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I auditioned for DUCFS: Here’s how it went

Unjustified wisdom of a non-model trying out for the most prestigious fashion show in Durham


Last Saturday I arrived at the TLC for my DUCFS audition, looking (and smelling) like wet dog due to Durham’s drizzle, having just done a last-minute Halloween costume shop. I was dressed in an exceedingly uncomfortable and ill-fitting dress, the type of dress an Edwardian governess or little girl being dragged to Sunday school would be forced to wear. This leads me to my first piece of advice…

Do not: Wear super uncomfortable clothing in a bid to impress [Exhibit A below]

I visibly relaxed once I noticed that two of my friends were already there, more so when a small panel of welfare people greeted me warmly, chit-chatted, and offered me chocolate. The fear of being a buffoon still managed to take over as I tried to crane my neck to peer into the auditioning room, alas it was frosted glass so I had no luck.

The next thing I knew, I was being herded into a corridor to take headshots (mugshots in my case), one smiley and one serious. So, remember to practice your model face in the mirror!

Do: Expect headshots to be taken

As I stumbled back from the corridor, the frosted glass door opened and I was beckoned to finally audition. I self-consciously catwalked to my seat in front of the auditioning panel. A panel in which every member was predictably sexy and radiant, but I was still taken aback by it: If these are the people on the auditioning panel, what god tier hotness are they expecting from me??

Do not: Be intimidated by how hot the panel is, they are here to help

They smiled invitingly and introduced themselves by name, starting a stream of questions. These ranged from asking whether I’d attended any of their promotional events to why I was interested in DUCFS to, weirdly enough, to what type of biscuit I resemble the most and why. I instinctively answered custard cream (my favourite) and had to back it up. This resulted in me saying I wasn’t vanilla but there’s more to me than meets the eye. At least that’s how it should have been phrased, but being under duress I blurted out something about having a “creamy surprise”.

Do: Answer questions authentically, but maybe not as authentically as me…

The panel finally announced the dreaded part: The walk. A girl on the panel played a snippet of what seemed to be an electronic instrumental beat, a militaristic march of sorts. Once the snippet was over, they motioned me to my place at the other end of the room and I swivelled to face them, proceeding to completely ignore their advice to “take as long as I need” and listen to the motif the whole way through.

I took a brisk walk towards them, a syncopated beat threw me off rhythm almost immediately, and I committed the fashion faux pas of apologetically smiling as I posed. Once rotated away from them, the Peep Show mantra “I’m not really here, it’s research. I’m Louis Theroux. I’m Louis Theroux” calmed my abject humiliation and the bad part was over.

Do not: Rush, ignoring very useful advice from the panel

They all smiled and congratulated me on my walk in the same way I’d imagine a mum convinces her child their scribble belongs in the Tate.

However badly my audition went, the panel was exceedingly non-judgemental and beginner friendly. Simply because it’s in my nature to stumble clownishly down the catwalk does not mean it is in yours! This article was solely to run you through what to expect, and precisely what NOT to do in a (hopefully) comedic way!