Tomike Ogugua | Actor
On the intangibles that he studied to develop his craft as an actor:
I wouldn't say that I studied anyone per se, but I will say that I had, and still do have great mentors around me. When I was in my undergrad at North Carolina A&T University, I had the opportunity to be in a play by August Wilson called, "Seven Guitars." I was cast as one of the characters called Hedley, who was one of the leads in the play. Up until that point, I had never been cast in a lead role in a major stage production because my professor didn't think that I had the ability to play a leading role. It took an outside director by the name of Jerome Preston Bates, who was a Broadway actor, to convince my professor otherwise. This experience gave me the confidence to keep going. He's still my mentor to this day. You must keep good people around you, focus, and ignore the noise.
On the ideals that he took from his Nigerian background and utilized in his career:
Hard-work and discipline are the main components. Being that I am a Nigerian-American, my mother always stressed academics. If I came home with a C, I was in trouble. I will say that I did go through a rebellious stage, but it was still ingrained in me that I was expected to be somebody when I grew up. I was expected to be a role model and to always do my best and not quit. I was raised by a single mother, and she was always working three jobs so I go to see her work ethic within my everyday life. Even when times were hard, she always kept a smile on her face no matter what. Those are the things that I take from my heritage.
On his role on the Starz hit TV show, "Power:"
I auditioned for another role on Season 1, and I didn't get it. Season 2 rolls around, and I get the call from my agent to come audition. I go in, do my lines, then forget about it because I didn't expect to get it. A week later, I received a phone call from my agent saying that I booked the role on Power. I was in complete shock because I remember being on the train in the Bronx headed to my after-school teaching job when I got the job. I had heard all about the show, and I hadn't watched it, but I knew it was a big deal. It was probably the biggest booking that I probably had in my life.
On the person, he would sit down and have a mastermind session with:
I'm really into thinker’s man. I'm into people who are constantly trying to contribute remarkable things to humanity and mankind so I would have to say Les Brown. Les Brown is such a motivating force. I've always been a self-motivated individual, and I'm always trying to figure out how I can become a better person and much more goal-oriented, and Les provides that inspiration to people.