Since I was a teenager, I have struggled with depression. As a kid, the worst feeling about depression was feeling like I was the only kid struggling with it. Being the only one of my friends who felt that way was frustrating. But as an adult, I have realized that I thought I was the only one because nobody talks about it. From my family to my friends, to even my teachers, depression wasn't a topic of discussion. So I've aimed to create art where depression would be at the forefront so that the conversation could be normalized. Thus, I wrote a novel titled HEROIC.
HEROIC displays the life of a young boy, Revenant, who’s a sword wielding hero hiding in a world where heroism is illegal and Super Villains run rampant. But when he saves the family of a young girl, his unlawful heroic actions put the lives of the family in jeopardy which forces Revenant to join a deadly tournament that urges him to forsake his great teacher's one rule, Do Not Kill.
In heroic, the main character struggles with depression but still manages to be a hero even though most days, he doesn't have the energy or the will to be one. He just powers through on not the strength of his own, but the people who need him most. The story is told through the eyes of the people around Revenant and is a story of how they perceive him. However, accompanying the novel Is a hip-hop album that I've written that tells the same story as the novel except this time, you get it all from Revenant's perspective so that the pain and inner thoughts of someone struggling with depression.
The special part of this awesome project is that when the music is performed on stage, it is in the form of a musical where we tell the story once more but through song and theatrical performance. All this to show children who feel like I did that not only are they not alone, but depression doesn't make you weak because even someone with superpowers can be depressed and still make a difference.
Funded by San Jose, CA (May 2017)