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Faculty in the Acting for Film, TV & the Theatre program are also dedicated professionals. Links to faculty members’ websites, which showcase their work and accomplishments, appear in program’s faculty roster below.


Hart Massey | Program Director

Hart Massey is an actor, writer, producer, and teacher who has worked in the theatre and film industry since he was a child.  With over 30 years of experience, he has collaborated with Canada’s finest directors and entertainers including Ryan Reynolds, Don Cherry, Tomson Highway, and others. He is a partner of the film company Massey Bros. Films for which he produced and starred in his self-titled TV series Hart of the Annex (Rogers), bringing him acclaim in several Canadian newspapers and the nomination for Best Television Series at the Rogers Impression Awards. He has also written, produced, and hosted five seasons of the Gemini-nominated TV series, The Film Student (Rogers). His work as an actor and director have taken him across the country and abroad to the U.S., Latin America, Africa, and most recently China where he was auditioning actors and scouting production talent for the Toronto Film School. Hart is an alumni of The University of Toronto’s Drama Program and The Berlinale Talent Campus. His films have played in international film festivals such The Berlin Film Festival, The Montreal World Film Festival, The Seattle Independent Film Festival, and TIFF’s Sprockets Film Festival. In 2010, Hart became the Program Director of Toronto Film School’s Acting for Film/TV/Theatre program. He co-authored the curriculum and continues to oversee his vision of creating the “Complete Actor”, one who masters a full range of performance on camera and on stage, while understanding the entire production process.


John Tench

John Tench was born in Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.A. growing up in Canada, and started working in Film and Theatre in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. He began his career in Toronto with Ken Gass at the legendary Factory Theatre Lab before moving on to study and work in New York, London, Paris and Continental Europe, before returning to Canada. He founded the influential Theatre, Kathartic, touring shows internationally, including works by Sam Shepard, Dario Fo, and Bertoldt Brecht. John moved to Vancouver, B.C. and to Hollywood, Los Angeles to continue his work in Film and TV.

In his many Feature Film and TV appearances such as American Gods, Alias Grace, Designated Survivor, Killjoys, Brokeback Mountain, Shooter, Watchmen, Fringe, Supernatural, X-Files, he’s worked with many great directors including Ang Lee, Antoine Fuqua, Zac Snyder, Roger Christian, Chris Haddock and on numerous award winning shows. He has recently been invited back to the hit show Murdoch Mysteries to reprise his role of Alexander Graham Bell. John also works on Ubisoft’s new award winning VideoGame – WatchDogs 1 and Bad Blood as the legendary character fan favorite, T Bone Grady. He recently completed WatchDogs 2. He’s also worked with numerous theater companies as an Actor, Director, Writer, Producer. He has written and directed several shorts and three Screenplays. He’s been nominated for numerous awards in the Best Actor Category. He is a master of accents and dialects and voices many cartoons and animation.


Andrew Moodie

Ontario-based actor/playwright/director Andrew Moodie exploded onto the scene in 1995 with his first play, Riot. As an actor, he has performed in countless productions all across the country. Some selected credit include; Our Country’s Good, Better Living, The Second Sheppard’s Play (Great Canadian Theatre Company), Macbeth, The Merry Wives of Windsor and Amadeus (Stratford), Whale, Alice, Pinocchio, In the Field of Dreams, the Nelson Mandela Story (Young People’s Theatre), Health Class (Dora Award), The Incredible Speediness of Jamie Cavanaugh (Roseneath Theatre), Nathan the Wise, and Hamlet (Soulpepper) Master Harold and the Boys (Prarie Theatre Exchange), Othello (Dora Nomination), Shakespeare in the Rough. On television, he was the host of TVO’s Big Ideas from 2006 to 2011. And as an actor, he has appeared in many films, including How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, and the Oscar-nominated Away from Her, as well as Total Recall starring Colin Farrell and the recent film Race, a story about the life of Jesse Owens. His many television appearances include; CBC’s Being Erica, Lifetime Network’s Reviving Ophelia, Global Television’s Da Kink in My Hair, and he has a reoccurring role on USA network’s Covert Affairs.


Madeleine Sims-Fewer

Madeleine Sims-Fewer is a British-Canadian writer, director, and actor. After finishing her BFA with honours in film production at York University, she returned to London, England to complete an MFA in acting at the Drama Centre London. Her work has screened at festivals worldwide including the Helsinki International Film Festival, the Montreal World Film Festival, and the Guanajuato International Film Festival. She is an alumna of the Berlinale Talent Campus 2016. Sims-Fewer met TFS instructor Dusty Mancinelli at the 2015 TIFF Filmmakers’ Lab, and they quickly joined forces as a filmmaking duo. Focused on a naturalistic performance style and visual aesthetic, their films explore gender politics, human nature, and abuse of power. Their short film Slap Happy screened at the BFI London Film Festival, VIFF, and Slamdance, among other festivals; their short, Woman in Stall, won the Jury Award for Narrative Student Short at the Austin Film Festival and the Narrative Shorts Grand Jury Prize at Slamdance. Chubby, their third collaboration, was shown at the 2020 Slamdance festival. For her first feature film, Violation, Madeleine received two Canadian Screen Award nominations at the 9th Canadian Screen Awards in 2021, for Best Actress and the John Dunning Best First Feature Award.


