AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – THE EXPERIENCE is a ministry that has taken Augusta and the surrounding areas by storm as they are inspiring and transforming the lives of the youth and teenagers through the creative arts including mime.
WJBF News Channel 6’s Karlton T. Clay talks with Brandon Jackson, the founder of THE EXPERIENCE.
Can you explain to us what is mime?
Mime is pretty much telling a story using your body, your facial expressions, and just different types of movements. So, you want people to be able to know what you’re doing without you saying anything. So, you never say anything, but you’re still telling a story using your whole body.
How old were you when you began to mime?
I started when I was 9, and I’m 26 now so, you know… math. (Laughs) So, I’ve been doing it for a long time.
Before THE EXPEREIENCE, what were you known as?
The Unspoken Word, and that came from actually me not talking. Well, I talked, but I didn’t like going in front of people talking. We chose the Unspoken Word because as mimes, we don’t talk. It was a play on words. I didn’t like to talk, and mimes don’t talk so it was like Unspoken Word because we are still giving a word without talking.
Singing and dancing are mostly used as expressions of worship. Why miming and what makes this form of ministry unique?
With not talking, you actually have to spend a lot of time working on it because you can’t just get up there and do anything. First of all, it is gospel mime so that means we do it to gospel music. So, we have to make sure we listen to the song and study the song almost to the point where we become that person. So, that’s what makes it unique because where you have your favorite singers like Tasha Cobbs [Leonard] and Marvin Sapp – singers like that – I give them a visual of how that person may have been singing that song. I try to give them that visual.
How has THE EXPERIENCE grown over the years from your personal experience?
I think we started off in 2012 with maybe 10 people, and now, we have expanded. Now, we have two branches: one in Augusta and another in Daytona Beach, Florida. So with that alone, we have 50 to 60 active members, but at least, over the years, about 500 kids and more have come through THE EXPERIENCE. We say, “Once a member, always a member.”
What does THE EXPERIENCE have coming up?
We have our spring camp coming up, which is a creative arts camp. This is where you come in, and we do mime, praise dance, drama, and art. At the end of the spring camp, we do a concert that showcases what the kids learned throughout the week. So, we keep them all day and work on the arts – any arts even if they want to sing, we will even put that into the concert, and we’ll have a huge explosion at the end of the camp.
So, if anyone wants to join THE EXPERIENCE or they want more information about THE EXPERIENCE, how can they get that information?
We have our website, which is derwinjacksonministries.org, we have our Facebook page which is The Experience Ministries, and we have our Instagram which is @ExperienceOnInsta. You can message us, follow us, comment – whatever you need to do to get in contact with us.