Report: #427584

Complaint Review: John Robert Powers, Houston, Harris County, TX

  • Submitted: Mon, February 23, 2009
  • Updated: Sun, April 11, 2010
  • Reported By: Houston Texas
  • John Robert Powers, Houston, Harris County, TX
    701 N. Post Oak Rd.
    Houston, Texas

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

John Robert Powers Harris County, as they are called legally, is at very best an unethical and poorly run business. They demand complete amount ($1950-$9900) up front. If you cancel even within 72 hours, you will have $500 deducted and after that, you will get a very small amount back. They will promise you the world and deliver nothing. They do offer classes, my daughter was attending those every Sundays, but has not learned anything of any value! She is a top honors student at a private school in Houston, mind you.

I am deeply disappointed at JRP Houston, it's a complete lie, everyone is accepted, if you have more than one family member who auditioned, one of them WILL get accepted, unless you are wealthy, which they determine by your occupation on the initial application you fill to "audition." If they know you can pay for both children, they will squeeze everything out of you. These families will later be asked to go to IPOP and dish out more cash; horrible!

I do not recommend this place to anyone! There are other means of getting training and getting in the show business. Please beware!!

Houston, Texas
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 02/23/2009 02:31 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment

They Don't Promise To Make Your Kid A Star

AUTHOR: pearlandmom - (United States of America)

I am the parent of a child who has attended John Robert Powers in Houston.  All of our experiences have been nothing but positive.  I have to admit, when we attended the open call, I had my doubts that they really had all the agents they talked about come here to Houston.  I mean, come on, LA is full of really talented people and they are right there.  Why would they bother coming to Houston?  But we went ahead and enrolled her because we weren't there to make her a star.  We were there just to give her some self-confidence in hopes that she would simply be able to get up in front of her class just to give a report!  Much to our suprise, yes, they really do have agents that come to the school and audition the kids.  And even more to our surprise, these agents they have really impressive clients that they currently represent.  And if JRP is such a scam, I truly don't think agents and managers like Susie Mains or Dede Binder Goldsmith would want to have their names even remotely attached to them.  Both of these ladies have some very impressive clients, and they are only two of the many agents and managers that scout JRP. 

I know that many parents only hear what they want to hear when they sign their kids up and pay the fee.  After all, every parent thinks that their kid is the most beautiful/handsome, talented child alive.  But if they listen closely, JRP never claims that they will make a star out of your kid.  They only promise to give them the training (which is what the fee is charged for, not the representation) and the ability to get in front of some managers, agents and casting directors.  In our experience, they have more than delivered on their promises.  I can't say that they only take a select few who audition.  But I do know that I have been told more than once by several parents that their kids didn't get accepted.  I even know of one mother who's daughter had auditioned on several occassions, was in serveral beauty pagents and won numerous times, and she could never get in! 

IPop is a whole other experience in itself.  And again, in our experience, it was great.  Expensive, yes.  But it certainly gives you an opportunity see and experience many things you would not possibly otherwise get to experience.  My daughter actually won Actress of the Year in addition to her monologue, commercial and scene.  Had she not won, would I still feel this way?  I can't say for sure, but I certainly think I would have come away with a positve outlook. If nothing else, we learned more about the business and what she would need to do if she wants to pursue her dream.

My daughter has had many opportunities that she never would have experinced had it not been for JRP.  She has had numerous callbacks and now has been asked to fly out to LA for further representation consideration from a MAJOR Hollywood agent.  Living in Houston, she wouldn't have had this exposure without JRP.   As a parent, you have to make up your own mind about it, but keep your ears open when you go in.  I bet if you are honest, and you listen closely, you will never hear them say, "We're going to make your kid a star.".  You be the judge. 

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#2 Consumer Comment

My daughter got on "Suite Life on Deck"!

AUTHOR: Sara - (United States of America)

I, like everyone else on here, heard the radio ad, "Have you ever wanted to be on Disney?" etc. I took my daughter into the JRP in Houston and realized it was a school.

After the audition I called a friend of mine who does the set displays for different Disney shows out in LA. He mentioned to me that alot of the Disney kids had indeed gone through JRP, and that Hillary Duff actually went through the JRP in Houston.

I then became very nervous, hoping they would call back my daughter the next day. I called in, and yes, my daughter got the callback!! I signed her up for the career program, so she could audition for Disney.

