Lobby Chats: Dismantling the Burnout Badge

May 31, 2022, 1 – 2:30 (ET) on Zoom

When we talk to industry members, a common theme that comes up is burnout. There is a perception that burnout is inevitable for those working in the entertainment industry – it is often viewed as a sign of getting consistent work. This notion is what leads to the belief that being overworked is a sign of success, but the pandemic has given many people time to pause and question the sustainability of this mindset. 

Burnout can have detrimental impacts on mental and physical safety, both on and off the job. At The AFC, we have learned that burnout can also lead to immense financial hardship, creating further precarity for workers. So what can individuals do to mitigate their risk of burnout while thriving professionally? Answering this question is easier said than done, so let’s talk about it! 

Dismantling the Burnout Badge is presented in partnership with the Associated Designers of Canada and Means of Production. Join us as we engage in a rich discussion about the effects of burnout (personally and professionally), how it is perceived, and the different ways one can mitigate its effects.

CW: This panel discussion may include sensitive subject matter.



Accessibility: ASL interpretation and closed captioning provided.


Patrick Lynn, they/them

Patrick Lynn is a queer performance professional transplanted from Fredericton, NB. After moving to Toronto in 2017 to pursue their BFA, Performance: Production at TMU, they have worked in a variety of roles including as a stage manager, production manager, company manager, and as an independent producer for both performance and film. Select credits include: Production Manager, The House of Bernarda Alba, Aluna Theatre & Modern Times Stage Company (2022); Stage Manager, A Grimm Night, Transcen|Dance (2022), A Room Without a View (short film), 2022, producer, Purple Pen Productions; Production Manager, Old Man and the River, WeeFestival (2021); Producer, Perspectives, Virtually Accessible (2021.)


Kyle Ahluwalia, he/him

Kyle is a bilingual technical director and freelance lighting designer in Ottawa. After completing a degree in international relations, Kyle did an MA in Theatre Theory at UOttawa (2013) and has been working in live performance for the last decade. Kyle was with Théâtre Catapulte from 2014-2019 and is currently the Technical Director at GCTC. Past lighting designs include Trust (10 Gates Dancing) (2016), Les Protagonists (Théâtre Tremplin) (2018) and Love and Other Things: a drama for flower, clay and bone (10 Gates Dancing) (2018). Kyle is currently a part-time instructor in technical theatre at UOttawa, an active member of Means of Production, and is looking forward to working on Cabine/Traces (Productions 2359) and Dom Juan (Fâcheux Théâtre) this summer.

When not in a performance venue, Kyle can be found at home with his partner Danielle or at the park trying (in vain) to tire out his Australian shepherd Beau.

Carmen Alatorre, she/her

Originally from Mexico, Carmen is a Latinx artist who earned her MFA degree in Theatre Design at UBC (2010) and lives in the unceded traditional territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations (Vancouver) since 2006. Some of her recent design credits were seen in companies such as: Arts Club Theatre Company, Bard on the Beach, Globe Theatre Regina, Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, Citadel Theatre, Electric Company, Milwaukee Rep Theater and Chicago Shakespeare Theater. Carmen is an Assistant Professor at University of Victoria. She is also a recipient of three Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards. For more information visit: carmenalatorre.com.

Megan Potestio, she/her

Megan Potestio is a registered social worker. She has been working with The AFC’s Maintaining Mental Wellness services, including Designated Sharing Time and the new Navigator program. Megan is also the Operations Manager of production services company, The Creative Reality Group.

Megan’s focus and passion for mental wellness in the entertainment industry stems from her time working behind the scenes on a theatre production while studying to become a social worker. Megan brings ten years of community case management experience, predominantly working with individuals living with a mental illness, substance use, and homelessness.

Leslie Ting, she/her

With performances described as “fire without smoke” (Strad) and “breathtaking” (Onstage), violinist and interdisciplinary artist Leslie Ting has been creating immersive, music-driven performances since 2014 with her definitive work, Speculation. Nominated for the 2021 Pauline McGibbon Award for Emerging Theatre Director, Leslie’s work combines her specialized background as a classical musician and former practicing optometrist.

Her latest project, What Brings You In, is currently in development with the support of Theatre Passe Muraille’s Buzz Development program, WhyNot’s RISER Project, Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and Toronto Arts Council.

A sought-after collaborator, this past year she performed in the inaugural season of improvisation web-series, Understory, contributed to experimental publication Caddisfly Project and is currently an artist in Race Cards (in Two Acts), a co-production by Prime Mover Theatre Company and Selina Thompson LTD. She is also an artistic research fellow at the Laboratory for Artistic Intelligence and an Associate Artist with performance company, Volcano.

Leslie is dedicated to pushing boundaries in classical and new music and bridging demographics by creating works with the intent and belief that live art can engage the imagination and foster the empathy and compassion necessary to spark advocacy and social change.

About Lobby Chats

The AFC’s Lobby Chats bring people together who have experience, passion, and knowledge of critical topics that directly impact the members of Canada’s entertainment industry. Whether we’re talking to freelancers, leaders, administrators, or service providers, these conversations offer a compassionate knowledge-sharing platform where our community can come together to help each other grow and flourish in the industry on both personal and professional levels.

Lobby Chats focus on the individual’s experience, the person who is navigating what is known to be a precarious career path in arts and entertainment. These conversations will hone in on the areas of financial wellness, mental health, and career sustainability. At the end of each chat, audiences will have a chance to ask questions and join the conversation in the spirit of community support and learning.

Introducing: Lobby Chats

The AFC’s new knowledge-sharing series in which community members can come together to help each other grow and flourish in the industry on both personal and professional levels.


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