Rock Band Vs Vampires: a feature film written and directed by Malcolm Galloway

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013|Event, Film Community, Interviews, Uncategorized|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

Comedy Horror Movie

A great passion for music, past experience as music journalist, and an innate multitasking personality. This explosive mix led to Malcolm Galloway’s comedy horror feature film Rock Band Vs Vampires.

Malcolm, songwriter, singer and multi-instrumentalist, is the driving force behind rock band Hats Off Gentlemen It’s Adequate. He has previously made  a few short films and performed in the London 2012 48 Hour Music Video competition runner’s up prize winning While I Still Can. Rock Band Vs Vampire is his first feature movie in which he is the scriptwriter, director, and one of the producers and actors at the same time!

A few weeks ago I had the chance to meet with Malcolm at the Belsize Park Station in Camden to talk about his new project.


A. “Hi Malcolm! Tell us about this movie. What’s the storyline of the movie?”

M. “It’s the story of Jeremiah Winterford, an old-school vampire whose mansion has been burned down and most of his clan killed by a rival. After these tragedies he is persuaded to move to Camden, the heart of the music scene in London, to rebuild his entourage. A local unsuccessful rock band, Sorcerer’s Tower is invited to play at the re-opening night of Angelfish, a Camden music venue now under new management…”

A. “Where the idea come from, and where did you get your inspiration?”

M. ”I don’t remember exactly why I picked vampires. In June 2013 I suggested the idea of a comedy-horror story about an unsuccessful rock band caught up in the middle of a vampire feud to some of my colleagues, and the reaction was so encouraging that a couple of weeks later I had a first draft to share. A lot of the story is quite autobiographical. Except the bits with vampires. Edgar Wright’s films are also an inspiration.”

A. “How things are going and what will be next steps?”

M. We’ve just starting filming, and so far it’s going extremely well. We’ve got two scenes filmed on schedule so far, and three more scenes coming up this weekend. We plan to finish principal photography by the end of this year, and it should be out in time for Halloween 2014.

I really would love to have the possibilities to give back to each member of the crew a physical DVD with the movie. You know, digital version is fine; but having it physical, it’s another thing!”

A. “Are there any celebrities among the actors?”

M. There are a lot of people who worked or are working in the movie field, and we were delighted that Gyles Brandreth, writer, broadcaster, and former member of parliament, joined us for a cameo scene! We’ve also got the former model and scream queen Dani Thompson in a major role. We’ve some other surprises to announce soon.”

A. “How are you managing the costs to record and produce the movie?”

M.Rock band Vs Vampires is an extra low-budget comedy-horror feature film produced with the help of over 200 volunteers. it has been inspiring that so many people want to get involved to try to help make the project happen. I’m incredibly grateful to my colleagues, who bring with them such a range of skills, experience and talent. I’m also extremely grateful to the businesses that have supported us by providing their locations for filming (including the Zigfrid Von Underbelly in Hoxton, the Underworld in Camden, The Fiddler’s Elbow in Camden, and Curry Manjill in Belsize Park as well as friends offering their homes.) and the Goltic Shop for their support with costumes.

We’re also putting on a fundraiser for the film at the Fiddler’s Elbow in Camden on Halloween, where there will be featuring performances by Hats Off Gentlemen It’s Adequate (the film will feature music our debut album Invisible) and others involved in the film. We’re also very grateful to those who’ve supported our Indiegogo Campaign.


Thanks to Malcolm Galloway for the nice chat while walking on the amazing Hampstead Park!

Don’t miss the fundraising gig for Halloween in Camden Town…it’s gonna be terribly fantastic!!!


Author: @AlicePodenzana



Live Lounge with Abbey Bowden is here…

Thursday, August 8th, 2013|About Elexu, Elexu Live Lounge, Interviews|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

Like promised, Elexu presents Nate Maingard’s first time as a host at Elexu Live Lounge with his good friend and musician, Abbey Bowden.

