Posts tagged ‘Jasmine Guy’
We couldn’t be prouder of Miles and Adamsville elementary chorus teacher Letricia Henson and Douglass High choral director Ben Polite, who currently are performing in the chorus for the Atlanta Opera‘s sold-out run of “Porgy and Bess” this week at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center. It should be noted that the opera chorus already has received rave reviews, and we’d like to think Henson and Polite are two big-voice reasons why.
And this isn’t Henson’s first rodeo with George and Ira Gerswhin‘s iconic opera, which tells the story of African Americans in Depression Era Charleston, S.C. She sang in the opera chorus for the Atlanta Opera’s first mounting of “Porgy and Bess” back in 2005, and the following year performed the opera in Paris with the same group. (It marked the first time an American opera chorus of this kind was ever invited to perform in a European music hall, Henson notes.)
When Jasmine Guy spoke with students from North Atlanta High‘s Center for the Arts, she was on familiar ground in more ways than one. The Atlanta stage actress and director and former star of TV’s “A Different World” and “Fame” is a proud graduate of the school when it was called Northside High.
Guy shared her experiences and life lessons from a lengthy career that has brought her back to Atlanta, whether acting with True Colors Theatre or directing the Alliance Theatre’s premiere last summer of the Martin Luther King Jr. musical “I Dream.” One of the funner moments came when a student asked her what she would do when, at an audition, she saw someone who was more talented than her perform. “I go to the bathroom,” she said as the students laughed. Then she got serious, after relating a particularly disappointing exprience: “Now, I try to use people that are good in auditions to inspire me. So I switch it around. If I see a fierce dancer in a room, I try to make it … juice me up. … You can’t let yourself get devastated.”
Guy appeared at the school at the invitation of Center for the Arts academy leader Reginald Colbert. North Atlanta and Grady High are the last of APS’ schools to convert to smaller learning schools under the High School Transformation Initiative that began in 2005 with The New Schools at Carver.
Watch the entire lecture and question-and-answer session with Jasmine Guy here.