John Robert Powers
ConsumerAffairs Unaccredited Brand
Location Miami, Brickell Key. After spending over 30k dollars the education received was inadequate. All events/invites to castings were tied to some out of pocket expense. No castings ever amounted to anything other than a cost. Considered a total scam.
I took JRP in Corona before (maybe 7 years ago). I spent thousands of dollars (which I do not want to remember anymore as it still hurts), and I felt like I just threw them in the trash. I really did not learn anything from JRP. The instructor who is a ** would just gather the students have them walk, every session. Would give advices and reminders to take care of skin, nails and drink a lot of water. She would also advise to get photos of models from magazines, because that is how you can build your fashion and style. WOULD YOU PAY THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS for these common sense and nonsense advice? I was hoping I will be taught how to do makeup, right etiquette in table manners, personality development but I could hardly remember any significant learning.
I also felt she was a racist, as I have felt ignored in her classes and really focused on the younger ones and **. I did not join JRP to be a model, but to boost my confidence through personality development with JRP because I was insecure, timid and wanted to improve myself, however, it was a BIG disappointment! How I wish I was able to get my money back. I don't think they are fair. Once you have paid, you're hooked! Also, if I remember it right, the instructor is selling something on the side. You would think John Robert Powers has a very credible reputation, but this experience made me believe it is all MONEY... what a disappointment!
When I attended this school in the seventies, it was a truly wonderful experience. We learned makeup, hair, catwalk, about how clothing is made and worn, and how to emphasize your best features and minimize all else. We had etiquette lessons, walked with books on our heads for balance, how to pose, what the camera sees in you. The school was so concerned about their reputation that they would not even recommend a photographer to put together your portfolio. Which you must have with you when you go on go-sees. One of my coaches was also a Miss America coach.
JRP had locations all over the country. I modeled professionally and made a lot of money. There was nothing in the curriculum at that time about "acting" or "talent agency". The Hollywood studios and some recording studios sent some of their girls to JRP. They were totally honest with us and about our chances of making it as a model. I can only say that Mr. Powers would not be pleased if he could read some of these reviews today.
OK so I looked up JRP after telling my friend about it and I am so mad. My daughter went through the CHICAGO school. She was signed at the showcase by 2 agents. She has paid for her college and has even helped me and my wife out in rough times. I know everyone does not make it but a lot of kids do! She has landed so many local commercial print jobs that are local. She has also done voice over work. The Chicago team that found my daughter were awesome. I still talk to Drew about what she is doing. I know it is an investment people. I just don't want people that have real potential to miss out.
Fantastic Teachers! I am an acting student and this company works hard for all students! Absolutely a great company! Listen carefully and do what they tell you! I can see my continued progress! This company is well worth your tuition!
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I took my daughter to JRP and paid 6000. After a month they said she was ready for iPOP. I paid over 6500 + pictures 750. They close the school without letting us know.
We were sitting outside waiting. After rudely ignoring us, we overheard the "professional agents" talking about the audience being "ridiculous audience and they need to ** get it done to leave, and we were a joke." The woman who is a minority kept giving me nasty looks. They didn't care we spent money to show up at the hotel for an audition. STAY AWAY. They're unsupportive.
My son, who is now 16, they claimed was "commercial/model material" when he was 4. I paid and took the child to "training" for at least 3 mos... Every week we sat in line, auditioned, sometimes paid... They said he needed more training, which made sense... After all, they did say "you can have talent, but you need to learn how to use it." Unfortunately, I moved away from Rockville. Bottom line, I had "paid up" for 10 more sessions, ($1300) moved far from Rockville... No refund, no support, no suggestions.
This company is in business to take your money. With nothing in return other than wasted time. I spent over $2000 for basically a babysitter for an hour a week. My daughter was eight at the time. I would advise everyone to stay away from this place.