Michael Ayoub

A graduate of the prestigious Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theater in New York City, under the brilliant Sanford Meisner. As an actor, director, producer and teacher, Michael has been an active force in the business for over forty years. He was Co-Founder, Artistic Director and Executive Producer of The Muskoka Festival Theatre from 1972-1991, he established that company as one of the great performing companies in Canada. During that time, Michael produced over 200 productions, many to critical acclaim. He holds over 30 years experience as an actor, giving him a wealth of knowledge to share in the classroom. Michael has been committed to giving Canadian performers their voice, by developing and working with The Music Theatre Colony and the Young Company. Many of his performers have moved ahead to professional careers, both in Canada and the United States. He has served on many juries and assessment panels, most notably the Ontario Arts Council and the Ontario Film Review Board where he was Vice-Chair and Chair of the Policy Committee, during which time he took the initiative and responsibility for changes made to the Provincial Classification Guidelines, having reviewed over one thousand movies and videos submitted to the board. Michael has appeared in numerous film and television productions including Billy Madison, Tuxedo, The Grid, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Forever Knight, Getting Gotti, Street Legal, Execution of Private Slovik, Tom Sawyer and the series lead in Mary and Michael and Mixed Doubles. His theatre credits include, Mr. Bones and Che Guevara for Toronto Workshop Productions directed by George Luscombe in Toronto and Venice, Italy. Claudius and Boy Bishop written and directed by Ken Gass and the premiere production of Bagdad Saloon by George F. Walker for Factory Lab Theatre and Same Time Next Year and Dracula at Muskoka Festival. Plus many award-winning commercials.


Laurel Paetz

In her thirty-year career as a professional actor, Laurel has appeared on stages across Canada, including Alberta Theatre Projects in Calgary, The Citadel Theatre in Edmonton, Vancouver’s Arts Club, Manitoba 111eatre Centre and Prairie. Theatre Exchange in Winnipeg, and The Globe Theatre in Regina. She spent ten seasons at the Blyth Festival in Blyth, Ontario, where she originated roles in over a dozen new Canadian plays. Her most recent credits include Yana in Nightbreath for the Summerworks FestivaL Ma Joad in The Grapes q{Wrath at York University, Communicating Doors and Noises Ojfat the Thousand Islands Playhouse in Gananoque, A Guide /o Mourning at the Globe Theatre, The Passion at Theatre Kingston and New Canadian Kid at the LoJTaine Kimsa Theatre for Young People. Laurel has numerous television, film and radio credits, and was nominated for a Gemini Award for her performance in Wendy Lill’s, Sisters. Laurel graduated from York in 2007 with an M.F.A. in Theatre and a Diploma in the Teaching of Voice.


Julia Paton | Actress / Voice Director / Producer

Julia is a Toronto-based actress, voice director, producer and teacher. She was a series regular, as “Marci” on CBC’s comedy P.R. and played “Milbank” in Conan O’Brien’s sitcom pilot, Beat Cops for FOX and NBC as well as “Francesca” in the Global TV Network’s, Da Kink In My Hair. She has also acted in a range of Hollywood feature films alongside Cate Blanchett in Pushing Tin, Jamie Foxx in Booty Call, and William H. Macy and Laura Dern in Focus. She has worked twice with Emmy award-winning Director Allan Arkush, in FOX’s Prince Charming with Martin Short and in Elvis Meets Nixon for Showtime. Julia also worked with Robert Loggia in the Joe Torre Story for Showtime and was the female lead in The Edge, seen on the W Network. Her selected TV series credits include Due South, Once A Thief and Doc. Julia also produced and starred in the TV Pilot Buddies, with Fred Penner. She has performed in numerous TV and radio commercials as well as lending her voice to books-on-tape. Julia has taught camera acting for 17 years to adults, children and teenagers. She is the creator and founder of Actors On Camera, which trains actors how to audition and act for camera. Her corporate division Crunch Time Coaching has her directing webcasts for one of the leading banks in Canada. Julia has a Bachelor of Arts, Honours Degree from Queen’s University with a major in Drama.


Christopher Sawchyn

Originally from Manitoba, Christopher is a triple threat (actor, singer, dancer) in addition to TV & film performance (THE BRIDGE, MAYDAY, QUEER AS FOLK). he has directed actors and choreographed pieces for Mirador Productions, New Teatro and Rogue & Peasant Theatre. As an instructor, he has taught acting, movement, improvisation, clown and stage combat. In addition to the Toronto Film School, he has taught in the Acting program at Dramaway (special needs), International School of Brussels and the Canadian Stage Company. Currently, he is a teaching artist with Join the Dance Canada, bringing ballroom dance to inner-city schools in the GTA. He is a founding member of the Teatro Scaramouche and brings workshops to high schools throughout the same area.


