The Opulent Corner would like to introduce to some and present to others, Mr. Avery “Slay” Washington. In 2007 while attending a party at his Alma Mater, Tuskeege University, “Slay” took a risk and asked the DJ if he could get on the microphone; eight years later, he reigns as one of the hottest names on the Connecticut event and party scene as he is rapidly gaining notoriety throughout the Northeast and beyond.
Avery was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and moved to New Haven, Connecticut as a young child. The son of a Social Worker and an Administrator in Higher Education, academic excellence has always been at the forefront of Avery’s mind. Through focus and determination, Avery obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration in 2011. Though he worked hard in the classroom, Avery made sure to maintain balance and have fun. In an interview with VSOP, Avery shared that his initial draw to becoming a host was the ability to improve people’s experience.
VSOP: “What drew you into your craft?”
AW: “I saw that people had great ideas for events but they were bland and missing the energy and hype elements. I felt that I was the missing link to an event being successful. Before I knew it, I was hosting the majority of the parties at the student union as well as at local clubs in the surrounding area.”
Public speaking and performing in front of large groups of people can be a nerve wracking experience. However, Avery got his start early on in life. As a lifelong member of the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Avery would often be called to lead the opening prayer or to serve as Worship Leader for Men’s Day Celebration and other church observances. It was evident early on that Avery had a special gift to connect with others, but more importantly, he enjoys the process of interacting with his audience.
AW: “My craft is my passion, I truly enjoy hosting events and seeing other people happy or laughing because I have enhanced the event experience.”
In addition to being extremely personable and professional, Avery has a reputation for putting his best foot forward at all times. He is not bashful in sharing that he seeks to stand out as the best in his field.
VSOP: “What does opulence mean to you?”
AW: “Opulence is being the absolute best at what you do. Opulence is when your worth is your wealth.”
VSOP: “Where do you see yourself in the next ten years?”
AW: “In ten years, I see myself on a major television network or radio station daily hosting a show or program.”
When thinking of a word to describe “Slay,” the first one that comes to mind is versatile. Not only can he hold down the mic at a club blazing the latest in R&B, hip hop and reggae, he can also serve as the Master of Ceremonies for a fundraising gala, fashion show, wedding or a black tie affair.
Slay doesn’t only seek opulence as a small business owner, he also excels at his full time job as an educator in the New Haven Public School system. When he is not hosting events or spending extra time with students, Slay can be found serving his community as a proud member of the Chi Omicron Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated.
VSOP: “Tell us about Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated.”
AW: “Omega Psi Phi is a brotherhood that is well respected in the New Haven community and all over the world for our service and uplifting African American males. We are celebrating 104 years of brotherhood.”
Avery has dedicated his life to improving the conditions of others. Whether it be through community service or by him making an event come to life with his uncanny ability to use wit, humor and charisma to get the crowd to “turn up”. Avery is a firm believer that iron sharpens iron and suggested that up and coming event hosts seek out professionals in the field as mentors.
VSOP:”If there was one piece of advice that you could give to someone looking to get into your industry, what would it be?”
AW: “Find the person that is most popular or the best at what you are interested in. Follow that person and their art form. Also, seek a conversation with that individual in order to understand their motives and ideas.”
The road to success is not always navigated through a straight path. When seeking opulence, one must have faith, determination and a love for the grind. Slay Washington exemplifies all of these traits and more; as an educator, community activist and one of the hottest names of the hosting scene, he is truly living the opulent life. We salute Slay Washington for who you were, who you are and who you will become!
Slay Washington can be reached at:
Now there’s only one question to ask, #AreYouVSOP?