Arts Service Organizations and Unions Resources

Work in Culture

CreativeBoost Webinar: Branching Out

On August 24, 2020, Work in Culture offered a motivational workshop for those working in the arts (artists or art administrators), looking to transition to self-employment, and are feeling professionally stuck because of the pandemic. “Insightful tips, tools and ideas on how to successfully branch out and reinvent yourself and your business will be shared by a former banker turned comedian. Registrants will receive practical tips on how to network, market yourself and position your art effectively to your target market – especially during COVID times.”

Career Guide – Job Search

This guide is a collection of resources to help with job searching and changing careers. Topics include:

  • Job Searching
  • Preparing for Interviews
  • Post Interviews-Now what?
  • For Surviving or Thriving in Difficult Times
  • Strengthening Your Resilience
  • Telephone Pre-interview Screening Questions
  • Eight Simple Rules for Succeeding in Your New Job or Internship
  • Reference Checks
  • Negotiating
  • Recruiting the Right People
  • Job Hunting in the Arts: Guide to Getting Hired

Associated Designers of Canada

Workshops & Webinars

“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the ADC is offering a variety of workshops and webinars for members and non-members. Costs will vary by event and some may be subsidized for ADC members.”

Directors Guild of Canada


Like many other ASO’s, unions, and professional associations that typically offer professional development opportunities, DGC-BC has canceled in-person professional development courses.

Dancer Transition Resource Centre

The DTRC offers practical services to address all stages of a dancer’s career, including the pursuit of fulfilling second careers when a life on stage is no longer possible.

Members have access to:

  • Professional Counselling
  • Grants & Awards
  • Online Job Board
  • Online Member/Alumni Network
  • Mentoring/Job Shadowing Opportunities

Services available to all dancers include:

  • workshops and conference
  • on the MOVE/danse TRANSIT
  • referrals to counsellors

Creative Manitoba

Creative Manitoba is a membership based organization which works to strengthen Manitoba’s arts and creative industries by promoting the arts, offering training and mentorship, providing a creative coworking space, and uniting employers, workers, educators, and professional associations. Annual membership fees vary across membership levels. Some of the benefits they offer to members include:

  • Classes and Workshops – workshops, events, seminars and courses are offered on a variety of subjects, such as Designing Websites for Artists eCourse and Artist Boot Camp: Selling Online. Many of their classes and workshops offer a distance learning option for rural members.
  • Expert Advice – one-on-one professional coaching for independent artists
  • Merging Mindsets – a conference designed to expand opportunities for artists to create using digital technologies while broadening connections with interactive digital media. Previous panel topics included 3D Printing, State of VR, Digital Collaboration, Projection Mapping, and more.
  • Youth and Young Adult Mentorship – designed to provide opportunities for youth and young adults to be exposed to careers in arts and culture
  • The Art of Managing Your Career – this $200 course is “for working artists to gain the confidence and knowledge to successfully manage their careers in the cultural sector, developing an extensive business plan, marketing plan, and template for managing finances.”
  • Indigenous Programs – workshops, mentorships, and programs created for and by Indigenous cultural workers, artists, and art enthusiasts in order to promote Indigenous arts and artists.  
  • Video Library – Creative Manitoba offers an extensive free video library covering a variety of workshops and topics, including Merging Mindsets webinars, panel discussions on industry struggles, and member profiles.
  • Job Board

Opera America

Career Transitions for Artists

During COVID-19, Opera America has expanded their professional development offerings for members to include a “seminar series for performing artists [which] provides practical information about alternative career pathways in the arts, and how artists can transfer their skills to roles offstage.”

