In October 1987, The Actors Co-op was founded to empower area actors by providing increased employment opportunities and promoting professional growth.
Co-founders Linda Libby, Annie Hinton, David Novak, and Philip Sneed were four “local heavyweights,” as the San Diego Union Tribune referred to them, who perceived a need for a professional support organization for actors in their city, similar to those found in other centers for regional theatre such as SHARES in Ashland, Oregon and REACT in Seattle, Washington. Veteran actors Sneed and Hinton had been involved with SHARES and REACT respectively.
Timeline of Accomplishments
1990 - A five-year plan was established and the first annual All-City Auditions were held. The organization moved into a 5,000 square foot facility that housed the office and the newly established Actors Center containing a callboard, library and rehearsal space available for members to rent for a nominal fee.
February 1991 - The first annual Actors Festival was held, a two-week event featuring some thirty one-act plays and employing sixty or more actors.
December 1991 - The organization received it’s 501(c)(3) status and officially changed it’s name to the Actors Alliance of San Diego.
October 1992 - For its fifth anniversary, the OnBookOnStage Playreading Series was established.
March 1993 - Following the five-year plan established in 1990, the organization moved the Actors Center uptown.
January 1998 - Managing Director, Suzanne Oswald joined the staff.
March 1998 - The Actors Festival included a new feature, “Kids Night Out” evenings, programming developed especially for children and family audiences.
April 2000 – AASD moved into their location on Adams Avenue in Normal Heights. Actors Alliance in conjunction with the Institute for Arts Education toured a 45 minute assembly program called “Theatrical Fantastical”.
July 2004 – Communications Director Shauna H. Ostrom and Program Director Jason Heil join staff
December 2006 – AASD moved into their present location at the NTC Promenade in Point Loma.
2007 – Final Festival and OnBookOnStage Reading. Program Director position eliminated.
2008 – New Website launched with online profiles and automated posting available 24/7
2009 – Sue Oswald resigns; Shelly Breneman joins staff as Executive Director with the goal of starting new programs in Community Outreach and Education.
2010 – Moved from NTC to Virtual Office to reduce overhead, in addition to creating a partnership with APA studios for use of rehearsal space for workshops and programs.
2010 – New Annual Summer Musical Theatre Intensive for students age 11-18
2011 – Began a partnership with ContAct Arts to produce an annual talent showcase called Encore
2012 – New Annual Summer Performing Arts Workshop for students age 7-10