One of Canberra’s finest entertainment exports, Tim ‘Timomatic’ Omaji has had great success across numerous platforms since entering the public consciousness as a performer some 10 years ago.
From releasing chart topping singles to dancing up a storm on national TV to treading the boards in a number of touring stage productions, Omaji has reached some dizzying heights in his career so far.
He tells Canberra Weekly part of the reason he’s remained grounded is his time at Kulture Break while growing up in Canberra.
“I remember it as this time of endless possibilities, there was nothing to lose,” he says.
“Dance was on the up and what we were able to do with a handful of people was to generate this energy through dancing that was very inclusive and very attractive to both kids and adults.
“Because there wasn’t a crazy amount to do, it made me focus more as there wasn’t much distraction … I definitely benefitted from that.”
He visited Canberra earlier this month to spend some time around Kulture Break, dropping in on a number of workshops and classes and mentoring current students.
“We surprised some kids while they were doing the sessions which was fun … I’ve also been working with some aspiring young dancers and musicians on mentoring and really encouraging them to keep going and take it to the next level.”
He says the most rewarding aspect of mentoring is seeing a student realise something that they never thought was possible about themselves.
“When they realise that there’s more in them than they thought, that’s just the most important thing in the world.
“That mentality, or the breaking of a mentality if you will, just permeates through their entire life. I like that effect, and again, I’ve seen it happen for myself.”
The advice he passes on comes down to the age-old adage, you get out what you put in.
“I try to instill that and say ‘guys, if you want more you’ve got to give more’.
“They’ve come to this level and that’s great, but I then ask them ‘what are you striving for?’, and tell them to keep going until they get it.”
Omaji says while Kulture Break has transformed and undergone significant changes since he left, the organisation’s message and core function have never wavered.
“It’s grown and taken different shapes … but I think the ethos of Kulture Break has stayed, which is ‘you don’t become somebody, you are somebody’.
“Kulture Break reinforces the fact that people are special the way they are, and that we’re here to facilitate their dreams of honing in on their craft.
“If anything, I think the Kulture Break ethos is you leave a better person than you came in, and it almost is a guarantee given the people you’re exposed to,” he says.