The final castings for SA Menswear Week AW 2015 Collections in February took place at Cape Town Fashion Council in Cape Town on Friday 09 February 2015. After looking through more than 400 male models, the final short-lists were made, and then an open casting seeking out “new faces, hipsters, tattoo’d and interesting guys” saw an additional 230 guys walk for our production team.
The producers for the February collections sat, and in groups of three, the hopeful models walked for them. Those lucky enough to crack the nod in terms of looks and walk, were shortlisted and measurements taken. Whilst this doesn’t mean they will necessarily make the final model pools for February, simply getting shortlisted is a major achievement.
“Getting the look right is crucial. Especially since a lot of our designers on schedule do not want the typical male ramp model look we use in South Africa.” said Jen Deiner from Group of Creatives, the head producers of SAMW. She continued to add, “right now with London [menswear] on, a lot of the designers are carefully watching the shows, so naturally see the models used, and want similar. Beards, tattoos and edgy looks are what London is known for, and it’s certainly impacting us on what designers are asking for.”
Show producer Deon Redman, agreed, but did caution that “although the boys have a unique look, we have to be careful to not get it wrong. There’s a fine line between looking different and just looking completely wrong.” Redman will produce seven of the sixteen shows over three days at SAMW AW 2015.
Whilst the final model pools are complete, Deiner assures us “you will see a lot of new faces on the ramps during February. A lot of agencies are still bringing in boys specifically to walk for us, and I am sure that designers will add these to their shows.” She also pointed out, “agencies tend to push the unique looking new models to us, as walking generally gets them noticed, and subsequently they get booked a lot to shoot editorials and the like.”
All models, especially the new faces, will also be put through an intensive programme by top male ramp model, Jimi Ogunlaja from Jimi Sterio Catwalk Academy. “Their walk and attitude on the ramp is very important, not just to photograph well, but also to really let the clothes speak for themselves to the media in the front row” said Ogunlaja. “We identified a lot of new talent today, and will also have models flying in from countries such as Nigeria to add diversity to the model pools, as after all, the world is looking at SA Menswear Week to become the African menswear platform.”
For more images from the casting, please check out the dedicated SAMW galleries on SDR Photo at: http://ramp.sdr.co.za/1502SAMW/casting/