As a young, continually learning Theatre Artist, I bring my experiences with me as both a working actor and student. As an artist who is constantly seeking knowledge and teaching myself, I understand the perspective of the student and understand that there are multiple approaches to effectively communicate between the student and teacher and that everyone learns differently! With that said, you certainly won't be sitting and reciting the same antiquated exercises of an elder teacher far removed from the business/modern educational sphere, at least not with me! As an artist, it is imperative to me to be CONSTANTLY learning from a variety of sources throughout the course of my career, and I make sure to carry the best parts of those experiences with me as nuggets of wisdom for both myself and those I work with. As a child, I wasnt fortunate enough to have access to technical teachings as some of my wealthier peers, so I sympathize with the struggle of the artist with heart and drive that lacks the access to technical knowledge (which people pay THOUSANDS of dollars for). All in all, I would say my greatest strength as a teacher would be the fresh understanding of being a student.
I've been working diligently toward my own artistic education and building my career over the past 6 years and have crossed paths with many influential artists whom I've been so blessed to work with and learn from. I've been blessed to have also achieved many accolades in the relatively short span of my career. I hold a 3 time Massachusetts State Championship in Poetry Performance for the National competition "Poetry Out Loud", which opened a multitude of doors and windows for me as a young person. I have been invited to perform all over the East Coast and was awarded the 2015 NAACP Youth Achievement Award in recognition of my work. I also spent 4 years working Summers at Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield, Massachusett. As a young person, this was quite a formative experience for me as an artist; I was able to witness firsthand all of the intricate inner-workings of how a prominent regional theatre is successfully operated as well as having the opportunity to network, connect, and learn from renowned artists from all over the country through Masterclasses and performances during my time there. I also completed Barrington Stage's Musical Theatre Conservatory training program, which elevated my training and understanding so greatly! I strive to carry all of my work with me into the space (good and bad) which allows me to have a greater understanding of the ways in which I do/don't want to work, and gives me multiple tactics to tackle any situation that arises in the rehearsal room or performance space with maximum efficiency. I am also so blessed to have so many mentors to call upon to help me through any conundrums I might have and for general motivation and advice. All of this I bring with me to my own teaching and mentorship.
The arts have always held a special place in my life. I come from a lineage of wonderfully talented musicians and was always surrounded by music in my home. From there, my love only further blossomed. With a strong familial background in the African American Church environment, I was always exposed to art as a tool to teach lessons/communicate. From sunday school skits to choir rehearsals to interpretive "Praise Dance", as a 5 year old I wasn't even fully aware of the artistic elements I was being exposed to, I just knew I loved it! Years later, as I grew out of the more religious elements, I grew into the artistic inclinations. I truly have cultivated an interest in all elements of performance: writing, directing, choreographing, and (of course) performing. This work is such a gift to those involved, as it enriches my life no matter how I experience it; whether as a performer, student, teacher, director, or audience member I've seen the most beautiful parts of human nature arise during the process. I have witnessed firsthand people find their inner voice, their wildest dreams, their alter egos, and their own stories through their art. There is power and healing in this work if handled with care and a focused mindset. As a performer, I love breathing life into what starts as inanimate ink on a page and drawing from my own heart and mind to do so; in this way, I have learned so much about myself. As a coach/mentor, I relish in the joy of collaborating with another person to find their "Eureka!" moment where they find that power within themselves and the joy that chases after it. I aspire eventually to be a Theatre Professor alongside my acting career, and to be the Artistic Director of my own, small theatre company someday! With this in mind, I'm always looking for ways to better myself as an artist and teacher to continue to grow and and be my best self for both myself and those linked to me. As I motivate others, I motivate myself; I dont look at teaching or mentorship as me doing a service for others, but as a collaborative effort in which we all can elevate ourselves.
For more info or a closer look at who I am as a person, feel free to check me out on Instagram (@thekinglycourt) or Facebook! (facebook.com/thekinglycourt) Website soon to come!
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First and foremost I always assess what the student's personal goals are. What do you hope to learn? How do you learn best? Do you have any prior experience/training? What are your ultimate goals for yourself and this work?
