Episode 283 THE NEXT LEVEL: ZAINAB ALSALIH discusses ABI MATESUN, Emmy-Winning Cinematographer, Filmmaker, Photographer & Speaker

“Success is not about the destination, but rather the journey.” Listen as Andy and his guest, Zainab Alsalih, Founder and Managing Director of Carousel Events, a bespoke event design and wedding planning company based in Dubai, discuss the way Abi sees and photographs a wedding, his need to find the love-story with his clients and the importance of good visuals plus much more on this episode of The Next Level. 

Abi is the Founder and CEO of Malekfoto Films and Malekfoto Weddings. Abi is a two-time Emmy-winning cinematographer, filmmaker, photographer, public speaker, and two time Telly Award winner. His wedding visuals have attracted over 60 million viewers around the world.

Zainab shares how attuned to his couple’s love story that Abi always is, the way he is involved through the whole process, and why knowing how the planners are designing the decor and lighting, for the event, helps give him the best visuals. They also speak about his use of storyboarding when preparing to shoot an event.

Listen, as Zainab and Andy speak about Abi’s definition of success and how he believes that it’s not just about the wedding day itself but also about the journey to the event that’s important.  Abi is very dedicated to telling each couple’s love story through photographs and film. He thinks of each event like a cinematographer, with the couples as the stars and the guests as the supporting cast. 

Don’t forget to listen to Andy’s new podcast, The Music Makers. It’s a podcast about behind-the-scenes stories from some of the most influential music industry pros around including artists, recording engineers, record producers, songwriters, managers, record industry executives, and more. You can find The Music Makers podcast by searching for it in your cell phone’s podcast app or by going to www.themusicmakers.com

 

SUPPORTING THE WEDDING BIZ

Become a patron and support Andy and the show: For as little as $6 per month, or $0.75 per episode, are you willing to support the industry insights Andy brings on his podcast? If you are so inspired: contribute. 

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Show Highlights:
Show Highlights:

[01:06] Welcome to the show, Zainab!

[02:04] Zainab discusses how Abi views a wedding when he is filming.

[03:14] Zainab shares that Abi is quite attuned to the love story between his couples.

[04:25] She likes how Abi gets to know his couples, how it will be designed, decorated, and the lighting, so he knows how he will portray the event.

[06:07] Abi likes to storyboard a wedding, which is something neither Andy nor Abi has seen before.

[09:51] Visuals are extremely important in today’s world, when people go to social media to find you.

[10:43] Zainab discusses Abi’s definition of success.

[11:42] “It’s really not about the wedding day itself as much as the journey to that day.”

[12:46] Thank you so much for being on the show!

 

Find Abi:

Malekfoto Weddings

Malekfoto Films

@malekfotoweddings

Instagram | Facebook

Inner Conflict Documentary

 

This Week’s Guest Co-Host, Zainab Al Salih, Founder and Managing Director of Carousel Events

Zainab Al Salih

Carousel Wedding Planner and Event Design

@carousel_weddings_events

Instagram | Pinterest

 

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Title Sponsor: This episode is sponsored by Kushner Entertainment 

www.KushnerEntertainment.com

Episode 281 THE NEXT LEVEL: CARRIE GOLDBERG discusses ZAMEER KASSAM, Designing Fine Jewelry and Telling Love Stories

“Designing jewelry is all about family and connecting emotionally.” Listen as Andy and his guest Carrie Goldberg, the Travel and Weddings Director at Harpers Bazaar, discuss Zameer’s refugee family upbringing, his ability to create an experience when he designs jewelry, how he comes up with ideas for engagement rings and much more on this episode of The Next Level. 

Zameer is the Founder and CEO of Zameer Kassam Fine Jewelry. In 2018, Zameer designed the Times Up ring worn by Ashley Judd at the Oscars and, later that year, the cast of Crazy Rich Asians wore Zameer’s designs at the global premiere in Singapore. Last year, he was commissioned to celebrate the groundbreaking movie, Black Panther, by designing the Wakanda Forever ring worn by its lead actress Lupita Nyong’o throughout the awards season.

Zameer’s passion and enthusiasm for what he does are apparent in the time he puts into his designs. Carrie talks about Zameer’s entrepreneurial spirit, how he can design an engagement ring that is so special between the two people in the relationship, and the jewelry he has designed for celebrities. 

