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Observations from a Pink Tartan Casting

March 2007

As part of preparations for fashion week, Modelresource once again had the opportunity to sit in on Pink Tartan's casting.

If you're new to the industry, here's what you need to know about PT: In the past two years its shows have featured a staggering number of top models (Yasmin Warsame, Lisa Cant, Heather Marks, Agnieszka Wichniewicz, Alana Zimmer, Eva Shaw, Meredith Mason, Bobbi Wiens, Vanessa Perron, Paméla Bernier, Nelly Tsyrlin, Richelle Dobson and Sarah Ruba). Last season PT cast Sofi Berelidze before she jetted off to New York to become one of that city's newest runway must-haves (this is the same Sofi Berelidze that opened the Louis Vuitton show in Paris this week). The Globe & Mail's review of the last fashion week proclaimed Pink Tartan had "the fiercest models." Basically, if you're one of the 20 or so cast in a PT show, you're doing something really right.

Another thing you should know about Pink Tartan though, is that being really good is not enough. Last year, for instance, casting agent Paola Fullerton had three sets of comp cards lined up on her desk; each a potential cast that wouldn't work as individuals. A great cast needs to be a coherent story, and individual models - as stellar as they may be - are often overlooked for the good of the whole.

Over four days more than 120 people auditioned for a place in this season's lineup, which Modelresource will unveil next week.

Models had the advantage this season of having a summary of a Pink Tartan casting posted on Modelresource's front page, so there wasn't much excuse to make the same mistakes people made in seasons past. Still, there were other things that could have been improved upon, so in the interest of making next season's casting even better, here are more observations from a Pink Tartan casting.

Tips:
  • Wear your hair down, but bring something with you to tie it back. We want to see your hair, and if you let it down after you arrive you're going to have a distracting kink where the elastic had been.

  • If you're wearing jeans, choose them carefully. They should be freshly washed so they don't look dumpy.

  • Don't wear a padded bra. Whomever is conducting the casting needs to see your true figure, and it's a rare casting that penalizes you for appearing to be less than a 'C' cup.

  • Gum? Really? Do I need to say it?

  • The thing with perfume is that scent has the strongest attachment to memory and if the really rude girl the day before was wearing the same fragrance you're wearing now, you've already got a strike against you before you even start. One model this season had so much perfume my eyes were watering (which made it difficult to watch her walk).

  • It is definitely to your advantage to arrive early in the casting. You shouldn't arrive BEFORE the casting is scheduled to start - otherwise you'll make the casting agent feel rushed, and that's not what you want. You also though, don't want to be one of the last models to be seen, after scores of models have already shown they belong in the show.

  • If, after you've done your run, you're told you weren't what they were looking for, don't cut them off while they give their reasons. First, it's a chance to learn. Second, it's really rude to cut someone off when they're trying to be helpful. It leaves a bad impression.

  • If you don't understand the directions, don't be afraid to ask. The casting agent would rather take a few seconds to explain it again, than to watch you go down the wrong hallway.

  • A lot of models were swinging their hips. That works for many shows, but not for Pink Tartan. Really try to practice different walks before you arrive, so if some shouts "less hips" you can lengthen your steps without breaking stride.

  • I know Mom told you to dress in layers when it's cold out, but you should probably shed some of them when you arrive unless you want to look bigger than you really are.

  • Because most models had to wait in the lobby before being seen, several got to hear the instructions given to those that went before them. Don't, though, assume you know the instructions until they have been given to you. Until you can actually see the area where you will be auditioning, don't assume you know where you will be starting from and stopping at.

  • When you actually are doing the walk, don't talk. Just stick to doing your walk and listen for instructions.




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