The Man The Myth The Myko

Duane Myko performs his "Should, Could, Dream" tour for Rockville High School students.
Duane Myko performs his “Should, Could, Dream” tour for Rockville High School students.

With lasers beaming, beach balls bouncing and music bumping, the stage was set for motivational speaker Duane Myko to change young lives.

Myko, who began touring in 2011, has entertained and motivated over 390,000 students across the country. His style appeals to high school age kids, with hot tracks like Rae Strummond’s “No Type” and Migo’s “Fight Night” playing throughout his presentation.

On November 19, students were treated to the Duane Myko experience, a three-part play of “poetry, comedy and entertainment,” as he described it in his introduction. The play is known as “Should, Could, Dream” and is loosely based on Myko’s peers and personal experiences growing up.

English teacher Ambereen Khan-Baker, as one of the coordinators of the ACES program, worked with College-Career Info Coordinator Janet Harris to bring Myko to Rockville. “He’s pretty well-known in the country. He’d been to other schools but never Rockville; he’s been to Wood [Middle School]. Mrs. Harris has been in touch with him and knows him really well, and we looked at his website. He looked highly engaging,” Khan-Baker said.

Myko’s debut at Rockville was definitely captivating. After having both sides of the auditorium compete to make the most noise, Myko asked the crowd an exciting question: “Ya��all wanna turn up?”

The crowd demanded it.

“I was told Rockville is the most turnt up high school out there!” said Myko as he tossed another ball into the crowd. Soon after, the presentation began with Myko explaining the “Should” character and taking on the role.

“Should,” named for all the responsible actions he “should” have done, was shown as a class clown known for his lack of homework and surplus of wise cracks. Myko, taking a break from character, explained that joking around in class is funny at first, but overall a waste of time.

Next was “Could,” who had ambitions but also had to try to stay on track. With various obstacles in his way, “Could” wanted to succeed but didn’t necessarily put in the time, another attribute Myko explained was not of any interest. “Dream” meanwhile represented the hardworking attitude Myko wanted the audience to emulate.

Junior Laura Kjellman enjoyed the performance, and said afterwards she understood the message. “He relates to his audience well and put it in terms we will understand rather than someone lecturing us until we fall asleep.”

Throughout the performance, Myko included tales of college, tips for treating women right and personal accounts of friend’s incidents with everything from drugs to job interviews. In the end, many knew the message was clear: right now is the time to focus and make the most of their opportunities.

Junior Joanna Klinedinst said, “There were a lot of people that I saw who really enjoyed his presentation. Not everyone responds well to a lecture about getting their act together, but he used his own experiences to connect with the students and a lot of them were able to understand his message better since it was told in a form they understood and enjoyed.”