Tag Archives: show

Prue Chilcott: The influential voice behind Melbourne’s iconic Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival

There are an endless amount of misconceptions about the infamous fashion industry. It is perceived to be a never ending stampede of exquisitely dressed people who are willing to trample anyone in their way in order to get their dream job. Luckily for those hoping to join the chaos, according to Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival’s digital marketing executive, Prue Chilcott, it’s not nearly anything like what we see in films, and for the first time, the reality is a lot better than what we thought.

Imagine you have the power to speak on behalf of a major organisation that not only hosts a nationally renowned fashion festival, but an organisation that heavily influences the Australian fashion industry. You would have a dramatic influence over a variety of people simply through social media. The new age of fashion marketing has changed the way a digital society stays in the know. Now, with the touch of a ‘share’ button, anyone can send a photo viral, revolutionising traditional fashion media, tripling the success and awareness of an event. Anyone can do it, but not everyone can utilise the skills of traditional marketing strategies and combine them with social media to create an influence that speaks to different audiences on different levels. In the case of VAMFF, Prue Chilcott is the person who has this power.

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Firstly, Prue presents herself in an incredibly friendly light. She radiates a genuine nature and has an admirable aura of confidence. Dressed comfortably but looking ever so stylish, she proves that she most definitely is “cool enough” to be the voice of the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival, even on a freezing Melbourne morning when you would rather be in bed sleeping, and not at work in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. For aspiring public relations students, take note of Prue Chilcott, who has come a long way in her career in a short time.

Prue began this stage of her career with VAMFF in November 2014, once she returned to work from maternity leave. Her job as the digital marketing executive leaves her responsible for all online communications involving VAMFF, including all social media, the VAMFF website, emails, and their blog, In Detail, which she helped to launch at the end of 2014. Prue is also a features writer for the acclaimed Australian blog, Melbourne Girl. When not at work she is busy enjoying motherhood and helping her husband with the financial side to his business. Is there anything that Prue isn’t doing?

If there is one thing that Prue says gets her through her busy days, it is the passion that she has for her work: “If you’re driven by doing what you love then it’s not work”, she said. “I really love working here, I love writing for Melbourne Girl, I love being a mum and doing simple things like making dinner every night and reading a magazine. I don’t want to miss out on any of those things”. The fear of missing out is proving to work for this busy Melbourne mum, as she runs through her daily routine of waking up at 5:30am to write before her baby wakes up, she makes it seem almost too easy to be able to balance a family life and a successful career in the Australian fashion industry. With students hoping to get into the same industry, Prue makes it obvious that the best way to find your self in her shoes in the future is to work hard and consistently: “[The fashion industry] It’s really competitive, no one is going to tell you that anyone who works in fashion just waltzed in”. Emphasising the importance of nailing the hard skills of marketing and public relations, Prue recommends that you always follow your passions, but keep in mind that it’s not always possible to get the job you want straight away. Prue got into public relations work through an internship as a receptionist at a PR agency following her studies, and then eventually got promoted to a PR assistant “it’s a round about way of getting there, but if you have an ultimate goal, scrabble your way to get there!”

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Prue graduated from Monash University in 2009 and since then she has worked for some highly reputable companies in their PR and marketing departments, such as The Style Counsel, the Coles group, and George Patterson Y&R. Within these roles, Prue managed to expand her experience in the broad marketing communications industry. Following in her example, she advises that students should “never think that they are too good to do anything”, after all, it was these particular experiences outside of the fashion industry that got her to her position as VAMFF’s digital marketing executive.

Although fashion communications is competitive, judging by Prue’s personality and experience, our impressions of the unbearably chaotic fashion industry are far from the truth… “There’s a preconceived notion that it’s a fluffy industry, but some of the smartest and savviest people that I’ve ever worked with have been in the fashion industry”.

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It’s important that students remember that any progress within marcoms is progress towards your ultimate career goal; Prue advises that you “find passion in what you’re doing… If you’re marketing electrical tools, make them the best goddamn electrical tools the world has ever seen”. As a graduate working for the Coles group, Prue was apart of the product development department, and during her first week, she had to cook around eighty different sausages, testing and preparing for Coles to launch a new brand of sausages… “I had never really cooked before because I had been living at home, and I thought ‘I did not go to university for five years to be cooking 80 sausages!’”