Oh my god where do I begin??? Well my daughter heard their ad on the radio, so she comes to me and her dad and like most parents we want our kids to fulfill their dreams so we agreed to meet with "her agent, Miranda"! She seemed nice on the phone. Her dad took her to the meeting while I was at work. She painted this pretty picture for us, had my daughter read and sing some lines, then told us she would need more training. I should have known better when they asked us for money upfront, but she gained our trust. About 5 days later I put $500 in an account she had set up even though she wanted the money the day of telling us that the package deal was only good until the next day. She didn't have a problem waiting! Auditions were to be the following week in which she informed us a day before, not giving my daughter time to study this "packet" she had given her. We pulled out before we can get started. I have called (number is no good), emailed, and text but no response still and it's been 6 Months! I want a refund! I'm trying to seek legal help because they will not get away with this. My daughter was crushed... I will fight this. Do not trust these SCAM ARTISTS!
I feel that the experience was good for my child, but that the description of what we would receive for the money was embellished and inaccurate. $2,000 for 4 days of training in acting and modeling totaling 24 hours, and 1 day of rehearsal/showcase performances, to be completed in front of 3 MAJOR talent agency scouts. This was the embellished part. The talent scouts that came were not from a major agency, but rather wanted to line their pockets with cash to have my child perform on their iPOP stage in LA where the real major agency scouts would be, and they wanted $6,600. This amount did not include airfare, transportation, or meals. It did include 1 parent and 1 child with a 5 day stay at the Hyatt in Beverly Hills, 2 dinners and a few workshops all leading up to a big performance on a big stage.
I felt like we went through these last few weeks, with awesome training and education and an amazing teacher, but they were only preparing and grooming us for the iPOP agency and their ultimate motivation was money, and not my child's amazing talent. It is easy to thrive as a business when you are using a parent's devotion, love, and belief in their child's talent as your profit potential. Sadly, many parents could not see that and have taken out loans to finance an entertainment career where they will be a lifetime "customer" rather than a business owner.
I heard a Disney audition over the radio for kids to come try out to get a part in acting on TV. I never called them because I wasn't sure if it was true or not. So I got a call from JRP saying I called them and they had audition held on Saturday 9/20/2014 so me and my daughter went to it in Syracuse NY. JRP talked about how they got famous people signed up for them and how they help your children with acting and modeling. My daughter that's 10 yrs. old wanted to join modeling so bad that she did her walk really good.
After everyone was done JRP said whoever did good would get a callback the next day. So I waited for the call to hear them say my daughter made it and that she needed to come back the next day on that following Sunday to do the paperwork for my daughter to join JRP. I asked my daughter on Sunday if she was really sure about modeling and joining because of all the money I was gonna put into the company, so when it was time to sit down and talk about money for my daughter to join, the lady told me "the plan that would work good for my daughter". It was 500$ down and all together 1000$. I told her I only had 200$ and wouldn't get the rest till Oct 1st, 2014.
They took the 200$ off my card and we left, that I would hear from them on Thursday for the rest of the money. I went to the ATM and took all my money off my card but left 40$. The next day I'm getting text messages saying we only got partial of the payment. I told them I only have cash on me. They text me asking me to go get a Visa loadable card and add money on there so they could get it. I told them no so they kept harassing me about putting money on a card. I never did because I thought it was a scam.
I have a agency working for my daughter in California and I'm in New York. I told her "I was gonna get my daughter into JRP for modeling and they wanted 500$ down that I paid them 200$ down already". She told me to look into JRP that there are a lot of complaints against them. They are a scam, that I shouldn't put no money into them. As I been looking them up on here I see they have a lot of complaints against the company of being a scam.
I'm glad they only got 200 outta me and not more. I called them to get my money back and they told me I signed a contract with them for my daughter and that she was working for them so I can't get my money back. I'm gonna get a lawyer and get my money back for them being a ** scam artist to kids that put their heart and soul into acting and modeling. This was just recent with JRP. Please don't go audition for them on the radio. BTW my agency said she never signed us up with JRP with our number, so somehow they got my number without me calling them to sign up. Please be careful if they call you saying you signed up for audition and never did.
