Ask any successful creative person you know about failure and chances are they will tell you about rooms papered with rejection slips, countless paintings they painted over, or songs that went nowhere. For most of us, a long road of failure is the path we must take to reach the published novel, the award-winning watercolor, the signature song.
In the Athens, Georgia area, where I (used to) live, Fail As Fast As You Can, or FAFAYC, is the name of a new program for children that teaches concepts such as creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship through fun classes in art, music, dance and foreign languages. Recently, I had a chance to interview the founder, Alexandru Muresan.
Donny: First, why did you pick the name, “Fail As Fast As You Can” for your program? I know creative projects involve many tries and failures, such as the numerous rewrites most authors must do before producing a publishable manuscript, and the many submissions we make to find the one editor or agent who says yes. But I am curious about your selection of FAFAYC as the name of your organization.
Alex: You basically guessed the reason for the name. Everyone fails at some point in their lives, but those who understand that failing is a good thing (as long as you learn from it, and never give up) become successful early on.
Donny: What led you to organize FAFAYC?
Alex: I wanted to create a company that would offer lessons to people; lessons that you’ve always wanted to take and things you’ve always wanted to learn, but never had a chance. In developing the idea, I realized children need exposure to such skills, classes and activities more than anyone else, since they have their whole lives ahead of them. I want every child to know what art is, how important it is to be creative and enjoy your work.
Donny: Tell me more about yourself and others who are involved in the organization.
Alex: I was born in Romania and moved to the US when I was 15. I competed internationally in ballroom dance growing up and continued dancing with an aerial contemporary company throughout college. I recently graduated from UGA with a BBA in Economics and a minor in Dance. I’ve been teaching dance at the University Recreational Sports Center for a couple of years. I started this company on January 1, 2011. I do everything myself, however I also have a very supportive set of instructors, all of them students at UGA. They are very talented and keep the FAFAYC program going. My girlfriend, Taisa, is getting her masters in Professional School Counseling at UGA and she helps me understand children better and is also the photographer for the company.
Donny: Who participates in your classes?
Alex: Right now, we have 11 kids enrolled in the program, and we just started May 2011. We hope to grow to 50 this fall, and expand to Atlanta next year. We’ve gotten a lot of comments and positive responses from particpants and members of the community.
Donny: Tell me about the July 29, 2011 FAFAYC picnic at Sandy Creek Park.
Alex: The picnic is open to the public. It starts at 4 and will end around 8 PM. We are hoping to get a nice group of kids, parents, artists and people interested in helping out, or just having a good time. We’ll have food, drinks, music, raffles, and a good time getting to know everyone. There will be some demos, some skill-building and most of the FAFAYC members and staff will be there.
Donny: Anything else you want readers to know about FAFAYC?
Alex: We’re launching a new product soon called FAFAYC Center. What this means is that we will offer the whole program including instructors, curriculum and materials to daycare centers, schools, and offices as an after-school/add-on program to enhance their ability to share the arts with their children. We’re really excited about this. We plan to expand our reach and once we get to 50 kids, we’ll strive to open new locations in other cities, as well as helping local communities that have no access to the arts. I urge all your readers to come meet us at the Sandy Creek Picnic and to join our FB group, www.facebook.com/fafayc and check out our website: www.fafayc.com.
For more information about the FAFAYC, contact Alex via email: firstname.lastname@example.org or phone: (478) 919-7323.