All of Prue’s hard work has brought her far in her six-year career, and now Prue continues to use her traditional marketing skills to bring the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival to life in the months between the main events. She continues to write for Melbourne Girl and juggle all of this work with a family, and she manages well, after all she does “have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyoncé”.

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Photos courtesy of VAMFF’s official Pinterest, Instagram, and Melbourne Central.

A special thanks to Prue Chilcott for her time and for being so supportive and helpful, and for managing to inspire and motivate me and anyone looking to go down the fashion marketing path!

Feminism vs Gender Equality: Do you know what you’re standing up for?

“Feminist: A person who believes in the social, political, and economical equality of the sexes”

No where in this definition is the statement that solely women are feminists. No where does the definition mention that feminists believe in the superiority of women. There are so many misconceptions about the term ‘feminism’ that confuses what the actual meaning is.

I personally like to consider myself a feminist, but not in the way some people do. I think that women deserve the same rights as men in business, relationships and in society, however, I do not think that women deserve more power than men in these instances.

Why do we assume that suppressing one group will empower the other? Even if it does, why is this a good thing? Why is taking the importance from one side and giving it to the other the right thing to do?

It’s not.

If you want fairness within the two groups, you need to enforce equality, rather than fight for a shift in power.

There’s nothing wrong with a woman earning the same wage as a man in the same position, and there’s nothing wrong with a man doing the house work while a woman is working. Still in this day and age we have an emphasis on gender roles, and the ‘traditions’ that were once socially acceptable, but aren’t any longer. House work traditionally was a woman’s role, as was staying at home and devoting their lives to their family on the basis that the house was clean and dinner was provided. In turn, it was a man’s job to go to work and earn a living for his family, then come home expecting to be treated like a king.

Like those traditions, I’ve grown up in a family where there are expectations placed upon both the women and the men. There are three generations of people living in my house. My dad who was born in the late 40’s and grew up in the 50’s and 60’s where these traditional roles were established (think Pleasantville), my mum who was born in the late 60’s and grew up with the female revolution, who sees the world more openly than my dad but still respects the ideas and traditions that he believes in. Then there’s me. I believe in feminism and the power of women, but I also don’t think it’s fair to undermine men and classify them all in a certain way.

Like family gender roles, there are so many stereotypes placed on men which aren’t true, and the majority of these stereotypes are placed on the generalisation of men by the popular majority of female feminists.

Not all men are power sick perverts who will underpay a woman just because she is a woman. Not all men abuse women or objectify them just because they may have more strength than a woman does. Yes, it is undeniable that there is a large portion of men who do, but it is also unfair of ‘feminists’ to just assume that all men are like that.

What people forget as well is that women are allowed to want to make their husbands and families happy. I was in a conversation not long ago where someone said “Beyoncé is derogatory to women because she sings about sexuality… have you heard her song ‘Blow’?”. I’m not just saying this because I love Beyoncé, but because what people who don’t take the time to listen to her music don’t know is that she is all about empowering women (Who run the world? Girls!) but she also loves her husband and enjoys their intimate relationship, and what’s wrong with that?

Also, haven’t you heard her song ‘Flawless’?!

I’m going to bring up a point I made in my Kim Kardashian post, and reiterate that women globally loved the show Sex and the City, which is easily one of the most openly sexual programs that is based on women. Why can people support a show like that which at times can be very derogatory but they hate on one woman with a few songs about the same topic? It makes no sense.

One of my favourite TV shows ever is That 70’s Show, which is obviously set in the 70’s, a time where equal rights was a social practice in the making. Woman fought desperately to separate themselves from the expected social conventions of the past, and from there were able to set the standard of equality that we know of today.

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 My favourite episode was in season 7 where Donna wants to go to a feminist rally, and Eric goes there to surprise her and says “Women should be able to walk through this park without being afraid. In fact, some day I hope that I can walk through this park without being afraid.” [queue laughter] Then, Donna decides that they should make out in the park’s bushes, and Eric accidentally pulls her hair, and Donna says “Ow, Eric get off”. The feminists then hear this and chase Eric, capture him, and strip him of his clothes and write humiliating messages on his body. It was funny but it was also really unfair that Eric wasn’t asked any questions, and that he himself was violated because it seemed as though he was violating Donna’s rights as a woman. Yes, in the instance that he actually was, then this reaction is totally acceptable, but in a lot of cases, men are wrongly accused of harassing women just because stereotypically, if they were seen in a situation at the wrong time, that’s what it can look like; but even that, who said it was okay to wrongly accuse someone in the first place, and secondly, humiliate them publicly without any questions asked?

