Picture Supply: YouTube user Dola
This interview has been edited for size and readability.
Many acknowledge Condola Rashad from her Tony-nominated performances in Saint Joan, A Doll’s Home, Half 2, The Journey to Bountiful, and Stick Fly or as Kate Stacker on Showtime’s Billions, however few know her music alter ego Dola. Nevertheless, that is all about to alter. On July 22, the 33-year-old dropped her debut EP, Space Daughter, that includes 5 tracks titled “Blue,” “Give Up the Gold,” “Operating in Place,” “What I Mentioned,” and “Too Fireplace.” Together with the songs, Rashad launched accompanying music movies for every monitor, they usually’re all so visually gorgeous. Personally, my favourite is “Blue.”
Forward of the album’s launch, POPSUGAR chatted with Rashad about every part from how Space Daughter got here into fruition to what she hopes followers take away from the EP. She additionally defined how her collaboration with Samsung has helped her keep impressed and linked through the pandemic. “This collaboration with Samsung really got here at a very nice time, as a result of with the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip, I even have been capable of seize, in a very superior means, the vitality of my house for the previous couple of months by means of photographs and movies,” she stated. Rashad even gave us a glimpse at what that appears like with pictures taken on her Galaxy Z Flip, which you’ll try in her interview forward.
POPSUGAR: You’ve got been so busy with Broadway and Billions over the previous few years, and now your debut visible EP, Space Daughter. What impressed you to broaden your artistry and get into music?
Condola Rashad: I began as a musician. No person knew that, which is actually thrilling. I am really simply lastly sharing part of my artistry that is been there the entire time. I do not play classical anymore, however I began classically coaching as a pianist after I was a younger baby right through after I graduated from highschool. Writing music was my first type of inventive expression. Once I graduated from faculty, I used to be very lucky that my appearing profession took wings very early. Whereas I have been so grateful for that, it allowed for there to be an area the place folks simply did not know, no one knew that I am really a musician who acts.
PS: How did you determine on the title Space Daughter?
CR: This “Space Daughter” got here to me, and I did not know what it was at first. This was earlier than I even created the music, I wrote it down. Then as I used to be creating the music, I really did not know what it was going to be. I did not know whether or not it was a tune; I did not know whether or not it was the title of the challenge; I did not know whether or not that was going to the artist title; I did not know what it was. I simply knew that was the centerpiece of this entire journey.
It’s my playful ode to the divine feminist and the entire completely different areas that she fills. Within the movies, there’s this one most important entity that is at the start of every video, she’s dressed all in white. That was my playful tackle type of a core divine, female vitality. There is a completely different motion on the prime of every video, the place she really manifests into one other model of herself to inform a distinct story. I am a giant storyteller, in order that’s actually what it is about. It is concerning the vibe and vitality telling completely different tales of herself.
Picture Supply: Samsung
PS: Your entire music movies are so gorgeous and aesthetically pleasing. What was the artistic course of behind making them like?
CR: It was some of the rewarding experiences I’ve ever had. I produced all of those, and I constructed all of those from the bottom up. It was essentially the most expansive expertise as a result of I had by no means produced something earlier than. This was the primary time the place I assumed that position, stepped into these footwear, and realized that I am good at that. Not solely was I the monetary backing for the challenge, however each single factor that you simply see within the video — the colour scheme, the hair, the nails, every part — I needed to be part of, which was wonderful.
Being the artist whereas additionally producing was extremely expansive as a result of the complete 12 months of 2019 was spent manifesting this challenge. I used to be assembly with the make-up designer, I used to be getting a name with the hair, determining how we will do the nails, and going to get the costumes, and attempting out the manufacturing firm. Each single day was spent in direction of creating and manifesting this dream of mine. It by no means ended. What I have not been capable of share this entire time is that we shot all 5 [videos] in a matter of 5 days.
PS: Wow, that is unimaginable!
CR: Yeah, I have been ready to share that element. The one means that I used to be capable of do it in that means was — I am so grateful — my alma mater. I went to the California Institute of the Arts. They have been so supportive of my challenge. They supported me a lot that they really allowed me to make the most of their theater areas to create this. The entire units that now we have are literally on the stage that I did all my faculty productions on. It was actually, actually cool.
We did not shoot one video per day, we shot it like a movie. We would’ve shot two scenes from “Operating in Place,” after which the subsequent factor, we went into the “Blue” costume. We had three levels that we have been allowed to work with. Whereas we have been capturing one scene on one stage, my manufacturing firm was busy constructing the opposite stage, constructing the opposite set on the opposite levels, so we might simply bounce forwards and backwards. That is how we have been capable of do it in 5 days.
PS: I perceive that you simply wrote, self-funded, produced, and codirected Space Daughter. Not solely is that tremendous spectacular, however why was that so vital for you?
“Anyone that wishes to collaborate with me, at the very least now they know who I’m they usually can determine whether or not they need to get on board or not, however I can not be manipulated into one other artist. I’ve already established who I’m.”
