AMTI’s Annual Showcase Celebrates Local Talent
This year, all eyes are on Ottawa for Canada’s historic 150th birthday to celebrate everything that makes Canada, this city and our people, unique.
For Angie Sakla-Seymour, owner of Angie’s Models & Talent International (AMTI), everyone is already late to the party. Angie has been celebrating, empowering and launching the careers of local talent long before the sesquicentennial spotlight and this past Saturday the AMTI’s Annual Gala Showcase was proof of that.
AMTI’s Annual Showcase is known in the agency world as one of North America’s top model and talent showcases, drawing agents from across Canada and around the world, including New York City, Los Angeles, Dallas, Milan, Paris and Tokyo. It seems that Ottawa is the not-so-hidden gem for fresh faces.
“We are extremely excited to welcome the who’s who of entertainment and fashion to Ottawa,” said Angie Sakla-Seymour. “Many people would be surprised to know how many of the faces they see on television, or in magazines, are from this city!”
Need proof? Go into your local Shoppers Drug Mart, open an issue of Flare, or check out the Victoria’s Secret Fashion show and you will surely be greeted by model heavy-weight Herieth Paul. Turn on a TV or check out your favourite Vin Diesel movie on Netflix and you will find actress model Helena-Alexis Seymour. Have you heard of Ryan Gosling? Yes, Angie found him too.
This launch to stardom doesn’t happen overnight, nor is it by chance. It is opportunities like AMTI’s Annual Showcase that provide the experience and exposure needed to make it to the next level. The Showcase provides a chance for fresh faces to gain some valuable runway experience, be seen by agents, and go through the call-back process close to home.
Of course, it isn’t all business. The event itself was just as much a celebration for the whole AMTI family. From the cocktails to the runway show to the music by DJ Ilon, the models were clearly having a lot of fun and the energy was through the roof. There was so much talent on the runway, from the kids rocking GAPKids through to the high fashion models gliding down the runway in Di Carlo Couture, that it was a complete joy to watch.
Even Angie got in on the fun, which included making a number of outfit changes into gorgeous custom designed dresses that included designers Zarucci and Eyal from Israel.
Another benefit of the Showcase is elevating local businesses and designers. The first half of the fashion show featured styles from Bayshore Shopping Centres’s many shops. The second half featured local and international designers and even works of members of the AMTI family, like Jafari.
This idea of elevating and empowering members of the AMTI family is something that Angie has emphasized from day one. Over the course of the evening, Angie took the stage to remind everyone of the agency’s roots.
Before AMTI, Angie ran a small etiquette school in Cornwall, Ontario and one day decided to represent her pupils herself. Now, AMTI has over 20 years of experience in representing top talent from models to actors and yet, despite the growth, Angie’s agency is still a family-run business. In fact, her son and daughter both work for (and are represented by) AMTI and even the summer intern, now an adult, started with the agency at 7 years old. Angie even reminded everyone in the room to come to her annual backyard BBQ that topped over 400 people at her home last year.
With so many milestones under her belt, it is a wonder what she will do next as she comes up to her next milestone this October – turning 60. One thing is for sure, it is going to be one hell of a party.