Actors of Caribbean descent Lorraine Toussaint, Sheryl Lee Ralph and Antonio Fargas, and screenwriter-producer Rob Edwards, will be honoured at the 2012 Salute to Hollywood and the Arts gala at the Sheraton Universal City on June 29. The event is organized byt The Caribbean Heritage Organization (CHO) and the Institute of Caribbean Studies, DC (ICS-DC)
EVENT: Caribbean American Heritage Month Salute To Hollywood & the Arts
ORGANIZERS: The Caribbean Heritage Organization (CHO) and the Institute of Caribbean Studies, DC (ICS-DC)
VENUE: The Penthouse, Sheraton Universal
LOCATION: 335 Universal Hollywood Dr, Universal City CA
DATE: Friday June 29 2012
TIME: Red Carpet Reception & Art Exhibit: 6:30pm – 7:15pmB| Awards Dinner & Show: 7:30pm-Midnight
TICKETS INFO: Event Brite, Caribbean Heritage Month
EXTRA: Honoring actors Antonio Fargas, Lorraine Toussaint, Sheryl Lee Ralph and screenwriter-producer Rob Edwards.
ABOUT THE HONOREES:
Antonio Fargas was born in New York City of Cuban, Puerto Rican and Trinidadian heritage. Over his forty-year career he has developed memorable characters such as informant Huggy Bear, in Starsky and Hutch and Doc on Everybody Hates Chris. Fargas has had an extensive television career in the United States and Britain and his credits include such shows as the Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Kojack, The Bill Cosby Show, Holby City, and The Wayans Brothers. He is no stranger to theatre. He starred on Broadway’s The Great White Hope and toured Europe with The Blues Brothers. He has appeared in over 50 movies to date such as The Cool World, Car Wash, and La Bell Anglaise. Fargas is on the board of Rhode Island’s Langston Hughes Centre for the Arts and the Martin Luther King Centre of Newport in addition to being the Chairman of the Board of the Mount Vernon Open Case Theatre and the Honorary Board Chair on the Progressive Symphony’s Academy of the Arts. He also has his own music production company- Bumpit. His son Justin is an NFL running back and free agent.
Lorraine Toussaint was born in Trinidad. She moved to Brooklyn NY at age 10 and got her start in the performing arts at Manhattan’s High School of Performing Arts and continued her studies at The Julliard School. On her graduation day, she landed her first paying job as Lady MacBeth with Shakespeare & Company. That was just the beginning for Toussaint, who spent 12 years working in New York theater prior to moving to Los Angeles.
She recently concluded a highly successful three year run on the TNT show Saving Grace, where she starred opposite Holly Hunter. For four seasons she starred as Rene Jackson on Lifetime’s critically acclaimed series, Any Day Now. For her work on the show she was nominated for four NAACP Image Awards and the TV Guide Award for “Best Actress in a Drama Series.” Lorraine is also the recipient of The Wiley A. Branton Award from The National Bar Association.
Ms. Toussaint starred opposite Halle Berry in Their Eyes Were Watching God. In 2002, Toussaint joined the cast of NBC’s Crossing Jordan portraying assertive medical examiner, Elaine Duschamps. Since 1990 she has recurred as Shambala Green on the NBC Emmy Award winning drama Law & Order.
The actress has received critical acclaim for her role in Ava Du Vernay’s Sundance Award-Winning film, Middle Of Nowhere. This film opens in theatres in October 2012. She is currently working on her first novel, and hopes to finish by Christmas of 2012. Lorraine and her daughter currently reside in Los Angeles.
Sheryl Lee Ralph was born in Waterbury, Connecticut to an American father and a Jamaican mother and raised between Mandeville, Jamaica and Long Island, New York. In 1972 she graduate from NY’s Uniondale High School where she had already tested her acting chops in the musical Oklahoma!. The following year she was crowned Miss Black Teen-age New York. At 19, Ralph was the youngest woman to ever graduate from Rutgers University where she would return to deliver the commencement speech in 2003.
This acclaimed show business “pro”, has an award winning body of work in film, television and the Broadway stage that includes originating and creating the role of Deena Jones in the landmark musical Dreamgirls, which earned her a Tony Award Nomination and a Drama Desk Award Nomination for Best Actress. After Dreamgirls, Ms. Ralph turned her attention to music, television, and film. She scored a top-ten selling dance hit in the mid-eighties with the infectious anthem In the Evening. The video is a You Tube hit.
Ralph was voted one of TV’s Favorite Moms for her portrayal of loving step mom, Dee on the smash series Moesha and received numerous NAACP Image Award nominations for this role. In the SHOWTIME series, Barbershop, Sheryl broke new ground as the popular, post-operative transsexual, Claire. She brought a new face to the sufferings of war in the NBC hit series ER.
Her extensive film credits include The Mighty Quinn with Denzel Washington, Sister Act II with Whoopi Goldberg, Mistress with Robert De Niro, and Eddie Murphy’s Distinguished Gentleman to name a few. Sheryl Lee’s performance with Danny Glover in To Sleep with Anger won her the Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actress.
Sheryl Lee Ralph is also an author, producer and philantropist. Her first book Redefining DIVA-Simon & Schuster was received with rave reviews. She is head of Island Girl Productions via which she wrote directed and produced her award-winning film short Secrets with an all-star cast, that includes Oscar nominee Alfre Woodard, Tina Lifford, Victoria Rowell, La Tanya Richardson, Robin Givens and Ralph herself. She is also the founding creator of The Jamerican Film & Music Festival, which in five years gave birth to five SHOWTIME Filmmaker Finalists. Ralph is the founding director of the DIVA (Divinely Inspired Victoriously Anointed) Foundation 501(C)3 which she created in memory of the many friends she had lost to HIV/AIDS. She also created the critically acclaimed Divas Simply Singing!, an evening of song and entertainment that after 22years is the longest consecutive running musical AIDS benefit in the country.
Mother of two with a blended family of four, Sheryl Lee is married to State Senator Vincent Hughes of Pennsylvania.
Screenwriter/Producer Rob Edwards was born in Detroit of Guyanese parents. His most recent achievement in his 20 year career includes his work as a writer on Disney’s Academy-Award and Golden Globe nominated The Princess and the Frog, starring Anika Noni Rose, Oprah Winfrey, John Goodman, Bruno Campos and Terrence Howard. Edwards has also produced and written for popular television shows including: Full House, A Different World, The Marshall Chronicles, Roc, In the House and In Living Color, for which he received an Emmy Award nomination. He also worked on the Fresh Prince of Bel Air, where he met show creators Andy and Susan Borowitz. The team went on to create Out All Night for NBC. Edwards has also written for Disney’s Academy Award-nominated animated feature, Treasure Planet.
He is currently working on The King of the Elves, based on a short story by Phillip K. Dick as well as Animated American for producers Robert Zemeckis, Bob Cooper and Dan Fogelman and Walt Disney Studios and Amulet: The Stonekeeper for Will Smith’s company, Overbrook Entertainment and Warner Bros.
Edwards lives in Beverly Hills with his wife, Michele, and two sons Joseph, a college sophomore and Sammy, a high school freshman.