Thursday, 23 June 2011

DAHLIA’s AIN TRUE LOVE: The newly engaged actress happily (and officially) closes the book on her single days

GOOD TIMES: Harris is the picture of happiness; her sparkling new white-gold-and-diamond ring.

It’s a balmy Wednesday night in Kingston, and Dahlia Harris is hurrying home from the Judgement set at the Green Gables Theatre to catch the latest episode of Criminal Minds, the acclaimed CBS investigative drama starring Shemar Moore. For the uber-busy actress-turned-playwright-and-producer, having her fingers in as many pies as she does constantly keeps her on her toes, juggling multiple projects. So one can understand if her usually steady social life takes a beating now and again. As for her home life, that’s another matter.

But one thing you can be sure of these days, when it comes to Harris’ love life, more than ever things are coming up roses, chiefly in the wake of --- signal the marching band! --- her recent engagement to her long-time beau. Of course, Harris declines to reveal his name or offer any clue that would make Mr. Loverman easy to identify (she’s hiding him from the press!), but, as it should be, her life at this point is the definition of perfect bliss. Did I neglect to mention that the gigantic ring is an exquisitely crafted white-gold-and-diamonds work of art that dazzles on that special finger?

I, like so many, always believed that the Dahlia Harris we saw living it up on the stage, broadcasting the sports news on TV or appearing in commercials was a happily single woman with eyes for only her work. Not so. It turns out that for someone of her position, Harris had simply learnt to keep her private life (extremely) private. “When you put your relationship out there in the public, you are opening up yourself for a lot of unwanted attention. Rumours start,” says Harris, who adds that she and Mr. Loverman have been an item “long enough.”

As for the formula that makes their relationship work so well, she says: “It’s not driven by limelight. We both enjoy the simple quiet things. He likes theatre. We communicate a lot. We both like to read. And we share a mutual respect.” And, she explains further, he loves his woman for who she truly is. “He loves Dahlia, not the person you see on TV or in theatre. If I gave it all up tomorrow, it wouldn’t make a difference.”

It’s a phase of endless possibilities where Harris now finds herself, with a fabulous wedding on the way (sometime next year) and the premiere of the eagerly awaited follow-up to the award-winning Judgement, which marked her writing-directorial debut. It’s a big-budget musical titled Jamaica Gold, opening next April, that, in large part, will pay homage to the milestone of Jamaica’s 50th year as an independent nation, coupled with our athletes' quest for top honours at the London 2012 Olympics. “What I want the musical to look at is after 50 years what has Jamaica really achieved – and where do we go from here.”

STAGE ROYALTY: Harris photographs with Judgement co-star (and longtime pal) Chris McFarlane.

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