Hello Ambassador 2015 is a creative conference featuring talks by industry experts from a variety of creative disciplines. It is one of those festivals I have yearned to attend for the last three years. This year, I finally got the chance to attend this intimate, yet esteemed, festival.
My initial impression as I arrived at the Sci-Bono on a very chilly Friday morning was one of disappointment. The number of “creative and innovative” stands was minimal, and quite frankly, that which was on display was a let-down. The number of food and drinks stands were also scant few, and festival goers were limited to Vegetarian Briyani, Chicken Wings or Ribs if they were feeling peckish at any point during the seven hours that the festival would run for on any given day. To make matters worse, the festival started almost 50 minutes late. This late start would end up being a trend throughout the two-day conference.
However, with all of the initial distress at a conference I had looked so forward to, the talks began and Hello Ambassador 2015 showed its true colours and flourished like a field of flowers in the spring time. With talks from the likes of Dillion S. Phiri, creator of Creative Nestlings, to Tumi Molekane of Tumi and the Volume, an incredibly successful hip hop act of the early 2000s, I grew increasingly excited as so much knowledge and success simply radiated out of the intimate auditorium. My favourite speakers included Robert Brozin, Founder and CEO of Nando’s, whose passion and love for such an incredible brand just shone through; DJ Black Coffee – who needs no introduction – whose question and answer discussion looked at a lot of the pressing issues in terms of our local creative industry; and William Struwig, creative director at Publicis Machine, who showed that it really isn’t impossible to become successful before the age of 30.
As the second day came along, we were faced with yet another late start of almost 45 minutes, which would end up becoming an hour as certain speakers went over their time limits. Day two featured far more outgoing, strong personality speakers. I must admit that I was truly fired up to go out and do amazing work simply because of the amazing way that the speakers managed to motivate, engage, and educate us all. A favourite would simply have to be Pepe Marais who is the Founding Partner and CCO of Joe Public United, which is possibly one of the biggest advertising agencies in the country. He gave a talk that included his 10 Commandments of Becoming a Citizen of Greatness. Some of the points included “Find greater purpose in your life”, “Surround yourself with the best”, and “Let your purpose drive your potential”.
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to stay for the entirety of the programme for both days of the festival. But I was equally disappointed that I wasn’t able to attend the number of talks that I had planned to, simply because of the unforeseen lengthy delays. It’s because of this that you won’t see any photos from the Street Fest in my photo series.
All in all, Hello Ambassador 2015 was a mixed bag of amazing speakers and disappointing festival logistics.
Let’s hope that HA 2016 holds a far more pleasant experience in store with the same high calibre of speakers.