Validation Is Good But It's Not Everything, I Had To Live Up To A Certain Standard
Get ready to dive into the world of event hosting and discover the secrets behind their success, memorable moments, and valuable insights with Freishia B
Read this exclusive interview with Freishia B, a renowned entertainer who has captivated audiences with their charisma, wit, and stage presence. Get ready to dive into the world of event hosting and discover the secrets behind their success, memorable moments, and valuable insights. Whether you're an aspiring emcee or simply love the magic of live events, this interview promises to be a captivating journey into the art of hosting.
Can you share your journey of how you entered the world of emceeing and what inspired you to pursue this career?
Owing to my background in theatre, I've been on the stage ever since I was a child. I was performing at Prithvi, almost 10 years ago and a gentleman came backstage, approached me, and asked me if I wanted to host an event. I was very unfamiliar with the events industry and had absolutely no knowledge about it. That was my first event and it was probably the worst event I've ever done in my whole life. I had no idea what I was doing, there was no one to guide me on what exactly to do, but I knew that there was something there. I knew that this felt the same as when I felt performing for audiences in theatre.
With a career spanning theatre, international films, TV commercials, and corporate events, what do you find unique about emceeing that keeps you engaged?
I love meeting and interacting with people. I'm very blessed to get the opportunity to do a wide variety of events, I think that's what keeps me going. I pretty much host all types of shows. The variety and travel aspect emceeing brings in, is like finding everything I like, put together into one profession.
You've had the opportunity to work with many prominent celebrities and personalities. Can you tell us about a particularly memorable moment or event from your career?
Recently at IIFA with Abhishek Bachchan, I was hosting a press conference in Abu Dhabi, and one of the toughest things that you have to do in a press conference like that is to thank the sponsors. Now IIFA has a very long list of sponsors that one has to name, but you still want to keep that moment engaging. So, I told the audience that I've been given a very tough job right now where I'm going to have to read all these names and support the sponsors and me by keeping the applause going. Abhishek very sweetly jumped on the stage and said: "Nobody will stop clapping for this girl!". So while I was taking all these names on the stage, he walked all over the venue and made the audience continue clapping, It's very encouraging when a celebrity of his stature joins in, encourages you, and makes sure the audience is having a good time.
Hosting conferences for various industries requires adaptability. How do you prepare to host events for different sectors, from banking to fashion to IT?
I insist on a lot of calls with the client before the show and I really make sure that I get a very proper brief. I have a fixed set of questions that I ask the client to understand the tonality and the exact requirements. I also recognise that I'm not from that industry, so I listen to session speakers very carefully to pick up on some industry lingo and then incorporate that into my hosting by adding a little bit of my own masala to it too. Coming from a theatre background, I'm able to take that tonality and change it as per the requirements of the event.
Your YouTube channel 'Whack' has gained significant popularity. How do you balance creating content for YouTube with your other professional commitments?
It's tough, I don't have a life (Laughs). I do have a team because I wouldn't be able to do this if I didn't. Even when I'm hosting or travelling, I parallelly work on my content. Many times I'll be on a flight and you'll see me on my laptop editing a video or doing research for my scripts on the channel. Now I create content for other people as well, including Dia Mirza and a corporate client.
Winning the Best Emcee award at EEMA22 is an incredible achievement. What does this recognition mean to you, and how has it impacted your career?
It means the world to me to be recognised by a body like EEMA and to be awarded as the Best Emcee, I was over the moon. I started applying for awards two years back and that year I won not only an EEMA but also a BW award and Eventpreneur. It means a lot to be recognised by my peers and my seniors. Validation is good but it's not everything, it felt like there was even more pressure because people started noticing me and then I had to live up to a certain standard.
As an emcee, what are the key skills and qualities that you believe are essential for success in this profession?
One thing I think to be essential is command over language. The second would be reading, that's where you get ideas from and expand your knowledge to be able to talk about a variety of topics on stage. Thirdly, I think it's very important to be fit and I do not mean this in a sense of vanity. I mean it in the sense that we work so hard for such long hours and there are days where I will be in three cities in the world in one week. To keep up with that you have to be extremely fit to be able to bring that energy and perform again and again. You also need to have a very humble personality.
Can you share your perspective on the evolving role of emcees in today's digital age and how it has influenced your career?
Clients are now not looking at us as just Emcees. With the digital presence and social media becoming more popular, competition is increasing exponentially. You have to make the clients see that you're bringing something more than just hosting to the stage, so a strong digital presence or having a separate thing going on the side helps. I definitely think that it does make a difference in my work as well. I have a lot of clients who call me because they've seen my YouTube channel. I also run my own beach clean-up movement called Carter Clean-up where we've done 111 clean-ups till now and we've cleared close to 50,000 kg of marine waste. As an Emcee if you diversify into other avenues as well, it definitely helps.
You hosted back-to-back industry events this season. What was that like?
I got the golden opportunity to host the EEMAX Awards, WOW Awards, and ICWF this year. Each one is a coveted industry event in their respective spaces. To be able to host these high-profile events in front of such varied audiences was a golden moment. I absolutely enjoyed that experience. While it comes with the challenge of being on the top of your game, there's also a certain comfort in being able to crack insider jokes about your own industry at such events.
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