Jasmine Cephas Jones Makes HistorySeptember 21, 2020
Jasmine Cephas Jones is making history with her portrayal of the wife of Rayshawn in the hit series #FreeRayshawn.
The series, which is available for viewing on the streaming platform Quibi, depicts the story of a black man named Rayshawn who comes into violent contact with the police and uses social media to elicit help from the outside world.
The show’s message is supported by recent protests and demonstrations against the treatment of black men and women in America by the police. There have been many instances of police brutality in the last few months and African Americans and people of all colors have galvanized in order to create awareness.
Jasmine, whose name in the show is Tiysha, related to CNN in an interview that even though the show truly represents the times that we currently live in, the show can also relate to many past moments of racial unrest.
She goes on to say that black culture has been promoting this message of awareness for a long time. The television and music that represents black culture has always been infused with this message, Jasmine says, and is now more impactful than ever.
She believes that the current pandemic, while difficult for everyone, allows people to analyze themselves and their actions more purely since they have fewer distractions surrounding them.
She believes that there is great significance in the fact that protests are happening even while a pandemic is occurring. She believes that this is a sign that a huge change is necessary.
The directors of the show, and also the cast, obviously did not know during production last year that the production would be released during a pandemic and also during a racial uprising as well.
However, these events have made the show relevant and timely.
Jasmine also played in the hit musical ”Hamilton”, so she is no stranger to controversial productions that depict black characters.
She says she was delighted to be a part of the series because it meant being a part of exploring police brutality and the damage that it can cause. She describes her connection with the series as extremely personal. She goes on to say that the fact that the situations in the show could happen to people in her immediate family makes the message that much more impactful.
She and her father, Ron Cephas Jones, are both nominated for Emmys this year. Ron’s work in the popular television show “This Is Us” gave him the opportunity to be nominated. In the show, Ron plays the long lost biological father of a black man raised by a white family.
She claims her father has been a huge influence on her acting career, which has allowed her to explore moments in times like these.
Even during the pandemic, Jasmine has been able to commune with friends and family at a safe distance. She attributes her health and wellness to these limited forms of contact and says she is extremely grateful for even the minimized time with her circle of influence.