This helps me help you! I believe every student deserves an individualized experience centered around their aspirations. You come with the desire and the dream, I'll come with what I have in my toolbelt! The more I know about you, the more I can help you! The more we know each other, the easier it is to work.
- Barrington Stage Company Musical Theatre Conservatory Program graduate
- Shakespeare and Company Masterclasses/Actor Training
- D.R.E.A.M. Studios summerstock training
- Masterclass student of various artisits! Feel free to ask! I love to talk about my journey as I love to talk about yours!
Y'all, I understand the struggle of the "Starving Artist", as it is my reality too! Searching for lessons can be ROUGH on the wallet, as the average voice/speech/acting coach can charge anywhere between $50 - $80 per hour, and you may not even like them! (YIKES)
With that said, I try to keep my own pricing pretty trim! $28 per hour of work is my base pricing!
Depending on the distance required to travel and materials needed by the student, I may request a small, additional $5 which would be discussed prior to the lesson.
Coming from an impoverished upbringing, I try to be perceptive to people's situations as well; If you are experiencing any particular hardships with pricing, let me know and keep me abreast of your situation, we may be able to work something out.
I started teaching when I was in High School, actually. I've always been a scholar, and know to tutor and help out struggling students and have been requested by some of my teachers to do so! In performance, specifically, some of the other students who were still quite "in their shell" or struggling with a particular conundrum in the High School theatre setting would sometimes find themselves intimidated or unwilling to talk to the teacher/director about specific, nit-picky notes about themselves or their insecurities. As a result, many would come to me and pull me aside privately to work with them: asking advice about line readings, requesting me to play piano for them or be a stand-in scene partner, or ask for someone to drill them and make them sharper in some way. As I was closer to them in age, they felt a little less afraid to ask questions and make mistakes with me and took the pressure out of working on (what can be) intense work! I found great strength in this, and began music directing cabarets, choir directing and arranging, choreographing, doing monologue workshops among my peers, and directingmy own pieces. Through working with so many different artists and directors, I was able to see the techniques that helped me to be clear and learn best as a performer and take those bits and peices and condense it into a more digestable, fun and straightforward lesson to share with my peers.
Typically young people! I've worked with children as young as 6 or 7 (but typically prefer 11 or 12 as my youngest students) and young adults as old as 25. My typical student has some cultivated interest and experience in their art already, and are equipped enough to be able to work on materials dicussed during the lesson on their own time. I welcome students of all levels of experience and backgrounds to work, though, as long as we make sure the work gets all of the effort and attention it deserves! No matter a complete newbie seeking the basics of technique and basic vocabulary of the business, or a seasoned performer seeking a reading partner or feedback for audition prep, I'll give you all I have to offder!
I recently closed a production of "The Trojan Women" at Columbia University, directed by Jeffrey Page (choreographer of "Girls" and "Run the World Tour" for Beyonce) and starring Ms. Tina Fabrique (singer of the "Reading Rainbow" theme song, star of the one-woman show "ELLA"). It was yet another one of those beautiful learning experiences where I was surrounded by so many beautiful, talented, and powerful people of color to work on this piece. We took this antiquated Greek tragedy and flipped it on its head with an all black cast and the power of Blues music. Needless to say, it was a spectacular event.
Look for a teacher who you can relate to/communicate effectively with! This is IMPERATIVE, as there are some student-teacher relationships in which the teacher is completely removed from the desires, opinions, and feelings of the student. In a private lessons setting, the relationship should be quite comfortable, in my opinion. That way both parties feel at liberty to discuss their thoughts about whats happening in the lessoons and outside too! The business of performing can get intesne! Its good to have mentors and people you can come to, not only for technical help, but for emotional support as well! The ability to have someone to talk to about audition anxieties, self consciousness, inclusiviity, how to advocate for yourself in a rehearsal/work space, etc. is extremely helpful/healthy and such a gift! It certainly creates a stronger dynamic between the student and teacher, as well.
What do I want out of my training? What do I want to use this training for? What do I know about myself as a performer that I'd like to improve upon? What are my strengths? How do I learn information the best? How do I best accept constructive criticism? How can I take notes well and implement them into my work? How can I make sure to always find the joy in the work?
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