I attended Kim Myers ARTS showcase last month (July 2016). I would like to leave a review as I was unable to find a review that fully delineated the experience for me prior to attending, and I want to help people understand more about this conference when deciding whether or not to attend. I had actually decided to get a refund and not attend after signing up, but their refund policy is absurd (reduces to a 10% refund within 2 weeks or so), so refunds are not really an option with them. Be aware of this when signing up. | There is both real value to this conference as well as manipulative conning. Overall it was a worthwhile experience for me. I am new to the modeling and acting scene, and the experience of acting in front of such a large audience was helpful. The seminars were also far better than I had anticipated. They helped me become a better model and actor, and I was able to use so many seminars in such a short time period to boost my resume a lot. | I would attend as many of these as possible, take notes, and write them down under training on your resume. | My situation is that I am 31 years old and I have enough money in the bank that a $2k investment was not overly burdensome for me. I am also from Tampa, Fl and the conference was in Orlando, so I commuted each day to and from the conference. This saved me about $1,200 on staying at the Walt Disney Swan Resort, and obviously I was able to save on flights and food expenses. | Now while there is real value to the conference, there is also conning. Its unfortunate because Kim purports herself to be an ethical christian acting within a corrupt industry, so I expected better. All of the cons are financial, and none involve endangering children or families in any way. This is absolutely a safe environment. Some of the cons include: | – strongly encouraging everyone to stay at the Disney Resort in order to network with agents, as she claims they will be staying at the resort the entire week. The truth is that they were not there for the first couple of days (which were only workshops), and they are not even allowed to talk to you until the final day of callbacks anyways. She goes on at length about some story of a mom randomly meeting the disney casting director in an elevator and how that got her daughter into acting with disney. Maybe that story is true, but I’d encourage you to stay elsewhere and save money, at least until the final 2 nights or so. Obviously ARTS is receiving some kind of kickback from Disney for all of the guests given how hard they push your stay there. If its a financial hardship, then do not do it, as it is not worth it. | – ARTS claims that they will provide you with over 20 hours of instruction prior to the Showcase. This absolutely did NOT happen, and this probably frustrated me more than anything. Kim mentioned that the entire staff would be meeting us in Orlando about 4 months prior to showcase, which didn’t happen. What did happen was 3 skype calls, each between 20 and 40 minutes long. So rather than 20+ hours of training, I received 1.5 hours, all online. A fair amount of this time was spent on just choosing my performances rather than training. When I called them out about this, Brooke Smith (Kim’s assistant) claimed that the ARTS seminars the first two days were the rest of my training. Okay, then add about another 4 hours. That still leaves me approximately 15 hours short of what was promised. I looked at the contract that I signed, and of course the training hours was missing from that contract. It was only in the brochure, which is misleading. Focus on the contract, not the brochure, in assessing their promises. | – The ARTS charges you $85 to be in their program book. Are you freaking kidding me? I just paid you $2,000 to go to your conference, and you want to slide another sneaky fee to be in the program book? I chose not to pay that absurd fee, and I think I was the only one who was not in the program book. They seemed shocked that I did not want to pay, and mentioned that the agents use the program books to find candidates. I doubt that they use that book, because they can see your number during every performance. And ARTS mentioned nothing about this until I received an e-mail and it was time to pay. Dirty move. | – I had my own professional modeling shots taken prior to the conference and I was ready to use them. They informed me that this would be no problem, and that I would not need to use their photographer since I already had my own shots. I model for two very well respected agencies in Florida, and my shots were better than those taken by the ARTS photographer, which are all done in similar locations. Later they tried to remove me from the photo competition because I had not shelled out $350 for their photographer, but I fought this and they reverted to their former stance and let me compete. I spoke with a fellow model at the conference who had used their photographer, and he mentioned that they charged him a $150 marketing fee of some kind on top of the fee that they had already quoted him for the pictures. Another dirty trick; be sure to ask about that. | – They charge you to be in more than 3 competitions. For every competition beyond 3, you pay $85. I competed in 7 categories, so I paid an extra $300. Additional revenue, but they are at least a little more upfront about this charge. | – Kim mentions in her castings (prior to payment) that she will always be available to answer questions any time moving forward. And she is, but only until you pay. After I paid she became unresponsive and I was only able to get questions answered by her assistant. I did not send an excessive number of e-mails, about 6 emails within 6 months. Something to keep in mind. | Overall the conference was worth it to me, but again only because I was able to comfortably afford it and I paid considerably less than many other people, who had to travel from other states (or even countries) and shelled out a lot of cash to stay in the Disney Swan Resort. Some people even brought their entire families. I got the impression that a lot of these people are not extremely well off, so it saddens me that the ARTS charges them so many dirty fees. Please be aware of this. | The seminars are impressively good, the competitions are very helpful, but the fees pop up without warning and the marketing is misleading. I received 4 callbacks, which was I think above average. One of those callbacks was with a commercial modeling agency in New York that will lead no where, and another was just with a school that will lead no where. I ended up signing with 1 Florida modeling agency (I was already signed with 2 others prior to the conference), and linking up with 1 Florida film director (who I may or may not end up working with). I heard of quite a few people receiving 0 callbacks, or callbacks only from schools like the New York Film Academy and American Musical and Dramatic Academy (as opposed to callbacks from any agents offering any kind of work). | If you are thinking of doing this conference purely to make it big with some modeling or acting agency, and it is at all a financial burden, then I encourage you to pursue another route. However if you can afford the conference and you place a high value on the acting/modeling experience and the seminars, then it is great to attend. I added all of the seminars that I attended to my resume (which was barren, so this helped a lot) and I paid $100 to receive digital copies of all of my performances (which I was then able to upload to my online modeling profiles) (this fee was fine, it was through a digital agency working there and was very reasonable given the value obtained). Its all about the pros and the cons with this conference. It is not a scam. They add value, but they play dirty. Hopefully this helps anyone considering attending the ARTS either in Orlando or LA.
- Name: The Applause Rising Talent Showcase
- Country: United States
- State: Ohio
- City: North Olmsted
- Address: 30701 Lorain Road, Suite B
- Phone: (1.800.782.7102)
- Website: artstalent.com