Anji Daniels – Academy Director
Born and raised in inner city Birmingham back in the late 1960’s, Anji has always expressed a keen interest in Performing Arts. From the tender age of 8 years old she felt privileged to join her local community stage school ‘Belford’. This is where Anji learnt the power of ‘LIVE’ performance and value of discipline in performing arts.
Anji started her first real community project when she was just 12 years old highly motivated by the 1978 block buster film ‘Grease’ a film she watched at the local Odean cinema on more than one occasion. Anji put on a series of shows over the school summer holidays using the family garage for a theatre. Our ‘Backyard Theatre’ as it was known was only ever meant to be a ‘one off’, a bit of fun to capture and engage local bored kids however, the performances were always enjoyed by our community audiences.
Anji gained valuable experience playing lead roles in school productions at St Georges Church of England Comprehensive School back in the early 1980’s. Her active involvement in the school Dance and Drama clubs gave Anji the opportunity to learn the organizational skills and develop leadership attributes with her peers.
Throughout her late teens and whilst at college studying Business & Finance, Anji’s passion for performing arts flourished however her involvement was now creating and producing talent showcases in local community centers.
Proceeding years see Anji married in 1988, completing her studies and working professionally in Finance and with her Husband Andrew raising a family of 2 birth daughters and foster son and daughter. Anji was appointed Finance Director for The Centre For Conflict Transformation C.I.C formally known as West Midlands Mediation and Transformation Services in 2004 and still holds this position today as her full time vocation.
Over the past 10 years Anji continued to be the main driving force for APAA developing integral relationships with our current APAA strategic partners. APAA’s reputation grew from strength to strength flourishing as our high profiled ‘out of school hours’ activities and showcase projects became visible throughout the city.
As Academy Director Anji oversees the day-to-day management for delivering quality ‘Live’ music base performances and producing creative arts programs leading to performance opportunities.
Working closely with the Creative and Artistic Directors and the Band Leader we continue developing our artistic processes and working strategies for delivering APAA’s Artistic Vision.
Truchio Powell – Creative and Events Director
Birmingham born, Truchio is one of seven children raised in the inner city areas of Birmingham. He found his passion for music and performing at the tender age of 8 where he did duets with his tw
in brother Pelego for church members and school peers. He became no stranger to the stage and quickly made a name for himself within his community performing at Talent Shows, Dance Competitions and Church Conventions.
Truchio continued his love for music and performance at Cardinal Wiseman Secondary School through being an active member of the School Choir, Wind Band, Steel Band, Dance Group and participation through Theatre Productions.
After leaving school Truchio went to Bournville College to study A Levels in English and Media Studies. Following this both Truchio and Pelego attended Joseph Chamberlain College where they studied Performing Arts and Theatre Studies for which they received A & B’s.
Truchio committed himself to various school projects around the City particularly Welford Primary School, teaching children the art of dance, singing and performance. Annually the children showcased what they had learned through the production of a talent show that was attended by 400+ supporters, family and friends each year.
Truchio attended Coventry University and graduated with a 1st in Communications. On completion of his degree he took on various management posts and went back into the entertainment industry through managing the Front of House team at The Drum Arts Centre. He also worked for Marketing Birmingham where he co-managed Birmingham’s Visitor Experience and ticketing team and also the organisations corporate events. Truchio is an Events Manager by trade and is a non-executive director for Aspire4u CIC a youth management and training organisation in Birmingham.
Truchio joined APAA in 2010 as the Creative and Events Director and is responsible for the overall project management of events, external and internal and is co-responsible for the overall presentation of the performance groups which includes choreography, vocal development, song choice and attire as well as the general day to day management of the students. Truchio is also a lead vocalist in the performance group Elements of Song.
Truchio is married to Matara and has one birth child and three foster children.
Pelego Powell – Creative and Artistic Director
Pelego was also born in Birmingham and is one of seven children. He found his passion for music and performing at the age of seven where he sung lead vocals in a class assembly. He got his first taste of the stage and did not look back. He continued performing for church members and school peers showing off his God given talent. Audiences from Talent Shows, Dance Competitions and Church Conventions he regularly performed at were mesmerised by his talent and confidence.
Similar to his twin brother Truchio, Pelego continued his love for music and performance at Cardinal Wiseman Secondary School through being an active member of the School Choir, Wind Band, Steel Band, Dance Group and participation through Theatre Productions.
After leaving school Pelego went to South Birmingham College to study A Level English, Sociology and Law. Following this both Truchio and Pelego attended Joseph Chamberlain College where they studied Performing Arts and Theatre Studies for which they received A & B’s.
Pelego got his first taste of teaching dance, music and performance through committing himself to various school projects around the City particularly Welford Primary School, teaching children the art of dance, singing and performance. Annually the children showcased what they had learned through the production of a talent show that was attended by 400+ supporters, family and friends each year.
Pelego studied Criminology and Sociology at Coventry University and graduated in 2008. Throughout the years he grew very fond of Welford Primary School and therefore decided he wanted to enter the academic world of teaching. He completed a GTP at Welford School and since then has become a teacher and has taken full ownership of anything music or performance related the school gets involves in. As a result he has also taken up the running and coordination of the annual talent show and has established a strong working relationship with APAA and the school.
Pelego joined APAA in 2010 as the Creative and Artistic Director and is responsible for the student’s development and pastoral care on and off stage. He is co-responsible for the overall presentation of the performance groups which includes choreography, vocal development, song choice and attire as well as the general day to day management of the students. Pelego is also a lead vocalist in the performance group Elements of Song.
Pelego is married to Natasha and has one child.
Reuben Reynolds – Music Director and Guitar Tutor
Born and raised in Birmingham, Reuben got involved with making and studying music whilst in his latter years at his secondary school, Stockland Green Technology College. His interest in music grew and his enthusiasm saw him get involved with his schools talent/music shows and also completing his Music GCSE’s a year early despite having no formal instrumental instruction. After dabbling with the different instruments available at his school, the guitar soon became his primary instrument and in 2009 he completed a Btech in Music Performance at Sutton Coldfield College with Distinction. A direction he took simply to further satisfy his interest in music.
During this time, prompted by a family member, Reuben attended a one-off performance workshop open to all ages and abilities facilitated by Aston Performing Arts Academy and lead by City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Not being affiliated with the APAA but showing some flair for musical performance, Reuben attracted the attention of the APAA director Angela Daniels and got involved with their future performance activities.
As APAA grew in size and their standard of performance and reputation grew along with it, Reuben became a core member of the APAA’s network of musicians and has been involved with all of their music performance activities since 2008. After demonstrating commitment to rehearsals, adaptability and ever-growing musicianship and leadership skills, Reuben accepted the role as official band leader of the APAA in 2011. Since then, it has been his responsibility to organise aspects of rehearsal, coordinate musicians and also to direct the band and the musical arrangements of the APAA performance repertoire, working closely with the group’s vocal coaches and choreographers to develop APAA’s exciting performances. Reuben also arranges for and conducts APAA’s Urban Orchestra.
Outside of the APAA, Reuben has achieved a First Class BA Honours Degree in Music Performance and Professional Practice from Coventry University and is an active freelance musician, performing, recording, directing, composing and arranging music within a wide variety of contexts and venues, as-well-as, teaching music theory, guitar and leading group music workshops.