Who is Bus Howard?
Jitney The Wire
Death of a Salesman Josiah Henson
Frederick Douglass Dreamgilrs
Headshot Just Jammin'
He began his acting career in his native Chicago, Illinois, where as a young child he portrayed the baby Jesus in his church's Nativity play. An accomplished career as a performer has led him into a variety of roles.
Bus was cast as Carl, a WhiteHouse correspondent in the HBO series VEEP, starring Julia Louise Dreyfus. Mr. Howard played the character "Marty" in Dreamgirls (Helen Hayes Awarded), at Signature Theatre. "Charley" in Death of a Salesman at Virginia Stage. As well, he reprised the great Paul Robeson role as the "Emperor Jones" to rave reviews, at the American Century Theatre in Alexandria, Va. He was the host for the Build a Boat Show on cable's (D.I.Y.) Do-it-yourself Network.
Also, a guest star on Law and Order-SVU and was a recurring presence on the HBO series The Wire (Season 2) in the role of Ott.
He was the national voice-over for United Negro College Fund's "A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste" campaign. Mr. Howard was invited to the White House during the Bush Administration (1st Bush), where he performed his one-man reenactment of Frederick Douglass. This and other powerful reenactments, such as Josiah Henson, Malcolm X, Martin L. King, Father Divine, Nat Turner, Thurgood Marshall and Negro League Baseball are performed by Bus Howard both on a local and national scale.
He has served as an Artist-in-residence for the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for over 12 years, as well as for 20 years with the Maryland State Arts Council, leading workshops and teaching drama to school age children.
Mr. Howard has displayed his craftsman skills as tour technical director of Negro Ensemble Company's Colored People's Time and the Pulitzer Prize winning A Soldier's Play. He was Master carpenter on numerous Negro Ensemble Company plays.
As a musician, Bus plays guitar, African stick drums, djembe drum, balaphon, bongos, and harmonica, in order to bring the music to his performance resume. And he is a student of the Blues.
Portrayal of Josiah Henson "The real Uncle Tom" for Maryland National Capitol Park and Planning
I lead workshops and residencies for audiences from the pre-cognizant learners to Teacher Development. Team building and ensemble based learning is my focus and forte.
It's not by rote we learn best...but "putting it in our bodies", "trusting ourselves", and leaping on faith that it is already there-just waiting for us to tap into it.
I incorporate live music to augment this process. Spontaneous operas have been known to spring out (telling a story with music). It is often that these groups can learn a poem or sonnet within 5 minutes time.
"What is the number?"
I am the World's Best Simon Says "...I'm sneaky...don't sleep...I've got tricks."
-I am a certified Teaching Artist (Teaching Artist Institute)
-VSC based Artist-in-Residence
-Over 30 years classroom and theatrical performance veteran
Available 60-90 min.Workshops: please contact me for bookings
*The Acting Workshop
*The Storytelling Workshop
*The Historical Reenactment Workshop
*Teacher / Staff Development
*The Centering Workshop
The Acting Workshop
Rousing vocal, body and creative mind warm-ups are followed by exciting theatrical games and exercises to integrate dramatic arts to the student population. Students will perform scenes developed in this workshop as a culminating experience, before their peers/families. Great team building.
The Storytelling Workshop
Once upon a time...someone told a whopper of a story! How to tell a story as a group, how to tell fairy tales, fables and stories of other cultures are examined in this workshop. One need not know how to read or write to tell a good story. Listening skills as well as speaking skills are developed. have you heard the one about...
The Historical Reenactment Workshop
Following a performance by Bus Howard, this workshop investigates the background work required to mount and present a character of historical presence. Students will research, script, and act, with a three to five minute presentation about their character of history. Living history takes on a new meaning when fun is an ingredient.
Faculty / Administration
This workshop is specifically for teachers! It is designed to reduce stress, anxiety and tension. Through theatrical games and vocal and body exercises, this team building workshop recharges those depleted batteries. A fun and stress-free workshop designed to get you through those long days! Try it you'll like it.
The Centering Workshop
All ages/ Faculty & Administration
Designed to relieve stress and get you back in touch with your relaxed, creative self. Breathing and mental exercises are introduced to assist the participants in slowing down their hectic pace. Team building games and activities allow for reduction of stress and strain. Thoughts are things, thoughts have wings, thoughts materialize.
