Russell E. Alexander II ( Actor, Singer-Songwriter, Writer, and Director)
A Selma, AL native, Russell grew up as the oldest of four and was very active at his church as a member of the St. Paul Methodist Church Youth Choir. At the age of 10, Russell relocated to Montgomery, AL where he started to sing in his school choir at Vaughn Road Elementary. Russell got his first taste of theatre during the Summer of 2006, when he was awarded a scholarship to participate in a week-long workshop at The Alabama Shakespeare Festival. While there, Russell participated in acting and costume-making workshops, and rehearsals, which at the end of the week, led to a final performance of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, where he played the role of "Baptista".
After leaving Vaughn Road, Russell moved on to Floyd Middle Magnet where he played the alto sax in the school band from 2006-2008, and afterwards, rejoined the choral music scene during his 9th grade year at McKee Junior High. Russell began to develop a passion for theatre arts during his years at Booker T. Washington Magnet High School (BTW), where he studied Musical Theatre Performance from 2009-2012. While at BTW, Russell was introduced to the Trumbauer and Thespian Festivals. It was through Trumbauer that Russell was recruited to the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), where he began his undergraduate studies.
During his time at UAB, Russell was a part of numerous main stage productions, stage readings, and showcases as well as an active member of UAB Theatre's Touring Companies where he served as a member of their Disney Cabaret Tour (2013-2014), Beatles Cabaret Tour (2014-2015), and Shakespeare Tour (2015-2017) where he served as a performer in and company manager until he graduated the university in April 2017.
Aside from his many productions with UAB, Russell has worked with both professional & summer-stock theatre companies such as Robin Givens' RSG & Company's 2014 touring production of Joy in the Morning; Red Mountain Theatre Company, of Birmingham's 2015 production of The Wiz; and The Huron Playhouse, of Huron, Ohio's summer-stock production of A Chorus Line. In February of 2016, Russell was nationally awarded "Best Actor in a Main stage Production" for his work in Aaron Posner's Stupid Fucking Bird as Con. As a result of this award, Russell was invited to attend and work as an acting fellow in The John F. Kennedy Center's Annual Playwright's Workshop in July 2016.
After graduating Russell headed to Lawrenceville, GA where he completed a year-long apprenticeship with the Aurora Theatre continuing education and training in theatre arts, gaining practical experience in the Atlanta theatre industry, and networking with numerous artists and creators in the state. While there, Russell was featured in mainstage shows such as Goosebumps The Musical Phantom of the Auditorium, Cinderella: The Remix, Mamma Mia!, and Ripcord. He was also featured in their touring improv show, Reindeer Games, and sang in their "Musicals by Moonlight" concert readings of In the Heights (2017) and The Hunchback of Notre Dame (2018).
As a recent graduate of Aurora Theatre's 2017-18 Apprenticeship, Russell continues to reside and work in the state of Georgia as a performer. Most recently in May 2017, Russell made his debut as a playwright presenting a new 10-minute play BAD RELIGION at Aurora's 2018 Apprentice Showcase under the direction of Jireh Breon Holder, featuring some of Atlanta's hottest young talents. Russell will continue to write, act, and direct around both around the city and beyond!
" Thanks for your continued and undying support! Continue to keep me in your thoughts and prayers!"
-Russell E. Alexander II