Beyonce, Celine, Britney. Just a few names in the world of entertainment who’s career started as a child, and Gioya Tuma-Waku is no different. Deriving much pleasure in performing for others and making them happy, she hit the ground running as a serious ballet student at age 4, then performed as a genie in a school production of Aladdin at age 10. This set the stage for many roles to follow.
“I wanted to transport people and get them invested in a character.”
This multi-talented whirlwind has had an array of performances on stage and screen, from an African slave girl named Angelique, to the custom-made role of Destiny in the film Bloggers, where she served as producer as well. Her years of disciplined training and degree in acting are just two indications of her dedication to her craft. Another indicator is that she always has a project in the works, like the independent pilot Up the Ladder, feature films Cherry Chapstick, The Auburn Pines and The Rest of My Life.
One of her dreams is to work with Lee Daniels, Ava DuVarney and Shonda Rhimes, and Gioya knows that each role gets her that much closer to that dream.Gioya also has her sights set on screenwriting, and more producing. She isn’t afraid of hard work, and she isn’t afraid of sacrifice. It’s what has brought her this far.
When asked what she would tell aspiring actors, she offers what has worked for her: Belief in oneself, hard work, persistence, and a good support system.Like many serious actresses around the world, Gioya knows that success isn’t handed to you. It takes a lot of hard work and relentless passion to take your talent and passion in the direction you want it to go. One opportunity leads to another, and it’s a journey, not a destination.
Gioya’s journey is headed in only one direction, and it’s Up.