Lets listen to how Abbey seriously pursues music, full time, after taking up music lessons in Uni despite playing various instruments before that, the reason behind her music being termed as ‘dark’, on what she basis her song writing, her admiration, inspiration, life in London in 1 ½ yrs and the unexpected kind of support and encouragement London gave her…

Abbey talks about what goes into her mind in front of a live audience on stage, her biggest lesson in life, music being a self-indulgent career, what she strongly believes in and how Abbey’s father is her strength in her music life.  The video also presents some questions from the audience to Abbey.

Abbey performs ‘Comfort’ to her audience at Elexu

And ‘Still’…

Feel free to post your comments, suggestions & feedback… And if want to be a part of Live Lounge, please get in touch with Meng, our Event Manager, at with the subject line as “Live Lounge”.

Watch this space for more details on the future Elexu Live Lounges and who our next guest is!

In conversation with Larry H. – Part II

Thursday, July 4th, 2013|Advice, Interviews, Uncategorized|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

In continuance to conversation with Larry H. – Part I

Born in England in 1977, Larry Hallegua is an award-winning street photographer based in London. Larry strives at capturing candid moments of everyday life, trying to incorporate elements of art, fun and surrealism in his photos. His subject(s)’ are generally unaware of him capturing their emotions, Larry states, ‘’If emotion is on the street it must be poured onto the page of the photo, for all to learn and benefit from.’’

MB: Elexu Senior Associate, Meng Bean
LH: Photographer, Larry Hallegua

A good street photo

MB: Have you ever asked yourself the question – ‘’Am I shooting to please just me or to please my audience?’’

LH: I always shoot for me in the first instance. When I edit I try to think whether it’s a good shot, by how difficult it was to take, what it’s trying to show, as well as how interesting it is for the viewer. A great photo in my opinion, is one that you can look at and enjoy for more than a minute or two, that makes you want to come back to it for repeat viewings.

So many factors make a photo aesthetically pleasing and interesting to view – the composition, colours, subjects, etc… I think street photos are unique in that they are not necessarily reportage or documentary, although I think there is sometimes a crossover, they can purely be showing a quirky or fun scene. I do enjoy reportage and documentary shots too but I’m usually drawn to quirky or funny situations.

shooting to please

Funny, quirky and surreal

MB: Except for fun and quirky I notice that you define your work also as surreal, so what is surrealism to you?

LH: I guess in its widest definition it’s when something ordinary becomes extraordinary and reality is being played with through the exploitation of chance effects or unexpected juxtapositions. A good example would be “Light Being” which was hanging in Urban Picnic’s gallery in the UK, during May this year, I was one of 30 finalists in Urban Picnic’s International Street Photography Competition.


Artist or anthropologist?

MB: You said that “if emotion is on the street it must be poured onto the page of the photo, for all to learn and benefit from.” Do you think of yourself more like an artist or an anthropologist?

LH: Maybe both at times. But I don’t study my subjects, the art comes first definitely.

artist or anthropologist

Photographer’s perspective

LH: I often think my photos say more about me than my subjects. People see your perspective on things, the world through your eyes. It is open for all to see, you cannot hide it.

MB: Do you feel insecure about it?

LH: No, not insecure. I am lucky as I enjoy the method, the hunt as it were, as well as the obvious satisfaction of having taken something that people find interesting and engaging to look at.

photographer's perspective

All rights reserved

MB: I notice that you don’t normally put watermark on your photos, do you mind if somebody uses your work for other purposes without giving you the credit? Have you ever struggled with protecting your own intellectual property?

