Today we’d like to introduce you to Samantha Long.
Samantha, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Born in Memphis, TN, I started dancing at the age of four. At the age of 11, I knew I wanted to be in the entertainment industry, and began traveling every weekend to assist top choreographers/creative directors that I idolized almost every weekend. I started assisting so often that ultimately I had decided to make the big move to LA at 16 to sign to an agency (the ultimate small town dancer dream). I passed a ‘legal 18’ test in California so I could work jobs right away as an adult. I felt there was no time to wait. Since then, I have had the opportunity to dance and choreograph for some of the biggest artists in the world such as J Balvin, Nicki Minaj, and more! When I turned 21 was when things really started to change and I decided that it was the right time to branch off and start my own brand; it was a time in my career and life when the so called ‘gatekeepers’ of my industry started to push back against my growth and a new perspective on self-worth was realized… but that’s a whole different story.
In response, I launched ‘A THREAT’ which is not only a brand but also a dance studio in North Hollywood including a dance performance clothing line. At A THREAT, we focus on developing artists from fresh to A-list. Create a space for performance improvement not just focused on content. Most importantly, create a sense of family different than the rest of what is out there that brings others down. A THREAT is continuing to grow at a rapid pace that I couldn’t be more proud of, and it’s truly just the beginning of what’s to come. ‘If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together!’ That is the spirit of how I see myself and the team I’ve created with A THREAT moving into 2020 and beyond.
Has it been a smooth road?
Being a young female entrepreneur is anything but easy in the entertainment industry. Having to navigate if people want to work with you based on your looks over your talent is something I’ve had to face countless times and continue to deal with. What I’ve learned is as a woman you have to hold your ground and be passionate about what you’re chasing. However, I am addicted to breaking glass ceilings no matter the situation. For example, I have been told ‘no’ a thousand times, done choreography for an artist only to be told I have to leave set before they arrive so that one of the choreographers can take all the credit, and even have had my choreography stolen many times by who I thought were industry ‘leaders’. Although facing these difficult situations have been rough, I have only gotten stronger from them. These obstacles have made me who I am today & have inspired me to go for it on my own. No matter who or what tries to stop me from my goals, I will be A THREAT to it. Bring it on.
Please tell us about A Threat.
I am the CEO and Founder of A THREAT LLC. A THREAT is a movement of empowerment through dance. We work with independent and major labels to develop artists’ movement, develop marketing campaigns for them (through our multiple accounts with reaches into the tens of millions), and teach dance classes all over the world in addition to private dance coaching. All of this goes down at the A THREAT studio in North Hollywood, CA. The studio is a home to whoever walks in its doors, whether I am there with you or not – the energy is just crazy there. A THREAT is about chasing your dreams and not letting any obstacle get in your way. It’s a mindset and way of training. The A THREAT Studio is where I choreograph, develop, and train artists/dancers to move and pull out their inner stardom.
What separates us from the pack are a few key differentials; 1) We are experienced first, content second. A THREAT is your home if you’re wanting to actually come out and learn how to be a pro, without always having the stress of class being filmed and made viral over your head. 2) We are pros at taking an artist and blowing them up; in both person and persona no matter the level. Whether it be as J Balvin’s dance captain or developing breakout up-and-coming stars like REI AMI – we have it down to a science. We have the time, focus, resources, experience and creativity to make every client of ours a top priory. 3) There is simply no glass ceiling here; my assistants have danced on stage with me for J Balvin, helped run business operations, and have as much creative input as they are inspired to provide resulting in a very diverse and entrepreneurial company. Everyone is welcome and celebrated no matter what their background or experience in dance is. If you want to be a part in any way, just DM me! Also, A THREAT’s merch line is developed from scratch by sourcing fabric and creating all the design work in house – I have even hand tie dyed special edition runs myself. Building this business is the greatest joy I have ever felt. My goal is to continue giving the community what I wish I had when I first moved to LA – open to all and every idea to make this thing we call dance a better lifestyle – reach out!!
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Los Angels is the city built for dreamers but can also be very intimidating! I have experienced first hand what it’s like to start off in LA in a toxic environment not feeling like I belong or am welcomed. With so many viral dance studios here, it’s very easy to become overwhelmed and feel excluded. I have made sure to structure the A THREAT Studio to be a warm welcoming place for anyone who is looking to start of their dance journey! We cater to ALL levels from absolute beginner to pro level! One saying I start off every class with is, “I don’t care if you remember every step or just one I teach you. I will still be screaming and hyping you up either way!”. I am so proud of the support system A THREAT has for every single person that walks in the door. Every dancer in class is focused solely on their own growth and encouraging /uplifting everyone around them while they do so. Having a rough day? Come to class and be showered with love/good energy!
- Website: ATHREAT.CO
- Email: Info@athreat.co
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/athreat.co/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/athreat.co/posts/