It’s an Emmy win for Sheridan alumni


The third time is the charm.

Stephanie Gorin, a Sheridan graduate, says walking the stage to receive the 2014 Prime Time Creative Arts Emmy Award for Outstanding Casting for the television series Fargo is a dream come true.

“Winning the Emmy was an unbelievable experience,” said Gorin. “Walking up to the stage which was filled with so much talent was a dream come true.”

Gorin, born in Toronto and raised in Georgetown, graduated from Sheridan College in 1981 from the Media Arts program, previously known as Music Theatre, and became a casting director.


“Sheridan for me was a thrill,” said Gorin. “I always loved music theatre but had never really had the opportunity in our small town, certainly straight theatre, but no musicals.”

After graduating from Sheridan with a three-year diploma, she auditioned for How to Succeed in Business at the Bayview Playhouse in Toronto.

“After waiting eight hours, I was last in, sang and got one of the apprenticeship jobs in the ensemble,” said Gorin, in a phone interview. “I did seven jobs as an stage manager advisor in places like Grand Bend and Sudbury. That’s where my career took off. For the past 25 years, I have worked with great mentors like Beth Russell, Vinny Liff, Deirdre Bowen, before taking off on my own.”

The win was for casting the mini-series Fargo, which was cast with Rachel Tenner and Jackie Lind.

Fargo is a dark comedy-crime drama television series.

IMDb describes the show as: “A drifter named Lorne Malvo arrives in small-town Minnesota and influences the population with his malice and violence, including put-upon salesman Lester Nygaard.”

Gorin was previously nominated for the same award in 2008 and 2009 for The Tudors. She was also nominated for three Gemini awards for Being Erica and The Border in 2009, as well as Guns in 2010, and a three-time Canadian Comedy Award nominee for the web series The Casting Room, which she won in 2012. With every nomination, she has garnered much praise from her colleagues.

“She thinks outside the box, and always brings a creative level to the casting ideas,” said Kari Skogland, a writer, director and producer, by e-mail. “She is the calm amongst the storm – she just keeps going. Casting is so tricky because sometimes it’s about fulfilling the ambiguous ideas of the whole list of executives, each with their particular idea of roles. She keeps her eye on the prize and just manages to get it done.”

Skogland met Gorin at the casting of her first big film The Stone Angel where Gorin was the casting director. This was also where they became friends.

“Stephanie is world class, and she has taught me a lot over the years,” said Skogland. “In the casting room, watching her work and how she opens the creative mindset for performers is always interesting and thoughtful. I pick up many useful tools that have helped me over the years on set. She also has a wicked sense of humour which makes working with her fun.”

Gorin’s Toronto agency, Casting Society of Canada, opened in 1989, and she has cast thousands of actors in over 200 productions, including theatre, television, film and web series that have scored big during awards season.

“There are many memorable moments to be honest,” said Gorin, about casting newcomers. “There is nothing like doing an open call and in walks some extraordinarily talented young person who has no idea how good they are.”

Gorin offered advice to current Sheridan student hoping to work in the industry. She said that they should keep training, even after graduating. They should have a hobby that helps them stay balanced when work slows down, learn to hustle, and see lots of theatre.

“The business is hard but joyous,” said Gorin. “Accept there will be good times and bad and it’s the same for everyone, performers, casting directors, producers, directors. It isn’t to do with your talent. Love life.”