through experience and talent and determination – or you earn the $$$ to buy a ticket.

What you will NOT do is say that your $$$ is worth more than anyone’s life.

What you will NOT do is decide that your fear of a day or two of side effects is worth more than your fellow cast member’s LIFE.

It is not. Ya BIG BABY!

If TFP could wave her wand and impart herd immunity to the world – she would. If it spared even an ounce of suffering – not just for her and hers, but for you and yours – and all she had to do was get jabbed in the arm – she would do it – oh wait a MINUTE….



THIS ONE IS NOT ON TFP – it’s on YOU, MF-er!

If you don’t get the vaccination – you don’t have a right to walk around in common areas. That is it.

Polio and Measles are two things that vaccines helped eradicate from our society – and if these moronic anti vaxxers had social media then? We’d still be seeing deaths and crippling repercussions from those two diseases.

If you don’t get vaxxed – stay the hell away from TFP – she fines you a wack of the wand from the 10K Covid Deaths of the past week or so – all non vaccinated people.

Maybe that will knock some sense in your heads!

TFP out.

The Fairy Princess is a member of Actor’s Equity, which is the Union that covers stage managers and performers.

She has written about some things once or twice….

When she first saw the released statement, she will admit she had a hard time wrapping her head around some points, specifically this one point:

“…we are opening Union membership to any Actor or Stage Manager who can demonstrate they have worked professionally (i.e. received compensation) as an Actor or Stage Manger in the United States.”

Which, she has to admit left her feeling like,

Which was of course, a reaction to the implied understanding that there are different ways of being ‘paid professionally’ and what ‘standard’ that did or did not meet, and what effect would that have on what constitutes professional theater?

She took time to read through the information available, and honestly – it is FINE.

“This eligibility will extend for two years, with application and down payment of initiation fee and any applicable re-instatement fees required by May 1, 2023

Stop freaking out – this is FINE.

The applicant has to be evaluated by a committee, they have to submit pay stubs and a resume and while this is more open than it has been in the past, it is not carte blanche for anyone who has ever trod the boards in a local production to waltz in and demand a Union Card.

Experience is still being prized, the only thing that is being examined is the pay grade.

She thought about all the things she has learned as an AEA member over the years – about safety, and health regulations, and self care – and guess what? None of that is going to be affected by opening up. Anyone who calls themselves an Actor or an SM who is going out of town, or pulling insane hours, or doing Summer Stock, not being compensated for overtime – they should be protected from predatory producers.

The Union was formed to PROTECT PEOPLE FROM PREDATORY PRODUCERS – and THAT is what this is about.

It has been the PRODUCERS who decided which actors were able to garner “POINTS’ towards AEA Membership, and it has been PRODUCERS who have negotiated just how many AEA Contracts they will ‘allow” – so what this does is take the power out of the hands of those same PRODUCERS and puts the power of collective bargaining back in the hands of AEA.

Why should we support PRODUCERS determining who they will ‘allow’ into AEA?

If you have the talent to be hired over a season – a summer season, a winter season by one theater, or for a large role by an Off Broadway or Regional Theater – you should be able to be an AEA Member.

After all – if the MAJORITY of Actors are AEA Members, then it is going to be a LOT HARDER to find Actors to fill the slots for a Non Union tour or large regional space. This is not about Broadway at all – this is about losing tours and regional theater to Non Union opportunities. This is to save the protections that AEA Members are entitled to – to prevent people from being abused by a tradition that is, let’s face it, rife with opportunities for “poor sportsmanship”.

Opportunities that will STILL BE THERE for those who do not want to ‘go Union’ just yet – which could be financial or could be experience related – but it will be in the hands of the ACTOR or STAGE MANAGER to determine for themselves what the timeline is.

The only thing that will be of concern is going to Open AEA Calls, with newly minted members who possibly could decide that they deserve their shot (Which they do) and so…you add people to that equation, yes, it may get crowded – but overall- if you have been a member already, this is NOT going to affect you.

It is on the PRODUCERS to add additional casting days. Days they already agreed to.

You are already a member.

You already pay dues.

You are already entitled to support from your Union when you work under a Union contract.

You know that TFP loves writing about the ‘systemic racism’ nature of theater, yes?

Well…NO, she does NOT, but as she is an AAPI Actor, she has seen how lack of opportunity through the years has taken a toll on the careers of very talented people who simply cannot get a job.

TFP herself is an AAPI Ethel Merman – ask yourself how often that combination is called for?

AVENUE Q and the revamped FLOWER DRUM SONG are the only shows that call for an AAPI Ethel Merman type.

TFP has done both those shows

Neither of them are currently running on Broadway.

She is ‘too Asian” for white shows, “too White’ for specific AAPI shows that do not require singing – she is in a pickle that has nothing to do with training or talent, but has everything to do with opportunity she can meet with talent and experience – and that, is systemic.

When TFP joined the Union, it was because she happen to be cast in a Pre-Bway Workshop.

The AEA Rep came to explain membership, as it turned out – only three of us, all AAPI, were Non Union. She sat through a rehearsal, and when the time came, she told us she was just going to let us apply for membership, and as long as we paid the fee within a certain time, we were to consider ourselves AEA Members. She said she was saving herself paperwork for when we were going to join AEA, which she estimated would be in a matter of months.

