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Hello, I'm
Gerald C. Rivers

The Voice of Dr. King

About

 

Gerald C. Rivers, grew up in Compton, California. Studied at the Sheenway Theatre Arts Repertory in Los Angeles, Earned an Associates of Arts Degree in Theatre Arts from Los Angles City College, where he also served two terms as the ASO President and was a 3-time National Gold Medalist in Dramatic Interpretation with the National Forensics League. He then continued his education in Theatre & Marketing at Morehouse College in Atlanta.

After college he joined the Academy Theatre (at that time, Georgia's oldest existing professional theatre), where he toured and performed for several years before going on to become the Associate Artistic Director. As a classically trained theatre actor, Gerald has performed with The Georgia Shakespeare Festival, the Hippodrome State Theatre in Florida, Tony Plana's East L.A. Classic Theatre and countless other regional theatres and is currently a company member (where he has performed for the last 20 years) at the Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum. Gerald portrayed Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in several Los Angeles theatre productions as well as a several national tours and received critical acclaim for his performances in Maurice Kitchen's "Voices - A Legacy to Remember", the Theatricum's "Carry It On", his show with Broadway Voclaist and author, Charles Holt "Martin & Music" and his one man show "What Do You Dream Of?"

He is a tremendous voice over talent as well, doing everything from cartoons and video games such as the voice of M. Bison on "Streetfighter" the voice of Ex-Death "Final Fantasy X & XI Doudecum & Dissidia" along with the voice of Jackson 'Jax' Briggs in "Mortal Combat" and Drakuru in "World of Warcraft", Immortal in Starcraft, just to name a few, to California and Georgia State Conservation spots. He can also be heard on the 'Tobacco Free Florida' Television, Radio & Internet Campaigns. McDonald's & Bacardi Radio ads, and the Academy Award Nominated 3D animated Disney movie "Wreck It Ralph."  For kids Gerald is also the voice of Jaguar in "Pacha Pamas Pajamas," an environmental animated program for kids and he is "Murphy the Math Guy", as well as, the primary narration on the educational website ABCMouse, sponsored by The Age Of Learning. And he can be heard as "Pua" as well as other characters on Disney's, "The Lion Gaurd" on Disney and Disney Jr. 

His biggest vocal success has come from being the voice of the late great Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Gerald has earned accolades performing, speaking and touring all over the country and abroad as this resonating voice from the past. Almost thirty years as the same character and dozens of King speeches fully committed to memory has garnered him recognition from the King family, the King Center, NAACP, SCLC, National Baptist Convention and he has been a part of the National holiday celebrations in Atlanta, DC, Oakland & Boston, LA and Bermuda.

Gerald performed live on ESPN Radio Los Angeles on the Dr. King Holiday also the Cake for King Celebrations at the California African American Museum, Agape International Spiritual Center under the direction of Rev. Michael Bernard Beckwith and the Olandar Gallery in Malibu. He has appeared live in the Los Angeles King Holiday Parade. He has performed at The Manhattan Beach Rotary Club, The Carson Black Chamber of Commerce, Lynwood Community Adult School, El Camino College Compton Campus, , L.A. City College, Florida A & M University Alumni Association, countless schools, colleges, universities and churches across the country, The 5th Annual Unity Festival in Santa Monica, Hillside International Chapel & Truth Center in Atlanta, Georgia.  He has performed at Rust College Mississippi, Oregon State University, Ferris State University, Michigan, Dallas Center for Spiritual Living, Unity Church Nashville, Innerlight Ministries Soquel, Huntington Beach Church of Religious Science, The MLK West Side Coalition and St. Francis Medical Center, Lynwood.  He was invited to Washington D.C. to speak at the Dr. King Memorial Dedication celebrations where he spoke at the Convention Center, the King Memorial and on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

Gerald has spoken at Guidance Church Los Angeles, Compton Senior Citizens, The California African American Museum for Assemblyman Mike Davis, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, The University of Utah, Dallas Black Academy of Arts & Letters, Greater Framingham Church Massachusetts, Salt Lake City Center for Spiritual Living, United Nations Council in Claremont, Greater Phillips CME in Compton, Wichita State University in Kansas, Kennedy High School in Granada Hills, Temple of Light in Lake Forest, New Prospect Baptist Church Los Angeles, Sylmar High School, Campbell Hall School, West L.A. College, Topanga Library opening, celebrations in Culver City, Campbell Hall School, Pepperdine University, Terminal Island Correctional Facility, Neutrogena Corporation and The Buckley School in Sherman Oaks, CA, just to name a few.