The demand for Zameer’s designs has increased since the beginning of the pandemic. His way of telling a story, with a beautiful piece of jewelry, draws people to him and is what makes his designs the perfect way to capture memories that last a lifetime. Zameer’s approach to design is unique, and the way he tells stories with those designs are one of a kind…you won’t want to miss his story.

Don’t forget to listen to Andy’s new podcast, The Music Makers. It’s a podcast about behind-the-scenes stories from some of the most influential music industry pros around including artists, recording engineers, record producers, songwriters, managers, record industry executives, and more. You can find The Music Makers podcast by searching for it in your cell phone’s podcast app or by going to www.themusicmakers.com

 

SUPPORTING THE WEDDING BIZ

Become a patron and support Andy and the show: For as little as $6 per month, or $0.75 per episode, are you willing to support the industry insights Andy brings on his podcast? If you are so inspired: contribute

Become a Patron!
Show Highlights:

Show Highlights:

  • [01:10] Welcome back to the show, Carrie!
  • [02:03] Carrie believes that the fact that Zameer tried to sell Mickey Mouse watches to his classmates at age 11 or 12 showed an entrepreneurial spirit.
  • [04:12] Carrie speaks about Zameer’s ability to make jewelry an experience.
  • [06:03] Carrie discusses how Zameer takes the idea of an engagement ring and makes it special between the two people in the relationship.
  • [08:24] They discuss the jewelry Zameer has designed for celebrities.
  • [09:27] Carrie speaks about Zameer’s passion and enthusiasm for what he does.
  • [10:28] Carrie talks about the jewelry she has worn that Zameer designed.
  • [12:52] They talk about how Zameer’s business hasn’t slowed down during the pandemic.
  • [14:17] Carrie, thank you for being on the show!

 

Find Zameer

Zameer Kassam

@ZameerKassam

Instagram | LinkedIn | Facebook

 

This Week’s Guest Co-Host, Carrie Goldberg, Travel and Wedding Director at Harper’s Bazaar

Carrie Goldberg

Email 

@carrielauren

Instagram | Twitter

@harperbazaarus

Instagram

Harper’s Bazaar

 

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Title Sponsor: This episode is sponsored by PartySlate – the first website designed specifically for event professionals and venues!

Episode 279 THE NEXT LEVEL: MICHAEL RANTISSI discusses PHILIP CARR, Event Architect and Stylist

The menu for one of Philips events has to be an experience from the food perspective, the fragrance perspective, and total essence of the event. Andy welcomes Michael Rantissi to The Next Level. Michael is an award-winning chef of Kepos Street Kitchen and Kepos & Co out of Redfern, Australia.

Philip is the owner of Philip Carr and Associates out of Sydney, Australia. Philip calls himself an event architect and stylist, completely transforming ordinary spaces into multi-layer theatrical environments, and turns his clients’ fantasies into breathtaking reality. 

Listen as Michael speaks about some events he has worked with Philip, why he believes that Philip is truly an event architect, what it’s like creating a menu for one of Philips events, and how they both strive to create an experience. Michael also shares his insights on why Philip likes to extend the experience as long as possible by providing something special at the end of an event.

Michael and Andy discuss combining the business and creative aspects of a business, how Michael is handling the pandemic, and what he is doing with his downtime. Michael describes his restaurants, the differences, and how they came up with the names. Positivity is key during this global crisis and listening to Michael; you can hear he has it in spades.

Don’t forget to listen to Andy’s new podcast, The Music Makers. It’s a podcast about behind-the-scenes stories from some of the most influential music industry pros around including artists, recording engineers, record producers, songwriters, managers, record industry executives, and more. You can find The Music Makers podcast by searching for that term in your cell phone’s podcast app or by going to www.themusicmakers.com

SUPPORTING THE WEDDING BIZ

Become a patron and support Andy and the show: For as little as $6 per month, or $0.75 per episode, are you willing to support the industry insights Andy brings on his podcast? If you are so inspired: contribute

Become a Patron!
Show Highlights:

Show Highlights:

  • [00:57] Welcome to the show, Michael!
  • [01:27] Michael speaks to the phrase, Philip sees himself as an “event architect and stylist.”
  • [02:48] Michael shares that when he creates food for an event he, like Philip, is creating an experience.
  • [03:29] Michael describes designing a menu for an event he did with Philip.
  • [05:12] Michael speaks about Philip’s idea of giving the guests something special as they leave the event.
  • [06:48] Listen, as Michael discusses how he combined the creative elements and the business side of his company.
  • [07:58] Michael shares the training he has that allows him to handle the details on both the creative and business sides.
  • [09:50] Michael discusses how he has handled the pandemic and what he is doing while business is slow.
  • [12:35] Michael believes we all must be positive during this pandemic.
  • [14:18] Michael shares the difference between his restaurants.
  • [17:19] Thank you for being on the show!