A local popular radio station here in Montreal promised a chance for young kids to possibly win a chance to star on an episode of Hannah Montana (this is going back a few years, but the scam seems to never die, that's why I'm writing). All we had to do is audition. My wife and I brought our young daughter to a downtown office building where JRP had set up an elaborate audition space. In reality, they just rented some office space and hung movie posters on the walls to make it look important. They had a smarmy shill come out and tell us how it would all work and how great it was we were there. We get herded into a line and when it's my daughter's turn they hand her two lines to memorize and say to them. She does it and they say she's great and she'll be able to keep going in the 'process' which meant photo shoots and a $1000 deposit... Ah, I knew that university education would come in handy one day, but I was ashamed I was suckered even this far.
All these questions started running through my head as my skepticism kicked in. Like: what kind of audition asks you to read two lines from an ad? And, why is every kid being told they're great? And then I asked myself why I let them sucker me in and I left as quickly as I could. They called me to pressure me into paying the $1000 deposit so they could get the professional photo shoots started. I said no and then had to explain what 'scam' meant to a 12 year old girl who had stars in her eyes. I was a dream killer that night, but she eventually understood. JRP should be run out of any town they visit to bilk parents of thousands on the backs of their kids. What a slimy bunch, don't know how they sleep at night.
Hi guys. I just wanted to give everyone a heads up on the JRP program we attended in Savannah. First of all they did exactly what they said they would do.. for a price of course. They provided a showcase. Once both of my boys were "wanted" that put my kids in front of several agencies. It was fun and my guys enjoyed it. They were professional and helpful throughout the whole process. Once the showcase was over we were contacted by ALL the agencies for both of my boys and also "invited" to attend the IPOP showcase in California. We declined the IPOP invite due to the cost and only decided to go with 2 of the agencies. One in Louisiana and the other in Tennessee. Both of these agencies also wanted money to add my children's photos/videos to their websites. So, we paid it and they are currently being represented by said agencies!
NOW, for what they don't tell you! First, EVERY SINGLE job is filmed through the work week. That means that if you don't live nearby, you will never be able to "be available." Unless you don't work and your children are home schooled. Second, most of the jobs that you can be available for are very low paying jobs. For example: 8-10 hours on the job and under $100.00 in which you don't even get all of it due to a rightful percentage going to the agent. This too is fine as long as you live close by and aren't spending tons money out of your own pocket. (I for one expected the job to at least pay for the cost of going to the job.) Experience is a must in this field and I understand that.. but I do feel like JRP skirted around the truth when asked about distance and realistic expectations for agencies they were introducing to myself and my children.
Now to be fair, JRP has nothing to do with the jobs and representation the agencies provide. BUT it all links together and at the time you are going through this, your head is spinning and the kids are yes-ing you to death! I wanted all the parents out there to understand that the whole program is not exactly what they make it out to be. It's a business. AND it's fun and exciting to be told YOUR kids are the next great thing but be realistic and look at the distance and availability for both you and your family before jumping in head first. Thanks and good luck!
I was told that I was also one of the lucky ones that had made it. I was told never to pay anyone for what you're good at but next minute, I had to give a thousand dollar deposit - not just me, my daughter as well. If anyone know anything about JRP in New Orleans, please let me know promptly!!!!
I heard the casting call on the radio and took my son. After auditioning, they said they wanted him to participate in IPOP in LA. The cost would be $5,000 for him and for a parent its an additional $2,000. They would take $500 out of the acct every month (which is mandatory) but you would be responsible for the rest. Along with this, there would be practices and wardrobe meetings. There were supposed to be emails monthly to keep us in the loop with this. They took they $500 out of my account, but never emailed me after the first initial welcome to IPOP email. When I called and left several voicemails as well as emails, I finally got a call back telling me that I should of gotten an emails. I advised that I haven't and they were supposed to send them right the.
Well guess what, never got them and still haven't. When I asked about the practices that my son was supposed to be going to, to help with with his monologues and commercials, they said that wasn't important right now. Glenda was very rude and not organized. She didn't like the fact that I was questioning her. I had finally told them that my son wasn't going to participate, because they were very unorganized and I wasn't putting anymore money into it, because I didn't feel comfortable. They said I couldn't get my money back, which is stated in the contract. I can see if it was my fault and if I wasn't paying them, then I can see where no money back. I have contacted a lawyer because I feel this is a scam and this is their way of getting free money. I have paid $2500 into this agency and they haven't applied what they were supposed to.