Mr. Rivers has dedicated his life's work to keeping alive the spirit and inspiration of the late great Dr. King through his awe inspiring renditions. We know the messages of Dr. King are as relevant right now as they were over 50 years ago and Gerald's passionate renditions dramatically bring them to life and remind us all of these timely and universal words.

He has committed to memory, verbatim over 20 of Dr. King's speeches in their entirety. However, one of Gerald's unique gifts is his ability to combine several of these speeches which flow seamlessly together to support a specific theme. As a result of years of study, Gerald was inspired to create a One Man Show called "What Do You Dream Of?" The show highlights Dr. King's famous "I Have A Dream" speech and culminates with "The American Dream" speech a lesser known version which truly speaks to world peace, unity and brotherhood.  This show tours across the US.

Sitting in an audience listening to Gerald literally become Martin Luther King Jr. is an experience everyone must have at least once in their lifetime. To hear these words and have them delivered with such passion and urgency, propels the listener to a higher level of consciousness. He speaks to that part of us that says "Stand up, do what you know is right, take action now!" The lives of everyone who hear Gerald speak are truly altered in the most deep and profound way.

This connection with Dr. King has led him to a life of service working with young people of all ages in schools, prisons, detention facilities both in Atlanta and Los Angeles. Gerald particularly enjoys his work in the schools, homeless shelters, senior citizen facilities, after school programs, violence prevention and conflict resolution in the community.

Gerald is passionate about keeping Dr. King's messages alive in our thoughts and actions on a daily basis......"Now is the time.... and the time is always right to do right."


Acting Classes

 

VOICEOVER WORKSHOP

Do you have questions about how to get into Voiceovers in film, television, commercials, video games, internet, radio or books on tape? Join Gerald for his special workshop. This is an opportunity to learn from renowned Voiceover Actor Gerald C. Rivers who has been in the business for almost 20 years.

Gerald’s Voice Over credits include:

  • Academy Award Nominated Film “Wreck It Ralph”.
  • The Voice of Tobacco Free Florida – Television, Internet & Radio campaign.
  • Internationally popular Video Games such as “Mortal Combat”, “Street Fighter”& “World of Warcraft”.
  • Disney Animated series “The Lionguard”.
  • Voice match for Morris Chestnut & James Earl Jones.
  • McDonalds & Bacardi commercials.
  • National educational website ABC Mouse.

You will receive advice on how to get started in the business. In this class you will receive personalized individual critique and instruction.

Including:

  • Getting a demo reel
  • Getting an Agent
  • Booking the job
  • How to get into video games
  • Voice Acting

Work in a small intimate environment.

ACTING CLASSES

Gerald is not only a gifted Actor and talented Master Drummer he also has the real ability to encourage children and adults of all ages to deliver truly creative, uplifting and entertaining performances. He guides participants to write, develop and create using acting techniques, music, dance, multimedia & poetry. It is an experience of self-discovery and creative evolution for all involved, allowing their voice to be heard in a fresh new way. His unorthodox teaching style works every time, as it always nurtures and supports the individual. Gerald's passion and love for the Performing Arts is contagious and all those who participate will be truly transformed and forever changed as they learn skills that will serve them for the rest of their life. Performing arts are simply the vehicle through which he teaches much more significant life lessons.

Suitable for schools, colleges, fundraisers, churches, community organizations and corporations. For a list of Gerald's credits, please see below.

IMPROV CLASSES

Topics covered include: active listening; team building, using the environment; basic narrative skills; understanding stage status; character development, focus and concentration, thinking on your feet, timing and making your fellow actors look good.

Location: Private Instruction in La Canada, CA

Gerald's clients include:

Sol Adventurers Foundation - Play Development, Crenshaw Community Garden, CA

Hollywood Jumpstart - Improv, Redondo Beach, CA

The Buckley School, Sherman Oaks, CA

Ocean Charter School (A Waldorf Institution) Venice, CA

John C. Fremont High School, Los Angeles

Pico Youth and Family Center - Hip Hop Summit, Santa Monica, CA

San Fernando High School - The Unusual Suspects

Radio Club Los Angeles

Alhambra High School

Stephen Foster Elementary School, Compton

Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum Drama Camp - Topanga, CA

Lorenzo Benn Detention Facility, Atlanta, Georgia

Colors United - Locke & Jordan High Schools in Watts & South Central L.A.