 

Find Philip

Philip Carr

@philiipcarrevent

Instagram

@philipcarrandassociates

Facebook

 

This Week’s Guest Co-Host, Michael Rantissi Award-Winning Chef

Michael Rantissi

Kepos Street Catering

Kepos & Co

Kepos Street Kitchen

@chefmichaelrantissi

Facebook | Instagram

@keposandco

Facebook 

@keposstreetkitchen

Instagram

 

Follow The Wedding Biz on Social: 

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Title Sponsor: This episode is sponsored by Kushner Entertainment 

www.KushnerEntertainment.com

Episode 277 THE NEXT LEVEL: JENNIFER STEIN discusses MATT PORTEOUS/Photographer: The Way He Sees The World

Andy welcomes Jennifer Stein back to The Next Level. Jennifer is the Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Destination I Do Magazine, which can be found at newsstands in all fifty states and twelve countries. She also publishes a daily blog, consults, custom publishes and has a podcast called CONFETTI.

Matt is an award-winning photographer who has gained a world-class reputation for his exquisite documentary style photography. Matt is considered the Royal photographer for his work with the Cambridges. He helps change-makers make a difference and shoots on behalf of Ocean Culture Life, a global community of storytellers, photographers, filmmakers, and environmentalists whose lives have been shaped by the sea. 

Jennifer and Andy discuss Matt’s love of travel, how he immerses himself into the culture of the people he photographs and how he connects with his clients by taking them to the places they love and getting them to relax. They also speak of Matt’s charity work and the fact that he doesn’t just take photos of beautiful things, he takes photographs that can change lives.

If you knew this pandemic had an end date, would you change how you live your life right now? Andy shares that he is using this time to take a day to himself to recharge and how it is allowing him to come up with fresh ideas. Jennifer speaks about the Black Lives Matter movement, and how it’s coming on the heels of the pandemic has allowed people to think about what it means and take the time to listen.

If you haven’t listened to Matt’s interview, sit down, give yourself a moment to listen and be inspired to look for the positive things when right now it seems easier to focus on the negative. 

Don’t forget to listen to Andy’s new podcast, The Music Makers. It’s a podcast about behind-the-scenes stories from some of the most influential music industry pros around including artists, recording engineers, record producers, songwriters, managers, record industry executives, and more. You can find The Music Makers podcast by searching for that term in your cell phone’s podcast app or by going to www.themusicmakers.com

SUPPORTING THE WEDDING BIZ

Become a patron and support Andy and the show: For as little as $6 per month, or $0.75 per episode, are you willing to support the industry insights Andy brings on his podcast? If you are so inspired: contribute

Become a Patron!
Show Highlights:

Show Highlights:

  • [01:09] Welcome back to the show, Jennifer!
  • [03:34] Jennifer discusses Matt’s love of travel and how he immerses himself in the people’s culture he shoots.
  • [05:02] Matt’s goal when he takes photos is to connect with them so they can relax.
  • [06:27] Andy shares that Matt gets his clients together before the wedding and asks them where they love to go on a weekend and takes them there.
  • [09:43] Jennifer speaks about how Matt does charity work and how he does so much more than just take photos of beautiful things.
  • [11:14] Still feeling joy during this pandemic is not only allowed but encouraged. 
  • [12:29] Jennifer says that if we had a crystal ball that said the pandemic would be over in six months how would it change the way you are living your life today?
  • [14:04] Andy shares that he is taking Friday afternoons off, for the summer, and having some time to himself.
  • [15:03] Jennifer thinks people would relax more if they knew when this pandemic would be over.
  • [17:53] This pandemic is a change for all of us to reset, recharge, and reflect.
  • [18:23] Jennifer speaks about the Black Lives Matter movement happening now when people have more time to think about what it means.
  • [20:36] Thank you so much for being on the show again!
  • [22:40] Don’t forget to listen to Andy’s new music podcast called the Music Makers.

