College of Arts and Communication

Rasell Holt '15

Rasell Holt

Rasell Holt graduated in 2015 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre and an emphasis in Performance. Originally from Milwaukee, he is very proud to be a working actor. In the Summer of 2022 you can catch him in the American Players Theatre line up in “Raisin in the Sun” and “The Brothers Size.”

You were cast in the 2022 Summer Season at American Players Theatre, are you excited about that opportunity?
“Yes, I am looking forward to returning to APT, after doing their Apprenticeship in 2019, and taking on some bigger roles. Namely Ogun in “The Brothers Size” directed by Company Member Gavin Lawrence.”

What made you want to pursue a degree in your field?
“Former Professor Jim Butchart if I'm being honest. I had no plans of pursuing acting when I got to college. I was going to do school for a year and reapply for the NROTC as soon as I got the chance. Butchart talked to me after seeing me do a monologue and appealed to the competitive side of me. He didn't say it as plainly as my young mind heard it but basically, I received the feedback of "you're not very good" and then I suddenly wanted to prove I was.”

What was your favorite part about attending UW-Whitewater?
“The broadening of people I ultimately met even beyond the Center of the Arts. I'm thankful I was involved in so many (student) orgs because I became introduced to more walks of life than just my own experience.”

How did your UW-Whitewater experience prepare you for your career or transform your life?
“I think that's just college. We're all learning to be people still really. College helped make me aware of things I don't want to do or be professional and personally.”

Are there any artists you draw inspiration from?
“Many! All the time. I'll unapologetically take a cool delivery, action, mannerism from other artists as long as it benefits the story. I love not being the best one in the room, that way I'm eager to learn and push myself instead coast by. My big inspirations, to name a few, are Will Smith, Donald Glover, and my brother Deshawn McKinney.”

Since graduating, tell me a little about your accomplishments? Where have you performed/lived? Any particular life experiences that stand out?
“I'm proud to be a working actor. Awards or accolades mean very little, if anything, to me. The things that stand out so far are the people I've been able to meet and those who have trusted me to rise to the occasion in storytelling. I'm happy this work has taken me across the country and hoping it takes me out of the country to continue to see more of the world while doing what I enjoy."

What is your proudest accomplishment to date?
“Hopefully it hasn't happened yet.”

What advice would you give to your former self?
“Breathe and enjoy what's right in front of you instead of obsessing over what could be ahead. To those around you, BE HELPFUL. DON'T BE A DETRIMENT.”

What advice would you give to your future self?
“Keep moving forward.”

What advice would you give to a potential UW-Whitewater student?
“Take use of the resources around you and don't get stuck on what you think you have to do. Embrace messing up, because you will constantly, but don't let it deter you. Allow it to teach you.
To performance majors specifically; your job is to audition. Don't worry about booking the gig so much. You come in, to tell a story, and showcase yourself alongside an interesting character. That's the part you can control, not whether or not you get cast. Once you get cast, you already know you can act, from there it's a paid vacation!”

Learn more about the Theatre and Dance Programs