Do you ever meet someone with the job you dream about having? Well, one day I stumbled upon Keltie Knight’s web-series “fangirl.” I realized something immediately–I had to start following Knight on social media, and I had to find a way to get that job.
After growing up in Alberta, Canada, Knight moved to New York City to pursue a career in professional dancing. Knight was a Radio City Rockette for six seasons, as well as dancing for the Knicks and the Nets. She’s danced with Beyonce and Taylor Swift—just to name a few—and made a name for herself in the dance world.
Knight’s blog, aprettyheart.com, and web-series “fangirl” garnered the attention she needed. In 2012, Knight became a correspondent and host for CBS’ The Insider. Knight covers red carpets and serves as a weekend host for the show.
After year of experience in both entertainment journalism and dancing—Keltie is sharing how she got there. I had the opportunity to chat with Keltie and get the lowdown on what it takes to be an entertainment host.
Growing up, what did you want to do?
Keltie: Be a ballerina, get out of my town and be a star.
You began your career as a professional dancer; what was the highlight of your experience in the dance world?
Keltie: I think dancing on the MTV VMAs with Taylor Swift because growing up I always watched the VMAs and it seemed like the BEST dancers danced on that stage.
What made you decide to transition your career?
Keltie: Honestly, I just got old. My body started to hurt from 20+ years dancing, and I wasn’t enjoying it the same way.
You were one of the first to really gain traction and national attention through your blog and, later web-series—what advice can you give to people trying to do that right now?
Keltie: I was really just lucky, as someone who started early…it’s really hard to break through now on YouTube or online because there is so much content. I do believe that being yourself and totally authentic can help!
As a correspondent for The Insider, you’re always on the red carpet—how do you prepare for interviewing so many people in such a short time?
Keltie: I study…a lot. Just last week I was at the Grammy’s and it took me the entire flight from NYC to LAX (over 6 hours) to prepare. I Google the stars I know will be there, then I check out their Twitter and Instagram feeds, then I’ll follow their fan sites to see what the fans want to know…I have little note cards for every single star and I study them right up until I walk on the carpet.
Who has been your favorite celebrity to interview?
Keltie: Obviously, some people I’m just a major fan of…Ed Sheeran, Gavin Rossdale, Gwen Stefani…but I would say that Hugh Jackman is the kindest human around and I always love talking to Ariana Grande because she’s actually hilarious and so real.
How do you feel about internships in the field of entertainment journalism? Should students be doing more?
Keltie: YES! Honestly, where I work we find many of our next employees through them being killer interns. The people who stay late, do more than they should, work extra hard and stand out actually do get hired! I’ve seen many interns be kind of lazy, only do things when they were asked, hang on their phones and no show their smarts- and I always think—WHAT A WASTE.
Lastly, what is the biggest piece of advice you can give to someone who would like to follow your career path?
Keltie: Work on your craft first, a good outfit and nice hair do not make you a expert on camera person, learn your strengths, and work through your weaknesses. I also think start small, I learned so much hosting my digital show that helped me when I was auditioning for TV later, and find people you admire and copy what they do… I look up to other tv stars and practice talking like them, see what they do that makes me laugh…I know I shouldn’t admit that!!!