In Summary

HOPEFUL . Over the years, a significant number Ugandan supermodels have been signed to different renowned international modelling agencies. Here is how they are using their statuses to inspire other hopeful models, writes Esther Oluka.

Last Sunday, a model casting was held at Garden City shopping mall in Kampala. A model casting is a sort of interview that models go through before either getting signed to an agency or booked for a particular fashion job. The process often involves meeting face-to-face with the casting team.

Over 300 aspiring models, both male and female, attended the casting. They had to face a panel comprising of Ugandan turned international supermodels including Stacie Lagum Aamito, Patricia Akello and Veronica Ayak. Also on the panel was Shena Moulton, a celebrated Jamaican, now New York-based international supermodel; Emmanuel Bagwana, founder of Eguana Kampala fashion house, and Joram Job Muzira, a renowned model scout.

As much as the focus of the casting was on scouting potential models, Aamito, Akello, Ayak and Moulton coupled the exercise with mentorship. They opened up on their respective journeys on how they started small before making it big internationally.
“You won’t believe it but I got rejected a number of times before my modelling career really kicked off,” Aamito said.
“I was also rejected a few times before getting signed onto my first agency,” Akello added.
But rather than give up, the duo say they persisted in chasing their dreams.
“Just because some people have said no to you that you can’t become a model, it does not mean you give up on your dream, keep pushing,” the supermodels advised the aspiring models, “persistence pays off.”

The selection
The casting exercise took place from about 9am to 4pm. Although the aspiring models were required to be from the ages of 15 to 22 years old, there were some younger and older ones. For example, there was one 14 year old. Then, there were those who were 24 years and above. There was even one man who seemed to be in his 30s who also attended the casting and expressed the desire to be a model himself. He wasn’t even six feet tall which issue led to his automatic disqualification.

The interested males were expected to be about six feet tall while the girls had to be about 5”9 feet tall. At the end of the day, basing on the above requirements, the supermodels were designated with the task of selecting their best models who have potential of making it onto the international modelling scene.

They selected 20 female and male models. These 20 selected models will now be under the management of Job Muzira.