A campaign against "scam" talent agents in Toronto has prompted threats of violence.
Following media attention generated by an early July press conference about the scams, the hotline (set up to deal with complaints of unethical behaviour) started receiving 10 to 30 times the number of telephone calls (up from 20-30 to 200+) per day. Canadians are obviously hungry for this type of information.
However, Diana Belshaw of Theatre Ontario, a spokesperson for the Entertainment Industry Coalition, has received repeated threats linked to her recent criticisms of fraudulent agencies. The threats are now under investigation by the Metro Toronto Police.
"People have called my house and threatened me personally," she said. "They have also talked to my young daughter and threatened her and the rest of my family explicitly." Belshaw was shaken and angered by the recent threats.
The Canadian hotline number for complaints is (416) 977-3832.-- By Andrea Hodges
Theatre News Canada