Northside mama Amber Coupe spent over 15 years in the creative arts mastering the dramatic elements that transform and move a crowd. Amber combined her skills in setting a scene with a passion for entertainment to establish her corporate event management business, Phoenix Creative Management. She is a busy mum of one, who uses her contacts near and far to create some magical and memorable events in Melbourne and across Australia.

What inspired you to create your own events company?

I have always had a passion for event management, production and entertainment. I love the feeling of moving people through an event. It’s addictive to create a moment that stays with people and even better if it inspires them to take action or make a difference somehow.

Coming from a wide range of jobs within the entertainment industry, has that helped you build your company?

Before I built Phoenix I was a professional dancer in musical theatre. I trained from a young age, right through my high school years and went straight into full time training when I graduated from school. I got my first contract in London’s West End at 19 back in 1998. I worked professionally in theatre for eight years jumping from contract to contract all over the world. This experience was vital as it is what gave me a taste of how events and moments are created from an artistic point of view. At 27 I made the tough decision to retire and then Phoenix was born shortly after.

You have worked with some well-known people over your career. What have they taught you about the celebrity lifestyle and how to manage those clients?

I have been fortunate to work with some incredibly talented people. Australia has some amazing talent and having the chance to give them a platform is so satisfying. I have also had the pleasure of working with a few high profile artists. One of my more recent clients, Adopt Change, has Hugh Jackman and Debra Lee Furness as their founders. I created an event for them at Kirribilli House recently. They come with an entourage, however they were the loveliest couple and so down to earth.

Events is a tough industry. How do you stay fresh and different?

Staying on trend or even a few steps ahead is a goal of mine each year. However fresh ideas are sometimes difficult. Research research research! Writing blogs and staying on top of social media helps as well. It’s not easy but it’s vital for my industry – my team and I dedicate a substantial amount of time to this area of the business.

What are some up and coming hot trends for parties, big and small, and what advice can you give to busy mums when planning an event?

Shared plates! Everyone is moving away from the three course meal option, food trucks are always fun, architecturally designed balloons and flowers are the buzz at the moment. Also try an in house chef for your next party. They are not as pricey as you think and always on trend – great for some extra wow factor for your friends/guests at home.

Where do you get your ideas for themes and design? Do you enjoy being creative?

I love being creative. I dedicate a lot of time to staying on trend, ideas come at anytime of the day. Generally when I meet a client they give me a brief and an idea always comes to mind while I am sitting there with them.

You’re a mama of one. How do you balance work-life as events can be so demanding?

Its hard and 100% a juggling act. Everyone is hands on deck! My husband, nanny, my staff and my mum are all fantastic. We all work together and make it work. We are actually pregnant with our 2nd child due in late July, so life is going to get to a whole new level of hard. However, I wouldn’t want it any other way.

What has been the biggest learning curve when starting up your own business?

Time. How to allocate it. Sometimes having to be in two places at once – either running an event away from Melbourne and also needing to be with my son, particularly if he is unwell. Family always comes first and learning to delegate when I need to is important.

What have been your most memorable events you have organised and run?

This past year has been an incredible one for Phoenix working with Adopt Change which is an organisation that drives awareness for adoption in Australia. It’s an important cause and Phoenix was the official event organiser for a number of events in 2017. At Parliament House Canberra, we launched the #ahomeforeverychild campaign nationally. This marked a very special and proud moment for myself and my team.

What is the favourite part of what you do and your proudest moment?

The look on guest’s faces when they have been moved by a particular moment throughout an event. My own moment was when I re-branded Phoenix and held a re-launch party. I invited all my closest family, friends, clients and potential clients along and the look on their faces at what I had achieved was a very proud and humble moment for me. I knew right then and there I was on the right track and I just needed to keep doing what I was doing.

What inspires you the most and what has motherhood taught you?

Being a working mum is my inspiration. My son and my family inspire me each day to be the best I can possibly be for them. Motherhood has taught me to dream bigger, not just for my growth, but for my family. Being able to show my son what you can achieve, there is no better feeling than that.

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