an interview with Lena Ski | Spice4Life | Online Womans Mag

ON A PROFESSIONAL NOTE

How would you define what you do do?

As an Manager (recently turned Entertainment Producer) a normal business day in my life includes online content management, administration, keeping tabs with the local industry happenings, networking, increasing the brands awareness, and offering consultations. Overtone is an online platform that enables the Events, Music, Media and Entertainment industry’s with all the tools it needs to make great entertainment happen. I much prefer to focus my attention to creating something spectacular… that’s why eventing and productions are so close to my heart.

What do you love the most about your job, and what do you hate ?

 What I love most about my field of interest is how diverse it is. You can’t put it in a box. You can’t shut yourself into one way of thinking. The rules (to an extent) have gone out the window. There is a lot more freedom in the process which means there is always innovation. That’s exciting! Of course it’s easy to get caught up in the admin (there’s always piles to do) and the real trick is staying real in all of it. I help other people manage their creative projects because let’s face it – many artists just don’t have it in them. I just need to keep reminding myself to focus on my personal projects too.

Where to from here? What’s the future for your Industry?

I see the future of my enterprise as a force to be reckoned with. South Africa has so much talent and I think that we have what it takes to step up on the global market and make a lasting legacy. Watch this space! One thing I would like to add is that SA needs to claim its own entertainment culture. Let’s stop living in shadows and rather bask in all our glitz, glory, and hard work!  Some of the  other major challenges that my industry faces is that it still feels like a man shaped world. It’s great to see woman in business, music, film and events but it still feels like we have to prove ourselves. The Independent Industry is also still finding its feet. The power dynamics have changed from Studios and Recording Labels, to a new force of Industry makers (Although, it does not look like they are going anywhere anytime soon) It makes for interesting times.

Defining moments

Some of the defining moments in my career have been to always come down to the challenge. I love pushing myself (must be a Capricorn thing) and making things happen.  From The first time I ever Stage Managed a Theatre Production (two days before opening night and no clue on who/what/ when/ where or how) , babysitting / running an international TV Production company for a week , to starting a business. Most people are too scared to try something new, learn something new, or just do! It’s ok – you’ll make mistakes. Hopefully none of them will result in the actual end of the world! Let it happen, ask for help, and keeping rising to the challenge.

AS AN INDIVIDUAL

How do you spend your down time?

It is important for me that my personal time includes a time out. I see my “job” as being an extension of all the things I love (and I don’t think luck had anything to do with it). So In my spare time, I’m often out supporting great music, checking out new hotspots, or treating myself to a good old fashion girl’s night in/out. Then again, I also adore sitting in nature and watching life and people drift by…. It’s really important to stay grounded.When I’m chilling, I prefer to unwind and simply just be in the moment. It’s important to find that quiet time for reflection and TLC. Getting out on my own, or treating myself to a writers retreat (in an inspired landscape) is pure bliss. Usually I fall into some creative outlet or simply daydream as the clouds / stars float by.

Sporty?

I wish! But I’m totally in love with Nia , it’s a great combination of all the things I love and the combination fits me perfectly (and it’s the funnest workout any gal could have). I used to do belly dancing but this fits me better.  I’m really trying to step up to take up Archery again. I started getting good enough at it…. I even hit the occasional bullseye. Maybe I’ll give it a go in the summer again. I never liked shooting indoors – it threw me out completely.

Tell us about your family life?

My family might be small but we are pretty close. I’m first generation South African while the rest of my family comes from Poland. Talk about being the odd one out (not to mention the only Capricorn in a house full of Scorpio). Traditions and Heritage play a big part at home which of course makes life all the more colourful. My brother is my biggest role model – I love his approach to life and his determination to push the limits. I’m forever learning something new from him or the books he admires.

MY PERSONAL INSPIRATION

what inspires you?

I am inspired by music, nature, photography, design, art direction, architecture, people, a great read and rainbows ….

Who inspires you?

I’ve been inspired by so many wonderful women and amazing friends. There isn’t a single person that I could put out above all others. There are so many people creating ripple effect movements out there. I’m in awe of all of you.

LIVING A LEGACY

My personal message to the women of the world “You can do anything if you have the courage to believe in yourself and the determination to succeed”.

Achievements and Victories

Recently I had the opportunity to get involved in an amazing project with the South African Circle of Dance Academy. I was asked to Produce and Write a script based on the true story of an inspirational young Dancer. The play was called “Soar like an Eagle” because anything is possible.  In 2010, it toured Cape Town and we took the production to the Grahamstown Festival. Working with a young cast from all walks of life, abilities and disabilities, was an empowering experience. Theatre is another past passion. I was on the committee of the Muizenberg Dramatics Society from 2003 -2005 while completing my BA Degree. Most people thought I was mad. I liked the challenge and the experience. During this time I was actively involved with 6 productions at the Masque Theatre, Muizenberg.

AS AN AMBASSADOR FOR MY COUNTRY

 If you were to visit my country, city or town, here are my picks::

An absolute must is watching the world go by on Long Street (for the vibe, coffee and fashion).

The rooftop of the Grand Daddy Hotel after a long week.

http://www.granddaddy.co.za/hotel_airstream.php

Decadent and glammed up milkshakes at the extreme hotel (fire and ice)

http://www.proteahotels.com/protea-hotel-fire-ice!.html#

Live Music at Zula Sound Bar http://www.zulabar.co.za/ (New add on Club Voom Voom)

Food for thought

What was the best advice you ever got?

The best piece of advice I ever received was to live your dreams and face your life.

What literature has inspired you?

The literature that has influenced my life the most includes

  • Excuse Me – you’re life is waiting
  • The Diving Bell and The Butterfly (recommended) by Jean-Dominique Bauby
  • The Alchemist

Would you say your life is pretty balanced?

It’s important to lead a balanced lifestyle and appreciating the life you lead. The truth is that everyone is unique and their lifestyle is going to reflect that. It’s all about what’s feels right to you. I can’t picture my life without buzz, work, and an active schedule – and I can’t see myself giving that up. My balance may be tipped more in one direction, I’m wired that way, but as long as I have time for family, friends, and myself I couldn’t be happier.

 In your opinion what will it take to make the world a better place?

To make our world a better place, I believe the key ingredient could be ACTION. If you feel inspired to do something, go out there and do it. It’s easy to think about it, it’s easy to talk about it. The real life challenge is actually doing it.

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