Ever since the beginning of their senior year at Miami Northwestern Senior High School, Sherrod Taylor’s friends have been listening to him rave about seeing the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical Kinky Boots. Not only did he expect his friends to see his favorite musical at the Arsht Center in December, but he wanted them to come to a workshop for LGBT youth programmed by the Arsht Center’s Arts Education department.
“You have no idea how long he has been talking about this,” Remar Scott told me as the workshop ended.
“A loooong time,” Diamond Dozzier confirmed.
As soon as Taylor stepped into the Peacock Foundation Studio, he demanded a selfie with cast member Juan Torres-Falcon. A Cuban-American from Miami, Torres-Falcon plays one of the Kinky Boots “angels” – that is, a heavenly drag queen.
“One day, when I graduate college, I would love to be an angel,” Taylor revealed.
“I know this musical, you don’t have to teach me anything,” he assured Torres-Falcon and fellow angel, Ricky Schroeder. “I can do it tonight with you guys.”
When the master class started, Torres-Falcon told the 50 or so students spread across the studio floor, “This is like a Broadway audition.”
Looking at Taylor, he added, “Give it everything you got.”
That’s exactly what the aspiring angel did, as Torres-Falcon called out the steps: right-left-swim-swim-Pulp Fiction-Hail to the Queen-booty pop.
His friends Scott and Dozzier did not lag far behind. A fourth friend, Quintina Killings, does not consider herself a dancer. She had to try a little harder, but she didn’t mind.
“My favorite part was learning the choreography, because it made me feel fierce,” Killings said. “I feel like this play could be a message for everybody to be comfortable in their own skin.”