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Conversations with the Inspiring Julia Tobey

Today we’d like to introduce you to Julia Tobey.

Julia, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I am a lady boss who supports other lady bosses!

After graduating with a Bachelor of Music from the University of Northern Colorado in 2001, I worked all over the world as a singer, dancer, actor, model, bartender, calligrapher (you name it!) for 15 years before returning to my home state of Colorado.

Disney was my main off and on gig. I completed five contracts for Disney Cruise Line, Tokyo Disneyland, Disney World as a principal singer/dancer.

I got bit by the producing bug in 2007 when I started “Party Singers,” a company that booked singers at parties in and around NYC. Basically, because a lot of my really talented friends and I were working service jobs in between performing contracts and I wanted to give us work where we actually got to perform.

After Macy’s Herald Square hired us to do their in-store holiday entertainment, we started getting more and larger scale contracts. In 2012, I became a full-time entertainment producer and haven’t looked back.

We went through countless evolutions before re-branding to Give 5 Productions in 2018.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
My spiritual/entrepreneurial guru, Marie Forleo, always talks about how tough it is to start a business and she is not lying. It takes a lot of tenacity and people around you supporting and believing in you. For me, that’s been my husband Heath Hyche, my family and closest friends. They told me to keep going when I was ready to quit.

There has to be a certain comfort level with failing, taking big risks and really listening to feedback and implementing it.

There is not a day that goes by that I don’t learn something if I am open to it. I hope I never stop learning.

My biggest piece of advice for young women is to have patience. You will get there. You just have to keep working at it and have faith. Keep your eye on the goal. Assess, regroup and get up the next day with a positive attitude. Develop your own most effective working style. For me, it’s reporting to my treadmill desk every day at 9 am and going home and truly clocking out with family no later than 6 pm. Take time off! Balance your life.

Also, support each other. You will go a lot further if you are constantly and actively supporting those around you that share a similar moral compass and integrity level. Ignore the haters. Very few people are comfortable around incredibly strong women.

And finally, in Marie Forleo’s words, “everything is figureoutable.”

What should we know about Give 5 Productions AKA “G5P”? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
We produce live music and entertainment. This is in the form of bands, shows, events and more!

I act as Owner, Founder, Artistic Director, Executive Producer, Singer, and Music Director.

I kind of accidentally fell into the vintage entertainment market. When I started “The Beverly Belles” after my beloved Grandma Beverly – who taught me all about The Andrews Sisters, Glenn Miller, and swing music – passed in 2014. I wasn’t sure it would go anywhere big. But in 2015, we were asked to open for Meghan Trainor at the Grove in Los Angeles. I think there were 25,000 in attendance and it was televised! That really got our momentum for some fabulous opportunities.

In 2016, Disney asked me to produce “The Silver Lake Sisters” – a show that ran for months at The Hollywood Tower of Terror before the attraction closed in Disney California Adventure. We took care of everything! Casting and rehearsing nine women total – three trios to work daily at the park – costuming, script writing, musical arrangements, choreography and more. I loved putting together all the pieces of that puzzle while being pregnant with my daughter Lily Jean. And the show was a hit!

We debuted “Swingin’ on the Sea with The Beverly Belles” – a custom show built for Disney Cruise Line in May of 2018. Beloved Disney songs in 1940s big band style. We are now a headlining act on those gorgeous ships.

Parker Arts has contracted us in 2018 and 2019 to produce shows for them and we are looking forward to growing that relationship.

Just last week, we opened “The Cottonwood Club.” A once monthly roaring ’20s gatsby inspired club at Ironworks, downtown Denver. Again, giving my cronies the work they deserve while giving our guests a huge treat! I loved collaborating with Jackie Covas, owner of The Honey Taps and Natalie Brown, owner of Phantom Circus. Again, lady bosses unite! roaringtwentiesdenver.com

On August 17, 2019, we debut our inclusive 1940s swing music party, “Swingin’ Summer Bash.” A lot of my friends who identify as LGBTQ haven’t felt welcome at other 1940s parties in town. We are going to change that. SwinginSummerBash.com

And this New Year’s, we are throwing Denver the party of the century! 1920s into 2020! roaringtwentiesdenver.com

Above all, I am most proud of our level of integrity. We treat our talented team well and we don’t commit to client contracts unless we can knock it out of the park. We have an impeccable satisfaction record and client return rate.

Our name – Give 5 Productions – is because we give 5% or more of our annual income to non-profit / for purpose organizations. I am very proud of our work in the community too. Most recently, we sponsored all the tee shirts and sound equipment at the Moms Demand Action Wear Orange Gun Rally in Montbello, Denver. We will continue to work with them as much as we can in 2019. 2020 will bring a new organization focus for G5P.

For good reason, society often focuses more on the problems rather than the opportunities that exist, because the problems need to be solved. However, we’d probably also benefit from looking for and recognizing the opportunities that women are better positioned to capitalize on. Have you discovered such opportunities?
Very recently, there has been such an exciting change in the tide for women in business.

For really the first time, here in 2019, we are seeing real change. We all owe our deepest gratitude to the generations of women before us who were extremely brave to stand up for equal rights, starting all the way back in 1848 with the suffrage movement.

Women don’t have to apologize anymore that they’re strong and they have something to say. They can walk away from companies and projects that do not treat them with real respect and equal opportunities and pay. We still have a long way to go but I am very encouraged with what I’ve seen in just the past two to three years.

I am also so very inspired by the #MeToo movement. Sexual harassment used to be something I felt like I had to ignore in order to keep my job. If I were in some of the same jobs I was ten years ago, I would speak up and get my boss fired, not the other way around.

Pricing:

  • $20 early bird tickets to July 26 Cottonwood Club roaringtwentiesdenver.com
  • $20-59 early bird tickets to August 17 Swingin’ Summer Bash swinginsummerbash.com
  • $100 and up tickets coming soon for New Year’s Eve Bash at The Cottonwood Club. 1920s meet 2020!
  • $34 and up “Swing into Christmas with The Beverly Belles” at Parker Arts PACE Center
  • Tickets coming soon for “Santa’s Naughty List” an irreverent but tasteful burlesque, comedy and musical show produced by G5P at Parker Arts Schoolhouse

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Danielle Uhl of Underexposed Photography, Kellie Coughlin Photography – KelliePhoto.com, Susan Pacek

Getting in touch: VoyageDenver is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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