My son went to classes in San Francisco Downtown. We paid $5,000 for lifetime membership. We Paid $10,000 for IMTA in New York where he won awards for comedy monologues and found an agent Annie **, which she never called Derrek once. We signed a contract with her for a year. The SF location closed and only a Marin location was left. We went but they did not acknowledge Derrek. I called them several times, about ten times, and the manager never called me back. Derrek is an entertainer, musician, songwriter, model. I would like him to be able to utilize his lifetime membership. Who can I talk to, or is this company complete rip off? They also did his head shots. I Paid thousands for head shots no one ever used. Derrek attended all the showcases and nothing ever happened. It was all an illusion for the parents. I hope that child's lawyer uncle files a class action suit. She will join.
We purchased a "Lifetime Membership" from the John Robert Powers in Sacramento. We moved to Vermont and my son is going to move back to return to John Robert Powers as he did get work through them. Although as they had our contract copy, they never notified us they had gone out of business/moved to get business elsewhere. They have NOT held their end of the bargain on this contract and I will be contacting a lawyer in hopes others are not taken for the "thousands" like we were. My son almost made a move across the country for this. I thank God for making me look into this scam of a business prior to having him invest his hard earned money as he trusted them so with his future.
My son and myself also heard the commercial for auditions being held in Panama City Beach, FL. I thought, what the hay, it's close so let's check it out. I made the call and agreed to be there so they would hold a spot. From there they sent us scripts to learn, sounded promising. We went and there were bare minimum 50 children. We watched videos about ALL the Disney stars they discovered, so once again it seemed promising. We were directed toward the front of the room to speak w/ a lady who commented on my son's long hair and how she loved it. She then informed she would be calling us back with their decisions.
As she promised, she called later that evening to inform me only 6 children (which I saw in another post) were chosen and my son was one of them. I was SO excited and REALLY thought this IS promising. We had to return the following day to sign contracts and commit to the next 3 Saturdays and pay $1000.00 (which my Mother paid, being I'm a single Mother). Our next 3 Saturdays turned out to be once a month for 3 months with the final being a showcase where TALENT SCOUTS FROM ALL OVER would be there to choose children (turns out ALL OVER was local companies that are affiliated with JRP).
FINALLY after emailing and texting a month for some answers I get a call that extended an opportunity for my son to attend iPop (which they didn't extend to the others). The cost for my son is $2900.00 and myself $1000.00, they assured me I could make payments but had to pay $1000.00 deposit (which my Mother paid again). During that conversation I'm told BAILEY'S ENTERTAINMENT GROUP wants my son. I got ONE email from Bailey's he wanted to Skype. Okay, so maybe it's legit. After a month of NO response I FINALLY get a call from Doug Bailey there's a photo shoot in Orlando in 2 days that would cost $500.00, could I be there? I informed him I'd have to check with my job and call him the next day.
The next as promised I informed him we were unable to attend on such SHORT notice and my response was "You have to be ready in this business." Later that night I get an email, a casting just opened up for 2 boys w /long hair to cast for THE ORIGINALS CW. BUT w/o me driving to Orlando and paying there would be NO casting. After emailing this smart ** back and forth, I told him my son either has the look or he doesn't regardless if they were photos in my backyard (as he put it, little does the smart ** know they weren't in my back yard), submit my son's pictures and I'll get busy on professional photos. He then emailed asking if I would be able to make the next photo shoot and I responded yes.
Last night at 11:00 I get an email my son didn't make the Atlanta casting call due to his POOR BACKYARD photos. The next shoot is February 8, 2014, can I attend. I informed him I'm working on it and already working w/ someone on professional photos... And oh hell, he snapped and started sending me emails saying I'm going to use a photographer he doesn't even know that has NO knowledge of the industry and he doesn't have any desire to work w/ someone 8 hours away that WON'T take my advice. Ok well, Mr. Genius smart ** you knew I was 8 hours away when you so called accepted my son. After doing some research on him, he had a company called THE CHOP SHOP that was closed due his inappropriate behavior toward his students.
