Derek Mcalister

Derek McAlister was born in 1978 to a Texas entrepreneur and lovely southern belle in Dallas, Texas.  Growing up in Texas yet with a family aware of culture outside of the US gave Derek his chance to stay open minded. It was not much of a surprise that after his first trip to Europe in 1999, a life of performing and doing so in the streets would make him very happy.

Derek grew up in the public school system doing exceptionally well in math, science, and foreign language.  His focus however, was more on making people laugh.  His parents often listened to Bill Cosby on vinyl, and at the young age of 6, Derek was already quoting the material well.  He didn’t understand the jokes of course, having to do with birth, love between adults, and having children, but he knew that when he said the joke just right, he would get a great laugh from his audience.  

After playing sports all through high school, with only one semester remaining, he redirected his attention towards the stage.  Everything changed from there.  He’d found his calling. Going to theater classes throughout university taught him a lot, but most importantly that he didn’t want to be apart of classical theater.  Combined with the impact of his parents traveling to Europe without him, inspired within him a desire to learn a foreign language fluently and therefore understand a different culture.

His first trip to Europe, 2 years before college graduation gave him just that.  There he met a street performer, Jean-Michel Parr who made him laugh, taught him some new juggling patterns, and performed what Derek still thinks to be one of the best street shows.  Derek came back home to Texas, and immediately after graduating in 2001, went abroad with a friend and performing partner to make a show.

Since that season, Derek went solo and has made his mark performing all over the streets of Europe, Canada, the States, Australia, and even Thailand.  
After about 7 years of learning and honing the skills needed to do a good street show, Derek was led into a workshop he needed to further his career and really make something beautiful.  It was a clown workshop in Boulder, Colorado with Giovanni Fusetti, formerly a student of the Lecoq international theater school in Paris.  Six weeks later, Derek had found his “clown” Franky J Kabaam!  That experience of creating new work has since inspired Derek to open his eyes and explore new avenues to satisfy his desire to share what’s inside his mind with the world.  The last 3 years Derek has made two new shows inspired by his new found respect for the tradition of clown and mime with a third new show in the making.

This website is the representation of that work. Inside you will find his three street theater shows, and a man always in the process of creating and pursuing his dream of making memories for the people he is lucky enough to have as an audience.

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