LH: I don’t like watermarks. When I started doing this, particularly on Flickr I was using an attribution licence. My images were used for various things but they always credited me. With the Internet and website like Flickr, it is even harder to protect my work. I guess I am too busy shooting to care, but I should be getting serious about that.

all rights reserved

Advice(s) to young people if they want to be a street photographer

1. Get a camera
2. Look at some good examples of street to get you going (Henri Cartier Bresson, Martin Parr, Garry Winogrand, Bruce Gilden, Lee Friedlander, Vivian Maier, Alex Webb, Jun Abe, etc… as well as lots of amazing street photographers on flickr)
3. Do not wait to be inspired, go out there and start shooting
4. Shoot, shoot and then shoot some more
5. Be confident and don’t be afraid. I shoot normally within a few metres of my subject or even closer. The more you do it, the more it will start to become very natural.

so many factors

Additional information about Larry Hallegua

2012, Runner-up of Practical Photography & Digital Photo Magazines’ 2012 Photographer of the Year, Round 6 - photo
2013, 2nd prize in Chicago Photographic Society’s Annual Street Photography Competition - here
2013, Finalist in Urban Picnic’s 2013 International Street Photography Competition - here

2012, Eschon Street Photography website - The role of SPNC in street photography
2012, Professional Photographer, Photo of the Day 19/12/12
2012, Alex Coghe’s blog – “gallery of the month” for Dec 2012 - “Noodles”
2013, Alex Coghe’s blog – “gallery of the month” for Jan 2013 - “Profile of a Woman”
2013, Urban Picnic’s Street Photography website, Featured Photo of the Day (Best of Feb) - here
2013, Urban Picnic’s Street Photography website, Featured Photo of the Day (Best of Feb) - here

2013, March, Chicago Photographic Society’s Annual Street Photography Competition in the gallery section of Calumet Photographic in Goose Island, Chicago - photo
2013, April 12th – May 2nd, Urban Picnic’s Street Photography Exhibition, showcasing the 30 finalists from their International Street Photography Competition - exhibition details
2013, May, “Useless Useless” Exhibition in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Photos selected from over 17,000 international contributions, organised by You Are Not A Dinosaur - photo

2012, 2012 Photographer of the Year, Digital Photo & Practical Photography Magazines, Nov Issue

This month’s Elexu Live Lounge is with…

Thursday, June 27th, 2013|Elexu Live Lounge, Interviews|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

The Salvati brothers!

Colourshop-Elexu Live Lounge 1

Elexu Live Lounge is an opportunity for all musical artists to help them present their masterpiece(s). Artists come to our office for an interview, perform live which is recorded (and live streamed online!) and even receive a quality video of their performance!

Watch one of our previous Elexu Live Lounge to get a better idea.

This month’s Live Lounge is with the Salvati brothers – Alfredo and Diego! Watch them talk about their band Colourshop, childhood, their love for song writing & taste for folk music and pop; in spite of having enjoyed heavy metal when they were younger (with long hair!)

Their nervousness & honest feeling during live performances, having a support system like a brother around, and advice for beginners:

Their live performance at Elexu office: Cold White Pieces

Another song by them: Coming back to you

If you need more info on The Salvati Brothers, find them in Facebook, Youtube and Twitter.

For artists out there, we welcome artists of all genres and from all over the world, as long as you can make it to our Soho office! Filming and editing is taken care by Elexu; all we need you to do is perform. We also help promote artists by sharing their performance(s) on our social media channels.

If you like what we do and want us to help you, please get in touch with Meng, our Event Manager, at with the subject line as “Live Lounge”. Shoot us an e-mail right now and we will take care of the rest!

Watch this space for more details on the future Elexu Live Lounges and who our next guest is!

In conversation with Larry H. – Part I

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013|Advice, Interviews, Uncategorized|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

Larry Hallegua

Larry H

Born in England in 1977, Larry Hallegua is an award-winning street photographer based in London. Larry strives at capturing candid moments of everyday life, trying to incorporate elements of art, fun and surrealism in his photos. His subject(s)’ are generally unaware of him capturing their emotions, Larry states, ‘’If emotion is on the street it must be poured onto the page of the photo, for all to learn and benefit from.’’

Larry Hallegua’s pictures have been exhibited across the UK and US. You could also check out Larry’s collection:





Currently teaching English in Tokyo, Larry spends the rest of his time capturing the city through his Fuji X100 (current camera of choice) or Leica M2.

