Arguably the people we spend much of are time with are people we’ve never met before, radio hosts. They’re with us during our morning coffee and our ride home from work and while they seem to totally get us, we don’t really know much about them. We caught up with Egypt’s very own TV presenter, radio presenter and, most recently, host of Nogoum FM’s “Men Badry” morning show, Farida El Khadem, to discuss on-air slip ups and handling yourself in the business.
1. How have you overcome obstacles of being a female in a Middle Eastern spotlight?
By not really being in the spotlight besides on air. I go out and go to social events and all, but I choose which ones to go to. Usually I hang out with close friends or acquaintances — basically, people I have known before being part of media.
2. What has been your most memorable on-air slip up?
Well it was Ramadan and I was fasting, of course, and the lack of caffeine had its effect on me! My show was early in the morning and I was trying to excite the listeners about the cool gifts they got from family/friends. Let’s just say I got too excited and my tongue slipped. But thankfully, it passed.
3. What has been your weirdest fan moment to date?
I don’t see myself as a huge celebrity, I’m still at the beginning of my career. I appreciate every fan and I try to answer them all through Instagram, my Facebook fan page and Twitter. Some fans keep texting me like every second of the day. They want to be part of every moment of my day, which of course is overwhelming, but weird. I’m not used to this exposure, I guess.
4. If you could give 18-year-old Farida a piece of advice, what would you tell her?
I would tell her to speak less and observe more and not believe everything she is told. Because not everyone we know is as genuine as they seem.
5. What is a societal issue that you would like people in the region to put more effort towards improving?
I would like to see the society putting more effort on education and the upbringing of the new generation. We, as Arabs, have a serious problem with the ideologies we are spoon fed as kids, which are the source of most problems we have in the region. New generations must be educated well enough to make their own decisions, knowing what they want in life and holding themselves responsible for their own actions. Men and women are equal beings and the only thing that should favor one to the other is what added value they bring to their society and country.
6. What is your motto for living drama-free in the entertainment industry?
Well, I learned the hard way that work and friendship should never be mixed. The best way to live a drama-free life in that field is to maintain a respectful relationship with everyone superficially.
Originally published on Scoop Empire January 21, 2016