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SPHS Alum Dominique Johnson Making Waves on Broadway

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28 Nov 2012 (SPHS) – Dominique Johnson, of Spain Park High School, has landed a role as "Cameron" in the hit Broadway musical Bring It On - a production which "...tells the story of the challenges and unexpected bonds formed through the thrill of extreme competition - according to the official Bring It On website.   St. James Theatre, 246 West 44th Street, NYC, stages the musical. Follow Dominique @DOM_inate

HCS reached out to alum Dominique Johnson for this Q&A: 

Q: How did you land this role?
A: It was very non-conventional. A few years ago, I had just gotten off of the international tour of FAME in China and I was spending some time at home in Hoover with my family. I was feeling like I needed to be doing something so I look around to see if there were any shows in Birmingham and Atlanta I could join. In my search, I saw that the Alliance theatre was doing the world premiere of Bring It On: The Musical. I felt so strongly about be able to do it. But, I wasn’t even in New York to audition. Through a turn of miraculous circumstances some may say I was asked by the casting director to submit a video, then she invited me to NYC for a final callback. Needless to say, I booked it. I’ve stayed with the production from Workshop, to Atlanta premiere, to National Tour, and Now BROADWAY!!!

Q: Tell us about your character, about “Bring It On” and about the general flavor of working on a Broadway cast.
A: I play Cameron in the show. He is described by most as the sexy basketball player boyfriend of the “Queen B” of Jackson High School, Danielle. He is also very anti-cheerleading but gets persuaded by his girlfriend to join. I, by the way, NEVER thought I’d use me and sexy basketball player in the same sentence but that’s the beauty of being an actor you get to do things you yourself would never do. I even rap in the show!  Working on this show has been a dreamy unique experience. As the original broadway cast we actual work hand in hand with the creators and also get to do cool stuff like record the album and perform at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.

Q: What is your schedule like?
A: We perform eight shows a week (two of Wednesday and Saturday). Given the amount of athleticism in the show I try my best to sleep when I’m not working. I have just now been able to become a little more social but it’s the price you pay...I’m very willing to sacrifice going out for my job though.

Q: How did you develop a love for theatre prior to NYC?
A: I did theatre at Spain Park High School and I knew pretty early on that Broadway was the goal. I had know idea it’d happen like in has. I moved to New York officially this year but I’ve been coming back and forth for a three years. It took about a year for me to land this role though. Some people it takes more and others less.

Q: What else have you been a part of (theatre-wise) since arriving in NYC?
A: I’m thankful to say I’ve only had to do theatre.

Q: How tough is Broadway? Any advice for up-and-coming theatre students?
A: Broadway started out as dream and now it’s my job. I do have a dreamy job but I didn’t factor in the stamina of doing eight shows a week, the rejection that’s inevitable, and the fact that this is the entertainment BUSINESS! Business can be tricky when all you wanted to do was be an artist. I’d say to my fellow theatre students learn as much as you possibly can about the theatre world...onstage and off, keep you family and friends close, and treat people like how you want to be treated in this world.

Q: What are your career goals?
A: Acting is my goal always. I hope to continue to do more Broadway if that’s what God has planned but I’m very interested in television and film next. I’ll go with the flow of the current. There’s someone bigger than me steering the boat, I’m just along for the ride.

Q: For those intimidated about coming to NYC and navigating through the maze of Broadway shows and ticket brokers, what have you found to be the easiest way to get a good seat at a good show at a decent price?
A: That’s a tricky question being that I don’t really see many shows because I work every night. I know they’re are Rush Tickets available at some show and TKTS in Time Square has pretty good deals.

Q: Are you originally from Alabama/Birmingham?
A: Born and Raised in Birmingham!  Spain Park High School Class of 2008.

Q: What was your time in Hoover City Schools like and how did it prepare you for your career?
A: The best thing I took from my time in high school are my friends. I still have them to this day. Whenever I’m home (which is rare) we visit each other. We stay connected over Facebook and some even visit me in the City. We were a very close class. I have to thank Jesse Tilton, my theatre teacher at Spain Park, for being so great in allowing me to cultivate my creativity. Jeanie Boone was my computer teacher and she was a gem as well.

Q: Do you still have family in Hoover-Birmingham?
A: My entire family still lives in Hoover and my two youngest brothers, Donaje and Devonta, attend Hoover High School. I still say GO JAGS!

Q: What’s your schedule like outside of Broadway? Favorite things to do in NYC?
A: I love to go eat with my friends and shop at places for the first time. We all love to have little apartment parties. Sometimes we get all fancy and go to nice meals but most of the time my free time consists of reading and sleeping.

Q: Your parting thoughts?
A: To all of the teachers and students you may be reading this just know that the child whose essay you’re holding, the person sitting next to you in English, or even the student whose name you may not even know...is special. Don’t discount anyone. Don’t judge anyone. If you give love you give life and who knows...maybe the person you’re loving is going to end up on Broadway one day. Thanks to all who loved me.

See more about "Bring It On": 

See Cameron and other "Bring It On" cast members perform "I Got You" at the November 2012 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade: 

-Jason Gaston, HCS District Coordinator of Public/Media Relations - 205.439.1054


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