I am so glad I got to talk with Caryn. This was like I was talking to a friend. As much as I share on this blog, and with friends, I don’t do it during and interview lol. I felt so at ease. What I loved about our conversation is we both want woman to be equipped with knowledge, and want everyone to live their best lives. I loved the flow of this conversation, and love the work that this young woman is doing. Please check her out all contact info is below…
YSF:I read that you Dad was a doctor, and your Mom was a lawyer, how did that effect you?
CW:It was great, I was blessed with a lot of opportunity because of my parents occupations, and their world views. I was able to travel all over the world. My Father made a point for us to visit, and be exposed to other cultures and other people. He didn’t want to us be limited at all by our environment here in LA. My Mother was responsible for giving me my spirituality, and really developing that. I’m very grateful! My Dad just passed away May 28; I reflect a lot on all the sacrifices and gifts that he gave me. He didn’t even want the sky to be the limit for us. I think that is the legacy he left for me.
YSF:That’s amazing that you were able to really appreciate those gifts; I guess It can go either way, when you come from successful parents. The Cosby Show is still my favorite show to this day. Because I didn’t have a Dad, I was drawn to them. Did you see similarities between your family and their’s?
CW:It’s funny that you say that; I actually did. I joke and say we were like the Cosby show, but the HBO version. Kind of the dysfunctional version. Like all families, we had our problems, challenges, pains, and difficulties. All in All there is a lot of love there, and because my parents grew up in Chicago and they were not given anything, they didn’t come from money. They grew up in a time period where segregation was still coming in, my Dad earned his PH.D degree in clinical psychology from Harvard University, which was not an easy or common thing to see Black people doing at that time period. My Mother was raising two boys when she was in law school at UC Berkley. As you know, it’s not easy to raise two kids period, let alone while in law school. So yes, I’m grateful for the opportunities and the resources my parents were able to give to me. As a mother It’s really important to be able to do that and more for my daughter.
YSF:Since your parents were successful in more traditional roles, did they have any objection to you becoming an actress?
CW:No, my Mother was very supportive. At a very early age, I would watch the TV series Fame, and Punky Brewster. I was glued to the TV, my Mom saw that it was a natural thing for me. She has always been supportive, even in moments when I wondered if I should even do this. She has always been the wind beneath my wings. My Dad always said we could do whatever we wanted as long as we got our education. Education has always been important to me, I graduated from Howard University with a degree in Psychology. I’m sure my Dad would have loved for me to go the medical doctor route, and I did toy with it for a while; but my heart and my passion was in creative arts and they were supportive of that.
YSF: I read that you were trained in dance, which form?
CW: I started in ballet, but I know all the traditional forms. I was accepted into the Alvin Ailey American Dance School and I studied there for a while, that was a pretty major accomplishment for me at the time. I danced with Janet Jackson, Usher, Arsenio Hall, and Chunky A, which Rosie Perez choreographed. I had a fun run with dancing, but I kind of realized I wanted a career outside of the dancing world.
YSF: What brought you to acting?
CW: I got my first break on Fame; Debbie Allen gave me a chance to choreograph an episode. I had a recurring role on the last season of Fame, but that was my first break. Then I went on to do other shows like Webster, and Family Matters, and other things of that time period. Then I left the business, to get my education. I went to Howard and lived overseas for a while. Again the importance of my Dad. My brothers studied in China and Japan while they were in school. I went to England, I kind of cheated because It is an english speaking country. My Dad wanted us to experience the world. It was a big deal for me to really get to know who I am. Especially as a child actor. Courtesy of my parents, I was able to do that. When I came back, I knew acting is what I wanted to do.
YSF: What has been your Favorite role in your career so far?
CW: I always say my best hasn’t happened yet, but if I have to chose my husband and I are doing a film called THE AFFAIR, and that’s the role I’m most excited about. The film is about infidelity and secrets. The story hits you on a real primal level. The character is really intense and will showcase me in a way that I’ve never been seen before. I think it’s going to blow a lot of people’s mind!
YSF: Who or what is your inspiration in acting?
CW: Life is my inspiration, humanity, and all of our faults and thoughts. I’m a story teller, we all have a story. I’m a mother so babies now inspire me. It changes with life depending on where I’m at, and what I’m going through.