  • Identifying and Harnessing Strengths – “How do your strengths as an artist translate to strengths as a business professional? Learn how to identify and maximize your professional strengths in a new career path.”
  • Resume Adaptation – “How do you craft an administrative resume that draws upon your experience as a performing artist? Learn how to adapt your resume to highlight your strengths and skills in an administrative setting.”
  • Adapting Your Skills – “The skills needed to succeed as a performer and as an arts administrator overlap more than may be apparent. Hear about ways to adapt your skill set to a new career path and discover opportunities to develop those skills.”
  • Transitioned Artists Panel – “Hear from a panel of opera professionals on how they successfully transitioned from working as a performer to a career in administration.”

Career Blueprints for Singers

Offered via Zoom, this seminar series provides practical advice and tools for navigating a performing career and redefining your personal brand.

  • Recording Techniques – “How do you make a good recording without the ideal equipment or setting?”
  • Financial Planning – “Learn specific techniques for being financially stable and successful as an artist, and how to manage your money smartly with intermittent income.”
  • Working as a Portfolio Artist – “Discover pathways to a successful career beyond the main stage in this session on creating a portfolio of work as a performing artist.”
  • Digital Presence and Style Guide – “Creating a website entails more than just putting your information online. Hear from branding experts on how to create a cohesive digital presence that effectively communicates who you are.”
  • Artist Managers Panel – “A panel of performing artist managers…speak about how contemporary artist-manager relationships function…”

Online Resources

Opera America has compiled Online Resources for artists, including:

  • Recording Resources for Virtual Auditions
  • Remote Audition Guidelines
  • Equipment Recommendations for Virtual Auditions
  • Credit the Librettist
  • Standards for Opera Singers
  • Making Informed Audition Choices
  • Career Guide for Opera
  • Speakers Bureau
  • Industry Resources and Publications 
  • Downloadable Resources
  • Schedule of Performances
  • Video Archives
  • North American Works Directory 


IATSE Training Trust

“The IATSE Training Trust Fund is a joint labor management training fund offering opportunities for eligible workers to achieve and maintain the skills, ability, and knowledge necessary to meet the ever-changing technologies in the entertainment and exhibition industries.”

The IATSE Training Trust offers no fee courses, funding, trainers, and additional resources. 

IATSE TTF & AVIXA Partnership

Through a partnership with AVIXA, IATSE TTF helps its members stay current in the industry by providing access to “free introductory AV courses and a 15% discount on most trainings, free global trade show access, and member-only events.”

LinkedIn Learning Subscription

Free to active IATSE members, the LinkedIn Learning online library offers instructional videos across a wide spectrum of technologies and allows members to develop new professional skills.

American Guild of Musical Artists

UnionPlus – Bachelor Completion Program

“Union members and their family members (spouses, domestic partners, children, grandchildren, siblings, nieces, nephews and dependents) can now earn their bachelor’s degree for no cost!” Degree completion programs in Teacher Education, Business Administration and Criminal Justice are currently offered. Students who have earned an Associate Degree or at least 60 credits in the field of study will be eligible. Those who want to continue in the 2020-21 academic school year could be eligible for a Free College last-dollar scholarship, which allows students to complete their degree with no out-of-pocket cost for tuition, fees, or e-books.

The Entertainment Community Fund (US) 

The Career Center

For working professionals who are interested in additional career opportunities, Career Centre counsellors, employment specialists and teaching staff help:

  • identify and apply existing skills to other work settings
  • provide a resource for referral to employers in the larger community
  • provide one-on-one career counselling, seminars, workshops & panel discussions
  • create a top-notch resume package
  • master new technology

Some tuition assistance is available for occupational short-term training.

Workshops Calendar

Career Transition for Dancers

The Career Transition for Dancers program enables dancers to define their career possibilities and develops the skills necessary to excel in a variety of disciplines outside of dance.

Wednesday Forum: Creative Career Alternatives

“As a result of COVID-19, a significant number of performing arts and entertainment professionals are unable to find desired work in their primary discipline. And as the country, economy and the entertainment industry shift to adjust to this new normal, arts workers may not feel especially optimistic about their creative job options and may be wondering, what’s out there for me?”