This year, London South East Colleges has its very own celebrity student.
Romario Shersmith-Adams, aka Romzy, is currently hitting the heights as a rap artist and has even signed a lucrative recording contract with Warner Bros. Records that could see him propelled to the very top of his career as a musician.
It would be easy for the 17-year-old from Woolwich to lose sight of his local roots and be diverted from continuing his educational future were it not for the fact that he intends to keep a firm grip on reality.
In September 2018, just months after the release of his breakthrough single ‘Bottles Get Popped’, Romzy decided to enrol at the College’s Greenwich Campus in Plumstead to study for the Production Arts Level 3 Diploma. He did so not as an alternative route or a backup plan, but to learn the skills he will need to complement his career in a mainly technical capacity and to gain inspiration and new ideas. Further to this, he intends to go to work to gain real on-the-job skills in either a theatre or production studio once his course is complete.
He says: “The last eighteen months have been totally crazy in terms of my music career and I’m very excited about the future. In the last year I’ve performed at the Wireless Festival in Finsbury Park, both the Reading and Leeds Festivals and a number of solo tour dates in Manchester, Birmingham and London. It’s all going down very well and I’m still pinching myself that it’s really happening – all of this just weeks after taking my GCSEs.
“I’ve decided to take two related but different paths as I move forward. One will be the music and the writing, the other will be my educational journey. I want to learn more about the crafts of theatre sound techniques and lighting, stage sets and costume design. If my success continues then I will use the skills I’ve learnt on my course to help create my unique onstage brand and character. This is something I will always want to ‘call the shots’ in and is very important to me.”
Earlier this year, Romzy took part in an Anti-Knife Crime Summit hosted by the Royal Borough of Greenwich. He spoke to an audience of young people alongside high-ranking members of the Council, the Metropolitan Police and Charlton Athletic FC. He shared his opinions about the relationship between drill music and gang culture as well as advocating a better way forward in life through education, training and empowerment through achievement.