After 10 months of training and auditions, my daughter booked a small guest star role on the "Suite Life on Deck".

We were flown out to LA and picked up in a nice car. Before we got to the set, my daughter was so nervous!! Once she got there, her mindset changed. The training the last several months really had prepared her for this one day.  She got to meet all the main characters and take pictures with them!

We had a blast!

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#3 Consumer Comment

JRP in Houston is great!

AUTHOR: Brandon - (United States of America)

I took my daughter to John Robert Powers in Houston because she was shy, and had low self esteem. I wanted her to build up her self confidence. I was referred to them by a friend of mine who took their child to the JRP Houston academy.

She has been attending for several months now, and she loves it! Her confidence has gone through the roof. At her past birthday party, she was telling the other kids how she auditioned for the Director of Wizards of Waverly Place. Just recently she got her first call back with Agent Susie Mains from Trilogy Talent. This has helped my daughter's self confidence like you wouldn't believe.

I am no stage parent, and I won't hit the internet with negative comments if my daughter is not the next Hannah Montana. I don't need her to pay my mortgage, I need her to be a kid and have fun. This is an activity for the kids, just like girl scouts, ballet, or whatever else.

Self confidence does not have a price tag. We love the JRP in Houston!


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#4 Consumer Comment

My daughter booked an Academy ad through JRP!

AUTHOR: Average Joe - (United States of America)

I heard the radio ad this past summer. I decided to take my daughter to JRP since all she talks about is acting. I also went to JRP Houston back in the 1970s.

My daughter was so excited about the audition, she ended up bringing 4 friends to the audition. The day of the audition all 4 families came in. Our kids all did their screen tests. The next day we start calling for our results. The first 3 kids got a 'no'. Then I called in for my daughter, and she got a 'yes'!! We were so excited!!

I decided to enroll my daughter into the 1 year program. At a cost of $5900 for the entire year, it averaged out to about $50 per class. Her guitar lessons are $60, but they don't provide any oppurtunity to book work. I did pay it up front, but thats because the Texas Workforce commission gave us 20 days to pay it. This is after all, a Texas Career College for actors and models.

My daughter has auditioned for Disney twice already. She just booked a national Academy ad, and got paid $2600. That may not sound like much, but when your 12, thats alot of money.

My daughter continues to love her classes at JRP. Teachers and entire staff are very supportive and always go the extra mile. I highly recommend this place to everyone!

To the parents, please be reasonable. You kids will not be Disney stars tomorrow. This is an activity that allows your child to explore their artistic interests.   Remember, JRP is a performing arts academy, not an agency.

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#5 Consumer Comment

I LOVE JRP- HOUSTON!! Wonderful staff! Exciting opportunites!

AUTHOR: Tanya - (United States of America)

I am too a parent of a student at John Robert Powers- Houston. My daughter approached me one day and said she saw a commercial about them on TV. I called and got her an audition with them. She was actually NOT excepted on her 1st try. We were told we could try again in 6 months to 1 year; my daughter at 11 was a very shy kid. About a year and a half ago, she wanted to give it another go. She did very well and was excepted to JRP- Houston to attend classes and receive training, as well as audition for major casting directors (ones that she might not have had access to unless through JRP)

I enrolled her into a 30 week program at first, to see how she would like it, plus see if this is what she really wanted. Well, after about a month of being enrolled it was obvious she was "hooked". I upgraded her to a one year contract, which gets her more in depth training and more audition time.

Since having her at JRP, I have seen much improvement in her. Not only has she come out of shell, she is learning great life skills they don't teach in public schools.Ettiquite, poise, and self-confidence.

I too have heard about this IPOP. I was unsure of what it was the first time it came around (my daughter had just been enrolled).I quickly learned from the other parents and students who were going what it was all about. It sounded pretty cool. Yes, the price sounds pretty steep to go to IPOP if you are unsure if show business is the place you want to be.

All the children and young adults who returned from this past IPOP (representing Houston!) either received a call-back from an agent, or for some, Major Motion Picture roles. I got excited upon hearing this news! But then again, this is for my daughter. She's not sure if she's ready for all that exposure yet. But I know that if she was really dedicated and wanted to do it, I would support her 100%.

