Meet The DYMS Staff
Benjamin Williams/Ben Will - Founder & Project Director
Ben Will is a native of Detroit, MI and earned his Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in theatre from Wayne State University. He also studied at the Moscow Art Theatre School in Russia and classical theatre in Spetes, Greece. Ben has worked at the historic Detroit Repertory Theatre, the nationally renowned Purple Rose Theatre, The Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble in Pennsylvania, in the films From My Window, Apparitions, and A Love That Hurts, a national commercial for 5 Hour Energy and as the national spokesperson of PSF Mobile. In his commitment to theatrical outreach and youth development Ben has also worked for Wild Swan Theatre, Teen HYPE, VSA Michigan, and The Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit. Also an accomplished vocalist, been recently released his debut neo- gospel single “I Need Thee” currently available on iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play (www.benwilldetroit.com)
Carollette Phillips - Associate Project Director
Carollette Phillips has a M.F.A. in Theatre from Wayne State University where she was a member of the Hilberry Repertory Company. In 2015, she appeared in three SAG films – Do You Believe?, It Follows, and American Prophet – as well as being chosen a principal actress in DTE Energy's "Know Your Own Power" commercial series. At WSU, Carollette appeared as Nina (The Seagull), Lady Anne (Richard III) and Hero (Much Ado About Nothing) among numerous other roles then made her professional theatre debut as Elizabeth in the Performance Network’s production of "In the Next Room" and as Camae in "The Mountaintop." You may have also heard her voice on various promotions for Radio One and PBS. Carollette is a professional choreographer, currently working with LaShelle’s School of Dance and Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit. Carollette is grateful to God for His grace & blessings! (www.Carollette.com)
Indigo Colbert - Acting Coach
Indigo Colbert is a native of Detroit, MI. While attending University Preparatory Academy Middle School she took an improvisation class taught by Tom Pare. It was this class that ignited her passion for theatre. At age 11 she decided to devote her life to the arts. She went on to study theatre at Mosaic Youth Theatre and Wayne State University. During her senior year of high school at the Detroit School of Arts, she began teaching theatre for the Readers Theatre Program at the Detroit Public Library and continues to teach to this day in programs such as the Boys Theatre of Detroit and Create and Perform. She believes that Arts Education can be very vital to the growth and development of a child. While attending Wayne State she was a member of their African dance company To Sangana, directed by Professor Karen Prall. She was also a member of the modern dance company Body Rhythm Dance Theatre, directed by Shirley Bryant. She’s been seen in local productions such as “Night Scales: A Fable for Klara K”. “Getting Out”, “Flow”, “Intimate Apparel”, “Walk Tall” and “The Fall to Earth”. She continues on her journey of perfecting her craft through performance and teaching the arts to the youth of Detroit, MI.
John Sloan III - Acting Coach
John Sloan III (AEA/SAG)
Born and raised in Metro-Detroit, Sloan studied Musical Theatre at the University of Michigan (BFA program '01-'05) and has over a decade of experience as a professional artist. An accomplished musician and actor, Sloan has performed in numerous regional theatre productions, and concert events. His favorite credits include "Brutus" (JULIUS X), "Mereb" (AIDA), and "Banzai" (u/s THE LION KING Nat'l Tour).
As the Founding Producing Director of GhostLight Productions, Sloan has produced and directed events across the country. And, in 2012, started The Helping Hands Campaign, a nationwide outreach organization dedicated to uniting the artist with the community. Helping Hands has organized outreach events and benefit concerts for non-profit organizations across the country; including, but not limited to: The United Way, The Red Cross, and NACCP.
John is the current Reigning Champion Coach of The Detroit Youth Monologue Slam!!!
Shawntay Dalon - Acting Coach
Shawntay Dalon is an Award Winning actress, writer & filmmaker. Shawntay founded her own production company CalienTay Productions. She has performed her Spoken Word pieces, written stageplays, commercial treatments, and screenplays all over the United States. Shawntay's original film “Encorette” was filmed & premiered in London, England. And “The Time” which starred Shawntay in the leading role won “MyTv20 Best Short Film Award” at the Trinity International Film Festival. Shawntay`s first written Feature screenplay “I Am, My Sisters Keeper” will be released in 2015 and she was also recently cast as Chrissy on the new Comedy Central Original series Detroiters. Anytime you ask her, Shawntay will let you know, all she does, is not by her might, but all God. She gives Honor and Glory to her savior, Jesus Christ. (www.ShawntayDalon.com)
Monica J. Palmer - Acting Coach
Monica J. Palmer is a Native of Detroit, MI. She studied theatre at Wayne State University receiving her BFA and also received her MFA in Theatre from Cornell University. Monica has toured with Disney's The Lion King in both the National and International companies. As an accomplished stage actress Monica has performed all over the world including Singapore, Hawaii, Mexico, and Taiwan. Monica was the first Champion Coach of The Detroit Youth Monologue Slam!!!