By Elizabeth Matthews
St. Louis (KSDK) - A warning for parents about a talent convention that tours the country. Just this week the Missouri Attorney General's office received two complaints about the convention and last year it got four complaints.
A radio ad tells kids this is the opportunity of a lifetime and could become a Disney star. When they attend they are handed a disclaimer stating "In no way does Disney sponsor or endorse The Event or is in any way involved in evaluating the talent at The Event."
"Wanting money that amount of money right off the bat, it just didn't sound right," said Lillian Guthrie who wants the best for her 15-year-old daughter Janai.
Right now Janai is interested in being a Disney star. The mother daughter duo attended The Event held at the Mariott in Union Station in downtown St. Louis over the weekend, after Janai got a call from the company.
"She was able to come into contact with someone and then explained to her that she could have the chance to work for Disney," said Guthrie.
They went to The Event on Saturday along with more than 800 other parents and kids.
"At that time I still didn't know what it cost although it did state on the application that it was fee-based," said Guthrie.
Until she read a brochure, outlining the cost, for the full package she would have to pay $8,000.
No one from The Event would speak to NewsChannel 5 on camera, but they did answer some of our questions via email.
Spokesperson Louise Worth says the money goes to an international performing arts convention. She goes on to explain, "We are not an agency or management firm and we do not represent anyone. Please read our website, as we fully explain our product. We have been in business for several years and our success stories are listed on the website."
Worth says those success stories include Disney's Zayne Emory, Hayden Byerly, and Landry Bender who all attended The Event.
The Better Business Bureau says you have to be careful when it comes to these conventions.
"It's not necessary to actually write a check to get your child a job in the entertainment industry," said Better Business Bureau's Chris Thetford. "You can get an agent and the agent gets the child a job and then gets paid."
The BBB graded The Event with an F, the lowest score a company can get.
Thetford says the reason for the F grade is because the number of complaints they've received and some of them have gone unresolved.
Worth kept referring us to their website, which is a little difficult to find. According to the BBB the company has at least six websites and some didn't even work.