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In keeping with this year's theme, Living Authentically Telling Our Stories in Theater & Film, it gives us great pleasure to introduce and welcome a different type of writer and their talents to the 2018 Symposium.  

Please read their Bios and familiarize yourself with these movers and shakers from our community!
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TRE'VELL ANDERSON

Entertainment Reporter - Los Angeles Times

Tre’vell Anderson is a film reporter with the Los Angeles Times covering the intersections of diversity and Hollywood with a focus on black and queer film. A sociology graduate from the nation’s headquarters for black male excellence, Morehouse College in Atlanta, he also received his master’s in journalism from Stanford University. When he’s not tweeting through his Twitter addiction you can find him jamming to Fantasia’s latest album or indulging his inner Southern belle with food that reminds him of home, Charleston, S.C.
 
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JAMES BLAND - Cancelled due to schedule.

Writer/Actor/Director/Producer

James Bland is an Emmy-nominated actor and multi-hyphenated content creator who is at home both in front of and behind the camera.  He is the creator, showrunner, and star of the hit drama series GIANTS, for which he received a Daytime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Digital Drama Series.  It won Best Drama Series at the Indie Series Awards and has accumulated over 2 million views on Issa Rae’s YouTube channel, Issa Rae Presents.

A proud graduate of Florida A&M University’s School of Business and Industry, James got his start working under producers and creative executives at Sony Screen Gems.  While navigating the studio world, James wrote and directed numerous award-winning short films including the BET Lens on Talent finalist Cocoa Love and the Cannes Short Film Corner select Thula. He then went on to work as Digital Producer for the TV Land’s THE SOUL MAN and YOUNGER, as well as, Nickelodeon’s  ALL IN WITH CAM NEWTON.

In 2014, James launched James Bland Productions, a full-service production company focused on creating original premium short and long-form content.

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TAMIKA MILLER

Director/Writer 

Tamika Miller began her career as a line producer and production supervisor for high-end television commercials, including major brands such as Samsung, Bank of America, Target, Verizon,  and Toyota, to name a few.

Tamika's production experience has contributed to her success as a filmmaker.  Tamika made her film debut with a short narrative she wrote and directed titled Gift for the Living, which won the Outfest Audience Award for Outstanding Short Narrative, and the Showtime Black Filmmaker Showcase Grand Prize.  Gift for the Living

aired on the Showtime Cable Network.  

Tamika's subsequent short narrative, Sarang Song, won the San Francisco Black Film Festival Award for Best Short and also aired on the Showtime Cable Network, and MTV Logo.

  

Her most recent film, /smōkd/, is a powerful short narrative that tackles the timely subject of police brutality through the eyes of twelve grand jurors deliberating the fate of a police officer.  /smōkd/ won the 2017 Reel Sisters Film Festival Award for Best Short Narrative, and can be seen at film festivals around the world.

 

In 2018, Tamika was selected as 1 of 6 directors, from over 400 applicants, to participate in the Commercial Directors Diversity Program - a DGA/AICP initiative created to increase the representation of women and under-represented directors in commercial advertising.

 

Tamika is currently developing her feature film UNDERCARD.

 

A gifted filmmaker, Tamika is a tremendous talent and truly a triple threat.

 

Her work can be viewed at:  www.tamikamiller.com
 

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BLAINE TEAMER

Playwright/Author


Blaine Teamer’s plays include 
#BoxSeats: A Los Angeles StoryBlack CoffeeDead Wait
and Pandora’s TrunkHis work has been produced and/or developed by New York Theater Workshop, National Black Theatre, The Los Angeles Theater Center, Directors Lab West and The National Black Theater Festival. Teamer’s work has been performed by such prominent performers as Tony Award Winner, Tonya Pinkins, Frances Fisher, Kim Fields, Veronica Redd and Darius De Haas. He is a member of the Playwright’s Center and alumni of LATC’S Wordsmiths. 

His literary work has been featured in Má-ka: Diasporic Juks: Contemporary Writing by Queers of African DescentandBest Black Gay EroticaBlaine’s debut novel is entitled, SHADY: A Novel.  He earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Pennsylvania State University and a Master’s Degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Community Psychology from Antioch University.His research entitled, "Using New Media and Social Networks to Promote Wellnesswas presented at the International Conference on Community Psychology in Lisbon, Spain.

 

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DALILA ALI RAJAH
Producer/Actress/Screenwriter/Poet

Powerhouse actress, Dalila Ali Rajah is a wonderful mixture of sandalwood, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. Whether she is lighting up the stage with her mesmerizing dance moves or her critically acclaimed acting skills, she is simply a joy to watch. She is an actress, published poet, dancer, and spoken word artist.
 
Ali Rajah holds an MFA in Acting from California Institute of the Arts and is a well-known lauded activist and content creator.  Cherry Bomb!, which ran 5 seasons on Canada’s OutTV is one of the few web series that have made the seemingly illusive
transition from the web to television.  Her award-winning short film, Secrets and Toys which she wrote, produced, and stars in is currently touring the festival circuit. 
 
She’s toured in the Tony Award-winning production of The Trip to Bountiful with Emmy and Tony winner Cecily Tyson, Blair Underwood, and Vanessa Williams; and has appeared in such shows as How to Get Away with Murder, Grey’s Anatomy, New Girl, NCIS and American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson .  Dalila also recently won Best Actress for her leading role in the feature drama Quiet As Kept. This dynamic Actress/Writer/Producer is a force to be reckoned with.

 

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Kareem Ferguson 
Director/Producer/Screenwriter/Actor


Born in Belize, is a multi-award nominated performer, most recently awarded the NAACP Theater Awards as lead actor for the play ‘Free Man of Color’. He is a classically trained actor receiving his Masters of Fine Arts Degree in Acting from the Professional Theater Training Program at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee.  

He has worked across the United States and overseas in Theatre, Television 
and Film. He has directed one short film The Touch and produced two others, Three Takes and Talking with the Taxman About Poetry. You may also remember him acting in the ground-breaking 2ndepisode of DL Chronicles.  He is an accomplished licensed pilot.