Why is vilifying someone okay just to accredit someone else?

Sometimes we have to realise that a man’s pride is something that has been embedded in them so strongly that questioning it can result in situations that can be derogatory to women, but not every man is like that.

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I am so sick of seeing Facebook statuses like “Over guys, they’re all the same” but they’re not, it’s not every man’s fault that you are attracted to that type of man, or that your actions as a woman don’t have the same consequences that his do.

I personally am over seeing this happen, and if asked, I will say that I am a feminist because I do believe in the rights of women, but I will never be okay with slamming all men just because of the mistakes of some men. More than that, I think it’s more important to believe in the equality of the sexes, rather than debate over which deserves their rights more.

Once The Musical!

His music needed one thing. Her.

Captivating from the moment you stepped into the beautiful Princess Theatre in Melbourne, Once the Musical takes you on a journey about love, inspiration, and the power of dreaming.

This musical had me speaking in an Irish accent in record time, while also tugging on a heart string which made me want to run home and sit at my piano, forgetting that I could only play a handful of songs and can barely read sheet music.

Speaking from a year 12 VCE Theatre Studies student perspective, there were many technical aspects of Once which I could not ignore, one being the highly noticeable use of Bertolt Brecht’s ‘Epic Theatre’ as the base theatrical style. Although the ‘fourth wall’ was hardly broken, an actor-audience relationship was established through the use of music and the ‘Verfremdungseffekt’ – also known as the ‘Alienation effect’ which reminds the audience that they’re watching a play, rather than become too immersed into the world of the play. This helped to create an actor-audience relationship as the ‘spectators’ were exposed to the complexities of the play, such as stagecraft elements which, instead of being changed during a black out, were changed in clear view. Although it did distance the audience, it also lured them in, as it built curiosity and evoked further thought about aspects which are not normally though about during a performance, such as “where did that come from?” “I really want to know what’s behind that door” “Did he really just change his pants off in front of a girl he just met?” and finally “why do I keep believing that those three chairs are a bed?” 

This effect was used a lot throughout the play, as the characters also served a practical purpose and were responsible for transforming the performance space from one place to another. Set in modern Dublin, the world of the play was created with quite a sensible set, which was easily manipulated to represent different places. However there were aspects of the set which were really detailed, and each detail became significant throughout the play. Many objects were used to represent other objects (for example: chairs were moved together to create a bed) which was not only practical, but demonstrated a complex level of presentation by director John Frost.

There were many other conventions of epic theatre which were prominent in Once (I made a whole list) which I can only touch on, but most importantly, this theatrical style was demonstrated through characterisation. The characters were significant symbols of Epic Theatre, especially noticeable through things like their names and titles; the two main characters are referred to as “guy” and “girl“, and there is also the “bank manager“, which literally depict who they are and their status in the play. 

Moving on from my painful analysis (sorry!) the music in this show was fantastic and was performed by an incredibly talented cast! The leads, Tom Parsons and Madeleine Jones not only had impeccable voices, but could play their respective instruments flawlessly. The rest of the cast was equally as breath taking. Each person demanded attention for their performances, even when in an ensemble, however one person who really stood out was Amy Lehpamer, a violinist and singer who played the role of Reza. She showed a lot of energy which was quite encapsulating from the moment I took my seat.

I really did enjoy Once, it exceeded any expectations which I had for this production! If you’re into stories with [somewhat] complex characters, meaningful messages, subtle comedy (which is expressed and received extremely well), open-to-interpretation-type musicals which have been faultlessly directed and impeccably performed, Once is definitely the show to see!

… I’m being serious, I’m Czech.

Furthermore, if you want to understand the above reference, you’ll need to see the show!

Once The Musical is showing at Melbourne’s Princess Theatre until December 31, 2014 and as cliche as it may sound, this musical really does only come around Once.

Get your tickets to Once the Musical here

Check out the official site of Once here

#loveonce

I’d also like to say a big thank you to Valissa from Nuffnang for giving me the opportunity to see this show! It has been a fantastic and motivating experience being Nuffnang blogger!

Wearing:

Zara navy knitted jumper

Mossman white leather skirt

H&M ankle boots

Versace Jeans Patent leather bag

Sportsgirl bracelet

Lovisa necklace