I've forwarded all these emails to my nephew who is an attorney, I've emailed 20/20, filed w/ FTC, BBB, State commissioner and I'll continue until these scum scam artists are STOPPED. This little Southern belle has lost her Southern hospitality and it's game on. I'll be listening for every audition they have now and going just to Picket it and warn other innocent families. YOU WILL BE BROUGHT DOWN AND PAY FOR THE PIECE OF CRAP YOU ARE... On a good note I did find someone who allows u to set up a FREE online account to upload your photos.
My daughter wants to be in modeling. She is very good. I mean very good. So we hear about a talent agency that was coming to town here in Anchorage. She auditioned and received a call back. Coincidentally, it was conveniently around our dividend time (all Alaskans receive a dividend check from the oil industry on an annual basis, just from being a resident of the state). The president mentioned a strong faith system to survive in the business. I felt he was playing on the heart of parents with this statement but I listened on. My daughter received a call back and I was counseled that her strength was in modeling (she has a perfect cat walk) more than acting. I already knew this. We were given a 50% 'scholarship'. Just the amount of our dividend this year. She received five acting sessions for $975. A good experience. I'm not complaining about the price of the acting sessions or what went on with Undiscovered Talent Group. My complaint begins with what happened afterward.
We were told that she needed a headshot and comp card for talent agents to even consider her. The photographer, Jeremy **, contacted me by email. We were offered 'packages' to purchase. A $250, $450 and $650 package. The package gave us his counsel from her wardrobe and three photo sessions, one of each wardrobe set. We were told that the package included 25 prints somewhere along the line but that was never to be seen. So I made arrangements with Jeremy to deduct $225 from my account one pay period and another $225 the next pay period. This was per phone conversation. He said that he would email me her shots and then I could take them and have them printed myself at $2 per print. But that I needed the prints for the showcase that next Saturday.
I get to his photo shoot and after all the shots are completed with my daughter, I learned that I need to print the shots at HIS lab. And that the lab will not print less than 100 prints. Now my daughter in interested in modeling, not acting. The way the packages were arranged, I had to purchase 100 headshots and 100 comp cards for my daughter's particular interest. A total of $375 plus shipping and handling. He said that I would receive my daughter's prints this Friday. He said that I would have my prints before my daughter's showcase which was yesterday and they have not arrived yet (Sunday, 10/10/13).
He did call me Friday to say that he was concerned that I have not received my prints yet. There was a problem with UPS. He said that it would be no problem and that he would email me her shots and that I could just go to Walmart and print up 5 for the showcase. I told him that at this time (he left a message about 6pm my time and I was in a meeting and was not able to talk to him until around 7:30 and all photo labs close here at 9pm), I would not be able to get the shots printed because of lack of enough time. He said that it would be okay and that you can just email the shots to the agents. I told him that is why I asked him if I had to order 100 shots because I would not use all the shots. He laughed and said that I can send them all to Ryan (UTG's talent coach).
I told Ryan the experience the next day. He said that he felt my grievance and that it was not right. He said that I did not have to order 100 shots and told me to call the president of UTG with the experience. When I saw the deduction from my account, I see that it was paid to John Robert Powers. I don't know the connection between Undiscovered Talent Group, iPop and John Robert Powers but it is all fishy to me.
Called hotline number on local radio advertisement for a one time shot to come in an "audition" for cattle call talent search for new Disney stars. Called number and was given time to bring in 8 year old son to audition. Only one time available. Time didn't work but they were booking nearby city next day so I took that. I received an email confirmation from John Robert Powers "representing Disney and other talent scouts..." confirming time and date.
Upon arrival a few minutes late, there was a LONG line going into a room that held a few hundred people. We were told, along with a few others that we had to wait for the next session that would open up in 2.5 hours. So, we were first in line in the second round and after a 30 min pep talk from one of 3 semi-retired models, we were directed to one of three tables in the front of the room. In five minutes they listened to my son (who CAN sing and act and does so locally) and handed us a thick folder full of info. "READ ALL OF THE INFORMATION CLOSELY" we were told and if in agreement email us at 9:30am tomorrow and we will call you back to come talk to us again.
