Actors' Equity Association, or AEA: the union of professional theatre actors and stage managers. Actors can become members one of three ways: 1. being offered an Equity contract; 2. earning EMC points, 3. buying in from a sister performance union, such as SAG (Screen Actors Guild, duh) or AGVA (American Guild of Variety Artists, like The Rockettes or Cirque du Soleil). "The Actors Equity Association offers free flu shots several times early in the season at the AEA building on 46th St."
The Business: The working term for the entertainment industry, including film, TV, stage and commercial. "Whatever happened to so-and-so? Did she quit the business?"
The Dance Belt: Ninth Avenue between (roughly) 40th and 54th Sts. "Whether I want to or not, I always run into someone I know on the Dance Belt."
ECC: Stands for Equity Chorus Call. A classic "cattle call" audition in which members sign up online a week beforehand to audition for ensemble tracks within a show. They are required by the union. On the day of the audition, members show up to the appropriate studio, and the list is read by a monitor 30 minutes before the audition is slated to begin. When members hear their names called, they are assigned a number, and they wait for the rest of the morning/afternoon for their turn. "I am never going to another early ECC ever again. I don't belt before 2:00."
EMC: Stands for Equity Membership Candidacy. A kind of indentured servitude whereby young, impressionable actors work for practically no money at otherwise union houses in order to accrue an insane number of weeks that will add up to an equity card one day. (Initiation fees still apply.) In my ten plus years in the business, I've never known anyone to join the union this way, but I'm sure someone has. The exception proves the rule. "Are EMCs allowed to pee in the Equity building?" "No way."
EPA: Stands for Equity Principal Audition. A day or series of audition days open to all members of Actors' Equity, and EMC candidates. Online sign-ups were launched at the end of 2016, and the website has been a clusterfuck ever since. Members must log in online at 12:00 noon on the appropriate day, and hit 'refresh' about 23 times in order to score an appointment. In New York, all the spots will be gone within five minutes. Each audition allows a certain number of standbys each day, so one can always haul his or her carcass to the studio on the morning of the audition to get on that list. Occasionally open to non-union actors "if there's time," meaning that no one Equity shows up at the audition and the creative team has literally nothing else to do. "Are they seeing non-union at the Wicked EPA?"
Ex-Pat: Someone who used to be pursuing an acting career in New York, but who either a.) moved away, or b.) left the business entirely. "Went for drinks last night with my ex-pat friend Stephanie, who's in from Chicago."
Legit: 1.) encompassing the TV/film/theatre aspect of the business. "Eddie is my legit agent, while Traci represents me for commercial." 2.) classic style of singing incorporating rich, open vowels and a head voice and/or mix. "Do you have a legit ballad in your book?"
Muggle: Someone who is not in the entertainment industry. "I shouldn't have posted about my callback. My Muggle friends won't stop asking me how it went."
Screlting: A female singer who thinks she is belting a high note, when in fact she is screaming it. Occasionally this technique is deployed on purpose. "No, I can't belt a G, but I can screlt it."
Sides: A catch-all term for the section or sections of the script that is to be used for the audition. "My agent just sent me 12 pages of sides to learn for tomorrow's callback."
Track: The specific things an actor does within a show, i.e., blocking, choreography, singing. "It's going to be so hard to teach Stephen's replacement his track."