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Sharing a Stage with Legends Talented young actors and models captured the spotlight at the 53rd annual MAAI convention as they looked to take their next giant career steps T he beautiful and historic Deauville Beach Resort on the white sands of the Atlantic Ocean hosted the 53rd Model and Talent Showcase for the Modeling Association of America International. Aspiring actors and models from across the country gathered to display their talents before industry ex- perts and professionals. In pursuit of their dreams, ambitious stars of the future participated in informative seminars and workshops, run- way modeling, TV Commercial, Photo Print, Soap Star, Cold Read, Quiz Kids, Legs, Swimsuit, and Monologue. Top agents, casting directors, acting coaches, and represen- tatives from highly-acclaimed New York acting schools shared information designed to help these talented individ- uals prepare for success. The Entertainment Forum offered insight into the ever-changing world of the working actor or model. And entertaining it was as “MAAI Has Talent” came to life on stage. These performers followed the footsteps of many leg- ends. Can you imagine displaying your talent on the same stage as the Beatles’ British Invasion, Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack, Liza Minelli, Diana Ross, Sonny and Cher, Pres- ident John F. Kennedy, Joan Rivers, Tom Jones, Eleanor Roosevelt, Tony Bennett, Bobby Darin and more? Inspira- tion from these superstars permeated the entire setting. The past blended into the present, as modern popular music blared above the sounds of the pounding ocean waves as the swimsuit competition began. Each contestant de- scended from a white staircase onto the runway while the massive, energetic crowd roared with enthusiasm. The op- ulent environment was picture-perfect with a brilliant sun- set providing the backdrop for the rollicking, fun-filled pool party. Contestants, family members, agents and guests mingled while enjoying delicious hors d’oeuvres. This was certainly the favorite event for many. 88 PAGEANTRY OVERALL ACTOR OF THE YEAR: Elizabeth Harrison (The Smawley Agency) Once the competitions were complete, the dreams and aspirations of those in attendance were in the hands of the agents. Showcase call-backs were posted and talented con- testants with portfolios and comp cards in hand met with renowned agents who could help fulfill their dreams. The MAAI Showcase culminated with the Awards Banquet, and this was truly the highlight of the week for the families and friends on hand to celebrate while many were honored with awards reflecting their hard work and dedication. A variety of scholarships were awarded by The New York Film Academy and The New York Conservato- ry for Dramatic Arts. The most poignant was a $500 scholarship from former MAAI attendees from Guam. Scholarship money was do- nated by the Sponsoring Merchants of JRP Guam and Fresko Guahan on behalf of past MAAI winners: Leila