Words by Margarita Buenaventura
Doing business with one’s family usually comes with a warning label: Don’t. But for siblings Steph, John, and Nicole Uy, it seems that there’s no one else they’d rather work with.
And it looks like their family dynamic works, anyway: in a little over two years, their production company Karpos Multimedia has turned up the volume of Manila’s concert scene. Karpos is responsible for setting up music festival Wanderland, where bands like Temper Trap and The Drums have played. They’re also behind concerts such as Phoenix and Bombay Bicycle Club, much to the delight of local audiophiles.
They certainly have a long way to go, but even they admit that 2014 has been quite a trip. What better way to celebrate that than through a festive family Christmas dinner? Over holiday ham and merrymaking booze, the Uys talk to B/BLOG about the importance of gratitude and just how their teamwork truly makes their dream work.
Hey, guys! Now that 2014 is almost over, how do you feel?
Nicole: I’m feeling 22! Kidding. 2014 is definitely a trying and a learning year for us! Truly grateful that God has been faithfully providing wisdom and guidance.
John: Personally still overwhelmed and in shock of how blessed I am this year. And at the same time very excited for what God has planned for 2015!
You’ve had a pretty great year. What would you say you’re most proud of?
Steph: Yes! Thank you Lord. I think our start-of-the-year show “Phoenix Live in Manila 2014,” not only because it was a sold-out show and the whole production process was smooth sailing but I gained four Parisian Phoenix friends that I will treasure forever.
Nicole: Thank you! It’s all God’s! I think I’m most proud of Wanderland. I always look forward to its planning process, and of course the festival itself.
So how hard is it to bring in a band to Manila?
Nicole: Pretty hard, especially the waiting game for them to confirm. You really have to pray for patience.
Steph: There’s timing and financial risk to consider.
What was the decision-making process when bringing bands?
Steph: Thankfully, we share the same interest in music and we love the same genre so it’s not hard. Usually, we get bands based on our favorites.
John: We all have our own biases when it comes to the band we want to bring, but at the end of the day the only thing that matters is if it will benefit the company or not.
What’s the most important thing to remember when working with your siblings?
Steph: Sometimes we argue about things at work and some stuff gets a little out of hand but at the end of the day, they’re still your siblings. When we go home after work, we forget about those things at work and have fun at home. I love them!
John: To never take it personally when it comes to work-related arguments.
Care to share who you might be bringing in next year?
Steph: Secret! We have a lot of things in store for next year, hoping it will materialize. But our Wanderland headliner will be bigger than this year and yes: Bastille on January 5th!
Nicole: (Laughs) Surprise!
Have you already gotten your siblings their Christmas presents?
Steph: Yes. Thank God we bought Christmas presents early on during our recent trip abroad.
Nicole: I have one more left!
John: Not yet…
Who’s the hardest to buy gifts for?
Steph: Nicole! We share the same interests and we always buy the same stuff all the time. It’s hard to buy a present that is unique and different.
John: Dad, for sure. Regarding us three, it’s got to be me.
Nicole: Our parents. They already have everything!