We had the good fortune of connecting with Albertossy Espinoza and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Albertossy, how do you think about risk?
I have always been a person who takes risks. I’ve been doing it all my life. Here are a few big risks I took. In 1996 at the top of my dance career in Chicago, I packed my car and hit the road to Los Angeles. I had a phone number of someone I had met on a Disney gig in Chicago and toured with to Rome. She had moved to LA a year or so prior to me. My thought however was that if I needed to live in my car for a bit, I would definitely do that. I arrived to LA with credit cards and about $500.00 to my name. Since age 11 something called me to LA. I just knew I had to try it and possibly fail, but at least try. I took that risk and although it has taken bankruptcy, stress and lots of ups and downs, it was the right decision for me. In 2005 after working in corporate America for 10 years, I took the risk of quitting my job at Sony Pictures Entertainment, loose my benefits, my salary and dive full time as an entertainer. In 2o08, when the the economy tanked, what did I do? Well, I decided to start my not for profit organization,FUSION Performing Dance Academy www.fpdacademy.org. The opportunity came to me at that time, so I had to take it. Many advised me against it. 12 years later we are surviving, but now faced with the current pandemic of CORONA-19. Due to this pandemic, I am now taking the risk of keeping our organization moving forward and not loosing our space. The risk in doing so is that we may loose all of our funds that we worked so hard to achieve. We are a small organization and have survived from fundraisers, our donors, classes and our rentals. We lost our rentals, fundraiser performances, and students. My thought has always been, I prefer to try and fail, then not to try and only wonder what if I had tried. Life is a risk. Every day as soon as you wake up, you take risk. Sometimes you fail, but a lot of times you SUCCEED.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
At age 11 I knew I wanted to be an actor, dancer, and singer. I accomplished two of the three, sadly I was not gifted with a singing voice. My story is long, but I will share what I can without going too long. My love and passion are acting and dancing. Even though I knew what I wanted to do at age 11, my parents could not afford classes for me. I took my first dance class at Northern Illinois University. Although I had never taken a dance class in my life, I took the risk of majoring in Theater Dance. I figured, they’ll either laugh me out, or they will work with me. Three semesters later, I was on a company scholarship at one of Chicago’s prominent professional dance company. A year later I was traveling the world with them. My career has not been easy, many obstacles stood in the way. My color and my height were the two biggest ones. After a couple of attempts to quit, I was pushed back in. I have been fortunate to perform on some of the biggest stages both abroad and in the United States. I have been fortunate to work with some legends such as, Dick Van Dyke, Placido Domingo, Edward Asner to name a few. I want to share this type of dream with others. That is why I founded FUSION Performing Dance Academy (Fusion). I don’t want a child of lower income to have to wait to go to college to take their first dance steps, I want them to start now. Making my dream of sharing the art form of dance and acting come to fruition is my most proud achievement. Dreams can come true! Work hard and stay focused to make it happen. I can say that I have achieved my goals, just not at the level I want them to be. Therefore, I continue to reach for that personal goal. It isn’t easy, but perseverance will take you many places. Fusion is changing lives and providing access to the under served communities to the arts, to character development, self-confidence, leadership, and creative expression.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love the beaches, the drive through Pacific Coast Highway, the L.A. river and the richness found on the streets of Los Angeles. When I have visitors we usually visit Hollywood Blvd. Runyon Canyon, Third Street Promenade, Malibu, Huntington Library Art Museum and Botanical Gardens, and Griffith Observatory. One of my favorite places to eat and take a guest is to Versailles in Culver City. In different times, we would also go to Pantages to catch a show. Los Angeles is full of arts and culture. I love Los Angeles!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I credit my mom, for giving me the strength, will and drive to push onward in all aspects of life. I am tremendously grateful to my family, friends and teachers for their love and support and I especially recognizes my good friend and foremost supporter, Carolyn James. Their encouragement, their understanding and their love mean the world to me.
Instagram: www.instagram.com/albertossye www.instagram.com/fusionpdacademy
Twitter: www.twitter.com/albertossy www.twitter.com/fpdacademy
Facebook: www.facebook.com/albertossy www.facebook.com/fpdacademy