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Young thespian Taye Theophilus happy to be bitten by acting bug

'It’s not always going to go the way you planned,' GBDSS student says about performing. 'It’s a big game of chance. Appreciate it if you do get a role, and play the role as best you can'

Taye Theophilus was bitten by the performing bug a few years ago, and hasn’t looked back since.

“It’s like a form of mosquitoes,” says the Grade 12 Georgian Bay District Secondary School student about his love of theatre.

After trying out for and acting in many of the school plays put on at Georgian Bay Secondary School, Theophilus recently played one of the Three Amigos in a comedic skit at Buddies in Badtimes theatre in Toronto.

With the help of a couple of his real-life amigos, Theophilus has been pursuing acting and performing.

“I’m leaning more towards the comedy aspect,” says Theophilus. “My friend group has encouraged me to open up that side of my personality.”

While comedic acting is definitely something Theophilus is interested in pursuing, he started cutting his teeth in drama class performances and the larger productions put on at Georgian Bay District Secondary School by their drama department.

Theophilus has graced the stage acting in Matilda, Kid Frankenstein, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Deus Ex Machina while a student at GBDSS.

He was also slated to be part of the cast for the school’s spring production of Beauty and the Beast, but that offering was cancelled by the school and board after an alleged incident involving cast members.

More recently, however, Theophilus has taken the stage with the National Theatre School in Barrie.

In the coming weeks, he’ll be acting in a play with NTS that takes place with characters performing at various speeds in the Velocity of Sin.

If it sounds complicated, that’s because it is. All the actors are performing at various speeds throughout the play until they figure out what’s happening to them.

“It’s very complex,” says the budding thespian. “Recently, I’ve just been doing any kind of public performance. “It’s a really fun thing that’s entertaining and gets a lot of energy out.”

Acting isn’t his only talent, Theophilus also loves to draw, and participated in painting a mural at school that took months to complete.

He was asked to participate in the creation of the mural in his first year at GBDSS, which says a lot about his skills as an artist.

“I have a billion sketchbooks, and I still do a good amount of drawing,” he says,” but I’m definitely more focused on performance.

“Even if it’s not my main career, I do want to do it on the side every so often. I want to go into the arts world when I go into college. That’s the route I’ve gone down throughout high school.”

As for his biggest influences, Theophilus immediately named his two dramatic arts teachers Matthew Rodnick and Betony Main.

“They have led me, and a bunch of my friends down that path,” he says. “They’re the two that popped into my head right away.”

When it comes to auditioning, and putting yourself out there on stage, Theophilus sounds like an actor with years of experience offering up great advice to younger up and coming performers.

“It’s not always going to go the way you planned. It’s a big game of chance. Appreciate it if you do get a role, and play the role as best you can.”