Putting on the Digicel Rising Stars Christmas Special – A Series of Unfortunate Events

Sometimes things don’t go the way you planned. Sometimes things get terribly out of control. And in those moments, the only things saving you from complete failure are your reputation and a reliable team you can count on to help you pull through. Filming the annual Digicel Rising Stars Christmas Special this year was one of those times.

Picture this scenario. I’ve only just returned from my two-week trip to Singapore, which means recovering from some serious jet lag, only to hear that a loved one is very ill. My day starts out trying to get an ambulance to transport them from their home in one parish, to the hospital in another. After going to the hospital and making the necessary arrangements there, I ended up being late for my call time!

I have to rush to get my makeup done, get dressed, head to Downtown Kingston on a gloomy late afternoon, memorize my script and film my parts for the Digicel Rising Stars Christmas Special…in the rain. Talk about stressful!

In the end, our team managed to pull off the seemingly impossible. We filmed a great show (which aired on TVJ on Christmas Day) and, had I not told you this story, you’d probably be none-the-wiser. There are three main elements I believe allowed us to get it done:

Communication – If you have people expecting you to be at a certain place at a certain time, and you know you won’t make it for whatever reason, let them know! Communicating in a timely manner means that they are able to adjust their plans and accommodate you accordingly. As soon as I knew I had to go to the hospital and it might affect my ability to get to set on time, I let my producer know so she could start planning for any delays.

Teamwork – My face may be the one you see on camera, but behind-the-scenes, there are tons of people coming together to make these shoots happen. From my producer, who had to adjust the filming schedule based on my updates, to the makeup artist, who had everything set up and speeded up the process to have me looking camera-ready in record time, and of course the film crew, who adjusted their equipment to account for the lost daylight and rain. Having a professional, reliable team on hand was literally the only reason the show could go on.

Reputation – I’ve been working with the Digicel Rising Stars and TVJ team for the better part of a decade, and they know that I am never late unless it is an unavoidable emergency. Had I been the type of person who always slacks off and shows up late, they probably wouldn’t have gone above-and-beyond for me in the way they did to ensure that everything worked out in the end. At the end of the day, your reputation is the one thing people will hold on to, long after your work has faded. Build it well and protect it fiercely.

My big takeaway from this unfortunate day: You can’t always control the things that happen to you, but you can control how you respond.

Here are a few of the photos we took in between filming on that fateful night.

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