The multi-talented Rawlanda Hercules ’20 has been performing all her life. Growing up, she listened to and sang the music her mother, a child of the 1970s, loved. Performing religious skits at church and later full-fledged productions in elementary school was the foundation of Rawlanda’s love for acting. “When middle school rolled around, I began to see how my performances impacted other people. I played the lead role in our talk-show-esque performance for a gala at Richards Middle School. After the performance, someone came up to me and said I could be the next Oprah Winfrey! As I continued to act and sing, I realized I could make a difference in people’s lives. That’s when I knew I wanted to be a performer.”
When considering her major, Rawlanda considered the two things she loved most, theatre and music. “I recognized that I would need a specific skill set to succeed as a performer. I wanted to combine practical and theoretical skills for both majors into one; therefore, the two majors separately would not be the best choice for me.” She met with professors and advisors, and set forth a proposed list of requirements for a major that would satisfy her aspirations. It took minor tweaking, but in the end she got full approval for her self-designed major: music-theatre. “When I graduate, I can go into any music- or theatre-related field. I could become an actress on stage or screen, a teacher of theatre or music, a vocalist, composer, or musical artist.”
Rawlanda has performed in three shows and directed one during her time at Wesleyan. In 2018 she played Pearl in These Shining Lives, Teacher in the student-written show All in One, and Sister Mary Hubert in the musical Nunsense. She directed “The Larson Plays”, a series of short, comedic scenes. Recently she performed the National Anthem for a Macon Mayhem hockey game.
Hailing from Columbus, Georgia, Rawlanda is the second person in her family to earn the prestigious full-tuition, room, and board Corn Scholarship. Sister Seychelle graduated in 2018. Currently serving as president of the honor society Alpha Lambda Delta, Rawlanda is also a member of Black Student Alliance, theatre club, and the tennis team, and serves as a resident advisor, a peer mentor, and a peer tutor.
So what is her dream job/career goal? “My dream job and career goal are very different. My dream job is to be a working actor and musical artist. My career goal is to found a performing arts school for underprivileged youth. No one should be at a disadvantage based on their socioeconomic status. I want to encourage youth to embrace their talents.”
Wesleyan College is privileged to steward many arts and cultural events and share them with the community. Most are free and open to the public. Wesleyan art galleries are open M-F 1:30 – 5:00 PM and on Wesleyan Market Saturdays from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM.
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