by
on June 5, 2017 on 6/5/17 from

**Black Girl Magic**

The end of my internship is finally here and tomorrow, June 6, 2017, I will be boarding my plane. I’d first like to say thank you to a few people that have helped me get through the course of this life-changing experience:

  • The Abramson Foundation
  • Lakendra Brunston-Parker
  • Deborah Sanders
  • Vance Davis
  • Joyce Davis
  • The Fund for Education Abroad
  • Norfolk State University School of Business
  • University of Johannesburg Arts & Culture Center

It is with your support and motivation that I was able to conquer my first internship successfully and flawlessly, and I am forever grateful for all the support. This week was yet another week of learning and excitement. I was able to follow the lead director, Alby Michaels, around and explore different venues for the upcoming production “James & The Giant Peach.” We visited The Market Theater one of Africa’s oldest historical theater’s in memory of Nelson Mandela. On our way to visit the theater we drove across the Nelson Mandela Bridge. In addition, I was able to go to one of South Africa’s #1 film schools.

In my attendance at meetings and rehearsals I have really learned to admire Mr. Michaels and the Assistant Director Ayanda Bulose. They both are very straightforward and have a strong demeanor to get the job done. I’ve shadowed both directors and helped with many things, such as assisting with musical compositions and leading warm-ups during rehearsals. I will miss the students that I met because they were so nice and eager to see what I had to offer. These are the types of mannerisms we should teach people in America- to not put people down for what they love to do but inspire them and be happy to learn from one another.

Coming to South Africa I had many goals but my main one was to learn something to take back with me to America. This week I found out what it was that I was searching for this entire time: having faith in myself. Coming to Africa I was putting myself down about a lot of things and putting limitations on my mind. I’ve been through a lot of hardships in my lifetime and never would I have ever expected to be living in South Africa studying Theater. Over the course of these four weeks there were times when I felt like somethings just did not make sense to me. Those things made me stronger and made me have more faith in myself. Africa has been very great to me and I am grateful that I took this opportunity. With my departure next week, I can say that I am taking more than just luggage back with me. I am taking the skills and knowledge of what it takes to be a director and own my theater, learning how to motivate my peers into doing the impossible, and to continue being grateful. This weekend I plan to take the South African sightseeing tour bus as well as visit the Johannesburg zoo. I am very happy for both of these excursions because all I have been hearing since I’ve been here is, “have you seen any animals running around?”

(Below – Me touching a crocodile :))

The media sends off certain types of images about Africa, which immediately become solid negative images in our minds. Africa is just like america the only thing different is the money and opportunities. In America people are so quick to call Africa “Home of the Motherland” but we don’t really understand the story or the culture. If I could leave you with one thing to think about I would say visit Africa and I guarantee you this opportunity will change your way of living and how we view other parts of the world. Remember everything always seems impossible until it’s done!