writer & performer
Ella Turenne has been a creative force for over 20 years. One of her first projects was her own television talk show, The Ella Show, which she starred in, directed and produced while attending Stony Brook University. She then went on to host and produce a live weekly talk show called Not for Nothin’ while obtaining her Master’s degree at Boston University. Some of her acting credits include plays such as Love Child at the Harlem Theatre Company, Working Things Out which premiered at the Downtown Urban Theatre Festival, short film Big, Dark, Scary Girl and the upcoming feature film Forever. Ella is also a theatre and spoken word artist and has performed all across the country, including the Black Family Channel show Spoken which was hosted by Jessica Care Moore.
As a writer, she published her first book in 2004 entitled revolution|revolisyon|révolution 1804 – 2004: An Artistic Commemoration of the Haitian Revolution, Liv Lakay Publications and has written for several magazines and newspapers. She has been included in several anthologies, including Letters from Young Activists: Today’s Rebels Speak Out (Nation Books) and Check the Rhyme: An Anthology of Female Poets and Emcees, nominated for a 2007 NAACP Image Award and is a blogger for Black Voices on the Huffington Post. Her first short film, woodshed, which she directed and produced, had its world premiere at the Hollywood Film Festival. woodshed was also nominated for Best Short in the Montreal International Black Film Festival. Her play Gray premiered in the Harlem Heritage Fringe Festival in 2009. Ella also co-wrote and co-starred in the critically acclaimed webisode series Kindred, which garnered much media attention and was an official selection of the LA Web Fest.
Ella is also an activist who is on the Executive Steering Committee of the Inside Out Prison Exchange Program and an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She was also a member of the Blackout Arts Collective where she participated in Lyrics on Lockdown, a national tour where she performed and facilitated workshops educating communities about the prison-industrial complex. She was co-founder of SistaPAC Productions, whose mission was to develop original creative works from women of color. Ella recently gave a TEDx talk on the value of higher education in prisons.
For more information about Ella, visit her at www.ellaturenne.com.