The bottom line is that John Casablancas Modeling Agency misleads parents/Guardians and their children.
Last summer my neice Victoria from Mississippi was visiting me and was in my care for 2 months of her summer break. She is 11 years old. As we were driving in the car one day, she happened to hear the radio advertisement that mentioned that John Casablancas were in search for the next Hannah Montana-type child star and were holding auditions in oakbrook Illinois which was only 35 mins from me. Victoria has always shown intrest in wanting to pursue this type of future so she took it upon herself to call the 800 number from her cell phone. She had no luck reaching anyone and never even left a message. However, Later on Victoria gets a call back from JC's saying they saw they missed her call and I saw her eyes light up with such excitement. She passed me her phone and they asked me to set up an audition time. I was skeptical therefore I asked if there would be any fees or anything I need to know about. They told me the dress code and the way they made it seem to us was that they were holding an audition to pick a child for an actual new image being created for television. This is how they mislead everyone. I went out and bought my neice a nice outfit according to their specifications. Victoria was so excited that she could not sleep and was just so anxious.
We go to audition appointment which went well, they called wanting her to do the second audition. They even told me over the phone that they liked her so much that she was the first child picked for the second audition! So, I go out and buy Victoria another outfit and shoes thinking that this is her little dream and I want to give her the best shot possible and may sure she looked perfect. BTW, I did get permission from Victorias mother to pursue this and her mother also spoke with the agency and confirmed the same information with me and understandings.
At the 2nd audition they take her in one room for her actual audition and they make me wait in someones office. After telling Victoria that she did great and that she has a ton of talent...they send her back to me with an office lady to the office in which I am sitting. Right in front of my neice which is estactic that she did a great job...they give me a folder telling me we need to sign her up for classes. These classes are around $2,000 and were like 3 months long. They knew she was only temporarily visiting me so why would they even have wasted my time to show up if this whole thing was about classes? They knew she wouldn't be around to take any classes. So, anyway...they said if I signed her up for classes today then Victoria could come back for another audition which would be in front of a talent scout flying in from California. However...this talent scout was coming in a matter of days so what would it matter if she signed up for classes or not because it would not affect her performance for that audition. I started seeing HUGE red flags at this point. They also told me that I would need to sign her up for classes that night in order to get her on that audition list. So I started asking questions... I said what I want to know is if these auditions are for a specific part/look being pursued as the advertisement on the radio made it seem or if these auditions are just to promote and fill your classes within your private school? Of course we all know that one does need training to become a famous actor or model, however, the difference is that John Casablanca is advertising a search for the next Hannah Montana-type actor or model...they are NOT advertising their school or their classes. This misleads children to begging their parents to take them in thinking they are just looking for that one lucky-duck kid with the right look. They advertise as if it is a contest to be won.
So I see all the arguing about if John Casablancas is a scam or not. Well all I can say is that I do not doubt that if I pay the $2,000 my neice would have went to some type of training classes however they need to advertise their school on the up & up as a school. They should not be allowed to consider these auditions when really they are preselecting the kids that they want to be in their school...which I believe is discrimination. If an ugly kid does not get a call back from their 1st audition, then that is JC's way of not offering classes based on what they have already seen of the child, right?
Anyhow...a stop needs to be put on all the misleading intentions John Casablancas is posing upon us and our children with misleading advertisements & misinformation to get our children into their office and to put us parents/guardians on the spot for something we are not expecting and putting the adult under pressure. Once it was clear what this all was really about, and I decided not to sign up for classes... I then had to contend with my beautiful neice which was in tears thinking that she was missing out on her one big chance for her dream. Very very sad & very very pissed. Please spare you child of this experience.
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