A shout out to the finely-tuned theatre company telling unheard stories
We caught up with Alissa Anne Jeun Yi, one of the founders of Trip Hazard; the theatre company aiming to innovate stage fun, as well as fresh and thought-provoking work for modern and diverse audiences.
Tell us what Trip Hazard is and what your business offers?
Trip Hazards offers energetic, cross-disciplinary shows which combine the absurd with the autobiographical, whilst finding creative ways to incorporate spoken-word, live music, and rap into the telling of unheard stories.
Our future goals include developing and touring new work, collaborating with creatives from outside our industry and creating performance and development opportunities for other emerging artists.
What was it that inspired you to set-up your own business?
A combination of passion for what we were doing and wanting to do it professionally! A lot of creative opportunities for emerging artists are unpaid, and the industry is very competitive and underfunded anyway. Thus, we gradually realised it is more effective for us to independently forge our own way. Not only do we want to get to a point where we're making the work we want to make, but there has to be a commercial element to what we are doing that creates a financially viable and sustainable lifestyle.
Do you think an Entrepreneur ISA and a Small Business Savings Allowance would have helped aid your company’s growth in the early stages?
Absolutely. It's also worth mentioning that we're currently in those 'early stages'. I believe that financial support like the above could potentially provide an alternative to arts funding for those who are serious about utilizing their creativity commercially.
What have been the biggest challenges you have faced so far?
The hardest part for us hasn't actually been establishing Trip Hazards, but making the move from passion project to a business - and managing all the responsibilities that come with that. We're still in the early stages of building the company and haven't made the move yet to become registered - when we do make the leap to freelance life we need to make sure that we will be able to keep afloat financially!
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
It's all very well to see a gap in the market and potential to make an impact, but running your own business is definitely a labour of love. The hours won't be regular and it can be more stressful managing your own finances, so it's definitely worth considering the day-to-day realities of doing this before deciding to commit.
What is your proudest achievement to date as a company?
We are now developing our debut show Love Songs through the Soho Theatre Writers Lab and will be taking it up to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for a full run at Underbelly. We're currently in the process of applying for funding and crowdfunding to give us the initial boost we need to make this happen!
Alissa Anne Jeun Yi is one of the founders of Trip Hazard.