With the host of absolutely mad local reality shows making their debut recently, a touch of normality will be gracing our screens the October (we hope). This October, a formidable group of the beauty, magazine and modeling industry’s most respected players will combine forces to groom 13 young women from inexperienced candidates into accomplished models. Mzansi Magic’s (they’ve been improving their programming) new reality TV show – Diamond in the Ruff, in association with De Beers will see a range of industry experts’ train the contestants, who’ll be selected from across the country, over a 13 episode series.
“This show is about taking on young women who wouldn’t ordinarily be considered for the modeling industry, and turning them into successful working models” explains Diamond in the Ruff producer, Phindile Mkhabela “Our model scouts will be specifically looking for young women who aren’t your obvious model candidates – but who, with focus, determination, training and support, can become one of the industry’s finest. We’re especially encouraged by De Beers’ commitment to empowering young South African talent – it’s going to be an incredible show.
The project will embark on a nationwide search commencing in Bloemfontien on the 30th September. A key focus of the show is that amongst the candidates will be plus size models. Women between the ages of 18-25 who are legally resident in South Africa, or South African citizens – are eligible to enter.
The show will select contestants from 8 South African cities and towns– Johannesburg, Bloemfontein, Kimberley, Cape Town, Musina, Durban, Polokwane and Kroonstad. With a deliberate focus on recruiting candidates from both the country’s major centres and smaller towns, by scouring the country, Diamond in the Ruff is looking to reach as broad and diverse a group of potentials as possible.
Castings will take place as follows
1. Bloemfonten – Friday, 30 September – Mangaung Metro Municipality – Braam Fischer Building, Rose Hall – Nelson Mandela Drive and cnr Maarkgraat Str
2. Kroonstad – Saturday, 1 October – Flavius Mareka FET College, Kroonstad Campus – Beukes St.
3.Durban – Wednesday, 5th October – City Lodge Durban – Cnr Silvester Ntuli (Brickhill Road)and K.E. Masinga (Old Fort Road) ,Durban,,
4. Kimberley – Saturday, 8 October – The Big Hole Mine Museum Boardroom, Tucker Street
5. Cape Town, Wednesday 12th October – 5 Welgemeend St, Gardens
6. Musina – Saturday, 15 October, Musina City Hall, Patharrison Street
7. Polokwane – Sunday, 16th October – Zanami Lodge- 44 Plein St
8. Johannesburg – Tuesday 18th October – The Shine Studios, 115 Smit street, cnr Henri, Braamfontein
Once selected, the candidates will be transported to a model flat in Johannesburg, where they’ll be guided in their training by ‘fairy godmothers’ – a group of established models, including Lerato Moloi –Face of Africa Finalist and Elizabeth Arden brand ambassador. They will also participate in a weekly adjudication process by a judging panel made up of Megan Kruger of the Shine Group, GQ South Africa associate editor and writer Siphiwe Mpye, and stylist, fashion writer and presenter Noni Gasa.
The training certainly promises to be the stuff that great reality TV is made of…. Diamond in the Ruff is a co-production between Dreamcatcher and Brainstorm Entertainment – the show will air weekly on Mzansi Magic channel 107, and promises to deliver amazing reality programming on a weekly basis- I’m keen to check it out and see if we can do the ‘model search’ reality vibe betten than we can the singing type.