Now Reading
Otis Sallid, Creative Mastermind and Arts Advocate

Otis Sallid, Creative Mastermind and Arts Advocate

Otis Sallid

At 74 years young, Otis Sallid assumed the mantle of creative director at Damsel, igniting Atlanta’s dining and entertainment scene with unparalleled flair. With over 50 years of artistic brilliance, including landmark achievements like shaping Broadway’s iconic “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” and collaborating with Debbie Allen on “Fame,” Sallid has enchanted audiences for decades. Fueled by family love and a passion for nurturing talent, he blazes trails, confronting industry barriers to champion inclusivity and pave the way for a brighter future in the arts.

What obstacles have you had to overcome to get to where you are today?
When I was coming up in the business, they didn’t hire people of color in many positions in the arts. Over time, we have seen some changes, but there are still limited opportunities for people of color. Access to and in the arts has to be thought of as a human right. Change is difficult but necessary.

How do you continually work to better yourself?
Writing is the latest skill that I am developing. My new project, a musical about boxing great Joe Louis, is one way in which I am honing this new skill. I had to work through my fears of writing and it has paid off. I tell many young people that once you face the dragons, they disappear. You must be able to stand in the sun and in the rain.

How does your health routine look different today than it did when you were in your 20s?
Being in the dance world at a very high level has enabled me to stay healthy and fit. I don’t often go to dance classes to stay fit anymore, but I like strength training and weightlifting. I work out at a fabulous gym called Ultimate Bodies by Carlos, and the people and trainers there really care for me.

How have you used your passion to make the world a better place?
I volunteer at several nonprofits and community centers, sharing my love for theater, film, television and dance. Through the nonprofit Broadway Dreams and several others, I work to mentor, coach and guide artists to great lives and careers.

What exciting things do you hope to do in the future?
I want to build on the work I have started—developing and promoting diverse and intergenerational arts communities. I want to continue to call attention to the Museum of African American Dance, another of my passion projects.,

View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

© 2020 Atlanta Best Media. All Rights Reserved.
Powered by Evolve Marketing

Scroll To Top