Sunday, December 9, 2012

My experience as a Let's Make a Deal contestant

     After I appeared on episode #4021 of Let's Make a Deal, everyone was always asking me, "How do you get on Let's Make a Deal?" and "How much are tickets?" or "What's the process like?"  Well if you truly want to be a LMAD contestant, I have a few tips/hints for you that could go a REALLY long way if you decide to try and get on the show.
     We'll start with the small things—getting tickets, eligibility, etc.—and then move on to the real tips that will get you on the show.  Since I was 6 years old, I had always been a fan of LMAD.  I can remember watching the Monty Hall reruns on TV when I was young, and just thinking to myself, "God, I wanna be on that show one day!"  Well, come my 18th birthday my parents told me they had gotten tickets to be on LMAD!  Here's how:

  1. Make sure you're 18 years or older!  Otherwise, they won't let you in—but you guys already know that!
  2. Go to and find the Let's Make a Deal page
  3. Find a date that you are available to be on the show and reserve tickets (NOTE: YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BUY TICKETS! THEY ARE COMPLETELY FREE!)
  4. Make a reservation up to 4 people, print your ticket, and get ready to be on LMAD!
     Alright, now that you have the tickets, you are going to need a costume.  THE IMPORTANCE OF THE COSTUME CANNOT BE UNDERSTATED!  I dressed as a caveman, and they were really impressed with how complete my costume was—meaning I wore a caveman wig, caveman booties, caveman robe, caveman jewelry, and held a caveman club.  Here are a few tips on picking a costume.
  1. NO SCARY COSTUMES!  They will NOT pick you if your costume is the least bit frightening.  It's daytime TV not a Halloween party
  2. Having watched the show for many years, there are certain costumes they gravitate towards.  Nearly every episode you will see one of these costumes
    1. Banana
    2. Grapes
    3. Penguin
    4. Bee
  3. The costumes above are all clean cut, creative costumes.  Choose one of these, and you're already raising your chances!
  4. They also LOVE really creative costumes!  If you haven't seen it on the show before, try it out!  Just remember, the cleaner-cut the costume the better.  They don't want any messy looking costumes!
  5. If you're going in a group, pick a theme and dress in costumes that go with each other.  The producers love this too, because it allows them to show the friends' reactions when a member of their group is making a deal.  For instance.  One person could go as a cupcake, another as a backer, and another as a cookie.  Pretty simple, right?

     Now that you have the tickets and your costume, the day of the filming is finally here!  Keep this in mind!
  1. DO NOT BRING ANY PHONES OR CAMERAS! They will send you back to your car immediately, and you WILL NOT make it back in line.
  2. There are going to be A LOT of people there!  Get there early, and wait in line.  We arrived an hour before and were numbers 159-162.  THEY ONLY LET 200 PEOPLE IN!  If you don't get a number, than you do not get to enter and your day will be ruined! :(
  3. They make you walk through a metal detector, so limit the amount of metal you carry.
    Now, while you are in line, they give you a number, a packet of info, and an information card.  THE INFORMATION CARD IS THE FIRST HUGE PART OF GETTING ON THE SHOW!  Write down something interesting about yourself!  Do you have a cool job, hobby, or story?  Write it!  Is it your birthday, or are you celebrating something?  ABSOLUTELY write it!  Did you come from an outside state? DEFINITELY write it!  The producers want a good demographic, so your chances will go up astronomically if you are from out-of-state.  We came from Florida, so I wrote, "I work as a lifeguard; it is 18th birthday, and I am a student at UCF. Ever since I was 6, I've always wanted to come on LMAD for my 18th birthday, and now I'm here!"  Make yourself memorable, and stand out from the people who write the mundane, "I work at ______, I'm ________ years old, I want to win a _________."  Finally, after a long period of time waiting, you will enter part one of the interview process!

      Now, as many of you already know, Wayne Brady does NOT just pick whichever contestants he wants.  There is an interview process, where every audience member is interviewed.  The interview is a three trailer process, meaning you go through three different trailers.  The first trailer, you wait in line to hand in paper work and show your license.  Once you do, they will give you your name tag, and they will tape your number on you.  Once you receive your name tag, they will take a picture of you.  Don't over think this.  They want a nice picture, so just smile.  Do NOT try to take a picture that fits with your costume (e.g. if you're an opera singer, don't pretend to be singing opera in the picture!)  Next, you are taken into a trailer where there is a water cooler, so freshen up!  You are sat in one of two rooms with about twenty other people, and a person comes and debriefs you about what to do if you get on, and how to impress the producers—he doesn't give you much though!  After that, you get put into a horizontal line, where row by row, you get interviewed by a producer (a panel of other producers are behind the interviewer taking notes though).  YOU HAVE 15 SECONDS TO MAKE IR OR BREAK IT!  Be upbeat, but not crazy!  Be loud, but don't scream!  All she has time to ask you is "What's your name?" and "Tell me something interesting about yourself."  I said we came all the way from Florida, and that it was my 18th birthday (I did a sort-of whooping cheer), and said that I wanted to win a car so I could come back and visit my parents from college.  The producer LOVED that.  She is a mid-aged pregnant lady—although I doubt she's still pregnant—so play to her motherly instincts.  BE MEMORABLE, but don't be defiant or cocky, and don't try and tell a joke.  Just be yourself, but add a little bit of extra enthusiasm!

