top of page

Co-Directing Justin Park's 'Bay to the City' | Vlog #9

Ellen Kim and family
Baes to the the city ❤️

Justin Park’s latest music video ‘Bay to the City’ is out now and I am so HAPPY. So happy that I went through my 엄마's closet and recorded the dance in the Bay. My #1 fan.

This project is one of the most organic and rewarding experiences I’ve had in such a long time. It’s a true testament to my abilities and I feel so strongly in my heart this is special for Justin and the 5A Label - being that this is Justin’s biggest song yet and for him it’s a big leap in his journey as an artist.

I want to invite you into an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at how I led this campaign across movement, marketing, and co-directing (I’m so excited to talk about this!)

The Beginning

I’ve been working with Justin as his movement coach for 3 years but I’ve worn many hats throughout my time with him. I’ve been his stylist, makeup artist, choreographer, producer, director, movement coach... So when this project was starting, I felt prepared to take on anything. With the project I was able to dive into my strengths but still apply my skills and still learn new things.

Breaking it Down

My relationship with Justin goes beyond his movement: it’s built on a personal level. Initially when we worked together, I dove deeper into his personality and sought his identity through his own unique movements. He was also incredibly open and persistent to learn the foundations of Hip-Hop. Working as his movement coach for the past 3 years, it’s rewarding for me to see how hard-working and dedicated he was. He takes my strength conditions (stretches, warm-ups) and respects my process.

This is something that I find valuable in any prospective artist I movement coach. Justin takes the time to listen and apply. Even beyond dancing, I created mock sessions that prepared him for auditions in the industry. For example, I would do mock-up commercials - teaching him the lingo and terminology in the audition room and walking him through various breathing techniques to prepare mentally.

For Bay to the City, what was easy about movement coaching this time around was Justin’s willingness to push himself further. For myself, I focused on tightening up his identity as an artist and providing guidance on what would help him move forward with this release.

As his teacher, it’s a blessing to experience these moments of incredible growth.

I will never forget the one night I got a WhatsApp message and Justin was out in Korea. And he messaged me ‘Sensei.. I’m at a club. I was thrown up on stage and I just remembered all the foundations you taught and the conditioning that helped me for this exact moment. Thank you.’ I almost bursted into tears because this was the defining moment where it felt so rewarding.

His appreciation from afar made my work feel worth it. I emphasize finding identity and building confidence with artists I work with - it’s not just about dance for me. It’s so much more. It’s about the emotions and confidence for me and I know these things will help drive movement tenfold.

Creating the Choreo

The process was so easy. The song mentions the Bay and naturally I had to let out my roots. I live and breathe the HYPHY...

Katelyn Andreassen and Ellen Kim on-set
Going over the choreo real quickly with Katelyn

What is HYPHY?

a style of uptempo hip-hop music originating in northern California and associated with a frenetic style of dancing.’

It’s not about dancing to Hyphy music - it was the music and community that I was raised with. I would go to house parties and folks would throw down with Hyphy-music and thizz movement. Everyone I kicked it with weren’t necessarily dancers - but this genre incorporated a movement that is so unique to the Bay Area.

Even before becoming a dancer professionally, I learned a lot of these movements from these house parties that incorporated Hyphy and thizz. It was easy to choreograph - because it was my love for my home - the Bay.

Making the Music Video

I pitched this idea of a COVID-friendly shoot from the beginning. Early in the development, I had the intention of creating a house-party vibe from behind the screen. This became the foundation of the video and truly drives the colors, influencers, and the upbeat vibes of the video. I love it!

The video is shot entirely on a green-screen and I reached out to talents via email and Instagram to feature in the video. Some bigger talents like Bailey Sok would send in their footage shot on their iPhone - and that’s what we’d work with. Tommy and I spent countless hours via Google Hangouts. We would be editing the footage - telling him my ideas and the best shots to use for the video. I could not have done this without Tommy.

The greatest thing about working with him is that anything is possible and nothing hinders him. I’m so thankful for an incredible director - our combined creative visions are powerful!

Amongst other influencers, we were able to bring many others:

There will be a TRILLER, Tik Tok & IG challenge circulating... Maybe I’ll see you do it?

Shoutout to: Blair Kim, Bailey Sok, Isaiah of the Future Kingz, Mike Song, Ben Chung, Jawn Ha, Brian Puspos, Kayla Brenda, and Katelyn Andreassen - ya’ll are the best!

My wonderful crew on set for Justin Park's 'Bay to the City'
That's a wrap!


I spent over 60-70 hours on this project. What drove me the most in this project was the incredible love and energy for (and from!) the 5A Label and Justin Park.

I’m so blessed by Justin for his genuine love to build his artistry. He drives me to create behind-the-scenes.

I ultimately really love people who feel like the star they’ve always been.

As a little girl, I’ve carried that mantra in all my work. To be in this field, you must love what you do. Just like any other field out there - whatever that means to you.

Let's Connect!

What drives YOU? Are there experiences you want to speak about? How do you want to express that? What are your core values?

I want to help YOU figure you out so you can create from a place of honesty without boundaries. I believe everyone is a character in this story we call life. Everyone is so unique and has something so specific to help someone else. Live it. Define it. Let me help you create it.

If you’ve ever had questions like above and or are curious to learn more, I offer one-on-one mentorship and group mentorship. With a simple click, you can reserve your FREE 15 minute consultation and we can discuss how to create your career path as a:

  • Professional Dancer

  • Choreographer

  • Creative Director

  • Movement Coach

Also, if you are an artist, brand or company, let’s connect! Please visit my ‘Bookings’ page and I will see you soon!


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page