My first time hosting a film festival

When Ben asked me if I was free to host a couple of days of the Mountains on Stage Film Festival, I was honestly surprised. Yes, I’m not a shy person. But talking to friends, family, in a camera or for a real crowd is so different. I know what you’re thinking… Come on Joyce, you never had to speak in front of a class in school? Sure, but I never liked it and even then, you do know the other students. Here I had to present the movies and get the crowd excited. First of all, how do you start writing your text and do I learn it by heart? My first reaction was to ask Ben for some help. But knowing he had a lot of work; he didn’t really have the time.

The Mountains on Stage film festival is an event that started in France and is growing every year. So, I based myself on the performance and text of my French colleagues. I gave my own swag to it. Made my text not too long and didn’t learn it by heart. (I have to be honest I did write the whole text down but just as a helpful tool in case I blocked in my presentation.)

Nerves and excitement

Kinepolis Hasselt, a crowd of 130 people and… me. Welcoming everyone for the first time was no problem. I’m used to it from my work as a hospitality manager for brands as Porsche, Audi, Hosting the event was better than I expected. Yes, I’m not going to lie I was nervous as hell. Don’t know if people could tell but I noticed myself talking way faster than normal. So, I was nervous but at the same time excited. It felt like this was something I need to do more…

Hosting the Mountains on Stage film festival in Antwerp. Every time I had to host, I improved my text, my posture, … Just by being logical and wanting to be the best at it. Therefor I concentrated on my talking speed and started reacting more and more with the crowd. With this edition of the Mountains on Stage Film festival we went from Hasselt to Antwerp, Bruges and ended in Ghent. Ghent had the biggest crowd more than 350 visitors. It was Sold out. Last minute I was asked to host one more time cause my colleague Ben was not feeling well. Knowing me, Of course I said I would do it.
I thought: “Well it’s not the first I have to do, and I know what has to be done and told.” But oooh I was wrong cause this one was a little different to the previous ones….

A plottwist

The last one in the row was a special one. I had to interview 2 athletes of the snow. Seppe Smits and Joost Vandendries. Those who know me a little know that I’ve never been skiing. So, I had a couple of hours to find everything I could about these 2 amazing guys. Another moment of getting nervous. However, while hosting, the more I talked the more at ease I became. It was as my second nature. I didn’t have to think about it. Just be Me!
It was a real honor to have gotten this opportunity to host a film festival and so discover something I really enjoyed doing. Hopefully I’ll be able to do much more as a host in the future.