Black History Month: A.D. Is A Scholar Not A Saint - Page 2
Although the environment might not always have been a positive portrayal for a child, A.D. was in high spirits and always taken care of by his family.
“I would walk out of my house and see hustlers, or kids looking to and actually mugging me. I would leave my house feeling upbeat and proud because of my family, these other kids were always wondering why is he so proud and positive.”
A.D. maintained his positivity and kept forward on the straight and narrow path. It was a constant process that he had to deal with a lot merely because of his intellect and his excellent upbringing.
However, the hustlers in his neighborhood would not let him descend to their lifestyle; they constantly helped to keep A.D. focused because of his intellect.
He talks about his ascendance into the arena of entertainment.
“Growing up, I came from an extraverted family. They were very social and performance like types of people. Not that they did anything in that realm, it was just the way functioned in social settings. So, basically I was the one kid amidst all of these adults who was quiet. When you’re the kid who’s quiet, you get singled out. So, I essentially became the kid who did and said things to keep people entertained.”
A.D. was basically working rooms at home and at family functions with no entry fee, and a no drink minimum by the age of 8.
“When I was in school, I was a nerd so I had to do something to counteract the nerdyness and the awkwardness so it was just easier to become an entertainer. If somebody said that I had a big head, I would play into the fact that I had a big head and turn it into a whole thing and go on a tangent with it. I would pull out a character, because when you are an only child you develop characters.”
A.D. began to hone his skills by participating and performing in musicals and had an opportunity to go to one of the greatest artistic schools on the East Coast. People recognized his excellent speech skills and the powerful tone to his voice.
“It was LaGuardia, one of the big art high schools. My parents were like you’re not going because you got accepted to a big name private school. I sad uh, ok. I came from an immigrant family, so my parents were about going to school to get a skill. Work hard, be proud. Being a performer was looked upon as taking a shot in the dark.”Continued on the next page