The Amazing Grace Conservatory, Los Angeles

The Inst. for the Study of Black Family Life & Culture HAWK Program - Oakland CA

SIMBA Players - Atlanta, Georgia

Curtain Call Youth Players, Marietta, Georgia

Academy Theatre, Atlanta, Georgia

Department of Cultural Affairs - Hamilton, Bermuda

Georgia Tech University - Atlanta, Georgia

The Atlanta College of Art

Berkeley Black Repertory Theater - Berkeley, CA

Redeemer Presbyterian Alternative School - Compton, CA

PRIVATE COACHING: (Please inquire for individual rates)

Gerald coaches private clients by helping Actors prepare for auditions, landing roles, and as an on-set coach once the role is obtained.

Clients include: Candace Cameron-Bure

For further information contact: messagemediagroup@yahoo.com

Drumming Classes

 

NEW DRUM CLASS BEGINS JANUARY 9th 2017

In addition to being an incredible Actor, Gerald is also a Master Drummer and Djembe player. He teaches basic and advanced rhythms both traditional and contemporary, including techniques like bass, tone and slap sounds. He enjoys educating his students on the ancient history of the instrument and it’s healing power. He frequently teaches and leads drum circle performances for children, high school students and adults. He enjoys seeing his students transform themselves and their lives through this incredibly powerful instrument. His most recent performance was for a spec Budweiser commercial where he is a featured African drummer. He currently leads drum circles all over the US.

HEART BEAT OF THE DRUM CLASS - FEEL THE RHYTHM

Traditional West African Djembe Drumming Classes are held Monday evenings 7pm @ the La Crescenta Center For Spiritual Living:

4845 Dunsmore Ave, La Crescenta, CA 91214

* Learn the rhythms that will allow you to play in drum circles anywhere, anytime

* Learn the correct way to play this powerful, sacred instrument

* Introduction to the history of the instrument and its healing power

* Includes drum circle graduation, be welcomed into the drumming community

For more information & to register, call Kiara at 661-542-1330

Gerald & his drumming students were invited to perform at The Mayme Clayton Library in Culver City, CA

 

Gerald teaches a community drumming workshop at

The Mayme Clayton Library in Culver City, CA

 

June 2012 Gerald and his Drumming students were invited to perform downtown for

"The Great Paper Yacht Challenge Race"

 

 

Gerald performs in his one man show "What Do You Dream Of?"

 

Article on Gerald's African Djembe Drum Class in the Glendale News Press

"Bass needs, and then some"

Students learn the multifaceted nature of the West African djembe drum.

April 25, 2011 | By Kelly Corrigan

Students, Samantha Rosen, Jan Kline, Victoria da Salla, Rev. Emma Ynequez,

and Kelly Corrigan join hands in a drum circle to start Gerald C. Rivers'

African Djembe class - "Heartbeat of the Drum". (Photo By: Amy Opoka)

In the community room of Que Tu Linda Boutique and Body ’N Soul Studio in La Crescenta, students took a seat in a circle, wrapped their legs around djembe drums and prepared to play.

Students of actor and motivational speaker Gerald C. Rivers make a lot more than noise when beating their djembe drums. During the six-week class in the community room of Que Tu Linda Boutique and Body ’N Soul Studio in La Crescenta, students leave with more than experience with just the West African drum, he said.

“I’ve watched individuals and people, collectively, be lifted up after playing,” he said. “Their breakthroughs on the drum are often in conjunction with their own liberation from some other area in their life.”

Djembe (pronounced jem-bay) is typically made of hardwood and goat skin and capable of producing far-reaching sounds, from bass to high notes and snare, “and lots of things in between,” Rivers said. One drum can do what two congas or a full drum kit can do," he added. Rivers started playing the djembe 22 years ago, when he was 23. “In my opinion, it’s a very healing instrument.”

He hopes students feel liberated as they play — confident enough in their rhythms to join drum circles at Venice Beach or Griffith Park if they wish. Students also gain historical and cultural knowledge, he said. At the start of class, Rivers directed new students to the visible creases in the center of the drum, which represents the spine of the animal sacrificed for the drummer to make music.

“What we teach and encourage is for you to have that spine in alignment with your own spine as you play,” Rivers said. While there are rules to playing the drum and tones to achieve, the instrument welcomes an improvisational style. Rivers reiterated that listening is the most important quality of a drummer, and that the more liberated someone is when they play, a visible change occurs. “Something happens,” he said.

Pointing to a student of his — the Rev. Emma Molina-Ynequez — Rivers said, “You literally see her spirit and her energy raise, and she plays so regally.”

When Molina-Ynequez was warned by a doctor that her blood pressure was higher than it should be, she looked outside of typical ways to treat it. She examined activities in her life that made her heart sing, she said, but without the pressure of walking or dancing. She selected the drum class as a new venture because the beat of the drum symbolizes the human heartbeat, she said. “Something about that resonated in me,” she said. “What I’ve learned to do is listen intensely. It’s added to my business. When I massage people, I listen with my eyes closed.”