Before we started the interview online, he just got back from his shooting in Harajuku – a fashionable district in Tokyo. So, our conversation started from there.

MB: Elexu Senior Associate, Meng Bean
LH: Photographer, Larry Hallegua

Confrontation with the subject

MB: Is there any difference between shooting British People and Japanese? I heard that Japanese can be shy and less open to strangers.

LH: Well, the reaction is generally better, and less confrontational. British people are becoming more and more defensive over having their photo taken in public, I think this is due to a number of reasons but is definitely affected by the popularity of social networking sites like facebook and how quickly and widespread information can be shared nowadays. Japanese people can appear much more forgiving or less wanting to engage in a confrontation, which makes my job easier. I have also experienced a much more positive attitude towards street photographers from the Japanese compared to the British public.

If they notice, I usually make some kind gesture of thank you or point out what it was that I found beautiful and shot. Today, when I was shooting in Harajuku I used ‘kirei’ (beautiful in Japanese) quite a bit after photographing people, mainly to avoid any uncomfortable moments. No one here has asked me to delete anything, in fact some encouraged me to take more once they realised what I was up to.

Brit and Japanese

Capturing the moment

MB: Do you carry a camera everyday or go out and shoot for a particular topic or area as you did in Harajuku today?

LH: I try to carry my camera all the time, very rarely do I leave home without it. I even take it to the University here when I am teaching.

Do you carry camera

MB: Has there been a time that you took out your camera too late and missed a moment that you regretted?

LH: Oh yes, that happens. I try not to regret things as there are always more moments. I will go insane if I am hard on myself all the time for missing shots. But sometimes I hit the air with my fist in irritation that I missed something.

I think the key is to keep your eyes open. Since starting this over a year ago, I have definitely developed my eye even more and now I am much instinctive and also getting better at editing down the good shots from the bad. Sometimes it’s hard not to fall in love with some photos, even the bad ones.

MB: So you care more about the moment than the person’s life story? Unlike Humans of New York, I feel they are trying to peek into normal people’s life from that one fragment of time.

LH: I do sometimes focus for a few minutes on a subject that I find very interesting but I am not trying to carry out a social study. If that comes out of some of my photos then great, but it is not my initial intention. When I shoot it is usually very impulsive and I like to shoot candid, not posed.

unlike humans of new york

To be continued…

A Day In the Life of a Young Entrepreneur

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013|Advice, Elexu Team Posts, Interviews|by Amarisgentles|No Comments

“I will never give up, my ambition has no limits”

On an ordinary day I get up around 7 o clock, I lie awake for while and mentally analyse whether I have hit the mile stone that I set myself for that particular day. Whether I have or not I tell myself “Keep going Aaron. Consistency is the key and your almost there. You are on the right path to make your life better.” I clamber out of bed and go straight to my computer and check all my emails and voicemails; to give me a detailed motivation of my day.

I walk to my local Tesco express and buy myself a vegetarian breakfast and lunch. Although I’m living on a budget I try to be conscious about what I eat. From the tender age of four I decided that I wanted to be a vegetarian because I’m a firm believer that it’s important to keep your body healthy.

My company is Runway Republic; an online fashion platform that creates a micro-site for designers, boutiques and vintage sellers to nationally and internationally trade. It also has a social network aspect to it all, which allows all fashion lovers, buyers and sellers to connect under one roof.

runway republic video (link to Runway Republics first photo shoot for a campaign)

I was exposed to a certain lifestyle at a very young age and I saw the benefits and downfalls that came with the environment that I was developing in. I managed to get myself in trouble with the police and made unnecessary enemies. However, I was so desperate to separate myself from the individuals that appeared to not want to prosper in life. After watching my older sister graduate and develop in her career and also graduating myself, I knew that if I put my energy into something positive there was a reward that would make me proud unlike the negative aspects to my lifestyle.