Please contact for information
25 maximum or sized by special request
The Acting Workshop
-chairs for each participant
- 12' x 15' open space (min.)
-chairs for each participant
-12' x 15' open space (min.)
Standard classroom for all other workshops
Please contact me for performances and bookings!
Uncle Tom's Cabin
Josiah Henson (Uncle Tom)
Sept. 19th 2009
11420 Old Georgetown Road Bethesda, Md.
Mike Baytop and I performing Josiah Henson's story
Using poetry, spoken word, song and live music, Bus Howard weaves the true story of a forgotten American hero, Josiah Henson. When Harriet B. Stowe heard his story she wrote the book, Uncle Tom's Cabin.
Uncle Tom's Cabin was the best-selling novel of the 19th century, and the second best-selling book of that century, following the Bible. It is credited with helping fuel the abolitionist cause in the 1850s. In the first year after it was published, 300,000 copies of the book were sold in the United States alone. The book's impact was so great that when Abraham Lincoln met Stowe at the start of the Civil War, Lincoln is often quoted as having declared, "So this is the little lady who made this big war."
Josiah Henson's name is associated with a negative stereotype "UncleTom", which to this day is misunderstood about who and what this man was. A visonary, a freedom fighter, a man of faith and spirit, a pioneer and a settler. Josiah Henson led many to freedom in a time when freedom of African descendents was in America nonexistent.
Many years ago I wrote a one-man play about Frederick Douglass. Using his own narratives, I constructed a timeline of events and happenings in his life. I chose Frederick Douglass as a character because, I personally felt he was a person we all subconsciously love, but know so little of. Who exactly was he and what did he do?
From The Whitehouse to small independent schools, I have had the fortune to present this story in varied locations and situations. I present this same story for very young audiences and audiences that are mature. I have the discretion to adapt his history as need be.
For young audiences, I am very interactive. For mature audiences, I can delve into topics that seldom are introduced, explaining different aspects of that "peculiar institution" - Slavery. All performances conclude with a lively question and answer period - "In character". Don't miss it.
School Performance of: "An Evening with Frederick Douglass
The Douglass House Washington DC
Originally commissioned by the Smithsonian Institution, this multidisciplined offering includes live Jazz music, original poetry and accurate historical timeline on this infleuntial American icon.
Martin Luther King
A moving oration of the legend that this Baptist Minister became... A "drum-major for Peace and Justice...for all Men and Women". An advocate for non-violence, a student of Bayard Rustin and Howard Thurman who introduced him to the teachings of Mohandas Ghandi.
Commissioned by the Smithsonian Institution, presented at the American History Museum, this powerful story is brought to life with narrative and blues music (live).
Negro League Baseball
Colorful stories and tales of the lives and times of the pioneers of modern baseball. Travel with the clubs and explore the difficulties of "barnstorming" and long "road trips" to deliver the game that became "America's Favorite Sport"...baseball.
Through first person narrative, discover the story of this often neglected American hero and "Man of the People". The tales of overcoming hardships that effected thousands of lives during the Depression, and the hope that this man inspired.
Commissioned by the Reginal F. Lewis Museum. A unique presentation of the life and times of Thurgood Marshall, Chief Justice, lawyer, Civil Rights advocate. In a mock classroom, the audience becomes "first-year" law students, (with printed prompts), that answer and pose questions to Mr. Marshall.
Please contact me at ActorBus@aol.com for booking and rates
A Partial List some of the many places of Performances:
The White House Washington DC
The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
Martin Van Buren National Historic Site Kinderhook, NY
The Charles Sumner Museum And Archives
The Corcoran Gallery of Art
The Congressional Black Caucus
United States Marines Corp
Children's National Medical Center
Jack and Jill of America
Creative Arts Program Fairfax County VA
Bell Atlantic C.I.T.E. Regional Convention Baltimore MD
Crawford Auto Museum Cleveland OH
Oxford Community Center
Linden Hall School Lititz PA
South Bowie Community Center Bowie MD
Roland Park Country Day School
Malcolm X Elementary School
The Reginald F. Lewis Museum Baltimore, MD