Ali in April 2010
|Birth name||Tatyana Marisol Ali|
|Also known as||Tatyana M. Ali|
January 24, 1979 |
North Bellmore, New York, U.S.
|Occupation(s)||Actress, model, singer|
Tatyana Marisol Ali (born January 24, 1979) is an American actress, model and R&B singer, who is best known for her role as Ashley Banks on the NBC sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. From 2010 to 2012, she starred as Tyana Jones on the TV One original sitcom Love That Girl!, and has had a recurring role as Roxanne on the CBS soap opera The Young and the Restless.
Ali was born in North Bellmore, New York, the eldest daughter (she has two younger sisters) of Sonia, a nurse, and Sheriff Ali, a police detective. Her mother is Afro-Panamanian and her father is Indo-Trinidadian.
By the age of six, she had begun her acting career, as a regular child performer on Sesame Street starting in 1985, even appearing with Herbie Hancock in a musical number. She also appeared twice on Star Search. She made her breakthrough when she was cast as Ashley Banks for the television sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air in 1990. She sang on various episodes of the show, including a heavily altered version of Aretha Franklin's "Respect" and the original song, "Make Up Your Mind" produced by Robert Jerald of N'Spyre Music Productions. Will Smith asked her if she seriously considered pursuing a musical career. Despite her singing ability, she concentrated on her acting career on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air the next few years. In the final season of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1995–96), Ali began preparing herself for her musical debut. The result was the album Kiss The Sky, which was certified gold in early 1999. The album spawned the hit song "Daydreamin'", released July 21, 1998, produced by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, which peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and on the UK Singles Chart.
The album spawned two further UK hits, "Boy You Knock Me Out", featuring Will Smith, which peaked at No. 3 and is her biggest hit to date; and "Everytime", which was her third top 20 hit in the UK, peaking at No. 20. She made an appearance in Smith's album Willennium for the track "Who Am I" with MC Lyte. Along with her musical career, Ali kept acting in many films. She had the chance to work with recognized film directors such as Takeshi Kitano (Brother), Rodrigo Garcia (Mother and Child), among others. In 2005, she completed work on the film Glory Road and starred in the music video for Nick Cannon and Anthony Hamilton's "Can I Live?" as Cannon's mother. In early 2008, she performed on the song "Yes We Can", a will.i.am project supporting Barack Obama's presidential campaign. She also appeared in the subsequent music video which gained coverage on the "What the Buzz" segment of ABC's World News Now.
She also performed the title song, "Sunny Valentine" along with Terrence Quaites for the indie film, Rockin' Meera directed by Param Gill in 2005. She is also producing and starring in the BET web show, Buppies. She is currently on recurring status on the CBS soap opera The Young and the Restless as Roxanne.
Ali can be seen in the show, Love That Girl! on TV One. She stars as Tyana (which comes from the last five letters of her name). When asked if the character bears any similarities to her, Ali said in a CaribPress interview, "She's a bit neurotic and I hope I am not quite like that."
"One thing that I do love about her is that she is really multidimensional," she went on to say in the same interview. "I think it's nice to have a female character that is portrayed in (a) really holistic way."
Ali also starred in Nora's Hair Salon and Nora's Hair Salon 2: A Cut Above. In 2011, Ali received the Living Legacy Award from the Caribbean Heritage Organization in Los Angeles. In 2012, Ali appeared as a guest on The Eric Andre Show. Ali's most recent role, as of January 15, 2013, is starring as Maya, along with Craig Wayans and Damien Dante Wayans, in the BET comedy, Second Generation Wayans.
In January 2014, Ali released a new EP entitled Hello, with her first single being "Wait For It", which she also performed on The Arsenio Hall Show on February 4, 2014.
Ali attended Harvard University, where she received a bachelor's degree in African-American studies and government in 2002. She traveled the United States as a spokesperson for Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign and headed voter registration drives at college campuses. In 2012, she continued showing her support.
