Streetsboro --In recent years, Keithe Williams Performing Arts Academy has made its mark on Streetsboro and beyond.
Keithe Williams is the owner, director and instructor of the academy which specializes in performing arts including dance, acting, and voice and piano training. All ages from toddlers to adults are invited to come take lessons.
Williams' student, Anthony Paul, recently competed on NBC's "The Voice" a national singing competition. Paul, a recent graduate of Twinsburg High School, has received vocal training for the past three years at Keithe Williams Performing Arts Academy.
Paul made it to the knockout rounds of "The Voice," which is when two people from the same team sing songs of their choosing and their coach decides who did best. Paul lost this round and was eliminated from the competition on Oct. 29.
"I think what Anthony's done is great," said Williams. "I'm very happy to be a part of his development as a vocalist and as a man. He is only 18, and I know he will go far."
Williams has made an impact locally, as well. In spring 2012, the head of Streetsboro High School's drama club, Jim Boardwine, contacted Williams to help out with the choreography for the club's production of "Fangs," a video produced in advance of the high school's production of "Lady Dracula."
"I gave him a call because I had a number of students and former students who were being trained at the academy and they had said really good things about Williams and his teachings," said Boardwine. "His studio is fantastic, and he is an excellent teacher. The students at the academy are incredibly disciplined and happy, which is a great combination."
Williams opened up his academy to the students to train for their production free of charge.
"We went to a local cemetery and did a lot of dancing for the video," said Williams. "The final compilation turned out really nice."
Boardwine stated he would like to work with Williams again in the future if the opportunity arises.
"Keithe is an excellent teacher and helped us out greatly with our production," said Boardwine.
The Streetsboro High School drama club will present "Alice in Wonderland" on May 9 at 7 p.m. and May 11 at 2 p.m. at Streetsboro High School. Tickets are $10.
To stay on top of his game, Williams said he tries to go to New York City every eight to 10 weeks to attend classes for voice and dance.
"I continue to educate myself because I want to offer the best to my clients," said Williams. "I really enjoy educating. I find it very rewarding."
Williams attended Brescia College in Owensboro, Ken., where he majored in music theory and performance.
He then attended the University of Louisville where he majored in vocal performance and general education. Williams also attended Barbizon Model Talent Schools and Agency in Louisville, Ken., where he majored in fashion and runway. Williams attended these schools from 1980 to 1985.
Opening up an academy has been Williams' dream since he was six years old.
"My grandmother had always wanted me to open up my academy, and in 2002 she passed away," said Williams. "I then decided to open up the academy in Streetsboro in 2003."
The Keithe Williams Performing Arts Academy is located at 1517 Route 303.
For more information about the Keithe Williams Performing Arts Academy, visit keithewilliamsperformingartsacademy.com.