Celeb News

I was on the 2018 ARIAs red carpet and this is what ACTUALLY happened

Nicole and Keith Urban were the ultimate target...

By Anita Lyons
WATCH Above: Now to Love got the stars of the ARIA's 2018 red carpet to sing in Red Carpet Karaoke
I am an excitable human being. In fact, most of the time, I exert a very high level of excitement that not many can match or even understand.
And when you're asked to attend and cover the red carpet of the 32nd Annual ARIA Awards at the Star in Sydney, you do not say no.
This is the second year that I have been fortunate enough to attend "music's night of night's" and believe me when I say, the adrenaline and the fun of it all does not dissipate!
If you've never been to any form of red carpet event before, you should know that yes, it is exactly what it looks like. But CRAZIER.
Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban are the "golden unicorns" of the ARIA Awards red carpet. (Source: Getty)
In fact, the only way to sum up the annual event is a wave of screaming fans, musicians, Aussie stars galore, plus Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban (must have own special mention because they are the golden unicorns...) and a wall of journos all trying to grab Nicole Kidman's attention. Did I already mention her?
So, behold this is what actually happened on the 2018 ARIAs red carpet!
You may be wondering who this is in the picture below. It's me, Anita, live from the red carpet!

The red carpet waiting game

This by far is the most un-glamorous part of the entire event.
Here is my hot tip for any future red carpet reporters: Always eat beforehand. For the love of God, eat a hearty, carb-filled meal between breakfast and go time.
Because by the time you get to the event at 12:30pm and get ushered to your tight-like-a-tiger, one-by-one centimetre space behind a barricade, it's not actually until 2pm that the stars star trickling in. By the time it's all over, you will not have eaten for a good seven hours.
I say this because this happened to me on Wednesday... and I nearly died of hunger and exhaustion, and by the time my Uber driver, Paul, picked me up, I was in no mood for chit-chat. (Goodbye 5 star rating!)
It's hard to see in the video below, but believe me when I say, the wall of media went for at least a good a kilometre and you spend the majority of your day waiting, waiting and waiting.
WATCH: The ARIAs red carpet for a Journalist's perspective. Post continues after the video...

How to get celebs to talk to you (or walk past you)

As media, you are tasked with getting as many celebs to talk to you as possible, however, it's also important to make sure you have done your research and know who the hell they actually are.
Don't laugh - well-dressed identities that look like celebrities will go by and you will literally look at the person next to you quizzically hoping they can shed some light on their name.
I have a new rule on the red carpet, and that's because I know who my wonderful audience is - i.e. YOU. And that rule is, if I don't recognise them, neither will you. So I don't talk to them.
The ARIAs are brilliant organisers, so we are sent a list of people to tick off who we'd like to chat to beforehand and once it gets to show time, their publicists will seek you out.
But if you see someone who wasn't on the list, i.e Aussie darling Sophie Monk, you yell her name, look at her with big puppy dog eyes and ask very nicely if she could come chat to you.
Confidence is key here. Yell their name loudly, but don't get hyped up and scream, because everyone confuses you with being a crazed fan - and they won't come over.
I didn't take this one, the photographers at Getty did. But I thought you should have a decent shot of Sophie with her dad since I didn't deliver. (Source: Getty)
I bring up the gorgeous Love Island star Sophie Monk because I really wanted to talk to her.
I yelled out politely but loudly, she waved, smiled at me and went to come over...
And then... her publicist walked in front of us and told me "no" and whisked her away to a rehearsal.
We were so close! We reached out our hands towards each other and yelled "noooo".. We didn't really - but she did tell me: "I'm so sorry" as I stood there despondently.
I was gutted.
I so desperately wanted to talk to her for you. And her Dad Andy was there, and we all LOVE Andy but sometimes, it just doesn't work out. Yep, the red carpet can be ruthless like that.

This is usually the case for the bigger celebs who are attending the red carpet, like Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban.
In fact, you've probably been waiting with baited breath for me to tell you if I got to speak with them or not.
Well, she was thiiiiiiiis close to me - but as is usually the case with the MAJOR names (Nic and Keith, Rita Ora, George Ezra, 5 Seconds of Summer, Jessica Mauboy and Vance Joy) they usually only speak to the big television stations.
Last year, Vance Joy spoke to me for five whole minutes (while I had lipstick on my teeth) and in the space of a year, he has hit such international stardom and can no longer chat to everyone. And that is that.
As for Nic, she may have skipped the throng of media but she made sure to give all of her time (and some selfies) to the dedicated fans camped out on the other side of the barricades.
Up close, she was warm, engaged and looked like a bonafide super-star.
WATCH: The time I got really close to Nicole Kidman on the red carpet at the ARIAs. Post continues after the video...

So who did we speak to?

Troy Cassar-Daley and his wife, Laurel Edwards
Troy and Laurel are the sweetest, most loved-up couple in the music scene (in my humble opinion) and I spoke to them about Troy's greatest hits album.
"It was partly Laurel's idea," he said. "We sat down and spoke about legacies you know, and after she lost her Dad, we thought, 'what do you leave behind?'"
"I didn't want to make it a full stop, I wanted to make it a comma, and you've just got to collect the songs that mean something to you and that mean something to the people that come to your show.
David Campbell
We love David, he's so personable and is so willing to talk about his family. We spoke about how Jimmy Barnes is as a grandfather.
"We call him Da, that's Scottish for Grandfather in our house and my kids just love him! They're obsessed with him, they're like the rest of the nation," he told Now to Love.
"He loves my daughter Betty, even though my son Billy looks like my Dad on my Dad's book. There were all these busses going around [promoting Jimmy Barnes' book], my three-year-old Billy is going 'it me! It me'."
WATCH BELOW: Video of who Now to Love spoke to
Dance Boss' and singer Timomatic was so energetic and his new hair was incredible! We spoke about what it was like to work with Dannii Minogue on the hit Seven show.
"It was so special," he said. "Dannii is so amazingly humble and a hard worker. So hard. And because it was a new show, working so closely and seeing how it came to life, was really fulfilling for me."
Sonia Kruger
Sonia is just as beautiful in real-life as she is on TV and her rose-gold hair was incredible.
Sometimes these celebs have to allow for the journos to bring up past roles, which for me, is Tina Sparkle from Strictly Ballroom, but I followed it up with why she thinks she has such longevity in the industry.
"That's a really good question," she said.
"I think it's because I started out behind-the-scenes, I learnt to write, to shoot stories, to edit stories and sit in on that process. I'm not an editor, but I can do a paper cut for a story.
"I think I've had experience. I've been lucky enough to have been given a lot of different jobs in TV, so I've had experience across the board and I think that's why. I'm a bit of an all-rounder."
Troy Cassar-Daley, Laurel Edwards and me on the red carpet at the 2018 ARIA awards!
I was also lucky enough to get chats with Tayla Damir and Dom Thomas from Love Island, Ryan Gallagher from Married at First Sight (who is "done with all that stuff" by the way - i.e. MAFS), former Eurovision contestant Isaiah, Australia's Got Talent Taylor Henderson, The Block's Sarah and Hayden and Sam Moran and Murray - former Wigglers plus more (see who we got to sing Red Carpet Karaoke in the first video above.)
What a whirlwind!
While we didn't get to speak to Nic and Keith, we did get a very special video, just for Now to Love, of 90s American singer Mya, who sung us one of her hit songs, Ghetto Superstar (1998).
And the 90s child in me was in heaven.
Until next year!
WATCH BELOW: Mya sings "Ghetto Superstar" at the ARIA 2018 red carpet