Azali Cyril (The DreamYard Project)
My name is Azali Cyril and I was born in Manhattan, but I’ve been raised in Brooklyn. I like Brooklyn, though my mom says it’s a lot different than how it used to be. There was only a Chinese food place across the street years ago and now there’s a spa, an Indian food restaurant, and a bakery. It’s pretty cool.
I’m sixteen now and I go to the Beacon School. It has performing arts and visual arts, which they offer as electives in lots of clubs. My step-dad is a teaching artist at DreamYard, and I sometimes and that’s how I heard about The Tempest auditions. I also go to DreamYard events every now and then. It was Ms. Robyne that recommended this production for me, so I’m thankful for her. She’s my angel.
I went to middle school for theater arts, but high school is different. It’s more academic focused. I’ve been taking acting, dancing, and singing classes for a while at the Ifetayo Cultural Arts Program. I really want to go on to be a performer. I’ll pretty much settle for anything in the performing arts. I don’t even care if I don’t get paid a lot. I just can’t see myself doing anything else. My biggest dream would be to go on Broadway. I love Broadway. I’ve seen a couple of Broadway shows such as Wicked, The Lion King, and West Side Story. When I graduate, I’d like to go to Howard University because I would like to go to an HBCU—a historically black college or university. Howard University’s theater program is astounding and it’s supposed to be the best HBCU. I know a lot of people who go there also, so it just seems perfect. I’ve been visiting there every year since I was in the 5th grade.
I have a lot of people who are coming to see me in The Tempest. And I’ve told them, “I’m just in the ensemble!” But I know that there are no small roles, only small actors, so I feel good about being in the ensemble. And I love my costume! I’m wearing orange tie-dye pants, and a neon pink spaghetti-strap shirt with a colorful see-through long-sleeved button up shirt. I’m also wearing purple hoop earrings. It’s a really snazzy costume. Rehearsals for The Tempest have been so so so much fun! Even when we have to do things over and over again, I’m just thinking “yes!” because I want to do it again and again and again and again. I don’t ever want to stop. I’m really enjoying the singing and dancing together. It’s like a packet of awesome sauce.