A Wrinkle in Time director Ava DuVernay wasn’t always destined to helm major feature productions. In fact, she may have been on an entirely different career path in the early 90s. It turns out, DuVernay used to be apart of a hip-hop duo named Figures of Speech, and they weren’t actually half bad.
Figures of Speech was reportedly comprised of MC Jyant (pronounced “giant”) and MC Eve, a.k.a DuVernay. The group reportedly performed in the early 1990s at local cafes – particularly the The Good Life Health Food Centre in Los Angeles – and were even featured on the 1994 compilation album, Project Blowed. As for their rapping style, they seemed to rhyme over jazzy beats, often incorporating spit-fire and spoke-word flows. Some of their memorable singles include: “Rhythmical Spiritual” and “Mythic Proportions.”
“Figures of Speech was a wonderful experience,” DuVernay said of her time performing in a 2009 interview with Black Film. “Being in that group allowed me be an artist for the first time, and all that goes with that—risk, dedication, stretching those muscles.”
DuVernay eventually dropped the rap career and experimented with a number of different professions, including journalism and public relations. She eventually settled on filmmaking, and it’s a good thing she did. DuVernay is gearing up for the release of the movie adaptation A Wrinkle In Time, which debuts on Mar. 9. DuVernay is the first black woman to direct a live-acton film with a budget of $100 million.
Check out an old video of Figures of Speech below.