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Life & Work with Sharar Ali-Speakes

Today we’d like to introduce you to Sharar Ali-Speakes.

Hi Sharar, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
All my life, I played basketball and solely defined myself as an athlete. My dream was to always play pro, but one day I was no longer settled in wanting to be an athlete. I knew that I wanted to dig more into my creative side, but not entirely sure what else I could be talented in. Prior to exploring acting, I only have done two to three commercials and two were National commercials. My success in acting and push into at least “trying it” is due to my mom Bernadette Speakes. I was able to discover a new passion because she encouraged me and believed in me. My entire family has supported me throughout all the way and madness of self-tapes.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I feel like my whole life has been learning how to deal with obstacles. From high school tearing an ACL to fighting tooth and nail to become a professional athlete. Acting is just another hustle that I’ve learned from sports and that it’s going to be a grind. I go through tons of ups and downs and wondering should I keep going or am I talented. But this year of 2021 has been a reminder to keep going and I was able to find success and reach some goals.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I specialized in acting, spoken word and started teaching myself how to edit. From acting, I am most proud that I got to be on my favorite show in its last season (Insecure). For my personal creative endeavors, I got to put out a piece that is close to my heart called Complexities of a Black Woman. Also, I am proud that during the pandemic I encouraged myself to do challenging things and that’s how I picked up editing and learning that I love it.

I honestly think my story in its entirety is what sets me apart and even though wanting to quit, I haven’t.

Where do you see things going in the next 5-10 years?
I see the fight for more diversity and inclusion to have more success within the entertainment industry.

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Image Credits
Breanna Lynn photo Pete Lee

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