Moving to LA

Forums Film Scoring Business Moving to LA

This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Zethu_Mashika 9 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #2261
    Profile photo of Nathanael P Winarto
    Nathanael P Winarto
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 2

    So, after all of the discussions on Facebook group, I’m planning to move to LA.
    What should I do first?

    I’m from Indonesia. I never go to LA, nor the US itself. I probably will go there on a tourist visa for my first time. What should I look for? Short course, winter course, or certification, or visiting production houses, or something else? And what to do next? About getting the green card? I really have no idea what to do.

    Note that I have a family, and they will be moving to LA as well after I established there.

  • #2274
    Profile photo of Evan Evans
    Evan Evans
    • Topics: 31
    • Replies: 110

    That’s great news Nathanael! You should know, just by being someone willing to move to LA, you have now already beat half the competition to the gigs out there. Just by having that switch in your brain flipped. Not even by being there yet, but knowing, that you have decided it, and you are going to become an LA based Film Composer. That is a huge first step that will change the landscape of your future in a big way.

    As an additional, very helpful resource and career guidance, as soon as it’s available, you’re going to want to take the following course:
    PREPARING FOR SUCCESS
    http://198.211.115.60/courses/preparing-for-success/

    Now, you’re questions were:

    “What should I do first?”
    “I probably will go there on a tourist visa for my first time”
    “what should I look for? Short course, winter course, certification, visit production houses?”
    “And what to do next?”
    “Getting a green card?”
    “I have a family who will be moving after I establish there.”

    Great questions, and I have some great advice, though I am not an expert on VISA’s I do have some experience as my wife is getting her VISA right now too, and I know others who are in the US on work VISA’s and have wound up converting that into Permanent Residencies and eventually Citizenship (dual).

    “What should I do first?”
    You should save up (or bring if you already have it) some “nest egg” amount of money to use, in order to be prepared for not making money in the beginning. Then secure a very cheap living situation, preferably a roommate situation, so you have enough additional free money for transportation (rental car, subway, gas) and additional expenditures over your expected budgeting (which can happen for instance if you wind up meeting a Hans Zimmer type composer and you offer to buy him/her dinner, or need to bring a gift to a meeting, etc). So, long story short: MONEY…and cheap affordable humble living at first.

    “I probably will go there on a tourist visa for my first time”
    “Getting a green card?”
    Well, so, you certainly could do that. I am not sure what the duration of a tourist VISA is, but I assume it’s short, like 30 days or perhaps 3 months. If it’s 6 months, than great, that should work. But, you might either also consider doing what’s necessary to get a work VISA first, or at least very much plan on meeting with officials while you are on tourist VISA here, about getting a Work VISA. Which brings me to your next question:

    “what should I look for? Short course, winter course, certification, visit production houses?”
    “Getting a green card?”
    So I think, for your situation, it would be extremely prudent to be interviewing at Recording Studios, Score Prep Houses, Composer’s Studios, Composing Firms, Library Music Companies, … for positions as an Intern, either for your return on Work VISA, or if a great opportunity comes up to seize right away, to get your Work VISA going right away! I just think one of the most productive things you could do with your initial time, is converting that next stepping level where you are on a longer term secured work VISA backed by an actual job and some letters of recommendation on why it’s critical that your talents be available to your boss(es) in the US on a Work VISA basis. Now obviously, you can do more than just twiddling your thumbs going around town doing interviews for internships and assistantship positions … you can also partake in some of the local Film Scoring events, Seminars, Concerts, gatherings, networking opportunities, as well as take advantage of being in Los Angeles near UCLA Extension and other places where you can take courses in the Art and Craft of Film Scoring (even private study is available if you ask around, there are Composers, Orchestrators, who teach privately).

    “And what to do next?”
    “I have a family who will be moving after I establish there.”
    So, from there, when you’re ready, you can take a private lesson with me, on how to easily secure work, and even try the techniques while you are in LA and perhaps secure your first LA based gig. Armed with those techniques, and an LA gig under your belt, you will have the confidence to then go back to your family, and then have a vision for how you can plan your move to LA on a Work VISA. Of course, while you are in LA, it would be a good idea for you to scope out areas, and schools, where it’s best for your family. Los Angles is a huge place, but as a Film Composer it can be best to be near the capital of Post Production of movies, and that is The Valley. Look up, The Valley in Los Angeles and you’ll see where I am talking about. You want to be in the Easy Valley, close to the big movie studios, because that’s where everyone else is, when they are in Post Production, working on music and audio for film.

    🎹 Evan Evans, Film Composer & Mentor, www.evanevans.org
    Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

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  • #2320
    Profile photo of Nathanael P Winarto
    Nathanael P Winarto
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 2

    Wow. Great information. Thanks a lot. It seems the first thing to do after landed to LA: meet with you.. 🙂
    And maybe I should join The SCL before that.

  • #3596
    Profile photo of Wesley Devore
    Wesley Devore
    • Topics: 0
    • Replies: 1

    Full Access

    Awesome! I just moved to LA two months ago, and this is great information. Thank you Evan!

    ——————————————————————————————

    Wes Devore

    wesdevoremusic@gmail.com

    www.wesdevore.com

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #4978

      Zethu_Mashika
      • Topics: 0
      • Replies: 1

      Wesley… Congratulations on your move to LA. Tell me, how is it going? what challenges are you facing?

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