Getting to Know Imani Thomas - Dallas Theater Center
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Getting to Know Imani Thomas

Tell us about what you do as Social Media Coordinator.

I manage all of our social media efforts. So I manage our online presences, create digital content, plan and implement campaigns, and engage with our audiences. Find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, and Spotify. Follow us and give us a “like”!  🙂

What’s your favorite social media platform and why?

As a marketer, Instagram simply because they steal features from other apps, so there’s a lot you can do on it. As a user, Twitter. Everyone on Twitter just seems a little unhinged and I love it.

My favorite platform of all time was Phhhoto (RIP). It was a really creative GIF-sharing social network that allowed its users to capture GIFs and provided prompts, GIF effects, and sounds. This was the app Instagram cloned to get Boomerang. It had 10 million users but it still felt really personal and close-knit. Very “next big thing” that your friends and family weren’t on yet. There were also only like three celebrities on it and brands hadn’t quite found it yet so it had that “underground” feeling I was looking for in college. It was the main medium for my angst as you can tell. I really miss it.

What is your favorite Dallas Theater Center production and why?

I really wish I had gotten to see Fly By Night. In spirit, that’s my favorite show.

For shows I’ve seen, In the Heights! I listen to “96,000” approximately 96,000 times a week. It’s a brilliant musical and seeing everyone’s reactions to it was incredible.

I took a friend to see it during the run and I think it was his first theater show. He was really quiet for most of the beginning and I couldn’t tell if he was enjoying it or not, and then Vanessa sang her line “If I win the lottery you’ll never see me again” and he just burst out laughing. He was super engaged from that point and came out raving about the show.

The student matinees were also really fun to sit in on. The students were so engaged and invested. The theater felt so alive.

You just wrapped teaching your summer classes. How do you like teaching?

I loved teaching, especially for this program. We’ve all been cooped up in quarantine and it was nice to break out of our everyday routines and connect with others. Especially over shared interests. In both of my classes (Intro to Media Arts & Podcast Production), we learned about storytelling and it was really interesting to see how the students developed their storytelling voices. They’re all so well-versed with creating

and technology, the lessons felt more conversational. You’re already making films and video content, here’s how to write & format your scripts, here are some standard shots you can use and what they mean, here’s what this piece of equipment is and where to get it, here’s how to edit & what different software is available to you. We listened to podcasts, watched videos on foley, learned more about the processes of making some of our favorite shows and movies, talked Harry Potter houses. We just got together every day and geeked out. The kids really bonded with each other as well. I think in both of my classes they went on to add each other on social media and start Discord servers together.

Can you tell us a favorite story/experience while teaching?

I had a student that would randomly start doing TikTok dances in the middle of lessons. She would be really engaged one second then I’d look away and look back and she’d be renegading. I miss her most.

You recently joined Activ8. What is that work group?

Activ8 is a collective of Dallas Theater Center staff that ensures that we follow through with our public statements and actually do the internal work towards achieving anti-racism and liberation for all.

We hold ourselves and others accountable, we atone for past traumas, we uplift silenced voices and pass the mic, and we provide steps for a more equitable future for ourselves and the Dallas community!

Why do you think it’s important for the theater to be socially active?

I think it speaks to our integrity as creators and facilitators of theater. If you make plays that explore systemic racism and oppression, you shouldn’t be silent when those issues come up. 

Have you discovered a new hobby, TV show, book, movie, or other entertainment while spending this extra time at home?

I’ve started/continued the beautiful hobby of online shopping. My apartment feels like the entertainment section at Target. I bought a PS4 which is cool (subjective) and am currently stumped on a level of Spider-man. I love video games but I’m terrible at them. You can often find me playing on Very Easy and doing nothing but fishing and swimming on other peoples’ Animal Crossing islands.

I also signed up for this dance app called Steezy. I danced when I was younger so I’m really looking forward to getting back into it! Look out for me on TikTok. 

I highly recommend Lovecraft Country, The Old Guard, Dark, Host (Shudder), Avatar: the Last Airbender, She-Ra & the Princesses of Power, and the Twilight saga.

If you could be a superhero, who would you be and why?

Definitely Matilda. Jk. This is such a hard question. I would love to be Static Shock cause he’s so cool or like in the Shazam fam or be a Power Ranger or a Ninja Turtle— have powers but also get to fight monsters & crime with your friends. But I also feel like if I had powers, I’d be a speedster. They’re chaotic tricksters which is very me. So Flash (Ezra’s Flash or Wally West), Quicksilver, Dash from the Incredibles. I’d probably be Quicksilver (but Evan Peters’ Quicksilver, no offense to Aaron Taylor-Johnson because Kick-A** is one of my favorite movies)

Do you have any advice for people who don’t want to go onstage, but would like to be involved in the theater?

Oh all the fun is off-stage. There’s production, over-hire, stage management, pit orchestra, videographers, marketing. 🙂 Get involved with your school’s theater program, try to get an internship at a local company. You’ll learn a lot of great skills, meet cool people, and get to really see all the different jobs that make theater happen! Also don’t be afraid to email people whose positions you’re curious about. We don’t bite and would love to talk to you!

Okay… maybe our Electrics Department bites…

Is there anything I haven’t asked you about that you like to talk about?

I get asked this a lot so I will say it here. I am not the entire marketing team. I am an arm in the Voltron machine that is Dallas Theater Center Marketing. Please refer to our Our Team page to see all the other people I work with!