Brandon Victor Dixon, locally grown Broadway superstar and arts booster

Brandon Victor Dixon, locally grown Broadway superstar and arts booster

At heart, Broadway celebrity Brandon Victor Dixon will always be a Gaithersburg, Maryland, boy. Even although he hasn’t lived in the area given that large college, the Hamilton and Shade Purple alum nonetheless returns to the state when it’s time to renew his driver’s license, visit with family, and reminisce about the position that released his vocation in the arts. Now the Tony, Emmy, and Grammy nominee, who can be seen this Friday on PBS’s Stars on Phase from Westport County Playhouse, has yet another reason to return property: The Brandon Victor Dixon Awards.

Brandon Victor Dixon, locally grown Broadway superstar and arts booster
Brandon Victor Dixon undertaking in Stars on Phase from Westport Nation Playhouse. Image by Carol Rosegg.

Dixon was enthusiastic when The Countrywide Theatre of Washington, DC, questioned him to lend his name to the initially DC-based department of the Jimmy Awards (the affectionate nickname for the Nationwide Superior College Musical Theatre Awards recognizing excellence in superior faculty theater courses). “My relationship to the DC location and its purpose in my advancement as an artist is extremely powerful,” Dixon claimed in a recent telephone interview. “So when they approached me with the thought of growing the Jimmy Awards, I was really fascinated in serving to to develop meaningful academic options for youthful men and women in the DC spot.”

Substantial college students close to the state develop into qualified for the Jimmy Awards by competing in regional programs like the new Brandon Victor Dixon Award. The winners of these regional plans then progress to the nationwide competitiveness in New York Metropolis. Incredibly, Washington, DC, has never had a neighborhood application to feed into this prestigious and formative celebration for large college thespians. That will transform this spring when up to 25 substantial faculties within just a 25-mile radius of Washington, DC, will be capable to compete for recognition.

In addition to lending his title to the prize, Dixon will aid run the DC program, host the awards ceremony at the National Theatre, and, he claims, “I’ll be there for the winners when they occur to NYC for the nationwide competitors.”

After rising up in Gaithersburg, Maryland, Dixon attended Washington, DC’s St. Alban’s School Prep University, in which he credits theater teachers Frankie Tacker and Richard Dorton for recognizing his talents and steering him toward many options in arts education. “They had a pretty significant influence on how I saw myself and my capability in the arts,” Dixon claims of his lecturers. With their support, Dixon became a U.S. Presidential Scholar semifinalist and received a scholarship to show up at a summer program at Oxford University’s British Academy of Spectacular Performing, in which he was the youngest student in the application.

Dixon knew he experienced an affinity for the arts by age three. In eighth quality, he was performing Shakespeare at the Folger Theatre. In large faculty, he skilled in voice at DC’s Levine College of New music and attended summer season systems at the Duke Ellington University of the Arts. “These ordeals linked me to a community of younger, aspiring artists, many of whom I’m still in contact with nowadays,” he observes.

He hopes the Brandon Victor Dixon Awards will convey comparable early enrichment opportunities to younger folks who want a career in the arts. “It’s essential to instill the perform ethic and group building that occur from finding out, educating, and education oneself,” he suggests. “To have this sort of eye-opening experiences at a youthful age in terms of what the arts can do for your lifetime can make all the variance.”

Brandon Victor Dixon. Picture by Dario Calmese.

Dixon obtained his “big break” just a few decades after transferring to New York Town to go to Columbia University. In his senior calendar year of university, he was cast as Adult Simba in the nationwide tour of The Lion King (2003). From there, he’s been in a string of superior-profile productions, earning Tony Award nominations for his roles in The Coloration Purple (2005) and Shuffle Alongside (2016). In addition to his performing accolades, Dixon received a Tony Award for producing the 2014 Broadway revival of Hedwig and the Angry Inch.

Using Broadway to tv, Dixon received an Emmy nomination for participating in Judas in the NBC reside concert manufacturing of Jesus Christ Superstar in 2018. “TV musicals are tricky, ambitious undertakings,” Dixon says of the venture, which grew to become the most-watched Television musical of recent times. “It’s tricky to make them truly triumph, so I’m happy a good deal of certain elements arrived with each other in the ideal way.” Dixon also reprised his portrayal of Tom Collins in Rent when that show was carried out reside on Fox.

Television viewers will have the opportunity to see Dixon once again this Friday, January 21, at 9:00 PM in a concert exclusive filmed for PBS at the Westport Nation Playhouse. In placing jointly materials for the show, Dixon chose tracks “from my lifetime and my job that discuss to me in a sure way.” Dixon notes that he came of age on Broadway at a time when a assortment of tunes genres have been earning their way on to Broadway stages. So, the concert will contain figures by regular theater composers like Rogers and Hammerstein and Stephen Sondheim as perfectly as pop and soul figures by Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, and Stevie Surprise. “Soul songs to me necessitates a distinctive relationship to psychological storytelling, which is what theater is about, so it is not a coincidence that people are the variety of artists that I’m drawn to,” Dixon suggests.

What does Dixon contemplate the most useful issue about a job in the arts? “Pursuing a occupation in the arts has expanded my environment and my ability to join with other individuals and with elements of myself. As a job, it is a serious personalized growth system and I enjoy that.”

Stars on Stage from the Westport Region Playhouse that includes Brandon Victor Dixon premieres on Friday, January 21, 2022, at 9:00 PM EST on PBS,, and the PBS online video application available on iOS, Android, Roku, Apple Television, Amazon Fire Tv, Android Television, Samsung Intelligent Television set, Chromecast, and VIZIO.

Extra information about the National Theatre’s Brandon Victor Dixon Awards can be discovered below.