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New Performers Academy director: Arts education can be lifeline for at-risk youth
November 27, 2020
Beth Reese Cravey Florida Times-Union November 27, 2020

As a child, Ebony Payne-English learned to read with the help of Dr. Seuss books.

So she became a poet early on, performing her own rhymed compositions. Poetry was her first performing art.

“My teachers and parents thought it was cute,” she said. “It became my thing.”

Over the years, from Douglas Anderson School of the Arts to Florida A&M and the New World Conservatory School of the Arts College, Payne-English expanded her repertoire, including dance, theater, rap and spoken word. She tested her skills on school and community stages and found fellow performing artists and mentors, one of whom told her she had a gift.

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