“If you’re passionate, determined and adamant to achieve your goals - you can get there! The only person or thing stopping you, is yourself. And always remember with anything in life, you won’t know unless you try.”
Radio host, disc jockey, event host and dancer – UK-based Harpz Kaur flawlessly plays different roles in her professional life. Many have heard this talented artist on BBC Asian Network where she presents the Breakfast Show, broadcast every weekday from 6 am-10 am.
Harpz decided to pursue a career in media simply because she “wanted to give it a go.” She opted for Media Studies at University. “I never really knew what I wanted to do or wanted to be. But there was something about Media that was reeling me into doing it. I remember filling out the form - and just underneath it said “Radio & TV” - that was it! I was sold!” She went on to doing her post-graduation in Broadcast Journalism. As part of the program there were times where she had to find her own work experience, so she started working at a local Leeds Station, Fever Fm. After doing four weeks worth of work with Fever Fm, Harpz knew this was what she was born to do. “I felt it straight away. It felt like home. Most importantly, I felt so comfortable,” she expresses.
She volunteered at the radio station for six years. Alongside, she started working on her portfolio to gain recognition. “I started using social media to my full advantage. I started sharing my content. I recorded interviews, began my own YouTube Channel. Eventually I got spotted by the BBC and the rest is history!” says the Breakfast Show presenter.
A lot of people listen to Harpz’s show; as an RJ, she plays a crucial role in helping radio listeners start their day on an energetic note. “I make BBC’s Asian Network Breakfast Show different and engaging by bringing a breathe of fresh air and energy every morning. We have a number of features and games that involve the listeners and a chance for them to interact with me not just via text but one on one. The topics we speak about are always relatable and usually come from me and the things happening in my life on a daily basis,” shares Harpz. Additionally, the guests on her show are a mix of artists, comedians, A-list actors and sports personalities – thus catering to different age groups and interests. “We are constantly trying to make sure that within our playlist there is always something for everyone. It could mean we add the latest Punjabi track going or a Future Sounds artist trying to break through.”
The most challenging part of her job is “waking up at 4am and ensuring you are ready to wake the nation up!” Being part of a fast-paced industry, the young RJ is constantly working and manages a busy schedule. But the positive response she receives for her show makes it completely worthwhile. “I can’t explain the feeling you get when you read and receive messages from your listeners on a daily basis. The interaction I have with them is the best feeling for me. It’s then when you realise how all that hard work you put in day in and day out has paid off.”
Harpz also regularly hosts live music events at arenas across the UK, such as BBC Asian Network Live, E3UK Live and the Brit Asia TV Punjabi Film Awards. She has presented shows for numerous worldwide stars including Sidhu Moosewala and Guru Randhawa. She has also hosted a range of TV programmes for the BBC’s Red Button, such as Radio 1’s Big Weekend and the Asian Network’s Comedy Show in Edinburgh, UK. “Hosting shows is one of my favourite things to do because it’s the one place I get to see everyone! To meet and interact with people is the best thing ever. The stage is where I feel most comfortable, it’s where I feel most at home,” expresses Harpz, who is also a well-established DJ.
Harpz’s work is impressive and she has become a role model to youngsters interested in becoming an RJ. “I think I see it more as motivation for them. I just want to be able to show others that anything you work hard for - can happen.” Her advice is to keep trying. “I’ve struggled a lot to get to where I am. But if you’re passionate, determined and adamant to achieve your goals - you can get there! The only person or thing stopping you, is yourself. And always remember with anything in life, you won’t know unless you try.”
Who are your role models?
As I was growing up, I would look up to presenters like Sonia Deol. I think she was my first proper role model. Everything about her was classy. She was multi-talented. In both TV and Radio, she made her mark. I’d watch her interviews with people like Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and tell my mum “one day I want to be like her.” I got lucky when I was 18 to gain some work experience at the Asian Network, at the time Sonia was on Breakfast. I used to always wish that one day that could be me. And here I am years down the line, living that very dream.
What is your most favourite celebrity moment so far?
I get asked this question a lot. Who’s my favourite celebrity that I’ve interviewed. It’s really hard to answer. I’ve met so many amazing people from Bollywood stars like Kajol, footballers like Rio Ferdinand to mainstream artists like Craig David. But I think my ultimate favourite and the one that will stick with me for a while is Gurdas Maan. The feeling I got around him was surreal. And he’s also one the nicest people within this industry.