What do ya do?
First and foremost, I am a writer. I’ve been writing music, poems, stories, plays, scripts and books since I was twelve. I’m a musician and it’s what I do professionally.
I also run Treehouse. Growing up in Los Angeles, surrounded by fellow artists, it felt like everyone was trying to build their own artistic empires and had little time to pay attention to anyone else. I decided to reach out to friends and see if they wanted to showcase their art with others. The first Treehouse happened in my living room and there were around 15 artists who performed. Some were friends and some were people I had never met before. It was magic watching the audience watch the artist. They were so attentive and so there, listening, taking it in. The people who performed were so talented. I felt like I had just tapped into some alternate dimension where everyone, even the not so seeming, had something magical to offer. I decided to do it monthly. As the months went on, and through word of mouth, it became too crowded, too many strangers to have in my own house. So, I decided to make Treehouse a pop-up event. Treehouse is completely free. We do not get charged for the spaces we use, we do not charge for admission or to perform. We have been doing this for awhile now, and it’s done nothing but expand every month. We all collaborate to try to build the best experience possible.
When did you know you wanted to pursue what you are doing?
I always used to say at the age of twelve. I guess that’s because that’s when I wrote my first set of short stories and also the year I started my own band.
Looking back at my earlier years, I reconsider. I remember having a sleepover when I was 5 years old and forcing my friends to put on a showcase for my parents. I’d ask what their best talent was and then had them practice for half an hour. I’d turn off the lights in my bedroom, use the bed as a stage and I would sit on the side, queuing a boom box and directing a flashlight as a spotlight while they were performing. Fast forward, I find myself still doing this every month.
What began as a monthly showcase of pop-up events around Los Angeles will expand into a full-day festival this weekend. The inaugural Treehouse Music & Arts Fest takes over the Ambassador Auditorium on Saturday in Pasadena. In addition to a selection of independent short film screenings, Kimya Dawson, Jade Castrinos (formerly of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros), Joey Dosik, Josiah and The Bonnevilles, Allison Weiss, the Active Set, Emily Gold, Livingmore, and many other extrapolations of the singer-songwriter variety will share their music on two stages. Alex Wisner, the artist who started Treehouse, says she was inspired by the “lackluster of the venue culture we’ve built as a society,” as she puts it.
Behind the Opportunity: Treehouse Festival
We’re so excited to share that we’re the official submission platform for the inaugural Treehouse Festival in L.A.! What started as a monthly event held at pop-up locations in L.A. where performers present their talents, has evolved into an all-day festival at The Ambassador Auditorium to expose upcoming artists to the crowd they deserve. We chatted with the inspiring team behind Treehouse to learn about the festival, exclusive ReverbNation opportunity, Kickstarter campaign, and more.