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Center hosts model audition event

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Marilyn Bryant-Tucker, right, of MBT Marketing Solutions, talks with Dr. Tiffany Tyson, of Tyson Multimedia, as they judge a model Saturday during the Young Ladies Empowerment Series Model Call at the OIC Community Health Education Center.

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By COREY DAVIS
Staff Writer

Sunday, January 7, 2018

An open casting call for potential models was held Saturday at OIC’s Community Health Education Center.

The event was part of the 2018 Young Ladies Empowerment Series, which is a conference for women, teens and pre-teens under the affiliation of Tyson Multimedia, Inc. that was created by Dr. Tiffany Tyson, who practices behavioral health at OIC. 

The event featured 12-year-old fashion designer Egypt “Ify” Ufele, who came down with her mother and other relatives from Queens, N.Y. to be a part of the audition. Ufele, who clohing label is called Chubiline, is known as the youngest designer in history to showcase her clothes at New York Fashion Week. 

“I wanted to come down and see for myself how good they can walk and how they’re going to show my design to the audience,” Ufele said.

Ufele, who began designing when she was 5, said her custom design clothing also has been featured in Philadelphia Fashion Week, Atlantic City Fashion Week, Small Boutique Fashion Week and several other fashion shows. The local model call urged not only young ladies, but men, women and children of all ages to come out and showcase their walk because Ufele has clothing for all regardless of age and gender.

Zandra Burney, 20, drove down from Richmond, Va. to participate in the model call. Burney said she has been doing modeling for two years and was excited about the prospect of working with Ufele.

“When I found out what was going on here in Rocky Mount, I got excited because I’ve been modeling for a little while at different shows,” Burney said. “For this young lady to be doing what she is great and I wished that I was that motivated when I was young. It would be great to really work with her.”

Tyson said the plan is to select five models to participate in the mini-fashion show featuring Ufele’s clothing line at the upcoming teen conference that’s going to be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on March 3 at Rocky Mount Middle School. People that weren’t able to make it to the model call because of the weather were able to send video clips. 

In addition to models, Tyson added, her media group is also looking for other talent such as singers and dancers to participate at the teen conference. Tyson is also looking for a co-host to be a part of a future teen talk show she is working on doing. 

“It’s very important for teens to showcase their talent and sometimes they have hidden talents that they don’t know they have,” Tyson said. “It’s very important to get teens doing something they enjoy to do or do well. It helps boost their self-esteem and confidence.”

The major feature of the upcoming conference is to help teens deal with the issue of bullying. Ufele is scheduled to come back down for the conference to talk about her story of being bullied in school because of her weight and how she started her plus-size fashion line to deal with bullying. 

“Just like Egypt, I was bullied growing up in school, so as a way to combat that I sung and played the piano to help with my stressors of being bullied,” Tyson said. “Regardless of where teens live, bullying is still going on and it’s important to address this issue.”

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