Today we’d like to introduce you to Keith Mascoll.
Keith, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I am a high energy chameleon Actor, producer. I belong to Actors Equity Union for stage and The Screen Actors Guild for film. I am here to inspire people by living out the stories of others through my acting. I am committed to using my unique and innovative style to provoke love, laughter, and empathy in each story told. I strive to use my art for social change. I have a strong background with working with young people. I am a founding Staff Member of Citizen schools, and a Teaching Artist for the Huntington Theatre Company. I have designed innovative programing for 500-1000 middle school age to high school students. I am passionate about the one man show Triggered directed by John Oluwole Adekoje because I am a survivor of sexual abuse. It was not until adulthood that I felt comfortable to share my story of childhood abuse. Sexual abuse of Black men is rarely discussed. One of the goals of this project is to create awareness about issues of sexual violence experienced by men of color. Triggered can help mental health practitioners appreciate the complexity of trauma and its impact in the black and brown communities. Through this project I hope to inspire other men of color to release their pain and hurt, to begin their healing process as I have started.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
My journey to this point in my career and producing Triggered has not been easy. The biggest challenge has been the loss of both of my parents, while coming to grips with my truth about being abused. The feeling of being an orphan feeling alone when I needed my parents the most has been painful. This journey really started when I moved back to my childhood home. All of the memories of the abuse came rushing back to me, I had to sort out these memories and come to grips with picking up the pieces of my life, identity, and sexuality in the face of grief. It took a toll on me which caused me to stop acting consistently so I could take the space to take care of my mind, body, and spirit. All of these things happened as I was experiencing a successful acting career, but it was more important for me to deal with the loss my parents and deal with the realization of my abuse. In the last year, I have been trying to recover from a bad case of shingles. The stress of the promoting and touring for a recent project, Confused by Love film took a toll on my body. This film afforded me the opportunity to travel to France and 8 other cities in a year which ended up complicating my health. I had to learn to work when I could and rest when it was necessary in order to create a healthy balance for my recovery.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
As an actor it is important to use my art to tell stories that need to be told, working with John Adekoje to help shape and build these stories makes all the difference. John and I work seamlessly and think as one on every project we work on together. Triggered is no different. There is a spiritual honesty and political statement in our work. We utilize all of our cultural gifts like storytelling, art, music, and fashion in our work together. John has added projection and technology to take it to the next level.
Triggered is a multi-sensory, multimedia post-traumatic story that reveals the psyche of men in need of understanding, love, and forgiveness. Triggered asks how exactly does trauma cast a shadow over the wholeness of black male selfhood? When does the shared cultural values of black and brown communities demand that men suppress their vulnerability and meet with their psychology alone? What kind of masculine identity is constructed and how can we redefine it? How do we stop reinforcing a mythology that masquerades are natural?
Triggered follows a day in the life of two such men, one named Malik and the other Keith. As they share their stories, we are forced to come to terms with how our urge to suppress, hide and lock away the experiences, thoughts and feelings that feed the very thing we most fear. I am blessed to be creating work for myself. I helped create a local professional black theater company in Cambridge so as to continue having stories that represent communities of color. Currently, I have been producing and staring in the movie titled Argyles. And Rosey this spring and summer. You can find me online in the film Confused by love. I have a role in the recently released Polka King starring Jack Black.
What were you like growing up?
I was a great energetic kid. I love dancing, soccer, basketball, football and the arts. I knew at a young age, I had a gift of being able to make people laugh. Initially, I was unaware of the effect it had on people. I loved doing impressions of famous people and my family. I leaned on my creativity to get me through the rough moments of my life. Dancing always has been a great outlet for me besides acting. Growing up I danced with my mom all the time, it was a big part of our relationship in which I adored. I have to move when I hear music, it takes over my body and the emotion flows out. Music and dancing is the one constant in my life and helps me feel connected to my mom. When the abuse occurred it made me feel depressed and it started to affect my sleep and school performance. The hardest part was that no one ever asked me, what happened to cause these changes in me.
- Website: www.keithmascoll.com
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @keithmascoll
- Facebook: @keithmascoll
- Twitter: @keithmascoll
- Other: www.triggered.com
John Oluwole Adekoje, John Savone, Neettrice Gaskins, Crosby Tatum