Keep Your Eyes Peeled — Daveed Diggs Is Coming Our Way

(5.28) He looks a little different these days. Rapper (Clipping.), “Hamilton” Lafayette/Jefferson Tony winner, “Black-ish” cast member — with Brown alum Tracee Ellis Ross . . . do they reminisce about East Side Pockets? — Brown Class of 2004 and all-around underachieving layabout, Daveed Diggs returns to his alma mater to deliver the Baccalaureate address this Saturday (ProJo 4.21.17) while also receiving an honorary degree on Sunday.

But how much of an impression did he make in college? Check out this 2004 senior profile from the Brown Daily Herald (He was worthy of a senior profile — that says something right there. I don’t remember URI asking me for an exit interview.)

On this day, like always, Diggs is sporting his signature fluorescent colors, yellow rubber overalls to fend off the rain and a tangerine orange bandana on his head.

Although his unusual style often attracts outside attention, he says, “I’m not trying to prove anything. Especially on gloomy days like this, I like to brighten up my own scene.”

How did I never see this guy walking around?!!! At any rate, while Diggs was concentrating in theater arts, he was also setting records over the hurdles, but the theater and music won out. From the profile,

Diggs is currently fine-tuning “Sweeter than…” which he first performed at Rites and Reason in November 2003, to make it more portable and address smaller audiences. He hopes to be able to perform it, with minimal production needs, at any location.

As if performing and maintaining his status as a star runner weren’t enough, Diggs has had a leading role in the Central Falls High School Arts Literacy Program. His freshman year, he developed a program with Jody Green ’03 that required students to deconstruct plays and write them in their own terms.

Yikes, I think I owe my parents money. And note to self: Check out more of the student theater events at Brown. Chris Hayes (Class of ’01) recently told the New York Times about staging a version of David Foster Wallace’s “Brief Interviews with Hideous Men” in his senior year ” . . . in a student-run theater, and one of the people I cast was John Krasinski, who would later buy the rights to it and make it into a film.”

Five other honorary degrees will be conferred this weekend, including Robert De Niro.

(Above photo: Brown University Athletic Department.)



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