The Decorating Adventures Of Ambrose Price
By Chris Azzopardi
Ambrose Price hasn't a clue as to how to complete the often daunting challenges he faces on his reality show, The Decorating Adventures of Ambrose Price, which makes its Logo debut on Monday, October 5. On each episode, the giddy, self-taught decorator is given a task and must use all available resources (mostly seasoned pros -- definitely not how-to books -- he doesn't read) to master the mission.
From Toronto, where the show is taped, Price filled us in on planning a baptism, meeting Oprah's decorating demands, and what he wouldn't do to become a decorating superstar. Turns out, not much.
Out: What's been the most challenging event for you to plan so far?
Ambrose Price: Every episode is a challenge. There are tight deadlines and it tested my true ability to design. And you're doing it on national television, so that doesn't make it much easier.
You can't just give up.
I have to do it. But when I'm doing the show, I'm always like, 'Oh my god, how is this going to turn out? Oh my god, I'm going to make a fool of myself on national television.' My show is not staged; it happens exactly as you see it on television. There's none of this, 'Oh my god, I screwed something up -- we have to do it all over.' If I screwed it up, it's on tape and that's it. But back to your question of --
The most challenging event?
There were a few instances where I was challenged. The event planning episode, which will be launching on Monday, was actually quite a challenge. I've done events before on a much smaller scale, and not to the capacity of the events I had to plan on this show, so it was a challenge to make sure everything was on time and to make sure the client's needs were being met and to make sure everyone was happy in the end. You'll see on Monday.
That's the baptism episode.
Yeah, and I'm like, 'A baptism?!' When they told me what event I was doing, they're like, 'Oh, you're doing a baptism.' I said, 'Oh my god, what am I supposed to do -- tie a bow around the holy water?' [Laughs.]
During that episode you remark that planning events in your hometown of Newfoundland is a little different than in Toronto -- how so?
Newfoundland is much more of a casual thing -- you just send an invite and everyone comes. It's just so easy breezy. But here in Toronto, you have to spend a week on the menu, and then you have to do rehearsal dinners, and you have to run everything past the clients -- a centerpiece or a sample of the music. It's just really, really detail-oriented, whereas in Newfoundland you get hired to do a little shindig and it's like, you just do what you want -- and it's so easy. But to plan an event in larger cities, it takes months. It's like a production, for God's sake.
Also in that premiere episode you get some advice from Preston Bailey, who plans events for Oprah. Which celebrities would you want to plan events for?
Well, obviously Oprah. But I would love to plan an event for Joan Rivers, because I just love her. I love her, love her, love her! I love her personality, and I just think she's hilarious, so she would be number 1 on my list. I would love to plan an event with Martha Stewart. That would be a lot of fun as well.
Oprah -- really? With such little experience, wouldn't you want to go with someone less demanding?
You know what? I take on anything. I don't care how demanding they are [laughs] -- I just go for it.
Where do you draw the line: A school's Halloween parade? An orgy?
Yeah, I'm not going to be out planning that [laughs.] You know what? I've just been contacted by my high school back in Newfoundland -- I find this very flattering -- but the 12th grade class, they're planning their prom, of course, for next year and they want the town's celebrity to help them out with it, so I'm going try my best to help them with it. It's something I wouldn't normally do, and I have a very busy schedule, but I think it'd be fun just to give back to my ... peeps.