It was a little after six in the morning that past Saturday when a pink fade began to creep across the sky. At this time, depending on the class, most Full Sail students were either still asleep or just beginning to fall asleep after a long night of working on a project. But thirty minutes away beyond the Orlando city limits, and tucked away on a private piece of country land, Full Sail film students (both current and graduated) were already hard at work, preparing the set of Stephanie Berlanga’s “Band Aid” music video.
It was an extremely impressive scene. 3300+Climbing has always been student ran. But this...this I admit, took the idea of student ran to a completely different level. Taylor Hayes, an alumna of the graduate film program, was the director, and current New Media Journalism graduate student/alumnus of the Bachelor’s film program Nestor Vera was producer. And between the two of them and Director of Photography Michael Fallon, Full Sail film students worked diligently to create an amazing music video for Stephanie. Instructors were not around to keep a watchful eye on these students as if they were in class. And in fact, students weren’t even doing this for a class. This project was completely put together by students on their own free time.
Yes, 3300+Climbing was there of course. In fact, one of our faculty advisors, Israel, got to play a cool part in the video (but we’ll keep the details on the down low until the video is released). Interns and coordinators also got to stand in as extras. Being that we are music and entertainment business students, it was slightly different hanging out on the set of a music video. But it was extremely fun, eye opening, and informative nonetheless. And a huge shout out goes to 3300+Climbing intern Jason Gordon, who went above and beyond to help the film crew with setting up (the night before and the day of). As a coordinator, I observe our interns a lot during meetings. Jason has always been quiet, possibly observing others just as much as I do. But this past weekend when I walked on set, Jason was all about production in the most natural and helpful way possible. He was definitely an important asset to the film crew that day as well as is an important asset to our artist development initiative. Kudos to Jason!
Fast forward to mid-morning. Most crew begins to show up. 3300+Climbing interns begin to trickle in as extras and as extra hands. Stephanie arrives, excited and fresh faced, ready for a long day of work. The rest of the main cast are not too far behind her.
It was a relatively smooth shoot I believe. No one got hurt. No one broke equipment. We weren't too far behind on time. And it only rained for about twenty minutes (thanks, Florida, for reminding us that we are indeed in Florida). The skies cleared up just in time however for a crucial scene outside and by six in the evening, it was a wrap.
I was just an extra and I was completely exhausted. Imagine how tired Nestor, Taylor, and Michael were though. They dedicated all of their time and talents to putting together a music video for our artist and 3300+Climbing is forever grateful. Their talents may be have developed over the years of training but the entire crew had a natural flair of hard work and drive that cannot be taught (even at the famed Full Sail University).
Stick around for Stephanie’s music video coming out soon. It’s definitely something that you don’t want to miss. But in the mean time, if you need a music video, Nestor, Taylor, and their crew are a group of people that will definitely deliver.
Written by: Claire Contevita
Full Sail University’s Hall of Fame 7 was quite a success, especially for us at 3300+Climbing. While students ran from one panel to the next, meeting and networking with industry professionals and our six Hall of Fame inductees, 3300+Climbing interns and coordinators were doing the exact same thing. But rather than sitting in the audience, we were on panels, participating in discussions, preparing Stephanie Berlanga for her on campus performance, and even one coordinator (shout out to soon to be graduate Michelle Susan) was able to attend the Hall of Fame ceremony. But amongst all the running around, music, and networking, we felt it was appropriate to acknowledge our roots and give thanks to those that paved the way for 3300+Climbing. As a coordinator myself, I particularly wanted to have a one on one discussion with one of the original coordinators, music business 2015 graduate Kayla Cove, so that I can get a clear idea of all the hard work that was put into the initiative. Because without Kayla and the other original coordinators, 3300+Climbing wouldn’t be what it is today.
C: You are only twenty years old, you started Covdiss Artist Management and you also work in venue operations. What were your goals back when you were a student at Full Sail?
K: One of them was actually speak at Hall of Fame.
C: Really? Check!
K: Yes! And then be inducted but I originally just wanted to see how far I could go. I did the A&R workshops with Steve. I started in January of 2014 and I went until I graduated and I did every month. It was everything that I wanted to do. I put all of my focus on that because that’s what I wanted to do when I got out. My goal was to work with Atlantic but things happen.
C: Things do happen.
