Up close and personal with Jasmine Guy

By Roslyn Giles

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM)- Actress Jasmine Guy mesmerized audiences in her portrayal of Whitley Gilbert in the hit TV show, "A Different World" from the late 1980s to the early 90s.  Twenty years later, she is still going strong in the world of theatre and speaking to large crowds with an inspirational and motivating message to women.

"I did not envision this. I envisioned from your table to over there and when I walked out here I was like...ooh, let it go, let it go, you don't know."

The crowd laughed at Guy's humor as she reacted to the large turnout at Davis Broadcasting's 9th Annual Women's Empowerment Luncheon held at the Columbus Trade Center Friday.

"We can talk about how was it when I worked with Eddie Murphy, what Spike Lee was like or where is Duane, but just indulge me for a moment. I want to talk about my woman part...not all of them because we are among mixed company," added Guy.

Her message came from the heart. "As women we are incredibly adapt, we are flexible, we are resilient. But we have to remember to let it go, lean a little bit, talk a little bit and let our men do their jobs."

Guy told the audience she had a bad marriage, but didn't want anyone to know. So, she kept it all inside. Now, she realizes the importance of talking about her problems to the right person. "When it didn't happen the way I thought and it ended in divorce and I came back home;I was just mortified."

Guy now lives in Atlanta.  She left when she was 17 years old and went to New York to dance-- living as an artist from a concert dancer to the Broadway stage to movies and television to her new job.

"I just started directing so I'm in my 5th production as a director. Currently, I am doing the Colored Museum which opens this week actually. After that, I will be in a play called, "Fool for Love," with Kenny Leon who runs the True Colors Theatre Company in Atlanta."

Her list of accolades and accomplishments are endless, but Guys puts her role as a mother at the top of her long list of credits.