Chato Risi is the owner of SoundCloud Events.


Dubai concert maker Chato Risi on star-studded business

From megastar Sharon Cuneta to popstar princess Sarah Geronimo, she’s brought all the royalty of Philippine showbiz to Dubai shores, Middle East and Europe since 2009. Her name? Chato Risi, Dubai’s own event queen and concert maker.

The Swiss businesswoman, who was born and raised in the Philippines, is the force behind Dubai-based events management company SoundCloud Events.

“My older sister has been into event management since I was young, so I grew up watching her organize big concerts with these big stars. When she retired from the scene, I sort of picked up where she left off,” Chato told Expat Media. “She said, ‘I’ll introduce you to the right people in the industry’. And that’s how I came to work directly with networks and artists’ management,” she said.

The first artist Chato worked with was Gary Valenciano for a concert in Europe. “Gary is such a nice person. Through him, I was able to have such a positive outlook for other artists,” Chato recalled.

Since then, she has been bringing Filipino stars in concerts in the UAE and around the world. The latest were hip-hop stars Skusta Clee, Flow G and Shanti Dope for a concert in Dubai.

Skusta Clee performs in Dubai on March 19, 2023.

Chato also brought Filipino pop singers SB19 in their first UAE concert in 2022, followed by Ogie Alcasid and Ian Veneracion for a pre-Valentines concert in Geneva and Zurich. This June, she is bringing back multi-award-winning singer KZ Tandingan to Dubai. She is also in talks to bring music divas Regine Velasquez and Sharon Cuneta in one stage for an iconic concert in the UAE and Europe later this year.

“I love my work because I get the chance to create quality events that bring Filipinos closer to home through their favorite stars,” Chato said. “After Gary’s concert in Europe, we produced concerts for April Boy Regino, Sarah Geronimo, Billy Crawford, to name a few.”

“Apart from Dubai, I have produced and organized concerts in Switzerland, Geneva, Zurich, Basel, Milan, Rome, Vienna, London, Stockholm, Dublin, and other cities in Germany,” Chato said.

Out of the many concerts she has produced and organized over the years, which ones were her most memorable?

“Producing Sarah Geronimo’s first concert in Oman,” Chato said. “We were in an open arena in Muscat. Tickets were sold out, but several minutes before the concert started, it rained hard. People ran to the sidelines for shelter. Miraculously, the rain stopped just a few minutes before the concert was scheduled to start, and people started rushing back to their seats in the arena. It did not rain until the concert ended. It was such a great show, too,” she recalled.

Chato also considers her Dubai concert with Sharon Cuneta as one to remember. Chato produced Sharon’s much-awaited concert in Dubai in 2013. “Sharon is really the megastar that she is. As soon as she starts singing on stage, everybody sings with her,” she said.

The concert queen said dealing with every detail, including the occasional hiccups, with poise and professionalism is one of the reasons she is able to pull off great concerts. “Professionalism is very important in this industry. I make sure plans and deals are carried out as agreed, and I am accountable to everyone I work with, from the venue owners, to the artists, their management, the crew, and of course the audience who bought tickets,” Chato said.

There may be glitz and glamour to being an event organizer and producer, but Chato said it is also a lot of work in the background. Her job puts her in touch with different people from different backgrounds, and takes her to different parts of the world, but she loves every moment of it. She shuttles between countries from her main offices in Switzerland and the Philippines.

“With my SoundCloud Events, I want to bring quality shows and bring favorite stars closer to their fans, especially in Dubai,” Chato said. “My greatest accomplishment, all these years being a producer and promoter, is that despite the different ups and downs in the industry, at the end of the day, I am happy that I am bringing happiness to our kababayans,” she said. ICA/Expat Media

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