SITTING PRETTY: "It took me out of my comfort zone," Davis says of playing Lisa in this season's Special Cuts.
WHEN Aisha Davis says there’s so much joy in her life that she laughs a lot, it isn’t hard to see why. First off, she’s back on stage (playing firecracker Lisa in the sizzling dramedy Special Cuts), she has a soulful new EP in the works, and lately she’s been seeing a hot younger man. But, as we promised, our lips are sealed. And don’t even bother asking how old she is. Here, the talented Miss Davis goes on the record, as she dishes with TALLAWAH at the Phoenix Theatre.
TALLAWAH: Your new play, Special Cuts, is about family, facing the mistakes of your past and friendships. What qualities do you most admire in friends?
Aisha Davis: Honesty. I like people who are genuine. I like good, positive energy and people who are just fun to be around.
TALLAWAH: So what’s your philosophy on dating and relationships?
Aisha Davis: There has to be chemistry and, of course, physical attraction (Laughs). We have to communicate on some level. Trust in a relationships is also very important for me. Without those it won’t work.
TALLAWAH: Earlier this season you co-starred in What Goes Around. But the last time we saw you on stage you were starring in JMTC’s Dreamgirls. You were playing Deena. And that was over a decade ago. How does it feel to be back?
Aisha Davis: I was a bit nervous, to be honest with you, because it’s been so long! But it feels great. When I did What Goes Around, we had like two rehearsals, but my castmates were very welcoming, very helpful. It was also my first time working with Sabrina [Thomas], and it’s been fun.
TALLAWAH: And you’re working with her again on this new show. What drew you to Special Cuts?
Aisha Davis: I loved the story. The process of bringing this character [Lisa] to life has been challenging but a great learning experience because there are so many sides to her. She’s a complex character, but I could relate to a lot of what she’s been through, like being abused. It took me out of my comfort zone.
TALLAWAH: Interesting. Speaking of your comfort zone, when was the last time you connected with L’Antoinette Stines and your L’Acadco family?
Aisha Davis: Oh, my. I was actually with them recently for orientation, as they welcomed the new members. I’m still a part of the family. I was a dancer with the troupe for 13 years, and I was also dance captain. Once a L’Acadco member always a member. And as long as L’Antoinette needs me to come in to help with a piece or maybe teach a class, I’ll make myself available.
TALLAWAH: You’ve evolved so much as a triple threat: dancer, singer, actress. What do you most want out of life now?
Aisha Davis: As a recording artiste, it’s about getting recognition having put in the work. It’s a wide landscape out there, but I’m not competing with anyone but myself. I just want to do good music. But I do wish I had a team, an engine, behind me. And I guess that’s the major thing, the machinery to further push my music career.
TALLAWAH: Tell us about the EP you’re currently working on?
Aisha Davis: It’s called Cinnamon. I was hoping to release it in time for spring, but because of schedule constraints it’s been pushed back. But when it comes put you’ll love it. It’s a mixture of soulful and that nice groovy reggae vibe. Good stuff.
TALLAWAH: Sounds promising. How do you measure your happiness these days? What makes Aisha truly happy?
Aisha Davis: I’ve been blessed with an extraordinary life. I’ve had some wonderful people who have entered my life. Sometimes you can’t help but feel overwhelmed. But I’m very grateful. I try to stay positive; I laugh a lot. The Bible says, ‘Count it all joy.’ So even when something bad happens, you learn from it.