Ama K. Abebrese

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Ama K. Abebrese was born May 3, 1980. She  is an award-winning British Ghanaian actress, television presenter and producer. She was born in Ghana and raised in West London in the United Kingdom. She won the 2011 Best Actress in a Leading Role at the AMAA Awards for her stellar performance in Sinking Sands. Her film credits includes the Netflix movie Beasts of No Nation directed by Cary Fukunaga and stars Idris Elba. She plays the mother to lead young actor Abraham Attah who plays Agu. Abebrese is listed among Africa’s Top 20 Actors and Actresses by FilmContacts.com. She was named among C Hub magazine’s 100 most influential  African Women Influencers’ of the era 2014/15. She was ranked the Number 1 Most Influential TV and Radio Host 2015 on the Ghana Social Media Rankings List.

She is an accomplished television presenter, having started hosting TV shows in her teens on YCTV in London, she has presented on BBC2, OBE TV, Viasat 1, TV3, Ebonylife TV and many more.

Abebrese started her training at YCTV (Youth Culture Television) in London, an organization started by Sabrina Guinness on the TV show Challenge Anneka. She was a presenter on BBC2 youth show Pass da Mic and a guest presenter on the English File educational series. She developed a love for acting after joining the Lyric Theatre (Hammersmith) Summer Company as a youth. Abebrese was a regular TV presenter on the now defunct OBE TV in London, hosting and producing on a number of shows including One Touch, and the entertainment chat show On The Sofa, where guests she has interviewed range from Akon to Ziggy Marley. She has interviewed the likes of Harrison Ford, Ne-Yo, Rihanna, and Star Wars director George Lucas among notable others.

Her film credits include the international multiple award-winning film Sinking Sands, directed by 2011 BAFTA LA and Pan African Film Festival prize winner Leila Djansi. The film received 12 nominations at the 2010 Ghana Movie Awards, including “Best Actress in a Leading Role”, the film won four awards, including “Best Film”. Others film credits are Revele film’s Elmina and London Get Problem. She starred and co-produced the movie Double-Cross, which won two awards for “Best Cinematography” and “Best Hair and Make Up” at the 2015 Ghana Movie Awards.

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She is the former Head of Own Productions at Viasat 1 television station in Ghana.She was the host of A Day in the Life TV show which aired on Viasat 1; she co hosted New Day on TV3 weekday mornings.In 2013, Abebrese alongside Nollywood actress Dakore and comedian Ayo Makun hosted the 2013 edition of the AMAA Awards.

 

Yetide Badiki

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A Nigerian Princess navigating the ins and outs of Hollywood. Born in Nigeria, raised in England, Nigeria and the United States. 

 
A graduate of McGill University in Montreal Canada with a major in English Literature (theater) and a minor in Environmental Science. Recipient of an MFA in theater from Illinois State University and nominated for a Joseph Jefferson Award in Chicago for  the role of Juliette in “I Have Before Me a Remarkable Document Given to Me by a Young Lady from Rwanda.” 
 
The name Yetide means “mother is back,” looking to do that name proud.

Sarah Nakintu

Sarah Nakintu...

This gorgeous beauty is Sarah Nakintu. She has her own line of luxury handbags.

Here’s an interview she recently did:

Who is Sarah Nakintu?

Sarah Nakintu: I moved to the U.S. in 2005 for higher education and to explore something a little bit outside Kampala, where I’d been born and raised. When you grow up with African parents, it can be a challenge to do what you want. I always loved fashion and I wanted to do fashion from when I was really young, but my parents were all about school. You know, go to school, get an education, and be like a lawyer or something.

I think New York just opened my eyes so much to people doing what they love and people hustling and trying to get things done. With time, I just thought maybe I can really do what I love as opposed to doing something that my parents wanted me to do.

What drew you to fashion?

With fashion, you’re really able to bring out your imagination. I travel so much these days and every time I go to a place, I’m very inspired. I can see what New York looks like and look at cities like Milan. How do people there dress? I’m really interested in seeing how it all trickles down. How can something be a painting today and tomorrow it’s fully interpreted into a dress or a bag?

What was it like growing up in Uganda?

I grew up in boarding school, so I was very sheltered. Uganda is a religious country. You’re kind of expected to be a good person and go to church—do what your parents are telling you to do kind of thing. A lot of judgment as well, so you can’t disgrace your parents.

I remember my aunties and my sisters and my whole family would be like, ‘You know you’re too loud. You really need to tone it down.’ The only person, really, that was appreciative of me and who I was was my dad who encouraged me to be myself.

Yeah, I have definitely always been very interested in fashion. With or without money, it’s always been my thing.

What was the moment like when you told your family that you wanted to pursue fashion full-time?

I didn’t really tell them. With things like this, it’s really better to go and do it and then once you’re successful or you’ve moved the needle a little bit, you can tell them. I think I’ve tried to tell them like, ‘Hey, I’m doing this handbag thing,’ and they’re like, ‘Oh, okay. Sure. Whatever.’ I have a lot of ideas, so I’m sure they were thinking, ‘Oh, that’s one of her crazy ideas.’ I didn’t get their blessing—I just went ahead and did it. That moment was scary for me because I had a full-time job and I was earning really well and in New York it’s hard to just give up a full-time job to go and do something where you have no idea if it’s going to succeed.

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How is Kintu African-inspired?

Often when you tell people that you’re doing something African-inspired, they’re expecting African pattern or African material or something like that—this is not necessarily what I wanted to do. I represent modern Africa and the different types of people that come out of our continent. There are so many ways to do African inspiration.

A lot of brands do African-inspired in a way that’s a bit overwhelming. I wanted to do a bag that you can take from morning to day to night. We wanted to do a luxury line that’s African-inspired. You know, very subtle but still there. The closure is the shape of a cow horn. If you’re East African or know about East African culture, the cow is very central to our subsistence. Animal print is actually completely African-inspired. We worked with African animals and we did it in a very modern manner, which it’s really, really interesting to a lot of buyers. It’s something that they’ve not seen before and they love it.

Why is sustainability important to you?

Our bags are made really well with long-lasting materials. You can pass them on to your children. I think that’s really important. There’s also sustainability in terms of where we make our bags and who we make them with. When we worked in India and Kenya, we’re paying a living wage. We pay artisans what they deserved as opposed to just saying just because you’re based in Kenya, we’re not going to pay you well.

That’s also important to me because remember, I’m African. Just being there and remembering the women in the market working really hard or the farmers that I grew up seeing or the tailor, that’s sewing. They work really hard. They groom and they grow and they hone their craft. We need to start paying them really well and recognizing their talent and taking it global. I feel really passionate about being able to bring those skills and then also create the next generation of artisans.

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