After many mornings and nights wandering around my neighbourhood I noticed that there were no young black males to look up to, except rappers or athletes but that wasn’t the conduit I wanted, I saw myself as an intelligent black male so I decided I would represent that figure in society. I put myself to the test. I want to show other black youths that there is space for them on the corporate ladder. I feel like there is a lot of weight resting on my shoulders but I use this added pressure as motivation.

No two days are the same ever since I started up Runway Republic. The day that we first got financial aid for Runway Republic was such a joyful day, particularly because I knew as a young black male it would be harder to find financial support. Working in the fashion industry I discovered the importance of conducting myself in a professional manor and being well presented. So just before I leave my house for any business meetings I make sure that I have a fresh hair cut, intoxicating cologne and a trusting smile.

After a relaxing shower and shave, I drive down to our office proudly in ford focus after I sold my B.M.W in order to invest the money into Runway Republic. I sold and used everything that I’ve ever owned my savings, shares and my car.  As I drive I try to ignore the burn from my tired eyes after a night at work. I had to get a night job in order to keep myself alive while I get Runway Republic off the ground and although it doesn’t pay for holidays to Hawaii it’s enough for me to treat myself to a cheeky Kit-Kat now and then.  Working at night and running a company during the day is hell on earth, it’s mentally and physically tiring.

My youth allows me to take off my CEO hat and put on my worker hat on in the night and switch it back in the morning without running out of batteries. It’s difficult to give up when I don’t understand the word no. The good thing about being an entrepreneur in this decade is that young people are forced to be more ambitious so we are taken more seriously in the public eye. People often ask me if my race has been a barrier to me operating on a daily basis but I think that constraints are self inflicted, not to say racism doesn’t exist but if I feel like I’m being hindered because of my race I’m not going to allow that to determine my success and enough doors had been opened for me to confidently believe that anything is possible.

Some days when I’m travelling between the office and work I have my ordinary human doubts and I start thinking of alternative ideas but then I remember that a wise man once told me “why have a plan b if you know plan a is going to work”

At the end of the day I return home with a brain full of worries and anxiety but my family and close friends are a comfort to my mind. There so much diversity of intellect and beliefs among my relatives and companions.

Before I got to sleep I am consoled by knowing that I will never give up because my ambition has no limits.

‘Breaking All the Rules’ with The Ignition Boys

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013|Elexu Live Lounge, Event, Interviews|by Sam Watson|No Comments

One afternoon in January Elexu interviewed The Ignition Boys, a 5 piece band from five different cultures and backgrounds joined together to create music. We got to talk to them about the band and there upcoming album breaking all the rules which is due for release later in the year.

Part 1

Part 2

TIB are performing at Elexu Creative Live on 23/02/2013. Come down for a great night of music,

photography and films. Just click here for all the details and get your discounted VIP ticket.

Actress Interview – Arundhati Misra

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013|Interviews|by Sam Watson|1 Comment

Elexu had the privileged of interviewing Arundhati Misra an actress trying to make it in one of the worlds toughest businesses, Acting!

So tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m 23 years old, born and brought up in Delhi, trained on the job…

I started off with community theatre when I was 12 years old, and then continued to do theatre in school and university (a lot during my undergrad in Mumbai) and then came to London to do a Masters and tried to get into professional acting here.

What inspired you to get into acting?

I don’t know, but I was 13 when I realized that I wanted to. It was not a ‘big moment’ at all or a revelation of sorts. It was merely a class play for my English lesson (Taming of the Shrew- Shakespeare). The play was being performed in front of my class and hence it was a very small school activity. But it made me think, “This is so much fun, this is what I want to do!”

What I find inspiring is when you have lines, sentences and a script and you create a scene, a character from nothing at all and sometimes it’s amazing. And you have brought life to this script, this character.

So inspires you? 

Someone I really admire is Mark Ruffalo from The Avengers. “This man went on eight hundred ill-fated auditions. Auditions for bad karate movies and shows about cops on bikes. Auditions in which — and this one is hard to picture — Richard Grieco trash-talked him. Even in a town where rejection is as common as multigrain pancakes, eight hundred auditions is a lot. Epic even.” And, this always makes me think ‘If he can, I can as well’.

