While several people are experiencing the January backlash because of the festive season celebrations, people like Remy Nsanga De Keyzer are cashing in favourably.
Born in Rwanda and raised in Belgium, Remy came back to his motherland to venture into several business fields especially in the Entertainment industry.
He is the Managing Director of Club Planet, located at Kigali Business Centre, Le Cactus in Kiyovu and Cabana Pizzeria in Kacyiru. He is also the Managing Director of the Happy People gig, an event that takes plae every New Year’s Eve in Rwanda.
In an interview with The New Times, Remy Nsanga narrates what inspired him to start the Happy People gig seven years ago.
“Initially it was a get together with friends on New Year’s Eve since there was nothing special going on in Kigali at the time. It started as a house party but then got crowded with many people. We decided to get a bigger place and charge entrance fee which at the time was Rwf2,000,” he recalls.
“The first several gigs where staged at the Tennis Club in Nyarutarama. It also became smaller so we moved to Telecom House and now we are currently making it happen at the MINAFET (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) Gardens.
As to why the gig was named Happy People, he said, “Happy People was a song recorded by R. Kelly and it was a hit at the time. Since people liked to dance to it, we felt it was the best name for the gig.”
The Happy People concert is unique because the DJ gets to play the people‘s favourite music. This differs from the usual concerts that artists perform.
“On New Year’s Eve there are venues or concerts organised for artists to perform at so we want to be unique and go for the best DJ. The sound effects improve each time. We also have a display of fireworks and we bring in international DJs,” Remy said.
Just like any other concert, setbacks and criticism are inevitable hence, the organising team has to adjust to the required standards.
“We learn from our past mistakes each year and perfect it the following year. We work with several people for instance, the police to regulate the traffic, access to entrance and security and this is what makes the gig a success,” he explains.
On the issue of over spending during the festive season, Remy says it’s quite simple.
“It’s a matter of managing your budget. If you can’t, you will experience the backlash all year long,” he says.
“One of my best moments is seeing people happy and enjoying themselves that is why I engage more in the entertainment business. It’s more pleasant when people enjoy what they have paid for,” he expresses.
Remy is the first born with a brother and two sisters. He majored in Marketing at the University of Libre Belgium- Brussels.
“I moved back here 17 years ago. At first I came to visit my family who lived here at the time and then I realized that there were several business opportunities. I started off with a shop called ‘Top Men’, which exclusively sold men clothes although I later ventured into the restaurant business,” Remy explains.
As a child, he wanted to become a banker so that he could be in control of money (as he was told) but when he grew up, he realised that was just a myth.
“My childhood dream was just like anybody else’s. I always wanted to be successful and have a family and children (he laughs). I’m living well but I still have big dreams to accomplish,” he says.
Music: - Hip Hop and R’N’B
Artist: - David Guetta
Colour: - Cream and Brown
Personality: - Straightforward
Quote: - ‘The sky is the limit’