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Old 02-16-07, 03:18 PM   #3
Steven Ragatz
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Indiana, USA
Posts: 493
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Maybe "poor treatment" isn't the best description. How about "no treatment"?

Poor treatment would imply that I got them to review my promotional package and they were rude as a result. Not only can I not get them to review the material, I can't even get them to acknowledge that they received it! Keep in mind that I had an "insider" rave about me ahead of time so that they would expect my contact.

I kid you not - this is a darn near accurate transcript of my last conversation calling the 1-800 number listed for the West coast office's website.

Ring - Ring - Ring

CoT: "Hello?"

Steve: "Um, I was calling for Cast of Thousands' West Coast office?"

CoT: "I'm on the other line, can you call back?" <click!>

Now, I'm not too fussy about business phone protocol, but this one really set me off. But, OK, I give them other chances...

This past week I called the East coast office. The conversation was long enough that I can't literally reproduce the dialog with such accuracy, but the jist of the rapport after I gave them my name was that I was told they didn't know if they had received my promotional material, but if they had, it would be "sitting on a shelf" and they would look at it when they had a need. I implied that perhaps viewing the material first, or at least surveying it, might give them a better idea of the potential for bookings. (Actually, I was thinking some snide remark about them getting good bookings with their psychic act.) This notion was met with a long, pregnant silence. I replied, "So, it just sits on a shelf?". They said - in one word - "yes." There was another pregnant silence...

I can't duplicate the awkwardness that I felt trying to simply get them to work with me on the basic process of introduction. I am not new to this business, nor am I new to their particular genre and venue. I've worked with international agents, regional agents, local agents, the secretary down the hall, and Billy's mom, who wants me to do his birthday party next Tuesday! I contacted almost twenty new agents, agencies, representatives, and producers this past two months alone and have had many introductory phone calls and correspondences, none leading anywhere immediately, but all were civilized and predictable, except two. The two that stuck out as being uncharacteristically bad were the Cast of Thousands East and Cast of Thousands West.

I don't want to beat a dead horse. Like I said - they may be great to work with, but I won't ever know since I can't even get them to tell me if the package I sent them arrived! If considered from my end, after four phone conversations, if they can't handle the simple protocol of dealing with an artist trying to submit promotional material to their office, how could they possibly be able to organize and produce a reasonable show? Hell, Billy's mom did a better job of engaging me!

Steven Ragatz
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