Every month we introduce you to a Belgian living in Dubai.
This month we talked to Wim Hoste. Belgian Born (Gent) and based in Dubai for over 15 years now. Wim is active in showbiz, and has made quite a name for himself in Dubai and abroad. His trademark is a perfect interpretation of the classical crooners.
However, Wim doesn't shy away from singing more recent Pop and Dance music (from the 60s to the present). He loves to entertain crowds. Furthermore, he dibbles into opera, musical and crossover ...you name it.
His latest project is a unique fusion concert that blends classical music with rock styles. In this project, Wim cooperates with Nikhil Uzgare, frontman of popular Dubai rock band Point of View. It's a new concept of entertainment in the GCC and Dubai. It's the first time the unique combination and interaction of these two diverse genres of music has come about in the region.
How would you describe yourself?
I guess you can describe me best as an adventurous soul, discovering the world through my passions.
I actually started travelling the world as a corporate employee, working for SABENA. Later that evolved into a yearlong career in logistics and transport. For a long time, I lived and worked in Africa. Although I enjoyed the corporate world, my true passion was, and still is, music and entertainment.
15 years ago, I was engaged to start up a logistical company in Dubai. At that time, I started performing here, but it was merely a hobby. A furtive hobby that grew into a professional career. I now am a full-time professional entertainer, and I love it. It was a big step to leave the corporate world and go after my dream, but I have never, for a moment, regretted the decision.
How difficult is it to start up a musical career in such a multicultural city? What was your strategy and who helped you the most?
Dubai is not an “easy market”. It is highly competitive, and it attracts talented people from all over the world.
I believe my strengths are the fact that I am classically trained and am very strong in combining different genres. These things make me a bit “exotic” on the UAE scene.
Further, my experience in the corporate world has taught me a lot about management and production. That makes you less dependent on others and permits you to go farther and faster.
How has Covid-19 influenced your career and your life?
The world of entertainment has been hit hard! We are all living off our savings, since for many months there has been no income at all. It was and still is extremely challenging.
Although there were no earnings, I remained very active during this period, working on video’s, interactive performances on you-tube and other social media. I’ve been streaming a lot from home. And off course using the time to practice and work out new ideas for the future.
I can say my actions led to positive challenges. I am now cooperating with The House of the Piano’s, GCC’s biggest, exclusive and authorized dealer for, amongst others, Bluthner, Steinway and Sons.
Now that things are getting back to normal, I started performing again. On November 25th I had a wonderful concert together with Nikhil Izgare. Again, we celebrated all different genres of music. Izgare was once the support act of Guns&Roses. You can image that was a quite a fusion with my crooning and classical talent.
What is your next project going to be?
On December 10th I will be performing for a benefit for the Children of Lebanon together with a children’s’ choir. Tania Kassis, one of Lebanon’s biggest stars, will join us.
The next day I will perform at the Dubai Opera.
For next year I am working on a “Don’t you forget about me” tour, which is a solo tour, with interactive sound and visual effects. I will take the show to Asia (Seoul) and Europe as well.
Are you looking forward to Expo 2020?
Expo is off course a wonderful platform for the local music scene. We can reach out to the world through this great event. I look forward to it and hope to spend a lot of time in the Belgian pavilion, meeting up with old and new friends. And off course, the rooftop-lounge that everybody is already talking about in Dubai, would be a wonderful venue for some great crooning performance!