 

INTERMEDIATE CLASS

8 sessions

Call (661) 542-1330 for further information and to register

* Take your Djembe Drumming to the next level.

* Explore Improv Techniques

* Creative Expression

* Holding the Beat

* Use of the drum as a healing instrument

 

HERE IS WHAT SOME STUDENTS ARE SAYING ABOUT THIS CLASS:

"In the spirit of trying something new and different, I decided to take a six week drum class with Gerald after seeing a flyer. Though it felt very much outside of my comfort zone, Gerald made the whole experience wonderful! His respect for the djembe and drumming together as a spiritual practice was and is uplifting and infectious. He was patient, kind and giving of himself and his time. Not only did I complete the classes, along with a lovely graduation, but I have continued to play and have acquired my own djembe with, of course, advice from Gerald. Thank you for everything Gerald!"

- Cindy Morales

"Gerald is truly a master life artist and teacher. In his class you learn so much more than what rhythms to play on a drum. You learn to listen to the beat of your own heart and follow the rhythm of your Soul's becoming. He's extraordinary. Take his class."

- Mary T. Sala

"Taking this class with Gerald Rivers was so much more than learning to play the djembe. There is a teaching, a love and a presence within Gerald that permeates the circle as we playfully learned the history and rhythms of this instrument. Taking his class was a lesson in deep listening and cultivating the ability to drop into the Divine flow of Spirit that resides within me. I have met so many new and wonderful friends while taking this class and drumming is now a part of my Spiritual practice."

- Rumi Noon

"I had a wonderful time being a student of Gerald, the class was amazing and I really wish that it never finished!"

- Cristal Guizar (Fremont High School Student)

 

Teaching students at Ocean Charter School in Santa Monica

 

 

Students at John C. Fremont High School, Los Angeles

Students Rev. Emma, Janet Grace & Delores Gilbreaux at graduation

 

Gerald, Mary Sala, Sunday, John, Janet Grace, Rev. Emma & Delores

 

Summer 2010 Drum Class Graduates

Drum Circle

 

 

The Spirit of Dr. King

 

Bring the Voice, Spirit and Teaching of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to your location!

Gerald's performance is suitable for:

  • Special Events
  • Conferences
  • Festivals
  • Commencement/Graduation
  • Keynote Speaker
  • Black History Month Celebration
  • Season for Non Violence Event
  • Church Service
  • Juneteenth Celebration

 

An inspiring and uplifting experience for corporations, schools, colleges, churches, and community organizations.

 

Actor Gerald C. Rivers discovered his extraordinary gift in bringing Dr. King's words to life beginning with an East Coast tour of "Voices, Voices of America" at the age of 17.

Mr. Rivers has been presenting the words and works of the late, great Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for over 30 years. Gerald has dedicated his life's work to keeping alive the spirit and inspiration of Dr. King through his awe-inspiring renditions.

We know the messages of Dr. King are as relevant right now as they were over 50 years ago.

Sitting in an audience listening to Gerald literally become Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is an experience everyone must have at least once in their lifetime. The lives of everyone who hear him speak are truly altered in the most deep & profound way.

Contact: Samantha Rosen – 818-681-9474 or e-mail: messagemediagroup@yahoo.com

Photos

Contact

 

To book Gerald to speak as Dr. King for your group/event or for further information on classes with Gerald, please contact:

Assistant: Max Lawrence
 
MESSAGE MEDIA GROUP
Tel: (818) 388-6735
E-mail: messagemediagroup@yahoo.com

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For Film & Television auditions and offers, please contact:

Manager: Al Hill

EPIPHANY MANAGEMENT GROUP
Tel: (310) 210-9227
Email: al@emgla.com

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For Voice Over booking/inquiries, please contact:

VO Agent: Portia Scott

COAST TO COAST TALENT GROUP
Tel: (323) 845-9200
Email: portia4coast@gmail.com

 

3350 Barham Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90068
SAG/AFTRA
 

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For Commercial booking/inquiries, please contact:
 
Commercial Agent: Samantha Daniels

MAVERICK ARTISTS AGENCY
Tel: (323) 931-5555
 

 

 

http://www.mavrickartists.com

If you are inspired to assist Gerald in continuing his moving and uplifting work in the world, we gratefully accept donations through Paypal.

Your generous contributions allow us to bring the words of Dr. King to schools, detention facilities, senior centers and places that may not otherwise be able to invite Gerald.

Gerald Rivers