I really hope I don’t I have to go to 600 auditions.

Favourite Movie and Why?

A movie that left me absolutely raptured was A Single Man. The reason for that would be that it makes you feel, from start to finish, exactly the way the director, actors and everyone want you to. There is so much clarity because there was no character I didn’t understand, no scene that didn’t fit in! And also, while watching it you’re a 100% present and not thinking of anything else.

Moreover, you can feel his love for his partner, you can see and feel his heart aching, feel his sadness, loneliness..It’s a perfectly made masterpiece.


What has been your best acting experience?

‘Fear and Misery of the Third Reich’ which is a Bertoit Brecht play. I did this during my Masters programme and the reason it was my best acting experience was because the director was absolutely brilliant. It was basically a series of short mini stories and the director adopted the directing style of Bertoit Brecht. So, there were no lights on stage, only torches that the backstage crew were holding up on stage, the crew were on stage with the actors, the audience were blindfolded for a while. Basically, the audience were to be involved at every stage, he used the audience during the play, engaged them, surprised them in original ways, in fact engaged them sometimes even without them realizing it. So, it was a very creatively satisfying experience…very different!

Tips for others  trying to make it in the acting business 

Don’t give up! Don’t give up! Don’t give up!

It’s extremely hard and there are days when you feel like you are in the wrong profession and that everything is just ridiculous but those are the moments to stay positive.

“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place and it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t how hard you hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit, and keep moving forward. How much you can take, and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done. Now, if you know what you’re worth, then go out and get what you’re worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hit!!”

Written by

Anoushka Adya



The Perfect Gentleman

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013|Event, Interviews|by Sam Watson|No Comments

Elexu was lucky enough to land an interview with serial entrepreneur Zach Falconer-Barfield the mastermind being the Perfect Gentleman experience. The Perfect Gentleman course is designed to teach you how to be a gentleman which will give you an advantage in your professional, personal and love life. Details about how to attend the course are below but first here is the interview:

What does being a gentleman mean to you?

The core of being a Gentleman is all about Respect; Style; the Commons of Manners, Courtesy, Decency and Sense; and lastly but not least Chivalry. The “Gentleman” is an ideal that lasted over 700 years and it worked.  However, it has faded over the last 80 years, the skills unfortunately are not being taught by anyone anymore and we believe that they could make the world a much better place.

How does being a gentleman help with your career?

In business and your career, people do business with and hire people not just their CVs nor track record, therefore being considered a “gentleman” champions a set of values and skills which gives you the edge.

For example, “First impressions count”, if you walk into an interview; a business meeting or any similar situation and you’re a stylishly and smartly dressed, quietly confident and courteous that alone will increase your standing and your chances of success.

It is the intangibles that make all the difference, knowing how to work the room and how to make small talk; knowing which glass to use at an important business dinner, knowing what gift ‘not’ to bring to your Chinese host.  These are all the skills that are not taught at that top flight business school or graduate programme.

Benefits in other aspects of life?
Benefits can be found everywhere in life with being a gentleman, but I suppose one key area is in romance and relationships. Through being that gentleman and re-discovering the lost art of wooing and romance, he can sweep the lady off her feet and BE her Prince Charming.

What was the reason for starting these events and the movement of teaching others how to be a Gentleman?

Two reasons started me on the path for launching the Perfect Gentleman.

Firstly, a very good female friend of mine asked me to teach her then boyfriend to be more like me, a gentleman. Very flattered, I laughed it off but when 3 other female friends of mine said similar things over a short period of time, I thought there must be something to it.

Secondly, I was becoming more and more fed up with the lack of manners that people displayed, for example the absence of basic pleases and thank yous.

I discovered, that these things are not being taught anymore: schools don’t;  it has dropped of the busy parents list of ‘to dos’; nor is there a finishing school for men in the world. So we thought we had better start one and we are hugely excited by the response.

Is there a specific moment where being gentleman gave you the advantage and someone not being a gentleman a disadvantage?

