Video

Cynthia Erivo to African Women: 'You Have to Know That You Are Enough'

Tony & Grammy Award winner Cynthia Erivo sits down with OkayAfrica to tell us about her experiences as an black woman in theater.

Cynthia Erivo wants to create more spaces for young black girls.


The British-Nigerian actress, who won a Tony and Grammy Award this season for her leading role in the Broadway revival of The Color Purple, sat down with OkayAfrica to tell us about her experiences as a black woman in theater.

During our chat, Erivo dropped some gems about balancing her identity as both an African and British woman, being true to herself, and preparing to play Harriet Tubman in the upcoming biopic.

Erivo also talks about her love for Nigeria and never letting her London upbringing dilute her background.

Her most important advice for African and black women:

"You have to know that you are enough. The strength comes from within you, and when you allow that to come through, nobody can tell you anything. That is the power that we hold, when we're able to be strong in ourselves, look someone in the eye and let them know that we're great."

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Interview

Interview: Adekunle Gold Channels Refreshing Truths Into Afropop

Adekunle Gold achieves an artistic freedom that most mainstream artists don't have through a smooth balance of introspection and club bangers.

A few years ago, Adekunle Gold broke out into the scene with a refreshing way of carrying himself, presenting his art and speaking his truth with music. His debut single "Sade" started this journey of chart topping releases, sold out shows, and the constantly evolving sound that graces African airwaves. Gold's self assurance made him stand out from the very beginning, as his sound was delivered with intent, compassion, and stuffed with personal truths.

Not many artists are willing to try new things with their music, and in order to maintain mainstream success, some cling to one sound, one image and direction often crafted from fragments of their first hit. These artists get stuck trying to recreate a capsule in time, while true artists are open to the dynamic of change, and the necessity of renewal.

Adekunle Gold is one of a handful in his profession who draws on a spectrum of experiences to make honest music which is consistent with the self-revelations of a growing man. This has become his biggest strength, allowing him to craft contemplative songs like "Sade" and "Oreke" and still create afropop magic like "Something Different"

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