Michael Harms

Michael has taught Voice and Text for more than ten years, most notably at York University, Humber College, Sheridan College, the Toronto Film School and Seneca College. He spent eight years training with Canada’s premiere Voice and Speech teacher, David Smukler and holds a Master’s Degree in Theatre Performance from York University. He also studied Clown and Mask with Richard Pochinko and acting with David Rotenberg among others. His diverse directing credits include everything from Ionesco to the complete works of Gilbert and Sullivan. He is best known in Toronto for his work as an Actor in and Director of the long-running hit “Clouds – The Musical”. As an actor he has also played Hamlet, Richard m and, more recently, roles in Murder Mysteries and Farces. As a singer he has performed in Musicals such as “I do! I do!” and Road to Muskoka and has done many Operas with Opera Ontario.


Ash Catherwood

Ash Catherwood, an actor, and creator, has been hard at work on both sides of the camera for over a decade. As an advocate for the importance of actors to take the reigns on their own careers, he’s created/starred in several multimillion viewed web series (Microwave Porn) and recently produced/starred in a feature film (Synchronicity- in post-production), and a short film (A Teachable Moment) featured in Tribeca film festival and repped by Telefilm at Cannes.

He was a co-founder of the IWCC, an organization dedicated to digital story creation in Canada, and sat as it’s president for several years.


Rosanna Saracino

Rosanna Saracino is an Italian Canadian director, educator, and activist, with over twenty years in the industry. She has directed over 80 projects in theatre and film, coached and created in theatre, film, dance, opera, and the music industry, around the world, including: One Yellow Rabbit, Canadian Opera Company, Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Shaftsbury films. Rosanna is the recipient of the Yorkville University SSAF fund, for her research and innovation in emotional and psychological consent and boundary practices for the entertainment industry.


Jack Grinhaus

Jack is an award-winning and nominated theatre artist who has produced and directed over 50 professional stage plays over the last 15 years. He is the Co-Artistic Director of B2C Theatre and the former Artistic Director of Theatre NorthWest, a major regional theatre in BC. He was part of the 2010 Canadian Stage BASH Directors Residency as well as the inaugural Director’s Lab North at Tarragon Theatre, was a contributor to the World Theatre Encyclopedia and holds an MFA and BA Honours in Theatre from York University’s Theatre program, an Associate Degree in Acting from The American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City, and has studied intensely with internationally renowned artists Uta Hagen, Anne Bogart the SITI Company, and Graham McLaren. Recent credits Include: Isitwendam (Native Earth Performing Arts/B2C/Talking Stick/Four Dora Mavor Moore Nominations), ART (Persephone Theatre/Nomination Outstanding Direction/SAT Awards), Hedda Noir, Million Dollar Quartet, It’s a Wonderful Life: The Radio Play, Alice in Wonderland, Half Life, The Secret Mask (Theatre NorthWest), Last Christmas (Lunchbox Theatre/ Workshop Series), dirty butterfly (B2C/Obsidian Theatre), and Phaedra’s Lust (Tapestry New Opera/ B2C). He is currently working on the original series Better Never for Amazon Prime and the horror theatre trilogy GrimHaus.


Jonathan Whittaker

Jonathan is a graduate of Ryerson University in Toronto with a Bachelor of Fine Arts with distinction degree in Performance/Acting Program 1978-80 and a 2015 participant of the Banff/Citadel Professional Development Program.

He has television appearances in Murdoch Mysteries, Christmas in Love, Ransom, The Expanse (2 Seasons) Open Heart (Series lead) Alienated (Series lead), The Kennedys, Lost Girl, Transporter, Flashpoint, Suits, The Avro Arrow and Lucky Girl.

Feature films include: Kid Detective, Brotherhood, Chicago, D2K, Blizzard, Land of the Dead, Three Men and a Baby, Virgin Suicides.

Notable theatre credits include: Nigredo Hotel (Tapestry Theatre – World premiere – Dora Award nomination), The Big Sleep (World premiere – Theatre Aquarius), Colours in the Storm, The Team on the Hill, Jake and the Kid (World premiere – Theatre Orangeville), Les Misérables and Dirty Dancing (Mirvish Productions), Man of La Mancha(TBTB), Closer than Ever (Latimer/Follows), 12 Angry Men (Drayton) and The Dining Room (Grand Theatre).



Aaron Willis

Adam Lazarus

Alex Poch Goldin

Andy Massingham

Caroline Smith

Catherine McNally

Chad Tailor

Christel Bartelse

Denise Norman

Glenda MacFarlane

Ingrid Hart

Jack Mosshammer

John Beale

Jonathan Cherry

Jonathan Higgins

Kearsten Johannson

Kelly Fanson

Lauren Brotman

Madeleine Sims

Mark Brownell

Nickeshia Garrick

Patrice Goodman

Peter Van Wart

Ralph Small

Timothy Chisolm

Tony Del Rio

Vikki Anderson

Yale Massey