Many moments come to mind, but one that I think illustrates the point well was when I attended an exclusive, invite only, cocktail party a few years ago.  I was engaged in conversation with a group of people and one man in the group was bragging and being crass, I took it upon myself to a steer both the conversation and him away from the group and once I had deposited him at the bar returned to the group. One of the people from the group found me sometime later and awarded my company a lucrative contract.  When I asked the person why, they said it was because of my gentlemanly conduct that night.  (I subsequently discovered that the “crass man” was actually in line for the contract.)

Do you ever take off the gentleman persona? 

It is not a persona.  A Gentleman is who you are, or indeed rather who you choose to become. It is an intrinsic part of you, therefore how cannot you ‘take it off”.


The Perfect Gentleman Course  12th & 13th of January 

True Gentlemen are not born they are made

These 2 Days will give you all the skills to make you that man

The skills we teach include:

  • Mind-set & Confidence
  • The Art of Being Well Groomed
  • The Ability to Dress with Style
  • Learn Excellent Manners & Etiquette
  • The Lost Art of Wooing & Romance
  • Developing Business Relationships

Click on the heading to find out all about the perfect gentleman event.



Interview with Siwei Yang

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013|Interviews|by MengQin|No Comments

Siwei Yang is the Manger of one of China’s most successful actresses Fan Bingbing. She was kind enough to complete an interview about her career tips for getting into acting and more.

1) What are some tips for being a good artist manager?

As a promoter one of the best tips I can give you is that you are a story teller.  Don’t just package an artist which generic events and PR stunts, you need to tell their story because that is what people really want to hear and every artist is unique you need to use that to your advantage. I got to be introduced to Fang BingBing by impressing her at an event with my own PR stunts. As a promoter which is one of the  first steps before becoming a manger is to really make your events special and get the public talking, since a actor/actress is only as famous as the amount of people talking about them.  As a manger you need to be flexible and think on your feet, any problems that arise you need to adjust to make them turn to your advantage. Quick thinking is key. I think what I am doing now is quite similar to being a lawyer so I enjoy it.

I believe that to be a promoter or manger of artists you need to be strong willed. If you want something, are determined enough and a you believe in yourself then nothing can stop you, you will be motivated to get it using any resources you have. This applies to everything I do not just my job. This is a key principle I live my life by.  Also I think I had a bit of luck on my side which never hurts to have.

2) How do you gain an artist’s trust?

I think you meet an artist and you just click. You can have a portfolio and have all the experience in the world but if you don’t get on with your artist and your personalities don’t work well together then you will never succeed with them. I worked with Bingbing once and we just clicked, she really appreciated the work I did and I have been her manager ever since.

3) What qualities of Bing Bing make you want to work with her?

Bing Bing is very intelligent, has a high EQ, loyal to her friends and has a great personality which is what really helps. If you have those qualities it’s hard not to be successful. Also she is beautiful which also helps but this is not the most important factor since there are plenty of beautiful people that are failed artists. What they really need is a good manager *wink *wink*.

4) Why do you put all eggs in one basket?

I could choose to manage many artists but I choose just to manage one because with BingBing I get the best resources in the industry and I can focus on her which is a great advantage to her.

5) How do you use social media to promote? What do you think of the role that social media play in promotion.

Social media is a fantastic platform it provides quick access to your audience. However social media is hard to control  so you need to posted quickly and smartly to negative information, promote good information often as to keep the audience engaged and interested in your artist. This applies for artists as well you need to be a good source of information and entertainment on your social media page as to keep people interested and attract new audience. Tell some good stories and people will always listen.

We have a whole system of how to categorized and react to news. Because when you work with others people responses to information differently when you really need to only response in one concise way. If you respond to news a multiple ways this can have a negative impact.

To finish off if you manage an artist they need to be nicely dressed or edgy dressed every time they appear in front of the camera because people aren’t interested in normal. You need to be the fire not the moth. It’s your job to help your artist set the trends that people follow.