Ariane Amanda Avonelle Mitchell, fondly known as Ari is a 33-year-old radio personality and primary school teacher, both of which she attests, satisfies her personal ambitions. She is the last of three children to Devine and Errol Mitchell, born and bred in the scenic and close-knit Maracas Valley, St Joseph. Dancing, doing aerobics and outdoor workouts, spending time (liming) with friends, beach-going, movie dates, indulging in spa treatments and travelling abroad are some must-haves for Ari. While many of us are used to hearing the beautiful voice on air, there is much more to her that many do not know. She is usually described as assertive, bold, vivacious, real and witty with her gaze fixed on becoming an active, awesome wife and mother in the very near future. She credits her love for children and family, from her upbringing. One thing is for sure, Ari works hard and plays harder. Although she has an extremely busy schedule, she believes that making time for yourself is paramount. “You need a well you!” she insists. WE Magazine caught up with Ari despite her hectic schedule. Here is what she told us:
What’s it like being a woman in the local media industry?
It’s very empowering. It’s empowering! Can I say that twice? Though at times I wonder about that glass ceiling above my head; The “Trini culture” among some audiences can be a bit much, however, one certainly develops the extra layers of skin required to be tolerant. If and when one gets a variance or repeat opportunities, one’s performance isn’t credited but one’s gender or familiarity with and so on. My one desire is to see employers and promoters hire people who are worth their salt. To me, it should never be that one gets the job because one is male or belongs to a certain clique. I don’t believe they realise it, but it weakens the industry both at home and abroad. We miss the opportunity to show the world who we really are. Rare are the instances when one’s proactive nature or talent and professionalism are credited.
What is the biggest challenge you had to overcome in your career in the media?
One of the biggest challenges I had to overcome in my media career was having to learn to deal with the fact that sometimes, even people you trust, piggyback on your talent to get ahead in their own career. In 2015, I left a brand that I was extremely excited about - a decision influenced by someone I trusted and loved. The circumstances took me off the media radar for a while. Fortunately, that experience has taught me the meaning of true professionalism and it allowed me to find a deeper meaning of my purpose, which ultimately made way for an even better Ari.
What are you working on at present?
Currently, I am working on building and promoting the brand that is ARI.
What is keeping you excited?
Definitely the feedback (positive and negative) from persons in and out of my “circle” as well as the opportunities which have been cropping up for the brand ARI.
What are some of your treasured milestones thus far?
I am proud to acknowledge my 11 years in the teaching service and seven years at Rosary Boys’ RC Primary School as a treasured milestone. In addition, I celebrate 10 years in the Entertainment Industry, my first published entertainment feature, Fete O Meter, and my first television advertisement for Honda City and Omega XL.
What is your ultimate goal or biggest dream for the future?
To continue on in both career paths successfully and indelibly, thus creating a legacy my future husband and children can be proud of and inspired by.
Why do you do what you do?
I do what I do to contribute to Trinidad’s future. Whether I’m in the classroom or behind the mic, I am directly and indirectly influencing the minds of our children whom I believe can reshape T&T.