|1987||Eddie Murphy Raw||Eddie's Sister||Sketch Segment|
|1988||Crocodile Dundee II||Park Girl|
|1988||Wow, You're a Cartoonist!||Child Cartoonist||Short film; direct-to-video release|
|1997||Fakin' da Funk||Karyn|
|1997||Kiss the Girls||Janell Cross|
|1998||The Clown at Midnight||Monica|
|2001||The Brothers||Cherie Smith|
|2003||National Lampoon Presents Dorm Daze||Claire|
|2004||Nora's Hair Salon||Lilleana|
|2005||Back in the Day||Alicia Packer|
|2005||Domino One||Laeticia Richards|
|2006||Glory Road||Tina Malichi|
|2006||A Warm Place||Clair Andrews||Short film|
|2008||Down & Out||Short film|
|2008||Nora's Hair Salon 2: A Cut Above||Lilleana|
|2009||Mother and Child||Maria|
|2010||Pete Smalls Is Dead||Cocktail Waitress|
|2012||Home Again||Marva Johnson|
|2013||24 Hour Love||Simply|
|2013||The Last Letter||Jillian|
|1985/90||Sesame Street||Tatyana||4 episodes|
|1989||Wally and the Valentines||Jamaica Valentine||Special|
|1989||A Man Called Hawk||Michelle||Episode: "Life After Death"|
|1989||The Cosby Show||Girl||Episode: "Shall We Dance?"|
|1990–96||The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air||Ashley Banks||148 episodes|
|1993||Getting By||Nicole Alexander||Episode: "Turnabout Dance"|
|1994||Are You Afraid of the Dark?||Laura Turner/Connie Turner||Episode: "The Tale of the Quicksilver"|
|1994||TV's Funniest Families||Herself as a Host||Special|
|1995||In the House||Ashley Banks||Episode: "Dog Catchers"|
|1996||Living Single||Stephanie James||Episode: "Whatever Happened to Baby Sister?"|
|1996||Kidz in the Wood||Rita|
|1996||Fall Into Darkness||Sharon McKay|
|1997||413 Hope St.||Kai||Episode: "Heartbeat"|
|2002||Fastlane||Shelly||Episode: "Girls Own Juice"|
|2003||Half & Half||Olivia||Episode: "The Big Condom-nation Episode"|
|2007||On the Lot||Girl||Episode: "11 Cut to 10 & 10 Directors Compete"; segment: "First Sight"|
|2007–13||The Young and the Restless||Roxanne||Recurring role; 53 episodes|
|2010–12||Love That Girl!||Tyana Jones||Lead role|
|2012||The Eric Andre Show||Herself||Episode: "Tatyana Ali"|
|2013||Second Generation Wayans||Maya|
|2013||Dear Secret Santa||Jennifer||Movie|
|1998||Kiss the Sky||#47 US, #41 UK|
|1998||"Daydreamin'"||6||5||6||3||—||—||Kiss the Sky|
|"Boy You Knock Me Out" (featuring Will Smith)||—||68||3||12||32||77|
Awards and nominations
||This section of a biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (September 2015)|
- Caribbean Heritage Organization
- 1996: Won, Outstanding Youth Actor/Actress – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- 1997: Nominated, Outstanding Youth Actor/Actress – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- 2010: Nominated, Outstanding Actress in a Daytime Drama – The Young and the Restless
- 2011: Nominated, Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series – Love That Girl!
- 2011: Won, Outstanding Actress in a Daytime Drama – The Young and the Restless
- 2012: Won, Outstanding Actress in a Daytime Drama – The Young and the Restless
- 2012: Nominated, Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series – Love That Girl!
- 2013: Nominated, Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series – Love That Girl!
- 1996: Nominated, Favorite Television Actress – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- 1991: Won, Outstanding Young Comedienne in a Television Series – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- 1992: Nominated, Outstanding Young Comedienne in a Television Series – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- 1993: Nominated, Outstanding Young Comedienne in a Television Series – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- 1994: Nominated, Outstanding Young Comedienne in a Television Series – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- 1995: Nominated, Outstanding Young Comedienne in a Television Series – Name Your Adventure
- Ofole-Prince, Samantha (August–September 2011). Wheaton, Robert, ed. "The talented Ms. Ali:an interview with Tatyana". CaribPress Newsmagazine (Los Angeles): 5. Retrieved August 17, 2011.
- Castillo, Amaris (October 17, 2011). "Tatyana Ali On the Pressures of Being the Star of a TV Show". Latina Magazine. Retrieved March 9, 2012.
- November 23, 1998. "Tatyana Ali Attends Harvard University; Enjoys flourishing Music Career". Jet Magazine. Retrieved December 29, 2012.
- "The Young and the Restless" Episode #1.8728 (2007)
- Wheaton, Robert (August–September 2011). Wheaton, Robert, ed. "Caribbean Heritage Salute in Hollywood". CaribPress Newsmagazine (Los Angeles): 21. Retrieved August 17, 2011.
- "The Eric Andre Show: Tatyana Ali Interview". YouTube. June 5, 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2013.
- "Tatyana Ali Shares Her Black Experience at Harvard University". BET. December 12, 2012. Retrieved June 21, 2012.
- "Tatyana Ali wants young people to know their voice counts". 9news.com. August 8, 2008. Retrieved November 27, 2012.
- Baker, Mike (April 9, 2008). "NC Voter Registrations Surge". seattletimes.com. Retrieved November 27, 2012.
- Wakhisi, Tsitsi D. (November 1, 2012). "Early voting a hit in South Florida". sfltimes.com. Retrieved November 27, 2012.
- "Jonathan Brandis". Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Jewel, Dan. "Young Love". Time Inc.
- "TATYANA ALI - The Official Charts Company". TheOfficialCharts.com. Retrieved May 22, 2011.
- Steffen Hung. "– New Zealand charts portal". Charts.org.nz. Retrieved August 2, 2010.
- Steffen Hung (March 13, 1999). "Les charts français". lescharts.com. Retrieved July 26, 2010.
- Steffen Hung. "– Dutch charts portal". Dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved August 2, 2010.
- "44th NAACP Image Awards Full List of Nominees" (PDF). NAACP. Retrieved December 12, 2012.
- NBC Latino. "Being a Black Latina". Retrieved December 20, 2012.