The bottom line was a sales scam ranging from a "showcase commitment" of $2000 (for five sessions) PLUS photo shoot for $800 to $4500 to go to California for an IPOP convention sans airfare and hotel ($3000) PLUS cost for one parent to accommodate to California for a convention ($4000). But IPOP only offered AFTER two rounds of showcase. Bottom line… no promises or guarantees. The saddest part is preying on the innocence of young children and their doting parents. They need to be held accountable for false advertising!!!! My poor son was upset ALL day the next day because I wouldn't go back. He thought they didn't think he was good enough. So now I am explaining the heartless side of sales to an 8 year old who spent an entire day in a hotel hallway and banquet room thinking he was being interviewed by REAL talent scouts (and a mother who actually THOUGHT better of something that actually screamed SCAM)... RUN!!! FROM THIS COMPANY!!!
This school was great. Teachers kind and creative. I saw and auditioned for actual agents and casting directors. I enjoyed my time there. Some people think they should get you work. LOL. No school gets you jobs. They help you with opportunities. They taught me that. I didn't know the difference when I first came to them. Now I am better equipped to handle auditioning. I have also booked work, thank you to JRP Orlando. I would recommend you guys to everyone.
We heard the news on the radio and all of my family was so excited that we were going to have my son on TV to be a superstar. But just so happened he went to the so-called audition which I thought was going to be a audition to get a part starring in a Disney show. Just so happened he went there and came back with this brochure talking about thousands and thousands of dollars and that's money I don't have. But now he got the second call talking about come back up there to just sit around and still no part. Well, I am so furious as to why they are getting away with this. They are not making your kids stars. They are trying to get paid, then having your precious child with crushed dreams. I didn't sign up for acting classes. I signed up for my child to go on a regular audition to get a part. There is a big difference.
I went on an audition in late July 2012 and was called back. My daughter was so excited as was I. I did the research, saw that many people were upset because they stated it was a scam and a way to get money when anyone can see that it was clearly stated it is an acting school. You are paying for auditions for an agent and schooling. Okay, fine. I accept that. Wait. Keep reading...
Because I went on vacation the next day, I informed them I will be in the day following my return. Believe me, they did everything possible to get me in before I left for vacation. I did as promised and came in on August 9, 2012. I signed up for 10 weeks of classes to start September 5, received a call on August 31 that due to instructor conflict, classes would begin on October 3, 2012 at 7 pm for a two-hour class every Wednesday. Fine. At 2 pm on October 3, the phone rang. Class was cancelled because the instructor was ill and class would have to begin on October 10, 2012 and not to worry because we would not lose credit and that it will not count as a make-up. The ten-week program would start on October 10 at 7 pm.
On October 9 at 6:45 pm, a universal email was received that they have closed their doors effective October 9. Wait a minute! Less than a week ago, you assured me that classes that I paid $1950.00 for in full is no longer existing. Wait, it gets better. The email had an email and telephone number. The phone is off the hook from 10 am to 9 pm and voice mail boxes are full. The email address on notice was auto-returned to us as "for more information please contact our director Cathy **" at a fake non-existing yahoo email.
So in summary, I paid, never started classes because JRP aka John Robert Powers keeps on postponing them knowingly. Wasn't it easier to say, "I'm sorry but right now classes are on hold, here is a refund until we get the class schedule on track." Or better yet, give the parents the option for a credit or hold, but no, they took our money fraudulently. Isn't that a felony?
They promote trust-building amongst the client and the staff, and they promote that you should believe in your child’s dream. Then, they hype your child up to be a star. And when you get the call back, they feed off your anticipation and your child's dream. They then pimp you out and tell you to collect the money from grandparents, ex-spouse or any relatives to make your "child’s dream" come true. And if you have a small child, it is absolutely heart-breaking experience to have to weigh out putting food in the table or supporting your child's dream. My experience was at the Pleasanton JRP. After the “call back", their only concern is the push for the money. They are not concerned about my child at all. And I noticed that their office looks like it’s a portable office; nothing looks like an actual, stable, permanent company.
