Jessica Van der Veen studied acting at the Banff School of Fine Arts and completed her BA in Theatre at UBC. For 27 years she acted and directed in film, TV, and theatre. Film and TV credits include ‘Wiseguy’, ‘McGyver’, ‘The Commish’, ‘Cold Squad’, ‘Scary Movie’, and ‘The Goodbye Girl’. Theatre credits include 17 Stories, Hot Flashes, Ever Loving, The Three Sisters, and Floating Rhoda and the Glue Man.
Van der Veen’s selected co-writing and directing credits include: The Waltonsteins (with Frances Sheridan); The Shadowbox; Scary Stories; and now The Triangle Factory Fire Project.
Van der Veen and her writing partner won Best Screenplay at Beverly Hills Film Festival for their feature script, ‘Emma’s Song’. Their inspirational internet series for early teens, ‘Verse’, won its young host a Youth Now award.
Van der Veen worked as a consultant for ACTRA/Union of BC Performers, creating a lobbying plan to change legislation and tax frameworks to promote the BC film industry. She sat on the Arts Advisory Council to the Capital Regional District. She is a member of the Dancing Backwards project, helping to develop theatre-based curriculum on democratic processes and the history of Canadian women in politics for the K-12 system.
Jessica built a successful career as an acting teacher in Vancouver, teaching at Gastown Actors’ Studio. She currently teaches Acting for the Camera at the Canadian College of Performing Arts in Victoria BC, one of Canada’s premier training schools for multi-talented performers.
Van der Veen is co-owner of CASTVictoria (Coastal Acting Services Team) providing coaching and taping services to professional actors across North America – in person and via Skype. She is available for private prep for auditions and also coaches on film sets. She provides career counselling to young performers. Clients include Kelly Rowan (‘The O.C.’), Sarah Chalke (‘Roseanne’, ‘Scrubs’), Alison Somerville (Mamma Mia, Rocky Horror), and many others working across Canada and the United States in film, television and the theatre.