Theatre Alumni Spotlight: Meet E. Clayton Cornelious, Broadway Actor, Investor and Producer
Meet E. Clayton Cornelious
- Job Title & Employer
- Broadway Actor, Investor and Producer
- Theatre Arts
- Rankin, Pa.
- High School
- Woodland Hills High School
- Now Living In
- New York City
"Thank you to Point Park for motivating me and preparing me for my career. Point Park has more tools than many other schools. I have seen from personal experience that Point Park students are the most prepared in all aspects of the business when starting a career."
Broadway actor, investor and producer E. Clayton Cornelious is currently playing the role of Paul Williams in the first National Tour of Ain't Too Proud — The Life and Times of The Temptations. Cornelious is also a co-producer on the Broadway hit new musical New York, New York.
Some of his Broadway and national tour credits include: Beautiful, The Lion King, The Music Man, Scottsboro Boys, A Chorus Line (revival), Wonderland, Jersey Boys, Dirty Dancing, Hairspray, Sister Act, The Wiz and Kinky Boots.
Why did you choose Point Park University for theatre?
I received an apprenticeship when I auditioned for the Conservatory of Performing Arts, so having that additional funding towards my education was great. I also had the opportunity to see a performance of Company at the Pittsburgh Playhouse that was amazing. The performances from that show inspired me to go into theatre. I've done every little job at Point Park that you can imagine, which was great to help me prepare for my career, as well.
What was your most beneficial experience at Point Park?
The most beneficial experience was playing Charlie Dalrymple, a supporting role, in Brigadoon my sophomore year. I never thought I would land a non-traditional role like that in college. I was shocked. That experience was a huge wake-up call and sparked me to really be ambitious.
What advice do you have for current students?
Get as much training as you can while you are at Point Park; this is one of the best schools in the country. Never stop auditioning for everything until you find your footing. Find a really good agent and get your equity card as fast as possible.
What advice do you have for students considering a career in theatre?
It's always exciting to pursue your passion, especially in the arts! Doing what you love is the key to success and never back down from what is meant for you. You have to want to do it. If you don't wake up thinking about your career in theatre, then it's not for you.
Students need to learn more about the business side, not just the creative side, because this is a business first. I like to call this "Business Show," NOT "Show Business." It's a lot more than just being on stage, as building relationships and having a good work ethic is very important. I encourage students to take more business classes. You have to have goals and a plan on how you'll survive in the longevity of this business.
Anything else you would like to add?
Thank you to Point Park for motivating me and preparing me for my career. Point Park has more tools than many other schools. I have seen from personal experience that Point Park students are the most prepared in all aspects of the business when starting a career.
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