“You’re in! We think YOU have potential. Now, give us all the money….”
Sound ridiculous? It was.
Back when I was still a starry eyed teenager, thinking I could become a STAR (a dream I put to rest once I realised the spotlight was NOT for me!), I went to my first, and only, audition.
There was a thing going around (a thing, I might add, which has changed its name again, and again), which I’m sure is STILL happening – or was before COVID – now.
There was something called ‘The Event’.
They promised a Disney Channel job lay at the end of the tunnel. All you had to do, was go to a ‘mass audition’ with hundreds of other hopeful actors and singers, and you would be heading off to this amazing conference. BE DISCOVERED! GO ON THE DISNEY CHANNEL! BECOME A STAR!
Anyway, once we got there it became clear (to my parents) that you could only GO to the conference in America, if you PAID a bunch of money. It covered expenses to put you up, and the actual event but didn’t include flights, food, etc.
It was more than my parents could afford, but they let me go through with it anyway. I had so much fun, memorising my lines, going up and reading them, and hoping for the best. I was told that once they had called the ‘winners’ and let them know who was going to the US, that you could have a second audition if you were a singer (that was really why I was interested).
I sat at home, hoping and praying for a call. When it came through, I felt so PROUD that I had been chosen. They thought I had talent, and could network with the Disney execs, and possibly be an actor (then singer) on TV.
Sound too good to be true? It was.
Once I had forgiven my parents for not being able to afford it, I did some more research. Sadly, I found article, after article, on how the entire thing was a scam.
Yes, there really was a conference in USA, but NO it was not as advertised. Everyone was most likely called and offered a spot in this conference, because they just wanted to make money. No Disney guests were appearing, nothing like what they advertised was actually true.
Story that you all saw coming, huh? Well, as a teenager, I didn’t listen to my parents concerns, and pressed ahead believing that it was real.
Once I discovered the truth for myself, it was a devastating blow… HOWEVER
There was a big silver lining coming from this experience. I gained something more valuable from the experience than any actual Disney contract. CONFIDENCE!
BEFORE the hard truth of The Event, BEFORE I knew that kind of life wasn’t something I wanted anyway, I HAD MADE IT.
THEY thought that I had potential to do what I wanted to do. To become an actor, singer, or whatever.
So no, I didn’t get a chance to be on the Disney Channel or become a singing superstar (which I don’t actually think is a bad thing – and not just because I didn’t end up doing it), BUT I managed to grab something more important. I felt worth something; like I could do it if I wanted to!
I’ve managed to find my worth OUTSIDE of this anyway along the years, but it was something that made me feel proud of myself, and special at the time.
I would LOVE to hear a story from you – what was something that made YOU feel confident, and special? Or, have you been through a similar experience; and what was that like for you?