T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh

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Born

10/13/1962 , Chicago, Illinois, USA

Birth Name

Crystal Walker

Gender

Female

Biography:


T'KEYAH CRYSTAL KEYMÁH (pronounced Ta-Kee-ah Kristle Kee-Mah) is a performer, writer, director and producer.  Best known for her starring roles on six television series including In Living Color, Cosby, and That’s So Raven, she has also performed with three singing groups, four dance companies, in a dozen films including Daughter of Fortune, Tales From the Hood, Jackie Brown and The Gilded Six Bits, and more than fifty theatrical productions including T’Keyah Live! …Mostly: A True Variety Show, The Piano Lesson, Crowns, the U.S. Premiere of Playboy of the West Indies, the Moscow production of The Old Settler, and her last self-penned solo show, Don’t Get Me Started.  She created voices for the animation shows Waynehead, Teen Titans, Batman Beyond, Static Shock, Pinky and the Brain, Cool Like That; A Christmas Special and the feature, Tweety’s High Flying Adventure. She most recently played Dr. Blair Riley on BET's Let's Stay Together.


Behind the camera, Keymáh produced the films One Last Time and Circle of Pain. She directed an episode of That’s So Raven and Amun Ra Theatre’s world premiere production of Route 66: Finding Nat King Cole, and co-wrote and directed Bronzeville Theatre Company’s premiere production of S.I.S.T.E.R.  She and Bryan C. Jones debuted the workshop of their new two-person stage show with music, Sellout!?!, this April.  The daughter of a schoolteacher, Keymáh taught theater, dance and pantomime, and served as a substitute teacher in her hometown of Chicago.  She currently coaches, mentors and presents workshops for aspiring and working actors. She encourages her students to be responsible artists and infuses her own work and writing with social, political and civic activism.


Keymáh has active memberships with many charitable and civic organizations including the Hollywood/Beverly Hills NAACP (ACT-SO program), is a member of the Century City Alumnae chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc, and Chairman of the Board of Directors for CHARM Outreach and Mentoring Services. She established The Keymáh Cultural Fund, which encourages youth participation in cultural activities. She chaired a WE Build for San Fernando Valley chapter of Habitat for Humanity, was an Honorary Co-Chair of the 2011 National Black Theatre Festival, and will chair the Institute for Black Parenting's 25th Anniversary Celebration, this November.  A long time vegetarian, she is an activist for health and education equality, the environment and civil rights and has established scholarships at Meharry Medical College and FAMU.  Keymáh is the author of the book version of her acclaimed solo show, Some of My Best Friends, and the popular coffee table book, Natural Woman / Natural Hair. She is included among The HistoryMakers®, The Chicago African American History Makers®, and Who’s Who Among Black Americans, and has collected all of FAMU’s highest honors including a Doctorate of Humane Letters. She collects crystals and loves to travel, especially internationally.

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