Updated: Jan 27, 2020
Welcome to our latest edition of Monument's Get to Know series, where we interview members of our team and introduce them to our audience! This week we sat down with one of the newest members of our company, Deont'a Stark!
MONUMENT: Deont'a! Happy to have you on board! Ready to get started?
DEONT'A STARK: Always!
M: What’s your favorite color?
DS: My favorite color is blue, turquoise and sky blue to be exact!
M: Favorite food?
DS: Nachos, soul food, Italian food.
M: Do you have a favorite article of clothing?
DS: It's a hard choice to pick my favorite article of clothing because I love fashion so much and I’m all about looking nice.
M: Any tattoos?
DS: I only have one tattoo right now, but hopefully a few more in due time.
M: Favorite time of year?
DS: My favorite time of year would have to be spring because that's when my birthday is and the weather feels just right!
M: Are you a sports fan?
DS: I LOVE SPORTS!!!! Basketball is life, my favorite teams are the Warriors & Pacers. Football I’m a Packers & Colts fan, baseball I’m a Cubs & Yankees fan, and soccer I’m a Spain, Brazil and Barcelona fan.
(Note: Artistic Director Maverick Schmit is a diehard Bears fan. While he can't punish Deont'a for his atrocious taste in football franchises, he would like it to be on record that he's disappointed. 2018 Division Champs!)
M: Let's move on. Coffee or tea?
DS: Tea over coffee any day, I don’t like coffee but I like hot tea not sweet tea.
M: Dogs or cats?
DS: Dogs ALL DAY, cats are a no go! Cats just don’t do anything for me, dogs are beautiful, loving and can protect you. What can a cat do?
M: Any hobbies outside of theatre?
DS: My hobbies are bowling, skating, hanging with friends and family!!
M: What do you do to relax?
DS: Sick back and binge watch shows on Netflix.
M: Dream vacation?
DS: Dream vacation would be going to Africa because that’s where my people come from, my ancestors. So it would be so cool to get to travel and see the most beautiful place on Earth!
M: Is there a favorite author or poet?
DS: I don’t have a favorite author or poet, actually...
M: How about a favorite actor?
DS: Favorite actors are Denzel Washington, Will Smith and Jim Carrey.
M: Who is a hero of yours?
DS: My mom is definitely my hero and inspiration, being a single mother of three is no easy task. To persevere through all we’ve been through and never give up is something I will always admire and be grateful of.
M: What do you admire in people?
DS: I admire someone's personality because ultimately that will determine how or if we can connect. Also the realness in someone, not someone who puts up a front in front of certain people but not others.
M: What do you despise in people?
DS: I despise a liar! I absolutely cannot stand a person who lies, especially someone who is a habitual liar. Also someone who doesn’t have manners or respect for others.
M: What charms you in a person?
DS: A good sense of humor.
M: Where are you from?
DS: I’m from Indianapolis, Indiana.
M: What was it like growing up there?
DS: Growing up here wasn’t so bad. But now that I’m a little older I see what’s going on here, it's a city that's struggling. It’s sad because we have reached a point in the city where people are dying everyday and multiple times a day at that, and it’s all kinds of ages. It's devastating.
M: When did you develop an interest in theatre?
DS: I developed my interest in theatre my sophomore year of high school when my school did Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. After that I knew this is what I wanted to do. Something about being on that stage just clicked and felt so right.
M: You went to study at Indiana State University. Why ISU?
DS: Honestly ISU was the place that offered the most financial aid. I was originally accepted into the musical theatre program at Heidelberg University in Ohio, but it didn't work out. That said, I’m glad it worked out the way it did because otherwise I never would’ve had the chance to go out of the country and meet some great people.
M: What are the stories that resonate with you?
DS: I would say comedy because I like to laugh and make others laugh as well. I connect to comedies because it is just the person I am.
M: What is the effect you'd like your work to have on your audience?
DS: I want my work to affect the audience in the most raw way, because then they can see me for me.
M: You recently got to be a part of Crossroads Repertory Theatre's 2018 season, specifically Hairspray - which happens to be one of your favorite plays. What was that like?
DS: Hairspray was an unforgettable experience. Being my first professional show I couldn’t think of anything I’d rather be a part of. Being an African American male in today’s society is still hard as it was back in the ‘60s. Met some talented people from all over and made friendships that will last a lifetime.
M: What has been your most gratifying experience?
DS: Definitely going to Vietnam has been the most gratifying experience I’ve had in theatre. Being able to take musical theatre over to their country where they don’t have it was such an experience. So grateful for that opportunity.
M: How would you describe your acting style?
DS: For my acting style I would say I just try to be as natural and raw I can.
M: A century from now, what would you like to be remembered for?
DS: I would like to be remembered as someone who puts others before himself. Someone who made sure his family was okay and someone who loved the stage and lit it up every time I walked on it!
Now you know Deont'a! Keep your eyes peeled for him in Monument's second season! Don't forget to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and subscribe to our newsletter so you stay in the loop on all of our updates, job openings, and events!