We had the good fortune of connecting with Dana Randazzo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dana, how do you think about risk?
By its very definition, risk implies that something is in jeopardy. I am a risk taker by nature, I fear little and always tend to side with the underdogs. I believe in equality across the board. I will take chances on an actor or model that has the desire, drive and love for the art. If they are not naturally inclined but have potential, I’ll give them everything I have to help them see that come to fruition. It takes time and there is risk in that. I could work with a client for years and the work may come slowly. Many land roles right out the gate, but sometimes it’s a matter of growth. But, my reward is seeing them come out of the process a more confident, ambitious artist. There’s no failure in that outcome.
What should our readers know about your business?
Symbiotic Talent Management is a management company that represents actors and models as young as 4 years old. My clients work in Film & Television, Print modeling and are Recording Artists. I specialize in children but some of my little clients are now my adult clients! We’ve been on this life journey together. I am watching them grow, not just as Actors, but as amazing young people. It’s really incredible. I’ve had prior employment in social work so I’ve always believed that nurturing children and giving them the tools to navigate the business (and the world!) is really important despite circumstances. I have seen kids in very difficult situations. I know what it takes for a child to gain the confidence in themselves, to have the drive and desire to create, to express themselves and the right attitude to never give up. This business takes a thick skin. But, we don’t want kids with thick skins do we? So, it’s imperative to find balance and allow room for them to just be kids. I come to this with an entirely different skill set than most management companies. It’s personal. I take clients by the hand and guide them. Like I said, it’s a journey, that we definitely go on together. My company started with one client, then two, one step at a time, slow and steady. But, once I understood the game and my relationships with Casting Directors, Producers and Agents continued to flourish, I knew what size roster was optimal. Too many clients and I can’t give them all the personal attention that is needed to successfully navigate each career. My original plan was to go work on a PhD but once my business starting taking off, I decided to stay the course, I’m glad I did. There’s been a lot of lessons along the way but if there is one lesson in particular, it would be lessons in resilience. Sometimes, things don’t go as planned, sometimes a client leaves you, sometimes you have to part ways with a client. It can be trying and maybe a little dejected but I do believe everything has a purpose and it may not reveal itself right away. I’ll let you in on a little secret. I am a lot of fun! I think that’s important. Symbiosis denotes a mutually beneficial relationship between different people. I believe my clients and I all benefit from each other, and we have a lot of fun doing it. That’s really important to me, finding the joy in it all. Why else would we do this? Yes, it is a business, we all understand that. But, I’m dealing with parents and many times, multiple siblings, with busy lives. Work schedules, band practice, homework, baseball practice, you name it. I am being invited into a family’s life and I have to consider all of it. Symbiotic Talent is unique in that we are part of the family. I really pride myself on that.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
What a fun question! LA has such an eclectic pot of activities; something for everyone. Post-Covid, I would definite take my guest to a show at one of my favorite venues like the Wiltern or The Greek. I recently dined at Hanoki and The Bird and had a lovely time in their spacious outdoor patio. The food was delectable and had a good variety. I am a huge bowling fan, so a stop at Highland Park Bowling would be a must. As far as additional dining and drinks, I am very partial to Jones Hollywood and Zinque in Weho. Amazing staff and they both have salads that I thoroughly enjoy. One can’t visit Los Angeles without a trip to the beach, so I would venture over to Carbon Beach in Malibu for a less crowded spot to enjoy a day picnic. I enjoy the outdoors immensely, so I would also take them on a hike to some local waterfalls like Fish Canyon or Escondido Falls.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
When I started out in this business, what experience I had came from a smaller market in Texas. LA was intimidating but I found a lot of support from friends who worked in various positions in the entertainment industry. Two people come to mind who gave me recommendations and guidance while I was learning the ins and outs of the LA entertainment scene. Domina Holbeck, VP of Talent at Abrams Artists Agency and Kendall Park, Part Owner/Agent of JLA Talent Agency. These two still help me 10 years later and what I have learned and continue to learn from them is invaluable.
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1 – Editorial Shot of Dana Randazzo (photo credit – Adrieanne Perez) 2 – Save the Rhinos Charity Event, 2019 (photo credit – Eleni Chaika) 3 – Spartan Race Participation, 2018 (photo credit – Spartan Race Staff) 4 – Google Casting w/client and actress, Audrie Rivera (photo credit – Audrie Rivera) She booked it! 5 – Clients/Models and Actresses – Amiyah and Madison McGraw shooting with photographer Ari Michelson (photo credit – Ari Michelson) 6 – Model Amiyah McGraw shooting w/ photographer Ari Michelson (photo credit – Ari Michelson)