Elvada: California's Best Kept Secret?

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Where She’s From: Elvada Seleithia hails from that great Southern City, Atlanta, in Georgia. She is grateful for having been raised by both parents, together with one brother and a sister.

Her father was a pastor and her mother, she says, was “the first lady.� It was tough growing up as a "preacher's kid" mainly because of the strict upbringing and the high expectations of the public. “The greatest lessons learned are the hardest to forget,� she tells The Black Star News. “One lesson was ‘A closed hand will never get fed.’ Pastor Woods said this all the time. Though I didn't quite know what it meant as a child I know now."

Elvada is a graduate of Avondale High School, the Dekalb Center for the Performing Arts. She's been educated at many colleges starting with Georgia State University with a degree in Medical Sciences and a minor in Public Relations and Dramatic Arts. She began singing at the young age of three and modeling at the age of six—she discovered her passion for dramatic arts at the tender age of twelve.  

Where She’s At: "I feel as though I am still in the learning stage of my craft,� she explains. “I am learning new things and trying to portray a myriad of characters, be it on stage or in film. According to my five year plan, I am right on schedule,� she adds with a laugh.

This up and coming actress has her eyes on an eventual Oscar, a Grammy and two Tony Awards. She sees herself in the director's chair as well as a producer of many stage plays and television sitcoms. A school for young girls with an emphasis on the arts and community services is also in the plans.

"It is important to combine beauty with brainpower simply because let's face it, in this day and age beauty gets you to a lot of places but only brainpower and determination keeps you there,� Elvada says, to others with dreams. “Beauty, unfortunately, doesn't last forever but nothing and no one can strip education from you."

Where She’s Heading: How does this beautiful Diva prepare to step out? She uses a daily scrub by Neutrogena, followed by an astringent of the same brand and finishes it off with a light moisturizer both day and night. Elvada tops it off by wearing any makeup by M.A.C. cosmetics but swears the best eyeliner is the Caviar cream liner by Smashbox. “I wear anything elegant from Donna Karen, to Anne Taylor; from Marciano to Bebe,� she adds. “Why? Because their clothes are classy and very elegant. But the best jeans will always be BabyPhat.�

When Elvada wants to get a little bold, she may throw a little something by Buddhist Punk or something from her favorite boutique called Runway, located on LaBrea and 8th in Los Angeles. Elvada considers herself a shoes specialist. "What’s my favorite brand name shoe? The question would be what is not? I own over 400 pairs of shoes and still counting. No matter what you have on or what it costs the shoes you wear with it can make you look like a million bucks. Shoes can make you or break you," she explains.

A Buddhist, Elvada is an advocate for The Foundation for Second Chances, GLAAD, The Trevor Project and KidSave and a proud member of NCNW and NOW. “Giving back to the world can make a huge difference in our souls, minds and hearts,� she insists.

Elvada’s impressive and extensive resume includes plays such as A Raisin in the Sun and White on Rice. Her film credits include Vale and One in a Million, along with a plethora of fashion shows and hosting gigs. She can be seen in an upcoming Sigeesees Production stage play called Forever is All I Need on Mother's Day. It will be playing at the Carson Civic Center.

Elvada’s Words Of Wisdom: “Whatever you do and wherever you go, always give them something to remember you by.�
Elvada’s Secrets To Success: “Living one day at a time to its fullest in capacity. Believing that ‘no’ is a foreign language I will never understand. Determination and education go hand in hand. My father always said ‘If you see a person you wish to portray, take them to dinner. If they pick their teeth with one toothpick you pick yours with two.’ I always feel that we miss out on our lives because we fail to dream. In the words of the late Dr. Benjamin E. Mays ‘It isn't a calamity to die with dreams unfulfilled, but it is a calamity not to dream. It is not a disgrace not to reach the stars, but it is a disgrace to have no stars to reach for. Not failure, but low aim is sin.’�

Elvada’s Favorite Three Books: “Letting Go of the Person You Used to Be, Josephine: The Josephine Baker Story, and The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran.�

Elvada’s Favorite Three Movies: "The Other Sister, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, and Great Expectations." 

The First Three Things Elvada Would Do As President: “Pull the troops out of the good- for-nothing war; invite Bin Laden over for some Southern, home-cooked food because food always brings the enemies together and the fighting to a complete halt, at least for a little while; and, third, push for a law so that all people complete 100 hours of community service.�

For more on this lovely winner or to get in touch for business projects please visit www.myspace.com/theimperial01  

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