Thirty three years after his death, the legacy left by Sam Payne continues to be applauded by the British Columbia acting community. One of Canada’s well loved and respected professional actors, Sam Payne is remembered not only for his contribution to Canadian theatre, film, radio and television, but also for his personal attributes, which included humanity, artistic integrity and encouragement of new talent.
Each year UBCP/ACTRA presents two Sam Payne Awards to local members. The Sam Payne Award recognizes a performer whose personal attributes mirror those of Sam Payne. The Sam Payne Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes a person with an accumulative outstanding body of work in the performing arts industry.
Sam Payne Lifetime Achievement Award for 2014
Gabrielle is one of Canada`s critically acclaimed, Film, Stage and Television actresses. She has worked repeatedly with some of Canada’s most notable directors including Atom Egoyan (The Adjuster, Where the Truth Lies, Family Viewing, Speaking Parts and the two-time Oscar Nominated film The Sweet Hereafter), Bruce Sweeney (Excited, Dick Knost and The Crimes of Mike Recket) and Carl Bessai (Sisters & Brothers, Repeaters, Mothers and Daughter and Normal).
The Sam Payne Committee is thrilled to celebrate the accomplishments of this Vancouver based award winning performer. Gabrielle’s awards include a UBCP/ACTRA Award for Best Actress, five Leo’s, two Atlantic Film Festival Awards, a National Board of Review (NY) Award and she has been nominated five times for a Gemini and four times for a Genie.
Sam Payne Award for 2014
Born in Nairobi Kenya, schooled in England and Calgary, by age 20 Veena had graduated from University of Calgary with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, and had co-founded & developed Calgary’s Loose Moose Theatre Company.
An award-winning actress of Punjabi descent, Veena’s wide and varied career includes theatre, film, television, cartoon voices, improv comedy, and emceeing gala events. She developed The Vancouver Theatresports League, co-hosted her own CBC TV talk show In the Company of Women, has acted in over 100 plays, been a series regular on numerous TV series, appeared in TV movies and feature films. Veena has been a three-time Jessie Richardson nominee and has won both a Jessie and a Leo Award for her acting work.
Currently Veena is in development with a new TV series, as well as the co-artistic director of Truth Be Told Theatre’s The Life Game. She is also known for teaching her popular improv classes throughout Vancouver.
“If the average actor amasses 40 credits to their lifetime, Veena has already lived four lifetimes.” Jamie Levitt, Lauren Levitt & Associates Inc.