Jake Benbow will be at LA Reel’s next camp at KDC in July. Madison Miller / staff photo

Jake Benbow will be at LA Reel’s next camp at KDC in July. Madison Miller / staff photo

LA Reel comes to Kirkland

LA Reel is a week-long camp that gives students experience in the entertainment industry.

LA Reel Camp, a week-long, real-life experience of the entertainment industry, is coming to the Eastside.

Launched by Bill Herndon, LA Reel Camp provides performers with professional acting and singing coaching, makeover, styling and performing advice.

According to Herndon, he said the entertainment industry doesn’t set young and inexperienced actors and singers up for success.

Herndon began in music. He worked to seek out and develop young talents. One of the main challenges for young talents, and their parents, was a lack of education.

After one of his more promising acts left their career, Herndon decided to change his approach and create a platform to better educate people about the industry business — the right way.

“I want to develop talent and continue to develop talent,” he said. “What LA Reel does is combine that with content.”

LA Reel camp is in its third year and travels all around the United States. At LA Reel, students work with top music producers, photographers, videographers and agents and learn the ins and outs of the industry.

Twelve-year-old Kirkland model, Jake Benbow, attended the camp when it came to Seattle in February.

Jake broke into modeling at 8 years old with Zulily. Since then, he was introduced to Seattle Open Shoots, which later connected him to model with Fashion District NW and participate in the recent LA and New York fashion weeks.

Through Jake’s New York fashion week colleague he was introduced to Herndon. Once Herndon learned Jake was interested in acting and producing, Herndon suggested he attend the camp.

Jake said he got more out of the camp than he first realized.

“You get everything,” he said. “He brings the best from everything from Seattle to LA and to New York.”

The week-long camp is action-packed, Jake said, as Herndon gets the students in front of a camera within the first few minutes of the first day.

“It’s really fun, you meet new people and you learn from each other,” Jake said. “This camp really helped me get more skills, more knowledge…this is definitely something I want to get more into.”

Through workshops and coaching, the camp gives its students the opportunity to be in scenes with established working TV/film actors and work on a set with a professional production crew. Each student receives a finished cinematic reel showcasing their acting ability as well as professional head shots.

Jake’s mother, Stasi Benbow, said she enjoyed how the camp includes the parents in the industry education.

“My favorite part about the camp is that it teaches the kids and the parents the industry — the good and the bad,” she said. “Bill brings in the best of the best from LA and New York and brings it right here. The kids take it seriously because they know it’s serious.”

LA Reel will be coming back to the Seattle area and will be at the Kirkland Dance Center from July 20-27.

For more information about LA Reel, visit lareelcamp.com.


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