INSPIRASEE OF THE MONTH:
muhammad wazif mateen
bin dr mohd. zamri
Written by: Angelina Lee
Muhammad Wazif Mateen bin Dr Mohd. Zamri is a 3rd-year student in FASS. The history major has made his strides in the creative industry. Some of his achievements include being the lead actor for numerous UBD Performing Arts Club (UBDPAC) plays, performing rap at festivals and being an actor and producer for New Wave Films upcoming series for Progresif Media. Interestingly enough, none of his close friends or family is in the creative industry. Hence, it is a passion that developed over time.
Wazif’s venture into the creative industry was completely unplanned. His involvement in the rap scene took off unintentionally; he posted a video of him rapping on social media and unexpectedly, it went viral. He did not expect much from his first audition for UBD PAC either, and his screen acting journey actually began as a project for the MIB module. He was merely doing the activities out of enjoyment and personal interest but he does feel very lucky to have been given the multitude of opportunities to pursue this industry formally.
Criticism and judgement are no strangers to the creative industry. Although constructive criticism is appreciated, Wazif says that there is almost always baseless criticism that comes with it. “Certain people for some reason feel the need to project negative energy towards other people,”. Wazif has a strong sense of self-belief. He maintains that if one believes in their abilities and are comfortable and secure with themself, a powerful ability to not care is developed. “You don’t care about what other people think of you, you don’t care what they say about you. When you get to that point, nothing can stop you,” Wazif says discerningly.
He believes that preparation, knowledge of crisis control and passion are crucial to get through tough times. Obstacles such as issues with team members, difficulties with paperwork, budget, or external factors that were out of his control have not deterred him.
”It sounds very cliche, but passion helps keep me going during tough times.”
Aside from being involved in the creative industry, Wazif has taken up a few leadership positions and spends his time volunteering. Some of his stints include being the Co-President for UBD Performing Arts Club (UBD PAC) and in his A-level years, he was the MPP in charge of sports. He has also volunteered at ISB and Brunei December Festival; in addition to his leadership role in student bodies and organisations. Wazif acknowledges that he has volunteered a lot but he also advises that volunteering isn’t about the scale of your activities or doing big things. Rather, it should come from a place of purity and taking the time to help those who are in need. He credits his volunteering experience for shaping him into the person he is today.
When asked about how he balances his time for all the activities he is involved in, proper time management and priorities were emphasized. He believes that everything has to be balanced. To achieve this, Wazif believes that what works for one person may not work for another person. Thus, one has to find their own balance.
As someone who had a quick ascend into the creative industry, Wazif’s personal goal is to continue pursuing what he does through more collaborations. His ultimate dream is on a national scale: for Brunei’s creative industry to flourish to a point where it is sustainable; where there will be employment opportunities, revenue and countless doors of opportunities for aspiring creatives. He is keen on playing his part to make this dream a reality.
Wazif’s words of wisdom to anyone aspiring creative: “ To creatives, understand that our journeys are intertwined. The industry isn’t that big here in Brunei, so everything that we do must be done with the support of one another. The power of collaboration is real. Collaborate. Create and work on projects with other creatives. Open up your demographic. That’s how the creative industry will rise here. Through collaboration.”