She just cut out the interim period because she felt our employment in this workshop was indicative of future members.

(Out of the three, two of us went on to have rather long careers, one was male – so he worked quite a bit on Broadway, and the other was TFP, which…yes, there was work, but it was work and long spaces of unemployment. Very typical of being a stage actor. She too eventually made it to Broadway.)

This was NOT a typical way to join, and TFP remembers being told to ‘keep it quiet’ about how they got in, but that was how. Someone showed generosity of spirit.

Which meant that by late September of the year post graduation, TFP was an AEA Member.

Now, this came with it some disadvantages and some advantages.

  1. Though it took several of her friends years and years to become AEA Members, they did a lot of Non Union Work – Work TFP was not able to do. So their resumes were honestly quite full when they came to AEA, and hers was not. Which is absolutely something to consider when deciding to join. Do you have the resume to get those AEA contracts? If you are just beginning, probably not – get some experience. Being Non Union only is a finite time in your life, hopefully – so learn as much as you can, make as many mistakes as you can, learn how to conduct yourself within theater as much as you can.

2. She could sign up for Open AEA Auditions and audition for higher paying contracts and honestly, higher caliber shows than they were able to – they would sit outside in the non Union Lobby – waiting all day to sing for whatever the ‘big’ show was, and she could ‘go in.’

Over time, Casting Directors got to know her quite a bit before she was ever cast – and that was, honestly, kind of okay. When she was ‘ready’, she was cast.

Thus TFP can say that being a member of AEA gave her the mental fortitude to say to herself when days were bad – that ‘at least’ she was a member of a Union. She took pride in paying her dues, because even if she had not worked in a bit, it meant she was still a part of ‘the business’.

Which made the ‘day jobs’ easier to take. At least she was in NYC, at least she was an AEA Member, at LEAST she could go use the bathroom in the AEA Lounge! She had a space in the middle of Manhattan to sit, and wait, and make sure her makeup was ok before venturing forth – something like that, in the middle of Manhattan, is a big deal.

She did not take some of those back breaking, carry the sets and tour on a school bus or mini van and do it six times a day “type’ of shows – because as a member of AEA which has rules, and has standards, she could not. She was not being housed in a closet that doubled as a bedroom in a shack next to the theater, she had to be housed according to AEA standards. She was able to get breaks while working on a new show.

Protections which likely saved her from some experiences that had her friends quitting the business left and right.

It did not ‘save’ her from having to get temp jobs or work in a catering house, or be in production jobs – it did not ‘save’ her from looking in Backstage and seeing she was clearly unwanted within theater – all of that was glaringly apparent.

Years could go by without a ‘call’ for anyone vaguely resembling TFP. Forget about Producers wanting to ‘take a chance’ on casting AAPIs when it was not specifically written in the script – that work was few and far between. Unless it happened to require an additional special skill that only that one AAPI performer had in their wheelhouse.

Not to mention which, the companies that did tend to be AAPI focused did not hire TFP because they considered that hiring her was a ‘watering-down’ of their message – which, does have to be stated. She was told she was not ‘submissive enough’ for jobs, she was “too American”, she was asked “who do you think you are” – all the hideous things that being a member of AEA cannot protect you from – that all happened.

But NOT in rehearsal.

Never under a AEA Contract.

TFP thought she was ‘a belter’.

The world thought she was ‘an Asian”.

That kind of stuff, AEA cannot protect you from.

THAT is systemic.

TFP is not at all worried about these potential new members. If they have been working, they can pay their dues and fees, and if it has been – as has been said by AEA – discriminatory Casting practices that has kept people from obtaining Union membership up until now, then that should be rectified by allowing them to have protections and opportunity to rise.

If the AAPAC Visibility Report proves nothing else, it has shown that Caucasian performers are OVERLY represented on our stages and are not representative of the population at large. Which means that, prior to – Producers were awarding contracts and points to White performers over PGM performers simply because of the glut of roles for those types of performers, and because well, they wanted to.

It took much longer as a Person of the Global Majority to get your AEA Card – TFP’s experience is an exception.

We were all in a Pixar movie, over and over and over.

Yeah, hideous.

New rules means we get the opportunity to ‘welcome back’ people who have talent who could not get cast and use their AEA membership, for whatever reason – perhaps they moved to a ‘right to work’ state. Perhaps there is not a large regional theater that has enough AEA contracts to support them? They already ‘earned it’, they just could not sustain it through no fault of their own.

The point is – we should not lose AEA Members to geography. Or Disability or LGBTQIA status. Or any of it. If they have chosen ‘this life’, and all it entails- let them have the shot. Their shot has nothing to do with you and your shot.

We should not be ‘afraid’ of people coming and auditioning from other countries – that is ludicrous. Who is to say that someone from Australia or Nigeria cannot belt their face off? Not TFP, and not AEA either, btw.

It is not upon the members or the officials to judge the talent of a potential Union member based on point of origin. If the US Government let them in, and allows them to work, they auditioned and are offered a contract – who is AEA to stand in the way?

If this new policy does not work, they have until May 2023 to revise it – so let’s just wait and see.

TFP thinks it is going to be ok – not that there will not be bumps, however this is not ‘a thing’ unless current AEA Members make it “a thing”.

Don’t make it ‘a thing’ or TFP will have to smack you in the head with her wand.

TFP out.