We had the good fortune of connecting with David LaDuca and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi David, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
David LaDuca Creative Services always looks at the quickly evolving social landscape in an effort to provide value and enrichment. Due to the recent Covid 19 pandemic, we are all experiencing a sense of isolation to varying degrees for employees, families, and especially to our senior population. Business “zoom calls” are now a regular feature of office interaction. Families “get together” for the holidays in virtual settings. And senior communities are no longer able to gather in community and take in live entertainment.This new paradigm has caused many of us to re-evaluate how we do what we do, acquire new skill sets and find new pathways for connection. So, I am creating more online content rather than live event production. And my executive coaching has gone from stage to computer screen, to what has evolved as ‘virtual coaching.’ It boils down to asking myself the big question: how can add value, and find joy doing it?
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’ve been a performing artist for most of my life. I was a musical theatre performer when I first started out. After two years performing in Sun City, South Africa’s version of Las Vegas, I moved to New York to do Broadway and the like. After a while, I decided I would like to try my hand at film and television work, which at that time wasn’t an easy transition from the stage as it is today. In fact, my agent at the time told me I would need to go away and build a new resume with some film credits, and then I could come back as a film actor. So that’s what I did. I started out getting smaller roles, but soon I was lucky enough to do starring roles in a few movies and commercials. I even appeared regularly on a tween sitcom for a couple seasons. But then I felt that need to switch gears again. As I have gotten older, I feel more driven to the work that will give me the most joy. I had a desire to sing more. So to that end, I am now performing concerts featuring music from The Great American Songbook. One of my pet projects is to perform in senior communities. It is so rewarding to see the smiles on their faces, knowing that a song I am singing might have been their favorite song when they were younger. It makes me wonder if years from now, will seniors will be requesting hip hop? I now work as a creative director, writing, directing, and creating video content. There are a few reasons I wear so many hats. First of all, I enjoy doing all of these things, but not all the time. I like the challenge of switching it up. Second, and more practically, it is a difficult thing to have steady work in just one aspect of the creative industry. Most actors have a day job like waiting tables or the like. I have worked hard to make sure my day job still falls within the parameters of the creative field. The truth is, I am a restless soul. And I don’t sit still well. I’ve learned important lessons and have gotten great advice along the way from some very wise people. The fear of being approved of can be debilitating. So I remind myself not to worry how good my work is. Rather, I simply trust that if I bring my whole self to whatever I’m doing, it will be coming from a place of my own personal truth. As it has been said, ‘to thine own self be true.’
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
When I have visitors, I take them to our fantastic museum district, which has been built largely from, and enjoys continual support from an incredible philanthropic community. Also, I feel there is no better way to experience the local color than through the local food. In Houston’s case, we have many flavors to choose from, reflecting directly our diverse population. For instance, we have the best Vietnamese food! One of my favorite places for a quick lunch when I’m on the go is the drive-thru at Oui Banh Mi. The chargrilled pork and pate sandwich is my favorite! And when I need to connect to nature, I go to any one of our meticulously designed and maintained green spaces such as Discovery Green, Hermann Park, and Buffalo Bayou.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
It is difficult to pinpoint any one particular source of encouragement, support, or mentorship. Of course, there is always something to learn from others that do what you do. But often times, an inspiration or great advice can come from unexpected people and places. Someone with no direct connection to the work I do can offer tidbits that are easily transferable to my endeavors. Our time-honored traditions of passing along the ‘good stuff’ is probably the oldest and most fundamental functions of human interaction. Looking for those opportunities to learn and then pass that learning on to others is what it’s all about. Listening is key.
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