I can’t even remember where and how I properly met Susan but from what I know for now is that I could easily describe her as a real talented, hard-working and passionate woman. I’ve been following her on socials for a bit before we met and she’s really enjoying her job even so that means to travel 24/7 and not sleep a lot. Today, I’m about to let her tell us more about what it really means to be an agent.
STRITER – What lead you to work with the dance community?
SUSAN – I started as a dancer myself, as a hobby when I was around 13. After that, I started to travel right after I got my diploma: I went to America just to study english, meet more dancers, go to the studios. Youtube wasn’t that famous so to see what was happening you had to be there. After that, I traveled to Europe when all the camps were created (UDC, Beat Camp…) where I met Phillip Chbeeb aka Pacman. He was just starting to be booked and asked me to help him with that ; but we never knew it was about to get that far. He won the ABDC competition with I aM Me Crew the year after and I ended up managing all of them. So this work always have been following me, I learned it on the way: I was 22 when I opened my own agency.
« I was 22 when I opened my own agency. »
STRITER – How many people do work with?
SUSAN – I always tried to have a core of 5 people that I handle everything for them as internationals bookings, and I work with 10-15 people as an agent. So I’m managing around twenty people and I change according to the markets, the new faces, new projects and so on.
STRITER – Last year, I guessed the dance community changed. More underground dancers are coming into the business. What’s an agent role in that?
SUSAN – It’s not an easy thing for dancers to handle organizing stuffs as dancers usually like to come and dance. They can barely make it to be on time at classes… Dancing is getting more in the spotlight: they got more spaces in music videos, TV shows and musicals… Hopefully is getting to stay that way! I appreciate the fact that people will try to get into the market, try to be more professional. I believe that having a friend or a family member that you trust can always be useful for you to help with all the papers you got: that makes you look more professional and take out more stress in your life. Dancers work should be to dance, be creative and not do all these emails stuffs. It’s better for everybody.
« Many of the dancers are really insecure, plenty have a lot of breakdowns. Almost ready to quit and that’s something that people don’t see. They give a lot and need to receive a lot too. I love to be there for them! »
STRITER – How do handle all of that alone? Being a manager means to be really involved into its « clients » life but their life becomes also yours then…
SUSAN – That’s why it took a long time to build a good relationship between the client and the manager. People are closer with you when you’ve been working with them for 5-7 years. I kept the same 5 people since the beginning and I’ll always work with them, no matter what. We evolve each other and together. It’s really like a relationship as everything occurring in their life you need to know: if they broke up, if they got problems… you need to be there to help solving them as it can impact their work. So whatever they right or wrong, my work is to fix it as they need to look right. Especially that as a manager, you’re the trusted person in the middle.
STRITER – What’s the best part of this job?
SUSAN – Of course, travelling, see the world, meeting new people.. I get to know successful people that teach me that no matter what there’s always a reason if someone is successful. That it is good or bad, if someone it up there then it means it got something different and/or interesting from other people. Being surrounded by all these people push me to also upgrade myself to keep into this circle and give them back something. The most important for me is the experience I’m getting through learning and sharing. I can support and push people to get better everyday, by using everything I learned.