     Now once the interview is over, they have a hamburger/hotdog stand that is open, so get a snack if you want.  It takes about 30-45 minutes to do all the interviews, and finally they take you to the studio! Now here's another crucial point of the interview.  BUT WAIT I THOUGHT THE INTERVIEW WAS OVER?!  NOPE!  This is where they root out all the phony people.  They make you wait outside the studio for about 20-30 minutes, and the whole time, they have "spies" who will walk around.  It will look like they're not part of the show, or not paying attention BUT THEY ALL ARE!  Don't be complaining about the heat/cold, be up and active!  Talk to other people, play games, tell stories, just let them know that you weren't playing to the interview.  I realized that they may have been "spying" on my group, so I initiated a game of rock, paper, scissors with the people around me (turns out I was right!  They actually were!  The head producer told us afterwards!)  Now once you enter the studio, they will look at your numbers, and they will have assigned seats for you.  DO NOT WORRY IF YOU ARE IN THE WAY BACK OR VERY FRONT!  They pick contestants from all over the place.  I was in the very front row, and thought that because of this, they wouldn't pick me, but they did!  In addition, the guy before me got picked from the second to last row, so it doesn't matter where they put you.  However, if a person is picked right next to you, or a person is chosen that is wearing the same costume as you, then you're out of luck.  Now, this is where it gets really tricky.  Prepare to get the workout of your life, because as soon as you walk in to the studio, they have the cameras rolling, and casting producers are watching you!  THIS IS NOT A JOKE!  So do NOT sit down!  Stay standing and dance (they have music playing) and don't stop until they tell you to!  Be smiling and active the whole time, because they still do not have a concrete list of contestants.  The producer who talked to us after the show said they have a list of about fifteen possible contestants, and based on how upbeat they are during breaks and while other people are playing games, they choose accordingly. 

    Wow!  Since you followed my tips you got chosen!  First off, that's awesome!  When he picks you, remember YOUR ON CAMERA!  Scream, be excited, jump up and down!  This is HUGE!  Now Wayne Brady will ask a few questions about yourself (What's your name?  What do you do?  You've done this before!)  And then the moment of truth: the deal.  Now there are an innumerable amount of games on LMAD, and I've tried to sort them into categories:
  1. Trading Games- The infamous, "You can take curtain 1 or 2," type of game.  But chances are you won't just be dealing with curtains
  2. Car Games- The game everyone wants to play.  While these reap the biggest reward, they are the hardest to win
  3. Cash Games- Playing for that almighty cash!  But beware, they will most likely slap a deal on at the end
  4. Improv Games- These are most fun to play.  While they usually give out medium-large prizes, Wayne and Jonathan (the announcer) make it REALLY fun.  Best part is, with these games, 90% of the time you will walk away with something!
Now, having watched and been on LMAD, I've accumulated a LOT of knowledge on specific games, and some general rules to follow.  These statements are 100% true, and I would not put them if they weren't.  This will help you immensely when you get chosen.
  1. LMAD ALWAYS HAS TWO CHANCES FOR CARS TO BE WON! ALWAYS!  Whether it be via a car game, cash game, trading game, etc. a car will pop up twice as a prize.
  2. There is no secret to winning a trading game HOWEVER they almost always put the big prize behind a curtain or box they originally offer.  For instance if they say, "You have this envelope.  You can either keep it or take curtain 2,"  I would suggest keeping the envelope.  Then most likely they'll offer up another deal, DON'T RISK IT! Nine times out of ten it will be a ZONK!  Stick with your original prize.  It has something great in it!
  3. In cash games, It's always a good idea to keep the cash (I won $2,400, and Wayne said I could buy curtain 1 with it.  I said I'd keep the cash, and behind curtain1 was a ZONK car, so I got lucky!)  If however, it's towards the end of the show, and only one car has popped up, there is a good chance there's a car behind that curtain!
  4. Improv games are easy.  They basically tell you what it is.  If you want it, take it.  If not take the cash.
  5. Number four brings up a good point.  NEVER ask Wayne for more money than he offers you!  First off, they'll tell you to sit back down, and that you are no longer going to be a contestant, and second, Wayne will always have a second offer—most of the time there's a third offer as well!
  6. Car games are fun, but tricky.  If he offers you good money, you might be better off taking it.

    So those are my tips/my experience with LMAD!  I want to finish off by saying that this was the experience of a lifetime.  From start to finish—even though sometimes waiting wasn't the greatest—it was an incredibly fun experience!  They keep you entertained, and they give you a LOT of opportunities to be involved with the show, whether it be for a game, Quicky Deals, or a game during the break.  Even if I wouldn't have gotten picked, it was still a great time; however getting picked made it a thousand times better!  Now if you DO decide to go, just follow my tips, and I guarantee you will be heavily boosting your shot to win that new car, trip, or cash!  If you do end up getting on LMAD, or you go and have a good time, comment and let me know!