Cassie - Completely unconfident but with immense talent, she lives with her single dad after her mother left when she was just a baby. Bullied at school with no real friends. Dresses unfashionably, hair in ponytail, big glasses. A bit of a dork. When she sings she's more confident, but she's only ever sung at home, alone. Taken to contest by loving single dad who enters as a very bad magician. Cassie enters by mistake when a member of the crew mistakes her for a contestant.
Joe - Confident and talented singer with a very pushy parent/manager. Smart and fashionable dresser, lots of friends but none that genuine other than his best friend Rupert. He has been brought up and coached to win at all costs. Not very likeable on first impression, but with softer side he hides from others.
Debra - Joe's Mother. Acts as Joe's manager. Driven, loud and brash. She will stop at nothing to make Joe a success and, more importantly, make herself wealthy. Not at all likeable, a Cruella Deville type character. Thinks that Rupert is a bad influence on Joe, distracting him from fulfilling his talent.
Frankie - Cassie's dad. Lovable magician with no talent. Bumbles along. Single since Cassie's mum left. Lost the ability to be a good magician when his wife ran away with his fiercest rival.
Russ Cole - Head judge, show producer, record company mogul. Single but tries to seduce most females he meets. Exploits acts to make as much money as possible.
Jenny Knowles - Australian Judge and ex-actress. No talent, but had a long, secret relationship with Russ Cole.
Des Matthews - Judge and ex-boy band member. Camp singer who was once extremely rich and famous, but has recently been out of the spotlight and fallen on hard times.
Karen - Cassie's mum and Frankie's ex-wife. Once Frankie's glamourous assistant, but ran away with his biggest rival when Cassie was little.
Tony Rose - TV show host and ex-comedian. Totally anti talent shows. To the audience he is the face of family entertainment, but backstage is rude and obnoxious to the acts.
Acts - Must include a comedian, plate spinner, rock band and a dog act (we never see the dog).