“Genius is eternal patience.” - Michelangelo
It was 2015 when I approached Alexandra Varga, our Director Of Development, to discuss the logistics to initiate the funding process for Alternative Synergy The Company (ASTC). Raymond Ultarte, aka Voodoo Ray and our biggest supporter, posed the possibility of bringing Boogieland Central, his own choreography showcase we always participated in, on tour with Funkbox NYC, one of the best house music parties in New York City.
My real first mentor Steve La Chance defines the relationship of teacher-student as a “give & receive” cycle. A teacher simply loves to give as much as he loves to receive; faithfully embracing our mentors values continuously fuels their motivation to raise strong-minded and magical creatives in any circumstances. Although back then Ray’s offer was just an idea, it guided me to realize my group of faithful students, which he called “ Amanda Spilinga Dance Company” deserved a step further into the world.
Alexandra assisted me in research until we finally set our goal: how to raise $1,000. What happened next is a rollercoaster of new opportunities, new faces, new choreographies, injuries, interviews, new legal name, new work settings, goodbyes and so on. Ray was extremely supportive throughout the process, accepting the responsibility to become an ASTC Board Member; despite asking other few people to get on board with us, I felt Ray was the one: I knew how he would have treasured my company’s ideals and wisely guided its activity.
In 2016 Ambika Chanrai, new addition to the company, helped me design the ASTC website, also thanks to the work of Alex Shi Photography, who joined us earlier the same year after watching one of our performances for Ray. As we started scheming THE ASTC THE DEBUT campaign, Kai- Ti Kao joined us as Director Of Operations. THE DEBUT consists of eight ASTC members unifying their diversity of minds and souls to develop universal experiences audiences can relate to. Our first $1,000 goal increased to $8,000 while the company started discussing week after week about THE DEBUT theme : watching ASTC so fervently sharing ideas, facing divergences and standing up for their values is still such a vivid and compelling image in my mind. We ultimately embraced our differences and translated them artistically.
A week away from the starting day of our campaign, Ray passed away. His unexpected passing brought not only shock and heartbreak, but also an inexplicable heavy sense of bewilderment. We postponed the campaign and united our strengths to perform for his service, thanks to the willing of his business partner Cynthia Rose.
Forty days after, the ASTC THE DEBUT campaign collected $9,628 thanks to the support of 136 backers, reaching our goal 10 days before the deadline. The reason why we decided not to aim for an additional goal is that we truthfully did not want to ask for more. Our priority was to work day and night to make sure each supporter knew how much their response meant to us.
Patience is virtue and no achievement is little; as creatives, we are entitled to broadcast the concept of failure as a standard and valuable phase everyone most likely encounter throughout the creative process. Inner doubt prevails over aspirations as we spend time asking ourselves if they are worth the endeavor.
What matters to you will matters to others.
Special Thanks to:
My Mother Ida Spilinga
for supporting me tirelessly
for being a faithful assistant & energetic motivator and working together with my family until the very last second of the campaign
ASTC Direction( Alexandra Varga & Kai- Ti Kao)
for taking so wisely care of ASTC operations & schedules
ASTC Company Members
(Ambika Chanrai, Noel Rodriguez, Aya Saotome, Keenen Thomas, Ladell Thomas, Alexandra Varga & Hara Zi)
for your honesty and hard work; for proceeding with our projects by investing your whole so transparently and reminding me everyday to embrace our humanity.
Alex Shi Photography & Jalen Thompson, Lucie Sorel, Li Sabas, Busy Beds, Good Things Records & Elli Lytra)
not only for make up, photography & videography and original music but also for never doubting my art.
ASTCLIQUE, our backers
for turning into such a powerful heartening force, stating no financial situation should define us when we support a principle we believe in; for switching the purpose of the “45 days funding challenge” into the most genuine way to contribute to our vision. After humbly stepping into the crowdfunding journey, we can’t be less than astonished by your prompt response.
To end a special thanks to you, Ray.
Thank you - and I know anyone who got to meet you would agree to this - for being you.
Alternative Synergy The Company
Here's a recap wall dedicated to all your contributions! Thank you!