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Life & Work with Walter Tabayoyong

Today we’d like to introduce you to Walter Tabayoyong.

Hi Walter, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I was born and raised in Chicago. Started by performing path playing in a string quartet with my siblings. My dad was a doctor and my mom was a nurse. Attended the Chicago Academy for the Arts initially as a French hornist, violinist and artist and by the time I graduated, I was acting, singing and dancing. My professional career started as a company member of the Joel Hall Dancers touring internationally. Transitioned into theatre doing shows like West Side Story, Guys & Dolls, and Miss Saigon. My day gig was working in advertising as a graphic designer, art director, illustrator and photographer. I did fashion illustrations for magazines such as Playboy, Parenting, Face and many others while pursuing my performing career. Acting credits include MacGyver, Secret in Their Eyes, Jon Benjamin Has a Van, Marry Me and Star Trek: Enterprise. Stumbled into the management world as a photographer working with Toni Braxton’s management team and with my background helped with branding and merchandising for her as well. Have been managing at Altamero Management with actors, dancers, singers and models and am now producing as well. I’ve worked extensively in music videos for artists such as Chris Brown, Joyner Lucas, Lil Wayne, E-40, Logic, Ty Dolla Sign and I Prevail. Produced three movies during the pandemic and cast two of them.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It’s been a very winding road. I’ve had all sorts of twists and turns putting me in front of the camera, behind it, on stage, in recording studios, art directing, web design and all sorts of other things I might not have explored.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
I’ve had an obsession with beauty since I was a kid. Have always studied it and tried to understand what makes something more aesthetically pleasing. For a time, I was known for my fashion illustrations in Playboy. I also danced professionally with the Joel Hall Dancers. I have always explored many different disciplines in the Arts, but ridiculously the thing that has brought me the most buzz was being in a music video for Chris Brown and Joyner Lucas directed by my friend Ben Proulx. What am I most proud of? I moved to LA to pursue a music career and made a CD of a bunch of songs I wrote with Keith Uchima. I’m also proud of the fact that I’m still in the game. I’ve wanted to quit many times and have somehow stuck it out all this time. I love artists and love surrounding myself with creative geniuses. Makes life a lot more interesting.

How do you think about luck?
I was very lucky to have been born into a family that believed in the importance of art. My parents were very supportive and worked hard to create opportunities for all of us to explore our artistic interests.

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