Coasters scouted for theme park jobs

THE Gold Coast and Melbourne will be the only Australian venues on Universal Studios Japan's worldwide audition tour for performers this year.

More than 150 performers are expected to strut their stuff over three days on the Gold Coast, competing with 3,500 hopefuls for just 220 jobs in Japan.

The Japanese casting team will hold auditions in seven cities on three continents to recruit the best singers, dancers, actors and stunt performers to work at the Universal Studios Japan theme park in Osaka.

With jobs hard to come by in the global economic climate, the number lining up for auditions this year is expected to soar, with tour management already registering a 20 per cent increase in interest.

Australians account for up to 30 per cent of foreign entertainers at Universal Studios Japan at any one time.

Studio boss Mike Davis, who's also the executive producer of many of the theme park's shows, says the Gold Coast has an excellent reputation for producing world-class talent.

“The number of Aussies in the audition finals is equal to the USA,” he said.

“We've seen more performers audition in the Gold Coast than Orlando in Florida, where the greater city area is over two million people.”

After auditions in Melbourne, the selection panel will screen applicants on the Gold Coast on August 20, 21 and 22.

Successful candidates will be offered a contract at Universal Studios Japan in Osaka commencing early in 2010.

They will receive return airfares to Japan, a fully furnished apartment in company housing, monthly compensation in US dollars, a daily living allowance in yen, quarterly bonuses, a completion bonus, medical insurance, excess baggage allowance, train passes and a gym membership.

Performers must register for an audition at www.universalauditions.com/japan.



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