MasterChef — the cooking reality show that conducts a search for the best home cooks in America and turns one into a culinary master — is coming to San Francisco. The MasterChef casting team is kicking off its U.S. casting tour at the Prescott Hotel from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, and UC Berkeley students are welcome to participate.
“Being a Cal alumni, I know that Berkeley students are some of the most passionate, creative and unique people out there, which is what we’re always looking for in reality TV,” said Stephanie Lewis, the MasterChef casting producer. “And while some students may think that they are too young for this competition, we’ve had some great college students on the show in the past, including the latest season.”
You can show up unannounced at open call, but you are strongly suggested to sign up online. When you’re registered, you’ll receive a reminder call about the open call and will also have the chance to receive front-of-the-line passes.
On the day of open call, you’ll need to arrive with a prepared dish that, according to Lewis, “shows off (your) culinary skill and style.” You’ll be given three minutes to plate your dish before the casting food judges taste it. You’ll also meet with the casting producers, who will want to learn more about your personality and life story. From there, if the producers decide they know enough about you and your cooking abilities, they’ll begin to build the cast.
“We are looking for a combination of personality and cooking ability,” Lewis said. “We want people who stand out, whether (it) is for their outrageous style, cooking skills, personal history or opinions. Be unapologetically yourself, and break out your secret recipe.”
Because the casting producers have a short amount of time to get to know people, it’s important that you show off your personality from the very beginning. According to Lewis, they are looking for people with a true passion for food, so don’t over think what you’re going to say.
“We don’t want rehearsed answers — we just want to get to know you and why you love cooking,” Lewis said. “Don’t be nervous — be yourself, and have fun at the casting call!”
You can go to the website for more information about how to audition.