K: Yeah and it didn’t happen so I went out and started working at a venue in Long Island called The Emporium and I absolutely love it there. It’s not what I thought I was going to do but that’s usually what happens. You make a plan and all of sudden you get thrown into something different. And then you realize that this is, what you are doing right now, is actually what you love to do.
C: Let’s talk about 3300+Climbing. How did you get involved?
K: It was a starting thing.
C: It was a baby. Brand new.
K: It was brand new. It was just an idea that Jackie had and I talked to her about it. It had all stemmed from the A&R meetings. They asked if I was interested after I inquired about it. Eventually, I ended up interviewing for it and getting the job along with Allison and Kiera.
C: I realize it wasn’t that long ago but has 3300 changed from back then to what it is now?
K: It’s so different. As soon as we switched coordinators, it was so crazy how different everything was. When January May did the music video release, I was on Skype and seeing all the different people and noticing how many more people there were…we had so little interns and now today all of sudden you guys have like…
C: About twenty-five.
K: Twenty-five! That’s crazy! It’s grown so much and just watching on social media, it’s so nice watching all these people get involved. We worked so hard for that.
C: How was working with January May?
K: I really miss them.
C: They’re coming back down for Moonstone Music Festival.
K: I wish I wasn’t so far so I could go to all these things.
C: But you’re doing what you love though.
C: As a graduate, what do you want to see 3300 doing two years from now? Do you want us to be bigger? A bigger artist roster?
K: I want it to be bigger and better and I want us to be kicking and screaming and making as many things as we possibly could do. That’s why we started this. We started such a cool thing that integrates education and everything that we want to do outside of school. So coming out kicking and screaming and making a name for ourselves. I want 3300 to be so known and respected because of what we are.
C: Throwback Thursday. What was your favorite moment while in 3300?
K: My favorite moment was probably telling January May that we picked them because that was the start of everything. That was the beginning. We did so much but that was the beginning of everything that we were going to do. And see how far we’ve gone with January May! Look at them now! They’re doing so well.
C: And 3300 has definitely helped you achieve the goals you have today?
K: Absolutely. It has helped so much. I was in charge of helping book the tour. Unfortunately that tour never happened. But the experience still helped me in the long run because now I work in venue operations. All the ideas we came up with in 3300 were nice things to base off of now.
C: I want to talk about your artists. Covdiss Artist Management.
C: And you founded that right after you graduated?
K: It was originally supposed to be a record label. I wanted to do a spoken word record label. But I didn’t see it working at the time so I moved on to artist management. I ended up loving it and finally in my last month, I launched everything with my artist.
C: You now have two artists?
C: Sea Mountains. And her genre is…?
K: Almost like chill wave.
C: I was listening to her last night. And your other act is Necter. They’re a female duo? I was listening to them last night too! How did you get in contact with both of those acts?
K: Sea Mountains is Amanda Jump. She is a Full Sail grad.
C: I did not know that.
K: She was an intern at 3300. And her girlfriend was in my graduating class and we were all just super good friends. And after we worked together in 3300, Amanda saw the potential and asked me to be on her team and be her manager. Of course I said yes. And I met Sam and Brianna up in New York. They’re incredible.
C: Are they the next Tegan and Sara?
K: They’re going to do very well. Even with Sea Mountains. Even though it isn’t mainstream, Sea Mountain’s music appeals to the niche. I have so many plans for both of them.
C: Can you explain the name Covdiss?
K: It’s funny actually.
C: What’s the story?
K: I had no idea what I wanted to name my company. I was freaking out and thinking that this is so dumb that I can’t come up with a name. So as a joke, I put mine and my best friend’s last name together.
C: So Cove plus Adiss?
K: And that makes Covdiss. And I thought of it as a joke at first and but then I really started to think about it.
C: It rolls off the tongue
K: Yeah and it sounds really official and so I stuck with it.
C: On your company’s website, it mentions your goal of “bringing it back to the core.” What does that mean to you?
K: The music industry is so crazy and with my artists, I want to focus on foundation. There are so many factors to consider so I want to break everything down and lay out a foundation for them. I want to bring it back to the core and what the music was originally about – the artist and the music.
C: Any tips and advice for 3300+Climbing?
K: Just work your heart out. This is what you want to do and obviously this is what you like to do so just own it. This is your initiative. Own the hell out of it, enjoy it as much as you can and don’t let opportunity pass you by.
You can find Kayla on Twitter at @thekaylacove
This is a blog following the students' work at 3300+ Climbing.