Indie Sponsor will be highlighting various people in the entertainment industry from different backgrounds and in different fields, from performing artists to fine artists to literary artists, and people behind the scenes. We love finding artists who exemplify the entrepreneurial artist lifestyle and can make a living in their field.

One such artist is dancer and entrepreneur Wil-son Williams. I’ve watched Wil since he opened his studio in Westwood, L.A. Dancefit, and turned it into one of the hottest dance studios in the city. Wil is a savvy bootstrapping entrepreneur who gets to live every day on his own terms. He was kind enough to share some of his tips for living the entrepreneurial artist lifestyle.

 

Can you tell us a little about your background and why you started L.A. DanceFit?

I started teaching Hip-Hop and Latin workout classes everywhere from elementary schools, high schools, county fairs, celebrity homes, night clubs, restaurants, television commercials, colleges, dance studios and gyms. This created a fan base of fun loving students that cheerfully pack into my dance studio every day.

I see. That’s smart. You got the fans first.

Right.

When did you start dancing?

I started dancing at age 8 in Philadelphia when my Mom took me to her Jazz exercise classes. The studio offered me a scholarship to their kid’s dance program. I’ve been dancing Tap, Jazz, Modern and various other styles ever since.

What kind of jobs are there out there for dancers in the entertainment industry? 

Instructors can teach at fitness gyms, dance studios, after school programs, colleges, health expos, community centers and night clubs and restaurants. The pay options are to collect fees directly from students or to teach as an employee at different establishments and get paid by check.
I am happy to announce the opening of the LA Dance Fit Instructor Training Academy. This academy trains dance fitness instructors to enhance their earning power, grow their student attendance, promote themselves and compete as a Top level instructor.
That’s brilliant. One more spin-off business for you that puts other dancers to work. And the more artists who are working, the better, right?
Exactly.
Is there a special agency just for dancers?

Similar to acting agencies there are talent agencies for dancers to audition with. These agencies represent dancers for TV, movie and professional performance work. These are Holly wood dance agencies. TRIO Talent Agency, Bloc Agency and DDO Artist Agency are some renowned LA dance agencies.

Indie Sponsor is all about the artist as an entrepreneur. About not waiting around for someone to give you a job. You literally created your own job and now you get paid to dance. I love it! What is your advice for other artists who would like to get paid to dance, act, write, or whatever, but who have never run a business?

My advice for running your own business from your talent is to offer your talent in as many places and outlets as possible. The choice is yours, to invest lots of money on promoting your business or invest your time and talents performing for as wide of an audience as possible at every opportunity at every pay rate high or low.

Did you have any kind of background in running a business before starting L.A. DanceFit?

My business knowledge comes from 14 years of experience in working closely with and working for business owners, dance company owners, fitness gym owners and dance studio owners. These years of doing the work that makes the business run has taught me the do’s and don’ts of student satisfaction in the studio owner world. I’ve spent years providing the product that keeps these businesses going. All I needed now was to transition from employee to owner. I learned the costs of the bills, insurance, promotions, employees, repairs and most importantly how to attract clientele.

How would you use innovation in the entertainment industry, especially in the areas of dance?

I would innovate the dance industry by focusing on health and wellness. Bridging the gap of dance and fitness by infusing true artistic expressions with sound exercise science.

Last question. If you had a time machine, what period in history would you go back to and why?

I would not go to any other place in time, I feel that there is no time like the present.

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Check out Wil’s Westwood studio L.A. DanceFit at: www.ladancefit.com

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