I made the call back only to find out I had to pay over $1,000 for acting classes. It did not feel right. I bet every child who was there made the cut (only 6 kids). Don't believe a word they say. All they want is your money.
Me, myself, a little was scammed because they told me I was good but I didn't pay the money. I was going to audition the second time until my mom discovered that JRP is a scam cause we saw all the complaints and that's just crazy. But I'm just letting all the kids know. Don't get too excited cause it's fake and me myself shed some tears because I got dressed up just to go to a place that just want money!
My family was sucked into John Robert Powers talent agency. I asked all the right questions and was convinced my son would land a job, but didn't. If they know that it's a scam, how can they go around continuing to scam people?
I took my son there and of course they made it sound so promising. I should have done more research on this place. After 2 days, they didn’t call me so I cancelled within the 72 hours. They told me that they wanted to get started right away, and that my son was great on camera. I've read thousands of complaints. Why can’t they stop these crooks?!
I went to a small festival in Las Vegas in front of one of the booths stood a lady handing out business cards. Hanging on the booth was a banner for John Robert Powers (with verbiage concerning acting). My son whom had done modeling work previously asked me to see about doing acting recently, so I approached the lady and asked her about JRP, but couldn't get a clear answer. I wanted to know if it was an agency or an acting school. I was not interested in an acting school. She only said she wasn't involved in that (school). She was hiding what JRP business was. The first red flag went up.
I was in a good mood and just in case it would lead to acting or modeling job/s, I filled out a short form and took a business card from her. Ten days later, we were called for an audition. I thought wow, that was fast, maybe JRP was okay.
Note: I am somewhat familiar with the acting-casting procedure and know when you audition for anything in the acting business, it is for a possible job!
The lady who called studiously did not say what the audition was for (shampoo, Coca Cola, Toyota etc.). She did say that they had casting type people coming from different places. She studiously didn't state when these people were going to be here, nor if we were going to audition with these people for a job. A second red flag went up.
Note: After our JRP adventure, I reviewed complaints concerning JRP on the internet and found that the audition word was constantly used and casting people are always looking for new faces (especially for Pilots shows), implying these people come to JRP to find new faces. From more than one JRP insider would register complaints, stated these casting people frequently, simply JRP staff from other offices. I don't know if this is true or not, but I have seen this tactic before in other businesses.
I thought well okay, going to this audition might give our son something to do regarding acting, so I accepted the audition. I told the caller that we had already had plans around when the audition was being held, I asked how long the audition was and was told that it would take two hours and this fit our schedule, so I accepted. A third red flag went up as to why it would take two hours for an audition when it's normally 30 minutes for a first audition. Additionally, the audition lasted 2.5 hours.
We arrived at the JRP office on time for the audition and were provided a form to be filled out with a mass of personal information for our son, as well as my wife and I. I did not appreciate being asked a bunch of unnecessary personal questions for an audition, especially since we did nothing yet and knew nothing yet about JRP. A fourth red flag went up.
Instead of being called in one by one for the audition, we were rounded up in a room by a guy in a suit, that was desperately too large for him (I thought this was very unprofessional) and sat down, told us to turn off our cell phones, given a piece of paper with multiple paragraphs on it regarding various products, ours was for peanut butter. I thought okay, this looks like the real stuff for a first audition (they usually take three to get the part). Afterwards, we're introduced to a director of this particular JRP (they don't tell you this is a franchise establishment around the country like McDonald's (found out myself)).
This lady director, while having a lot of good things to say generally, started in on her family, in the singing and show business, and went on about her family for two straight hours acting/singing successes never letting up over and over and over about them. I am happy she is happy for her family, but we were not there for this. This was a pressurized sales tactic. A fifth red flag went up.
