Monte J. Wolfe of Brave Soul Collective.
Monte J. Wolfe of Brave Soul Collective. Credit: Johnnie R. Kornegay III

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BSCFifteen

Inspiration can strike at any time. For actor Monte J. Wolfe, his revelation arrived at a First Sunday service in February 2006, courtesy of the book Bullshit or Fertilizer by Pierre Bennu. Flipping through the book, Wolfe stumbled upon “three different things, each one very inspirational. First, if you have an idea and you don’t take advantage of it, you can’t get pissed off if a year later you open up a magazine, book or turn on the television and say someone took your idea because it’s all energy. Secondly, nobody can tell your story but you. Finally, if you feel there’s a void that needs to be filled, it’s up to you to do it.” With these three ideas churning in his mind during meditation time, Wolfe envisioned Brave Soul Collective, an arts organization that would focus on performances and stories centering around people of color with HIV/AIDS and in the LGBTQ community. For Wolfe, starting the organization was an artistic necessity. “I had just come from an audition a week earlier and there were like, thirty Black men in the room and we were auditioning over one or two parts. That was something that irritated me because I felt that we were always scrambling like crabs in a barrel for roles,” he says. Now about to celebrate their 15th anniversary, the collective will have a week-long residency at the Kennedy Center from April 26-30, where they will be offering those who RSVP online an opportunity to view their recorded workshops and performances starting Wednesday night. Additionally, on May 29, BSC will host a virtual retrospective which will commemorate their first live performance 15 years ago. Registration is available at eventbrite.com. More information on Brave Soul Collective is available at wearebravesouls.com. Free.