Bree Tomasel – Big decisions, comfort zones and being Bree

A number of New Zealand Media and Entertainment’s radio stars have been moonlighting lately on primetime TVNZ shows.

ZM’s Vaughan Smith on Are you Paying Attention; and Flava’s Athena Angelou, The Hits Sam Wallace and ZM’s Bree Tomasel all on Celebrity Treasure Island.

Bree’s taken on the role of co-hosting Celebrity Treasure Island and has been reflecting on the impact of hitting prime time TV.

The biggest change I’ve noticed since the launch of Celebrity Treasure Island is just how amazing it’s been for me on social. I’ve had so many people connecting with and messaging me after seeing me on Treasure Island and a lot of them don’t realise that I co-host ZM’s Drive show.

Which is perfect really, because one of the big drivers for me deciding to go on Treasure Island was using the exposure of a primetime slot, 3 nights a week on TV2 to help grow our profile here at ZM.

The opportunity for me now is to convert those social connections to ZM Drive listeners and ZM fans generally.

Looking back, it was a big decision to just audition for Treasure Island. I’m naturally someone who takes a painfully long time to make decisions. It’s not that I’m indecisive, it’s just that I need to be sure it’s the right thing for me personally, for my career and for the people I’m working with. I also like to get solid advice and guidance from people I trust and weigh that up too.

With Treasure Island, I went into it thinking that I’d audition, and just see how I go not at all expecting to get it. I felt that by putting myself outside my comfort zone it’d be a great experience either way.

When the producers offered me the role - a couple of things made it a no brainer to push on. One was they told me I could have creative control over my scripts, and the second was they assured me that I could be me. And with that, I was in.

That creative control and being given permission to be me was really crucial. I’ve learned that audiences are totally amazing at picking when you’re not being genuine. They know! My advice to anyone keen to get into radio, or tv for that matter, is to learn to be yourself right from the very start - from your first audition to your first on-air segment… just be you.

Be the person that your friends and family know. If you’re that person on-air, audiences will connect with you. They’ll love you for your good points, but they’ll relate to you for your bad points because that’s what makes you human. They’ll also forgive you for them if they believe you’re being true.

It took me a little while to learn how to be raw and real and while I’m much better at it now, I reckon I’ve still got a way to go - maybe I always will!