Let me introduce you to another actress friend of mine. Do you remember the TV show ROC with Charles Dutton? His wife was played by the fabulous Ella Joyce. I know Ella from New York and when we met, she had an entirely different name. No, you won't get it out of me, I've been sworn to secrecy. Ella Joyce is one fierce sista. There were about four of us NY actresses that all came out to LA around the same time and ironically got married around that same time also. Phyllis Yvonne Stickney, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Ella and me. Phyllis, Vanessa and I all worked on a play called STRIVER'S ROW at the New Heritage Theater in Harlem. It was there that I saw Ella Joyce in another play and enjoyed her work immensely. We became friends and almost did a play together at Black Spectrum in Queens but I didn't accept the role because I was moving out to L.A. Ella moved out a little bit later but she had lived here before. Out of the four of us, Ella and Vanessa are still married, Phyllis is with husband #2 and I'm working on husband #2.
Ella's husband, the talented and handsome Dan Martin, directed the 20 minute version of my solo show, FIFTY! It Doesn't Look This Good On Everybody. We've all remained friends over the years. They are always on my guest list for parties and shows and have been extremely supportive.
As an actress, Ella is a joy to watch. Her work is impeccable. Every single detail is well thought out, she doesn't miss a thing. She has written a solo show about Rosa Parks called A ROSE AMONG THORNS and it is brilliant. She has created a piece she can perform for the rest of her life. She's always popping up on my TV screen.
The lesson I have learned from her is tenacity, being in this business for the long haul. Always creating and knowing your worth as an artist. She is a strong and powerful sista. Definitely a force to be reckoned with on stage and off!!