I really love JRP Houston.The staff, other parents and students are all wonderful. And these kids have so much talent! And the ones that are serious about getting into the entertainment industry, are ALREADY on their way to the top. And for those who aren't sure, like my little one, I still think it is a great type of " Finishing School".


Houston, Tx 



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#6 UPDATE EX-employee responds

John Robert Powers Houston

AUTHOR: Swboy2k9 - (U.S.A.)

I worked at the John Robert Powers in Houston for two years. I watched the Admissions directors turn down more than half of those that auditioned to get in. I have witnessed people trying 2 or 3 times before getting accepted into JRP.

Conspiracy theorists aside, John Robert Powers does not accept everyone for ONE simple reason. If agents go into their schools, and do not find talented individuals, the agents will not return to their schools. Simple.

This is a company thats been around since 1923 and developed countless stars over the years from Brenda Song to Chris Brochu to John Duhamel. This is obviously a company that knows what they are doing.

FYI, John Robert Powers Harris County is Approved and Regulated by the Texas Workforce Commission. =)
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#7 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

They will tell any lie do anything they can to get you to sign that line and hand over that cash...

It is only much later do you realize that you have been HAD and when you read the contract, you realize that they GOTCHA.

You might be able to get an attorney at law to get you out of an unconscionable contract but the best thing to do is RESEARCH, DO YOUR HOMEWORK and KNOW before you GO.

That way you aren't out ANY money because you wisely chose not to get involved with these people.

I don't know how these con people managed to stay in business that long. THE TACTICS THEY USE ARE ONLY MARGINALLY LEGAL....

You should have had your child enroll in classes given by theatres in Houston much cheaper. And in Drama classes in junior college and high school for less.
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#8 Consumer Comment

Get real

AUTHOR: Stacey - (U.S.A.)

Real Modeling agencies do not ask for money up front for so called "classes'
They pick and chose who they see has real talent and bank on that
Stop with the blah blah blah crap
This agency is a sham - They only want your MONEY
Go to a real agency like Kim Dawson
If they do not think you or your child is model material they will tell you without draining your bank account
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#9 Consumer Comment

There is business and then there are ethics and morals.

AUTHOR: D - (U.S.A.)

Yes, John Robert Powers can legitamately charge outrageous prices for training that local acting companies can provide for a fraction of the cost. The problem is that the ads on the radio are very misleading and they are clearly aimed at kids! A local ad suggests that the producer of Hannah Montana will be here to personally autition these kids. I wonder whether JRP company is honest with those parents that they take $6000 from about the actual reality that their child has any talent or any kind of chance. I will bet not. From other testimonials, it is clear that they don't. When the person at the audition claims that the child has great talent, when clearly they don't, is that being honest, ethical or moral? I think not. I think that they will say anything to the child and the parents to persuade them to sign up.
I can understand charging a clear talent a large fee to represent and train them to make it big. But to charge $6000 for any kid who wants to sign up, with no talent whatsoever is unethical and immoral. If you don't see it that way then I will pray for you. For what goes around, comes around.
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#10 Consumer Comment

John Robert Powers Is Not A Scam If You Are Honest About Your Child's Talent

AUTHOR: Marsha - (U.S.A.)

John Robert Powers is not a scam. Yes, they will take almost any family if they are willing to pay for classes -- but they NEVER promise to make your child a star.

They promise to offer classes. They promise to offer your child the opportunity to get in front of agents and casting directors. And they deliver on that promise.

America is built on business. This is a business.

The perceived scam is that hopes are shattered. By signing up, families believe their child is the most talented and just waiting to be discovered. JRP never promises you that.

JRP promises classes. They deliver on that. They promise you the opportunity to audition in front of agents and casting directors. They deliver on that too. Here is the catch -- your child must be TALENTED to be called back.

My daughter is a client at JRP and has received called back from numerous agents and casting directors. She is currently working thanks to an opportunity that JRP presented her. Here is the kicker -- she has told me on agent audition after audition that most of the kids have NO talent. They don't know their monologues. They look to the ground. They cry. They don't smile. Etc. Etc. Of course they aren't going to be called back.

Bottom Line: JRP does take talented and not talented kids. It is a business! They deliver on everything they promise. Unfortunately, the results may not be what your dreams or hopes had wanted. Be honest about your child's talent before writing a check!
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