Western Sydney girls had the opportunity to be discovered as Australia’s Next Top Model at the last round of auditions for the television show at Westfield Parramatta today.
Judges including Jennifer Hawkins, Alex Perry and Charlotte Dawson, were on hand to pick out the contestants and the crowd were roaring with excitement as each girl, all aged 16 or over, walked down the runway.
View a gallery of pictures taken at the auditions by Sun photographer Gene Ramirez here:
“I think they’re looking for someone who is down to earth, beautiful, charismatic and fresh and I feel like I have what it takes,” said Melissa Gok from Stanhope Gardens as she waited in the line of girls to take the stage.
But the panel were selective.
“This year we’re raising the bar. We’re looking for the girls who have been through magazines, have the model chic, casual, flat shoes not too much make-up and most importantly, height,” said controversial judge Charlotte Dawson.
With a height restriction of 172 centimeters, the candidates were expected to meet what Ms Dawson claims is a major requirement for a model.
“Models are there to make the clothes look great, if they don’t have the height they won’t pull off the clothes,” Ms Dawson said.
For 17-year-old Mikayla Sputacz from Rouse Hill it was a lucky pass after being selected to go through to the next round despite “not being as tall as the other girls”.
“The judges told me I was tiny but they wanted me to go through,” Mikayla said.
She said to prepare for the auditions she watched the past seasons over two weeks, ensured she was having a good night’s sleep and believed that she had what it takes.
The judges gave her the green light to the interview stage.
Eighteen year old Parramatta local Isaptu Klroma was another success of the day after being selected for the next round.
“I’ve been wanting this forever and was just waiting to finish school before I tried out and I’m finally here. I can’t hold in my excitement,” she said.
Isaptu, originally from Sierra Lione, came to Australia in 2004 with the dream of becoming a model and is now “one step closer,” she said.
Australia’s Next Top Model have partnered with IGM Models to create a world-wide modelling contract as the final prize for the winner.
The final round of auditions for the eighth season of the FOX8 show will be held in Melbourne.
This year's show will be hosted by Australian supermodel Jennifer Hawkins and will premier in the next few months.