The Afrolatin@ Theatre Series:Actress, Writer, and Theatre Mogul Florinda Bryant

Addressing the call to action in the article “Why We Need Afrolatin@ Theatre,” this series highlights many outstanding Afrolatin@ theatre artists around the United States who diligently offer the world their art. This first installment profiles actress, writer, and Salvage Vanguard Theater’s Managing Director Florinda Bryant.

  Florinda Bryant. Photo courtesy of Florinda Bryant.

I met the vibrant Florinda Bryant in May of 2015 when she was performing in a staged reading of my play The Stories of Us. I knew that I wanted to continue working with her the moment she took a line that I had no intention of being humorous and made the audience laugh. There is something about certain people who have a spark and Bryant has it. After the performance, I got the chance to speak with her and was deeply inspired by her passion for theatre and telling Black and Brown stories.

After sitting down with Bryant, I found that performance wasn’t something that she learned to do, but rather something that she was born to do. “I danced before I walked. I sang before I talked,” she exclaimed. In fact, art was a staple in her home growing up. Her mother was a poet, and there was always music and dance in the household. Naturally, this colorful upbringing motivated her to pursue a career in theatre. A conversation with her grandma about being a professional actress led her to be instilled in her the importance of being intentional about her career. She didn’t just want to be a “famous” actress; she wanted theatre to be her livelihood.

More here.



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