We had the good fortune of connecting with Robert Manning, Jr. and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Robert, as a parent, what have you done for you children that you feel has had the most significant impact?
Giving my kids the opportunity to have a variety of opportunities and then getting out of their way.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a creative artist. Many may think I am an actor. But I write, I direct, I produce and I write novels, short stories and poetry. I love to make anything someone can build upon or react to.
I think the thing that sets me apart is my voice. I am an individual and that makes me unique. I think we are all unique in that way. I’m not trying to be anyone but who I am. My personal work does have a strong civil rights component.
I am where I am professionally through hard work, training, support and a lot of luck. Such a tough question because I am not where I would ultimately like to be.
Was it easy? It is never easy, but it is fun.
I believe challenges are opportunities. Being told “no” just makes me ask myself “what else do I need to do to make it a ‘yes'”.
Never give up. Never. You can change the world.
What do I want people to know? I love what I do.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Let me see. If Duaine, my best friend, was in town? Let us pretend COVID is not a factor. I would first take him to a Yankee game. Hot dogs, nachos, and beer. Next, we would go to the Statue of Liberty for the simple reason that I have not been. Yes, all my years in NYC and I have not been.
Then sushi on the Upper East Side. Amazing sushi on the UES.
Then Chinatown, Little Italy, Bronx, Hell’s Kitchen, Harlem. I would want him to get a flavor of the different neighborhoods in the city. And we would eat in each neighborhood.
Of course Central Park, but specifically Shakespeare in the Park, paddle boats, soccer or baseball (since my kids play).
That is about five days of activities.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My mother and father are the two people that set me along my path. They gave me their strength and tenacity. I owe them my life, literally.