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:: Spotlight :: Making It Big In Modelling

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

With Spring Fashion Week behind them, and a busy period including New Zealand Fashion Week and Mercedes Australian Fashion Week in Melbourne, the next few weeks are busy for two high-profile models, Krisztina Laszko and Dan Zizys. Both are signed to Melbourne’s high-flying modelling agency FRM and there is a fascinating story about Krisztina and Dan in how they’ve grown to become international models of high order. Krisztina was born in Hungary but her agency, Genesis, is based in Hong Kong. In turn, they set up a proposal for her to work with FRM in Melbourne. She has worked in many European and Asian countries whilst Dan reached the status last year of being a prestigious Dolce & Gabbana model, and having worked in big campaigns. Whilst in Melbourne, Krisztina had already signed up to do a campaign for Jeans West, Pantene, and Myer. Dan’s story is well known in the industry; in being noticed by FRM boss Stephen Bucknall in the streets of St.Kilda. His tall, distinctive, almost larrikin, looks saw him make a big impression throughout various Melbourne fashion events and advertising campaigns, before his unique look took him overseas. I had an opportunity to have a chat to both in Krisztina’s first trip to Melbourne, and Dan’s return after a lengthy absence.

Q. Tell us about your life leading up to being a model and of your time so far?

A.(Krisztina)I originally had a normal school and university life and was 19 years of age when I started modelling. I wanted to experience adventures and not get too tied down. After three and a half years of modelling, my family and friends have been very supportive and I love going to places like Hong Kong, Barcelona, and Capetown.

Q.What has it been like for you over the past few years?

A.(Dan)I had eleven months in Paris in 2002 and I loved it. It was great to make contacts and to spend considerable time there. I did lots of shows there, for Jean-Paul Gaultier and many magazines. The industry is so huge there. I suppose the main thing I noticed is an experience in city life. As an Australian I was amazed when I was in New York to see the number of Australians in creative agencies there. Over a ten-month period, I’d meet at least two Australians every day in New York. Having seen this fascination, I would be very interested in pursuing this when my modelling days are over.

Q.How do you view the work you’ve done, and where are the places you enjoy working most?

A.(Krisztina)I’m still happy taking everything in my stride, making connections along the way. I’ve done campaigns for Dior. That’s been one of the best and busiest times, plus a few big campaigns in Europe and Asia. I love Shanghai too. It is an amazing and comfortable city and there are many English-speaking people there.

Q.You’re set for a big week at New Zealand Fashion Week soon. What else are doing in the immediate future?

A.(Dan)Yes, it will my first time at New Zealand Fashion Week so that is something to look forward to. It’s interesting to note that New Zealand is opening up for editorial aspects. Sydney has become very competitive and many US and Asian agencies are now sending models to New Zealand. In January I’m going to Milan, Paris, Barcelona, and New York. Then, it’s off to Munich and Frankfurt in Germany. The German market is the biggest in Europe and I haven’t been there yet.

Q.Tell us about landing the Dolce & Gabbana campaign?

A.(Dan)My agency in Paris had given my card to Dolce & Gabbana about one day after I left Paris a few years ago. They made up their mind to use me pretty quickly without seeing me in person. It was an honour and I got good follow-up work including a cover on the prestigious L’Uomo magazine in Italy.

Q.What do you do to keep healthy?

A.(Krisztina)I eat the right foods, in moderation. I love to walk.

Q.Any other hobbies and interests?

A.(Krisztina)I like to go to cafes and galleries. One day, I’d like to do documentaries as a journalist. I long for stability and happiness in Hungary.

Q.What about your attitude to health and exercise?

A.(Dan)I don’t do a lot of exercise. I’m just known for being quite slender (lean and mean). I’m 25 years old now. When I’m about 28 I suppose I’ll have to start a concerted fitness regime to put on the muscle and get into more commercial work. I’ll probably be in the gym every second day and going for a run.

Q.What does the future hold for you?

A.(Krisztina)I have several commitments for the rest of this year, but eventually I would like to open a little café.

(Dan)Having worked with a top photographer like Stephen Klein, I would like to work with other great photographers like Mario Testino and Jean Baptiste Mondino. That’s a great achievement for any model. I would really like to work in Shanghai one day.

Pictures:

Dan and Krisztina in action at the 2004 Melbourne Spring Fashion Week, plus Dan with FRM boss Stephen Bucknall.