WHO IS ARIF?
Arif was born in Avilés, a small village in the beautiful region of Asturias, North West Spain. Many people think that he is Muslim due to his name. Although he respects every religion, he actually doesn't belong to any and neither does his family. As a matter of fact, he was named after a guy his parents met in their youth. When he was little, Arif used to like to play dress up. He spent all his time writing stories, drawing magical worlds, building huts, sewing pieces of fabric and pretending to be a prince, a witch or a mouse.
Arif has always been highlighted for his artistic and kind approach to life. "If I am not an artist, I am no one, I am nothing" he states. There was never any doubt as to what he would become when he grew up.
Arif graduated with a degree in Drama and then attained a Postgraduate in Performing Arts. He has continued to take acting, singing and dancing lessons with respected industry professionals while honing his skills in other artistic fields: photography, costume, drawing, film editing, set design and film direction. He co-directs ‘To Be Creative Ltd’, a Theatre Company, and he has also a MA in Creative Writing.
Something that has been stuck in his mind since childhood is a question put to him by his best friend's brother: "Arif, why are you always happy?" From that day, he knew he had a mission; he had to inspire others to reach that inner peace that made him -makes him- so wholly happy.
He believes that an artist has to be multidisciplinary and he has a deep respect for their mission: to change the world. This enables him to focus all of his energy, as an artist, as a person, and as a personal branding strategist.
WHO IS RICKY?
They don't remember the flavour; they were only interested in each other's eyes.
Arif and Ricky used to work in the West End as Front of House. Although they worked within the same theatre company, Arif and Ricky were based in different venues.
As a reward for his excellent customer service, Arif was nominated as a ‘Mystery Shopper’, where he would be gifted a night out at the theatre, to another venue within the same company. As a part of this, he had to evaluate the theatre and it’s staff, choosing a winner, who would, in turn, become the next ‘Mystery Shopper’.
At the interval, Arif went looking to buy an ice-cream. That’s when he caught sight of and got lost in Ricky’s eyes. Suddenly nothing else mattered. Just 3 months after that magical encounter, Arif's theatre was closed down for a couple of weeks, whilst they changed to a new play. Where was he sent to work in the meantime?? Yes! You got it. Ricky's theatre! It only took a couple of days for them to start flirting, and then for Ricky to kiss Arif in the changing room...
The rest is history, and here they are! Now, happier than ever, building their own Wonderland, and inspiring you to build yours!
Ricky studied Acting and Musical Theatre for several years, now he has reached the level of theatre understanding to question himself: ‘Is "Art" just made of courage, or is it a mixture of courage, heart and brain?’
Ricky’s goals are his reality. He has studied a MA in Theatre Direction and Production, helping him to unify his background knowledge, experience, and creative mind, to find the purest way to express himself. Everything and anything he has been working on during his life, has made him the human being that he is today. He bases all his work and passions on respect, what he believes to be the primary core value in the development of anything.
Step by step, Ricky has written and directed 3 shows, worked alongside Arif’s theatre company, collaborated as a producer assistant for Judy Craymer (Mamma Mia!) and has worked as a theatre supervisor in the West End. He also adds reading, studying, assisting seminars and talks, performing, editing and creating props and puppets to his ongoing list of skills and attributes. Having these allows him to be the best version of himself, a boy who wants to change the ‘status quo’, to finally become that comprehensive artist full of courage, heart and brain he realises makes him whole.
The first time Ricky saw his mum crying marked a starting point in his life. His mum's heart was broken by the lack of respect, of somebody that was supposed to be her friend. Nine-year-old Ricky knew from then on, that to make this world a better place, everything had to start with respect.
As a personal branding strategy, a person and an artist, Ricky infuses respect in every step of the way, defining beautiful lines that draw a perfect path for everybody to walk on.
From early on in their relationship Arif and Ricky realised that they had to share their own way of walking towards happiness; they had to find another way, aside from their Art, to spread that message together. That is when they decided to become personal branding strategists.
Their couple personal brand was born when Ricky and Arif took part in a TV show for Channel 4. They needed a name to define who they were as a couple and ‘In Wonderland’ does just that. Arif’s father used to tell him that he lived in Wonderland, always dreaming in worlds that didn’t exist, something he didn’t always like to hear but agreed with wholeheartedly. Ricky’s love for all things Disney reinforced the idea that this is the name they should go for their creative minds have been boiling things up ever since: Instagram to spread a positive LGTBQ+ message; a YouTube channel to get closer to those young people who are not that lucky to live in such open countries and then (the cherry on top of the cake) training themselves in life coaching.
Now they have launched The Creators Breakthrough Academy, a perfect plan to help you transform your professional and/or personal life, focusing on your goals and guiding you to achieving them!
Join the smiles!