A new organization in Norway improves working conditions for freelance actors and dancers.
Skuespiller- og danseralliansen, the Alliance for Actors and Dancers, secures freelance actors and dancers income and social rights between jobs.
The Alliance started up in December 2012 by employing 10 actors and 10 dancers.
Background The Alliance started as a three year project financed by the Ministry of Culture. A report on the income of artists from 2008 showed that freelance actors and dancers have very low and unpredictable income. The Alliance is part of a government program to improve income and working conditions for artists. Even if freelance performers work very hard, short employment periods and variable income prevent them from getting loans, paid sick leave and pensions - benefits that are taken for granted by most employees. The purpose of the Alliance is to secure a number of actors and dancers predictable income and social rights in periods between employments.
Active while employed by the Alliance Through participation in courses, workshops, mentoring programs for younger colleagues and other activities meant to foster professional growth, the performers employed by the Alliance can concentrate on artstic and relevant activities in periods between jobs, instead of being passive recipients of unemployment benefits, or being forced to take jobs they are not trained for. The Alliance also leads to activity, as the performers must work for external employers a minimum number of days in each two year period to retain their place in the alliance.
Criterias for applicants The ciriterias for actors and dancers concentrates on the amount of work as professional performers. All artistic work the last 8 years for actors and 6 years for dancers should be filled in to the application. The applicants should the last two years before the application, have worked on short term contracts. The performer’s income during the last three years must not exceed a certain amount. The applicants with the highest volume of artistic work will be taken in. Only objective criteria - the amount of work - are given weight – the quality of the work is not considered.
Skuespiller- og danseralliansen was made permanent from 2016 by the government after the trial project in 2013-2015 was completed. The goal is to increase the number of artists.
Our mission is to contribute so that dancers and actors can develop sustainable professional careers without permanent contracts.
The founders of the Alliance are the Norwegian Actors’ union (NSF), the Norwegian Dancers’ union (NoDa) and the employers, Association of Norwegian Theatres and Orchestras (NTO).
Skuespiller- og danseralliansen is inspired by the three similar organizations in Sweden: TeaterAlliansen, Dansalliansen og Musikalliansen. In Sweden today nearly 370 actors, dancers and musicians are employed. Both employers and employees praise the organizations.
Employed Actors and Dancers A short presentation of the employed Actors and Dancers is available here: Artists Catalog
For further information please contact: Tone Øvrebø Johannessen, General manager, E-mail: