We had the good fortune of connecting with Devon Glover and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Devon, why did you pursue a creative career?
I pursued an artistic career as a way to work for myself. For a long stretch of time, I was having more financial success with my contract songwriting and performing jobs that my part-time teaching and retail jobs combined, and I felt that my pursuing an artistic career was the foremost way for me to provide income and survive in New York. This opportunistic career fell in my lap. Work as The Sonnet Man brings me in schools worldwide, giving me the pleasure of combining both of my careers – education and music.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I teach/perform Shakespeare through Hip Hop as The Sonnet Man. The goal of The Sonnet Man is to provide another form of edutainment; making Shakespeare more modern and accessible for students of all ages. By no means was this an easy task getting to where I am today, as I constantly working to keep my career going. I’ve overcame a lot of my challenges by collaborating with other artists and companies, alleviating some of my responsibilities. My work as The Sonnet Man has brought me into the world of theatre. Collaborating with progressive theatre companies has led me to begin setting my my next career as a theatre educator. My goals of The Sonnet Man are to 1)find the next Shakespeare or Tupac in our classroom by getting our students to write 2)provide more artistic and educational content that could be used in schools and theaters 3)continue to show the world the importance of Shakespeare and Hip Hop music.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
There are an assortment of places to hang out and eat in Crown Heights and the Lower East Side. For a week long trip, I would dedicate a day tour in Brooklyn; beginning at Coney Island, and using the train to visit spots in Crown Heights, Bed Stuy, and Downtown Brooklyn. There are so many wonderful night spots in various towns of Brooklyn, it all depends on the type of environment my best friend would like to be in. Brooklyn could provide that. I would also dedicate a day walking around lower and midtown Manhattan. At times, there’s no need to plan anything while in NYC, because we could bump into events just by walking. I would find time throughout the week to take my peer to Union Square, Bed Stuy, Harlem/125th Street, and Times Square, just so they could witness the pedestrian traffic.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I dedicate my career and success as The Sonnet Man to Arje Shaw, Esther Shaw and my mother, Yvette Collins. When I was down to my last dollar and still pursuing an artistic career without a job or future in sight, I never lost the support of my mother. Arje took a chance on me after one meeting, and was the first person ever to invest in my talents. I could name a whole list of schools and theatre companies who also took a chance on bringing in The Sonnet Man for some fascinating projects and events. For that, I’m forever grateful.
Elizabeth Arakelian, Laura Johnson, Devon Glover