While 30 minutes would have been good and interesting to hear about any success story, she beat us over the head with it without respite, going on and on and on and on and on. I, my wife, and my son, and many others had to go to the bathroom. It took unmercifully long. There were a lot of children wiggling in their seats and sitting sideways with complete boredom about things that they did not understand or concern them. They didn't even need to be there, parents could have handled the sales pitch. Additionally, as usual with these Positive Power speakers who never shut up they never, never, never let you question them or their presentation, this is for a good reason on their part.
Halfway through the Amway style sales pitch (Sandbagging people into listening to them without telling you what they are about and what their product is is until the very end of the pitch), she mentioned training. A sixth red flag flew. I told my wife, here it comes (meaning the real reason we were there). I was wrong; this was just a bit of chum.
An hour and a half after the start of the diatribe, in final brute force, came training, training and training, which was the real reason we were sucked into JRP. After finally letting us know what JRP was about, the lady stated we are not agents! This revelation took two hours of wasted time for me and my family and was what I wanted to know all the time (requested at the festival (red flag one)), but was side barred with implications when attempting to discover this - especially because this was supposed to be an audition.
An agent gets people work, this is what I, and I am sure other people there, where there for - work. This was not an agency and was studiously hidden from attendees whom, like I, thought we were auditioning for acting or modeling jobs.
Note: There is nothing in the JRP office at all except posters of movies. No brochures - nothing. A walk in has no info provided to them. Red Flag number six; there is a brochure, but it must come from the marketing people only after the so-called audition.
I asked the lad Director while bored out of my mind with her repetitive monotony 2.5 hour speech what we were auditioning for? She got perturbed and said she talked about this previously - she did not (unless I was in the bathroom at the time) otherwise, I would have walked out. There was no audition, what there was, a short video and the statement of a line they provided us earlier and a last ditch high pressure marketing entrapment. What audition there was, was an audition to let JRP work with us, if, we were accepted and good enough!
The marketing director lady said, if we passed the audition (which she was the audition person), we would be called the next day for another audition. At this point, people are given the brochure about JRP. They actually give the gullible a day to look over the brochure (and decide if you can pay) and if you are still interested you can go back and pay for the classes the next day. Oh I forgot to mention the hook. We were told the next week casting people would be there for auditions (they are not an agency? ), so if you paid up for the classes you might audition with these people. Of course who are they who pays them and will they show. JRP said, there would be people there for our audition as well, who were the JRP people? A JRP director bombing us with the 2.5 hour lecture.
Of course, everyone is good enough for JRP to work with, they are a business and a business is to make money and they make money by making people pay for training courses and head shots and other photographic cards. JRP sandbagged me and likely all others not telling you anything about who they are, what they are producing until you are psychologically manipulated and psychologically entrapped to give them money for something you were not wanting and were not looking for.
Take a look at the JRP website and see what it is about (only a form to give away marketing information to them). The only transparency on the website is directly below the John Robert Powers name in the logo, in small letters (small letters means what is hidden psychologically) is the word "School", which is something. Don't fall for JRP financial predatory tactics. Read the other complaints about them (ignore those that state they are great, whom is writing these no doubt someone working for them). Anything you hear good about JRP was likely written by themselves. Search directly for a reputable agent if you want to get in the acting business, not an acting school, you don't need one, but when involved, look into training. A waste of time if JRP was honest about what they really are and do 'Up Front' you know with a bit of ethics.
John Robert Powers expert review by ConsumerAffairs
John Robert Powers started his agency in New York City in 1923. Considered to be the first modeling agency, John Robert Powers both educates and helps aspiring and working models book jobs.
- Reputable past clients: Many reputable and well-known clients have worked with John Robert Powers, including Jackie Kennedy, Betty Ford, Princess Grace and Raquel Welch.
- Educational blog: The company has an educational blog full of helpful content about building a modeling career.
- Diverse educational offerings: John Robert Powers offers a wide range of classes for people who want to be models, including social skills and acting techniques.
- Legacy: The company has been in business for more than 90 years, so it has a legacy of being successful at training models.
- Naturalness philosophy: The company has a philosophy of natural beauty, and it encourages clients to embrace their natural selves, rather than cover up with makeup.
- Best for: Aspiring actors and fashion models.
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