CR: What it got here all the way down to is that I conceived it. It isn’t that anyone was going to do it the incorrect means, however as a result of they don’t seem to be coming from the within of my mind, it is simpler if I am linked to it. Additionally, what it got here all the way down to, to be fairly trustworthy was as a “new” artist, simply the best way that the music world works in the present day is, no one was going to permit me to do it that means. No person would have let me create this challenge the best way that I created it, no one would have allowed me to launch it the best way that I launched it. I made a decision to not put anyone within the place of permitting me to do something. I noticed that if I might do it myself, which I occurred to have the capability to do, then I used to be the chief, and I might really determine how I needed to launch. I might determine how I needed to shoot it. I had a creative imaginative and prescient and I used to be capable of honor that, as a result of I did not have anyone telling me, “Oh, this is not mainstream sufficient,” or, “Oh, we want you to be extra like this artist,” or, “Oh, this is likely to be an excessive amount of.”
There have been folks that thought I used to be loopy. Folks have been like, “You are type of nuts. You’ll be able to simply discover somebody to financially again this.” I used to be like, “Yeah, however then they may attempt to inform me what to do with it, and it will not be what I created.” Shifting ahead, I do not know that I am at all times going to have the ability to do this, however at the very least now I’ve to have the ability to say, “That is who I’m as an artist, and that is what I do.” Anyone that wishes to collaborate with me, at the very least now they know who I’m they usually can determine whether or not they need to get on board or not, however I can not be manipulated into one other artist. I’ve already established who I’m.
Picture Supply: Samsung
PS: Talking of collaborations, in case you might collaborate with any artist sooner or later, who wouldn’t it be?
CR: I actually need to collaborate with Little Dragon. They’re certainly one of my favorites. They’re an enormous affect of mine. I do not assume there is a tune that they’ve that I do not love. I might additionally like to collaborate with Chloe x Halle. I believe that they are inventive geniuses. I like them, and I really feel like we’re in the identical soul tribe. I’ve by no means met them, however I am prepared for that collaboration. I respect their artistry a lot.
PS: I noticed on Instagram that you have been donating proceeds from every Space Daughter monitor to numerous group organizations like Marketing campaign Zero. How did you determine to attach the EP to organizations?
CR: We have been at all times slated to launch this challenge on the finish of March, starting of April. What occurred was, in direction of the tip of February when the pandemic was rising and all of us began to really feel the burden of that and understand what that meant, I believe the preliminary response for everyone when it comes to initiatives, everyone was like, “All the pieces’s on maintain. We’re simply going to carry. We will wait it out.” At first, I used to be like, “OK,” however then I used to be sitting with myself and I simply had this realization, which was, “Why am I ready? I’ve created this piece that I’ve put all my love and light-weight into, and this can be a darkish, shadowy second. As an artist, that is what I’ve to supply my group proper now. If it affords two and a half minutes of music that lifts somebody’s spirits, why am I ready for a very good time for me to launch it?”
After I linked with that intention, I noticed, “How can or not it’s one thing that I am artistically providing and is there a strategy to really hyperlink it in such a means that it additionally provides again financially to my group at the moment? How can I do each?” The primary initiative was with the meals financial institution of New York Metropolis. That was as a result of I attempted to consider a demographic that I felt was going to be hit first and hardest by this pandemic, and routinely, my ideas went to individuals who have low earnings, individuals who endure from starvation. As soon as we did it that means, each time we got here up with one other tune, I simply realized, “Nicely, why cease now? I am going sturdy. Join it to extra organizations which can be serving to different sides of the group.” So, it simply type of saved going naturally.
PS: What’s your favourite tune on the EP?
CR: Truthfully, I believe for a lot of causes it is a tie. It is so exhausting. “What I Mentioned” may be very a lot indicative of my love for digital music, which is a really, very, very deep love of mine. I might say when it comes to the manufacturing, that is the one which I had the most important a part of my arms in. “What I Mentioned” has at all times been a favourite of mine, however I additionally love “Operating in Place” as a result of it was my concept to have reside strings in that tune. That is what drives that tune for me. Each time I hear that tune, I am at all times very excited by the reside strings. One in every of my quirks an artist is that I actually love the pairing of electronics with reside devices. That is a very huge factor for me. “Operating in Place” is extremely dramatic, which can also be very a lot part of my model. I would say between these two, however I do know folks actually love “Blue,” which I believe is actually candy, too. They’re all so completely different, however I might say it is a tie between “What I Mentioned” and “Operating in Place.”
“I at all times create all of my work from a really deep place of affection. That’s what I might say, that it is made and provided with love.”
PS: What do you hope followers take away out of your EP?
CR: The one factor that I ever say is that it is made with love and it is provided with love. The rationale why I say that’s as a result of artistically, I am fairly explicit about my relationship to how I talk with audiences within the sense the place I create a bit, I’ve a narrative to inform, I create it with love, after which I provide it. I attempt to enable for that at all times, and this goes for the appearing. I attempt to at all times enable for there to be house to supply peace with out informing the viewers obtain it. It is like giving a present after which telling an individual how they need to really feel the present. I attempt to simply provide it and permit folks to truly simply obtain it nonetheless they need. The one factor I can say is that I at all times create all of my work from a really deep place of affection. That’s what I might say, that it is made and provided with love.