Treshelle M. Edmond on Making History as a Deaf Performer on Broadway
April Reign interviews two-time headlining Broadway star, Treshelle M. Edmond, about making history and making the Great White Way more inclusive.
“The challenge of life is to build a resume that doesn’t simply tell a story about what you want to be, but it is a story about who you want to be.”
Oprah Winfrey said this about her own career, but it is very apparent that Treshelle M. Edmond is a student of his reigning highness of all media. A San Bernardino native, Edmond face might be familiar to those who subscribe to “Netflix and Chill,” as she was on Season Two, Episode Six of Aziz Ansari’s Master of None. A talented actress who is an ASL performer and strongly believes in self-love, her bit about not getting enough attention from her significant other was a laugh-out-loud moment during the episode, and cemented her in our memory banks as a player to keep an eye on.
It’s not every day that you hear or see ASL actors performing major roles in front of audiences and on television screens. This is probably why Treshelle, a graduate of Cal State Northridge University with studies in Childhood & Adolescent Behavior, managed to plan an alternate route just in case, y’know? Thankfully, she didn’t have to build a resume and work a regular-schmegular-degular 9-to-5, as Treshelle M. Edmond starred on Broadway before her Master of None appearance as Martha Bessell in Spring Awakening.
Described as “a stand-out performer whose words seem to spill directly from the core of her body,” Treshelle’s gift has taken her around the globe and into households across America. The oldest of three children, this gorgeous phenom was diagnosed with profound hearing loss in both ears when she was only 18 months old. Fluent in ASL, Treshelle found her home on the stage as the acting bug hit her at an early age. She’s made appearances on House, M.D., GLEE and Late Night with Seth Meyers, showering audiences with her passion and natural ability with each performance. Treshelle is also making history. As the first and only deaf woman of color to headline a Broadway production twice, she has created rarefied air for herself as creative and a performer.
With all that in mind, there was only one person we thought qualified enough to speak with Ms. Edmond about her career and diversity on Broadway. April Reign took the reigns of the interview to speak with Treshelle M. Edmond about being the only black actress in a Broadway production, if the Great White Way has truly become inclusive of others and what advice she has to offer other millennials of color. After reading our exclusive chat, be sure to get your ticket to see Treshelle in Mark Medoff’s Children of a Lesser God. —@KevitoClark | Interview as told to @ReignofApril.