We had the good fortune of connecting with Melanin Dragon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Melanin, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
Ever since I was young I had a wild imagination that would force me to see the world differently. I would wonder the details of peoples lives and how you can show off everyone’s uniqueness in a way that was both impressing and imperishable. Of course I was extremely privy to the performing arts because being able to detail my imaginations out with my body made me excited, it was the only thing that brought me joy no matter the level of difficulty. So with that being my background along with learning skills throughout the years like marketing, divisive work, and online content creation, my desire for a fully mobile creative networking style career have flourished.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Since university, I have become infatuated with original performance pieces. In my final year, my directing class had to make a devised piece on some hard hitting topics and through the collaborative work of my class we created an award winning 10 minute play. I believe in expressive art which can take literally any form. So what I currently do is produce personal vlog YouTube videos and perform in live productions across Baltimore City. Because of the pandemic, I was trying to find ways to still produce my form of art since I no longer could be in a live production, and through he help of ambitious friends, I discovered that I can still have the internet as my medium. I still am on the small side of content creation, but I have learned so much so far and I know I can take it further. Outside of my acting, I write, direct, dance, and do editing, so I have incorporated all of the skills into my YouTube channel under the name Melanin dragon. The focus for my professional work is to create a relatable identity that people can find inspiration from and hopefully I can forge communities that continue collaborating and producing their own personal style as well,
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Depending on the weather, I would take them on a fun adventure around the local parks and harbors since I am from Baltimore city. Nature is always the perfect way to enlighten people on the variety of a city. After that I usually want to see art museums and live productions. I try to find a local festival or just lively area to go around. I luckily live in the more historically artistic side of Baltimore so I always have options for theater productions and gallery showings, and if they don’t suffice I can always introduce someone foreign to the East Coast the wonders of the Smithsonian’s in DC. Now with all that being said, we will get hungry. I am a world person ( I love travel and exotic destinations) so I will always try to find the a culturally different restaurant to eat at. whether it be Thai food, Malaysian cuisine, or a street full of carts selling traditional Turkish foods. The most diverse of food culture tend the bring out the most adventures of people so I think those are the most exciting things to do.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to dedicate my shoutout to my family, and friends from across the years. First, my mother (which I’m aware is cliché but hey its my momma!!!), whose supported me and my passions for years. from the early ages of throwing me into musical camps and singing lessons, to now pushing me to still go after and try to achieve my goals of becoming a successful performance artists. If I can remember a significant moment, it was when I had to perform in my elementary school talent show and I ended up going on early. I was waiting for my parents to come see me and I was so afraid of singing in front of everyone but my mother showed up just in time for me to sing and I never sang louder and brighter. If your reading this, I love you mom!!! I would also like to shoutout my cousin Shayla who does theater herself and has always inspired me to keep going in this adventure, along with my brother and my father for there continued support. My friends are amazing and never let me feel like I’m not good enough and I have collaborated with them so much that I feel like I can learn any form of creative skill and be able to support them just as much as they support me.
Profile pic credit to @wholesumshotit