I was on a mission from 7am in the morning. We needed to get as many photo shoots into this last Juno day as quick—and as painlessly—as possible since we lost two days to St. John’s fog. We were down a few hands so this took some serious sleeve-rolling and wise-cracking. Just to give you a quick picture of what the day entailed, my trusted glam squad (which included Garnier’s beautiful Mylene Menard and her hair and make-up expert Dylan K. Hanson) and I wore a few more hats than usual to get the job done. All of us pitched in with location scouting, hunting and gathering stars, co-styling (which sometimes meant choosing pieces out of an artist’s suitcase), photo assisting and, in one case, ironing (Mylene’s skills were sublime). The result was a light-speed day of go-go-go glamour. From interviewing the super-confident Justin Bieber (who rocked in with a ballcap with a bass clef stitched into it, mimicking his hero, Jay-Z) to transporting the body-suit-ed pop twins known as Carmen and Camille atop a chilly rock in Battery Park (they froze and smiled like they were in L.A.), every shot George Pimentel took was like a reality series episode. We kept joking that each shoot was “the next challenge” for JUNO SURVIVOR WEEKEND. To see the fruits of our labour (and Lights’ fierce Star Trek-inspired outfit) look out for the July issue of FLARE. When all our portraits were done, George ran off to the red carpet and I headed back to the hotel and joined FLARE’s editor-in-chief Lisa Tant and FLARE’s publisher Kerry Mitchell for the main event: the live broadcast.

It was a satisfying moment for me, seeing all these musicians and singers give Canada their all and getting the praise they deserve in return. It made all the running around worth the blood, sweat and iron burns. Nothing beats watching the JUNO awards live. The performances were superb (Metric and K’Naan being the hottest moments of the night) and seeing the fans in action is something TV will never be able to capture properly. Even though the 16-year-old didn’t bring home any glass, the high-pitched shrieks from Bieber’s army of admirers were surreal (and a little scary). Big-time winner Michael Buble (who took home 4 awards) was also at the top of his game on-stage and off. I saw him tirelessly pose with fans in the stands and outside NFLD’s Mile One Centre beside the hot dog concessions during the commercials. He looked like he was sincerely having more fun than anyone else. After the grand finale (which had K’nann singing his flag waving anthem with Drake, Bieber, Lights, Fefe Dobson and others on stage), we started to make our way over to the Juno parties (FLARE hosted one with Warner). Before anyone could get a drink in hand, the blackberries started a swarm of buzzing. In a flash, we dashed out to the airport due to multiple reports of more bad weather (and the threat of volcano ash from Iceland sweeping over the city). When we got there, we were joined by Justin Bieber (who actually tweeted “we are getting off this island!”), Barenaked Ladies (who turned the airport into a Yuk Yuk’s with an endless array of bad jokes) and the seemingly calm, collected and in-control Metric. We landed in T.O. at around 4am and that’s why this blog is a little late. See you next year.