Donna Groff Modeling Agency
To Whom It May Concern:
I am an aspiring plus-sized model in the Memphis, TN,
area, and I recently attended my first "open call" for
a local modeling agency. That agency is The Donna Groff
I received a telephone call the day after the audition
and was told that they are interested in signing me and
becoming my "mother" agency. I also received
a letter stating the same.
A red light flashed when I was informed that I would
have to attend at least two modeling classes with the
agency that would cost me $275 before they would send
me on auditions and jobs.
I can understand their commentary on how they want their
models to have the training to represent the agency in
a fine light, but I did not understand why anyone would
have to pay for the classes if the agency was interested
in signing them.
I really need some help with this. I have tried finding
out some things on this agency, but have been unsuccessful
They seem to know their stuff (I have done my homework
on the plus modeling industry and all that is required
of models), but paying that money is so difficult while
I am in school.
If anyone could find out any information, or knows anything
at all about the Memphis, TN, Donna Groff Agency, please
get in touch with me as soon as possible.
I would appreciate this very much, as the dream of modeling
is one I have had for some time. But I don't have the
money to be swindled.
Thank you so much for your time.
You're right to be suspicious; most agencies do not
charge for training. They train their models free.
Even though there is a BBB record for this company,
and it is a BBB member, if you read below their BBB record,
- Many non-reputable agencies make their money on photograph
fees alone. Look out for agencies that pressure you
into having a portfolio done through their designated
photographer often requiring a deposit of several hundred
- Other agencies make their money on courses
or seminars on acting make-up and clothing.
They will generally high pressure you into signing
up for one or more classes.
The Donna Groff Agency may be legitimate, and they may
get models work, but ask them why they charge for classes
when the industry standard is training models free.
If you cannot get them to accept the industry standard,
ask them if they will take the cost of their classes
out of your first paycheck.
Based on how they answer these types of questions, you
can figure out how much if any work they think they will
be able to get you.
Read this interesting comment on another site:
- Try and go to an agency rather than a school. However,
if the agency you go to is in a small town or rural
area, chances are that they will have to supplement
their model bookings with the revenue from training
models to stay in business and provide your area with
You are in a smaller market, but this claim is open
to debate. The point is aspiring models in smaller markets
may be more likely to be asked to pay for classes. There
is less modeling work available, therefore there is more
pressure on an agency to require upfront fee payments.
But that does not mean the agency cannot use the ethical
standard which protects new models by making the payment
due after the model works so she cannot get scammed.