We had the good fortune of connecting with Maurice D. Proffit and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Maurice D., we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
For many years, I was going around to various theatre companies in Chicago trying to sell my skills and abilities pertaining to being an asset to their theatre company. Whether it be script writing, producing, directing, project coordinator, marketing, etc., I was hungry to apply my existing skill set and find a theatre home somewhere. But sadly, every meeting I set up, every person and every theatre organization I reached out to, I was denied. I didn’t allow this to break me or to stop me in my journey, so instead of asking THEM permission to be great, I gave MYSELF permission to be great. With this I decided to start my own entertainment company giving artists a viable outlet so this way they can grow and build their own crafts whilst getting paid for their work. No one should be left back when it comes to trying to be better.
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.
I am a film/theatre producer, director and the founder of B-Side Studios LLC. I have over 20 original projects (both in film and theatre) under my belt that I have produced and directed. B-Side Studios grants artist the opportunity to channel their abilities in a concentrated setting with the interest of their own personal growth. No experience is too little nor too much. Age doesn’t play a factor at all. There is an artist inside all of us and that inner artist should have a voice to speak. We ensure that not only that voice comes out but its heard by others. While other theatre companies may look for what may be wrong with you, B-Side finds everything that is RIGHT about you. It’s this philosophy and our growing reputation is what brings a smile to my face knowing that a difference is occurring. This positive energy is imperative because I have traveled down way too many roads that lead me to an embarrassingly high number of rejections. But as I noted earlier, those rejections were welcomed because they made me much stronger. It never was easy hearing and receiving those “No’s”, but when your belief is larger than what your soul can contain, anything is possible.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
Sweet! 7am – Gym at Planet Fitness in Logan Square: I call this the “bougie gym” since it has the best equipment hahahaha! So we’ll hit that up first. 9am – Batter and Berries (Breakfast): Were splitting the french toast flight and Im getting the steak and eggs 11:30am – Museum of Modern Art; Consistently this is the best meseum in the city with an amazing gift shop. 3pm – New Wave Cafe in Avondale/Logan Square: This is where I go to write all the time. I go here to write, I have meetings here and I use this place as a creative refuge when I just need to get away. 5pm – Logan Theatre: The historic Logan Square Theatre to watch an obscure indie film that they may be showing. 730pm – Hitting up the Wicker Park Art scene as there are a variety of small shoebox theatres (Den, Collaboration, etc), bars, restaurants, resale shops, etc. 10pm- Subterranean : Its a lounge/club that does open mic for hip hop. Great spot to see independent hip hop artists perform. 1am- Cafe Iberico: Tappas spot downtown that closes very late. Great place to go to for a late night bite and sangria.
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?
A number of people. Valerie Profit (My mother): She is the one who not only instilled in me my love for the arts, but be consistently always kept the fuel in me at a high when it came to my love and passion for the arts. I literally wouldn’t be in this position right now if it wasn’t for her. Christine Proffit (My Spouse): My wife serves as a cornerstone in my life when it comes to my ambitions and objectives. In addition she continues to be in my corner for every project I involve myself with. Omar McClintock (My Mentor): Ive been working with Omar for a little under a year and the guidance, direction, advice and wisdom that I’ve received from him has been invaluable. My entire professional life Ive always wanted someone to be able to pick their brain and learn from. Omar satiates that void exceptionally. So much to the fact that I consider him a friend. The Act Pack (My Crew): This is the greatest artistic collective that is in the city of Chicago. Completely original and organic in terms of its structure, the Act Pack is a driving force in my life that continues to push me to be better and better as a creator. Plus this is one of the best group of friends anyone could ask for.
Instagram: @mrproffit & @bside.studios
Facebook: facebook.com/mproffit5 , facebook.com/MrMauriceProffit/ and facebook.com/BSideStudiosLLC
Paulina Fadrowska (pic of me with the purple tie) Chrissy Johnston (pics of me in the “rap mom” tshirt”) Other pics were selfies