Growing up in a family of artists and performers, Anna Kelberg-Kim knew she wanted to have a career in entertainment.
It wasn’t until she was working as a paralegal that she realized she loved law and specifically, the practice of entertainment law.
Now the namesake of her firm, Kelberg-Kim pulls from her musical past to help her current and future clients.
“Entertainment law is so interesting to me,” she explained. “I speak the language. I grew up in that environment and it’s so organic to me. I grew up in a family of performers and I was training to become a professional violinist when I decided to go to law school. I went because I wanted to know more. It made sense to me. Everything that is happening in the world of entertainment and performing arts, I’m speaking that language.”
Along with her experiences in show business, Kelberg-Kim noted her son is also a recording artist, which motivated her to continue pursuing entertainment law.
“My son became an artist in his early years and that also prompted me to get into this,” she said. “He started off as a classical pianist and he went into jazz. And now his own style has evolved into a fusion of many different styles. It depends on the day what he feels like.”
Kelberg-Kim said there are similarities between performing and law.
“They do intertwine when musicians go on stage,” she said. “When one becomes a performer, there are different legal aspects involved. The business side of it also changes. It’s about preparing artists from the get-go as they develop before they get out there.”
When it comes to preparing for a case, Kelberg-Kim frequently finds herself using her artistic skills.
“When I was starting in music, it was a good old Russian-style of performing,” she said. “We had to study a lot of different disciplines, like theory and harmony, that don’t have anything to do with performing on stage. Because I am trained to do so, it is now ingrained in me to approach a case or client with all the background covered. It’s like a stage in the courtroom. It helps me see a bigger picture.”
Though Kelberg-Kim was raised a non-observant Jew, she incorporates Jewish values into her work.
“I always knew my identity and knew those Judaic values,” she said. “It built my moral character as well. The way I approach my work reflects that. It is encoded into my DNA to do things at 100 percent, to achieve perfection and not to cut corners. It is my heritage behind everything I do.”
As for why she’s practiced in entertainment law for so long, Kelberg-Kim noted its fluidity.
“Entertainment law is ever evolving,” she said. “It changes all the time and it is never stale. It is so broad and covers so many different practices within entertainment. It keeps me on my toes. You have to be aware of everything. It’s also my desire to strive beyond the immediate, obvious answer for something.”