2007 Myron and Margaret Winegarden Visiting Professor - Mr. Will Power

Will Power is an award-winning actor, rapper, playwright, and educator.  Viewed as a pioneer in the genre of hip-hop theatre, Power has created his own style of theatrical communication, fusing original music, rhymed language and dynamic choreography to produce compelling works.  Produced by New York Theatre Workshop and the NYC Hip-Hop Theater Festival, Will Power’s solo show FLOW has been described as “astounding”  (CurtainUp) and “theater with the refreshing aroma of originality” (The New York Times) while Power himself has been called an “electrifying”  (Newsday) and “dynamic performer” (Variety).  Most recently Will Power received the prestigious 2005 Joyce Award, a 2005 NYFA Fellowship, a 2004 Drama Desk nomination for Best Solo Performance.  In addition, Mr. Power’s SEVEN is a play set in the Fillmore District of San Francisco and explores the lives of the local streets.  The play was written by a group from the Fillmore District and Mr. Power synchronized the plot with the ancient tragedy SEVEN AGAINST THEBES by Aeschylus.  This production won three Lucille Lortel Awards (Best Musical, Best Choreography and Best Sound Design) as well as Broadway’s Obie for best performer.  Power’s skills have also been captured on television and film as a featured performer on “Last Call with Carson Daly” and “Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry” on HBO.  He was the lead male in the film Drylongso, a hit at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival and was also featured in the documentary, All Fathers Are Sons.  In addition to composing the music used in all of his theater shows, Power has composed lyrics and music that have been heard on MTV, UPN’s “Moesha” and “Kingpin” on NBC.  He also has been featured on four critically acclaimed albums “Free Roots,” “Spirit of the Roots,” “Bembon,” and “Prietos” as the lead vocalist for the Omar Sosa Sextet.  Power has received two AUDELCO award nominations for his solo shows, including The Gathering:  a hip-hop theatre journey to the meeting places of Black men, as well as winning the Trailblazer Award from the National Black Theater Network for his contributions to theater.  More information, including Will Power’s resume, can be found on his website at: www.willpower.tv.

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