 

Find Matt

Matt Porteous

Weddings M

Ocean Culture Life

@m_weddings

Instagram

@mattporteous

Instagram

 

This Week’s Guest Co-Host, Jennifer Stein Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Destination I Do Magazine

Destination I Do Magazine

Destination I Do Blog

Jennifer Stein on the Wedding Biz

Facebook

Instagram | Twitter

 

Follow The Wedding Biz on Social: 

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The Wedding Biz on Instagram: @theweddingbiz

The Wedding Biz on Facebook: @theweddingbiz

 

Title Sponsor: This episode is sponsored by The Music Makers Podcast, where you can get behind-the-scenes stories from the most influential music industry pros.

 

Mentioned:

Colin Cowie Episode 267 on The Wedding Biz

 

Episode 275 Forming An Event Coalition With Jeannette Tavares, Michelle Durpetti, Ali Phillips

Andy’s guests today are three people who have been involved with forming and running coalitions to advocate on behalf of networks of hundreds of small businesses and contractors in the event industry during the pandemic. The one in Chicago is spearheaded by Michelle Durpetti, Ali Phillips, and Colin Pearson, and Jeannette Tavares formed the one in Washington DC.

Michelle Durpetti is a Chicago based wedding planner, venue owner, and restaurateur with Michelle Durpetti Events. Ali Phillips is also a Chicago event producer with Engaging Events by Ali. Jeannette Tavares is the owner of Evoke Design & Creative, an event planning and production company out of Washington, DC.

Listen as these amazing women discuss why they thought it was necessary to start these Coalitions to help small businesses and people in the event industry, what they see happening because of this pandemic, and the response they have received. Michelle, Ali, and Jeannette share what they want to happen and why they believe that the Coalitions will continue long after the pandemic has run its course.

They saw a need and have set out to bring the plight of small business owners, and people who support the event industry, to the elected officials in their cities. Could you do something like this in your area? We all have a voice and it’s time to use it.

We are all experiencing more stress and other issues during this pandemic. Andy has put together a list of the top ten tips for dealing with stress, which he has compiled from interviews with icons of the wedding and event industry. If you would like a copy, go to www.theweddingbiz.com/toptips.

Become a Patron!
Show Highlights:

SUPPORTING THE WEDDING BIZ

Become a patron and support Andy and the show: For as little as $6 per month, or $0.75 per episode, are you willing to support the industry insights Andy brings on his podcast? If you are so inspired: contribute

Show Highlights:

[01:34] Andy introduces each of his guests, Michelle, Ali, and Jeannette.

[03:02] Andy reads the first two paragraphs of the letter that the Chicago Coalition sent to Illinois Governor Pritzker.

[03:55] Michelle shares why she felt they should form the Coalition.

[05:06] Ali discusses the three critical points of the letter.

[07:41] Jeannette speaks about her experience with the Washington, DC Event Coalition and what they are doing for the event community.

[09:34] Jeannette talks about getting information about their ecosystem together for lobbying.

[11:11] Michelle and Ali share the responses they received from their letters.

[13:13] Jeannette speaks about the response from the D.C. Coalition.

[14:23] Listen, as Jeannette talks about what she wants to happen because of the DC Coalition.

[15:54] Michelle and Ali share what their goal is with the Chicago Coalition.

[17:18] What would you suggest for anyone in another city that might want to start a Coalition?

[19:40] Jeannette shares some other things that she feels are important.

[20:49] Ali adds that we all have a voice and how important it is to let elected officials know what we need.

[21:36] Michelle shares some last words for people in the event industry.

[22:49] Thank you, Michelle, Ali, and Jeannette for being on the show!

 

RESOURCES

DC Events Coalition

The Chicago Coalitions letter to the Governor 

 

Michelle Durpetti

Michelle Durpetti Events

@mdurpettievents

Instagram | Twitter

@MichelleDurpettiEvents

Facebook

 

Ali Phillips

Engaging Events By Ali

@aliphillips

Instagram

@EngagingEventsbyAli

Facebook

@aliphillips

Twitter

 

Jeannette Tavares

Evoke Design & Creative

Jeannette Tavares Episode 230 on The Wedding Biz

@evoke_dc

Instagram

@EVOKEDC

Facebook

@evokedc

Twitter

 

Follow The Wedding Biz on Social: 

The Wedding Biz

The Wedding Biz on Instagram: @theweddingbiz

The Wedding Biz on Facebook: @theweddingbiz

 

Support The Wedding Biz by clicking here

 

Title Sponsor: This episode is sponsored by Kushner Entertainment 

www.KushnerEntertainment.com

 

Mentioned:

Alan Shukovsky Episode 268 on The Wedding Biz