Talent agency to open in Park City
November 27, 2009
Margaret Maier is one person excited about the prospect of the movie studios that may be built at Quinn’s Junction. She recently started a talent agency and is looking to sign actors, models, dancers and singers in the Park City area.
Maier said she finds two problems with much of her existing competition: they want money up front, or they’re too big to represent all their clients effectively.
Maier’s Utah Talent Management does neither. She only wants to sign people she thinks will get work, and she only expects to be paid once they get it.
That means she’ll need to have the right connections to compete against the Hollywood types, and Maier said she’s got them. The problem is that good talent she’s met here in Park City doesn’t find representation because they aren’t aware of all the work opportunities here.
"We as a community have an amazing pool of talent: seasoned actors and an influx of talent from California, but no agency in Park City," she said. "Great talents don’t know where to go, don’t know where to turn."
Sure, there isn’t the same kind of print-advertisement modeling in Salt Lake City that other big cities have, but a lot of films, television shows and commercials are filmed here and flying performers in from Los Angeles is expensive.
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For example, another High School Musical by Disney is planned, and people who can act, sing and dance will be in high demand, she said.
"The worst thing in my book is films come here to shoot and bring in talent from out of state," she said.
Once she builds her modeling pool, Maier said she will court ad photographers to Utah to take advantage of the great architecture and world-class landscape.
It’s no fly-by-night operation, Maier assured. She’s lived in town for 14 years and has pondered this idea for eight. She’s well aware of the schemes out there to entice people to seek representation, and then charge them for headshots, acting lessons and other related services. The problem with those agencies is that they have little interest in finding people work because they’ve already made money on the applicants.
But even legitimate businesses can get too big, she explained. If a casting director calls and wants an agency to send a blonde, blue-eyed child. An agency with 20 such kids on the file will send the one they think has the best shot which usually turns out to be the same kid over and over.
promising to stay small and be their client’s advocate, Maier said Utah Talent Management can guarantee that if they want to sign you or their child, they expect to find them work. That’s how it’s done in L.A., she said, and that’s how she works.
Because she’s brand new, Maier is looking for people to sign right now. She wants to meet people of all ages with all kinds of looks and skills for acting, modeling, voice overs, dancing and singing.
She’s holding auditions Sunday, Dec. 6, from noon to 4 p.m. at the Grand Summit Hotel by appointment only. But anyone who thinks they have what it takes can set an appointment, she said.
Like a professional audition, she’ll ask people to introduce themselves on camera and read or perform something cold. As far as acting goes, she said she understands people to be nervous, but wants to see if applicants, young and old, know how to put themselves into a character.
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Utah Talent Management