TTA (“Tots to Adults”) is one of the most respected model management companies in New York. Working with clients from infants to 18-years-old, its founder Anna Estrada and her team provide representation to child talents for marketing and advertising, commercial, editorial and other media campaigns. The company has casted their clients with the biggest brands in nearly every business category, from Disney to Nike, Toys R Us, Visa, Gerber, Mattel, Fisher Price and TJ Maxx, among many others. “Our focus is in career development and growth for all our children, so they have successful and profitable careers,” Estrada says. That focus has helped TTA build an enviable roster of models, including Kannon Skoyles (from the Hugh Jackman movie “The Greatest Show”), Chloe Casanova (“Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?”), A'naiiyah Reyes (“Dance to This Kid Version - Ariana Grande”, Barbie 50th Anniversary, Burlington), Mya Ali (Nickelodeon) and Kianna Burke (who has appeared in ads for Target, Lovesac, The View, Party City and Company Store).
Q&A With Anna Estrada
What is “Tots to Adults”?
Estrada: We are a family-friendly, boutique management company working in fashion, print, TV, film, commercial, etc. We believe our talent is not just one the many but can pride themselves on being one of the chosen few. Our roster is diverse. We are interested in signing only a few with the same experience and ability. Everyone is unique in their own right and we are personally and professionally invested in each and every one of our talent.
What makes you different in the industry?
Estrada: We are an “all in” management company invested in our talent and clients around the clock, not just office hours. Every talent is an investment for our company and therefore is treated as such. A lot of thought and effort goes into each and every talent and what they are “submitted for”. We have a very large family presence on our roster. We cultivate relationships with our talent and as a result, the entire family is willing to audition when needed. I am personally available at all hours: morning, day, night.
Why do models sign with you?
Estrada: We’re very personable and communicate openly. There are no secrets or fees, we are very straightforward. We are also willing to go above and beyond for every client. When we bring talent in for a meeting, I am always present and accompanied by an assistant/division head. In a lot of the agencies, the owner will not be part of the meeting. Because we can be reached 24/7, if the the parents need a helping hand, they feel comfortable reaching out at any time with comments, questions, and concerns. I like to ensure that our talents’ experiences are positive, rewarding and that our client’s expectations are exceeded. We also work with a multitude of different agencies and casting directors. We don’t discriminate on the size or notoriety of the client; we welcome all relationships. I am personally involved in every decision. It’s my name and my brand. Something to be proud of and stand behind.
What is your experience in the modeling industry?
Estrada: I’ve been in the industry for about 20 years; I’ve seen every side of the industry. I’ve been a CFO, CEO for both agency and a management company. I have experienced and dealt with all kinds of issues within the industry. Such as managing employees, handling talent payments, addressing parent’s frustrations, monitoring “stage moms”. The second it stops being fun for a child and it becomes someone else’s dream, my first suggestion is to walk away from what could be a potential issue. I have learned the do’s and don’ts from life experiences.
What are the sensitivities involved with child modeling?
Estrada: It is crucial to be as protective of each and every child as possible. No one should be blind to the possibility of scams, etc. Some people do take advantage and that is why our credibility and the credibility of our clients is key. I treat every child model as I would treat my own children -- with respect and the assurance that they are respected in the industry. Also, we only submit them to reputable clients. I would never put a child in a situation I would not put my own children in. Our number one priority is to protect the children, their innocence, and keep it fun and light. A child best represents a product when they are having fun while working. It’s not about TTA, not about the parents, it is about the child, their wellbeing, and their happiness.
How do you identify future models? What do you look for in signing them?
Estrada: Charisma, personality, cooperativeness. It is not just about what they say or do, but sometimes they can speak to you without saying a thing. Cute kids are important, but it is all about the ones who capture your attention and can command the room. Those are the ones who can sell a product, take an amazing photo, and communicate with no words.
What kind of safeguards do you have in place for models working with adults?
Estrada: We only work with clients, photographers and stylists that are highly recommended by reputable and respected industry professionals. All talent under 18 are always accompanied by a parent or an adult. Once signed, our talent only gives the company info when auditioning or going to a job. No personal info can be exchanged.
How does your accounting background help in running TTA?
Estrada: My accounting background allows me to oversee all the financial sides of my business and effectively and responsibly manage all of TTA talent payments, details, and negotiations. Not only can I guide my talent by suggesting classes and tools to advance their careers, but I can guide them on which route would be profitable for them.