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Amajae Jones: Leading Role

Updated: Mar 8, 2021

As one of Philly Youth’s Influencers, actress Amajae Hardy (@AmajaeHardyJones) spoke to us this week about her ever-growing range of experience within the entertainment industry, her passion for motivational speaking, and her love for travel.

Amajae’s love for acting stems from her childhood love for Disney movies; by the time Amajae was five, she developed a habit of standing in front of the TV and “mimic[king] every Disney movie and Disney show that came across the screen”. As she grew older, this impersonation of characters naturally transformed into a desire to start acting herself. At age 13, Amajae landed her first lead role in a production of Annie, an experience that furthered her interest in acting. 

However, Amajae’s interests include more than just acting -- recently, she’s created a social media platform, ‘Aspire to Inspire’, where she’s interviewed influential members of the entertainment industry, including Christopher A’mmanuel and Rayven Ferrell. When asked how interacting with these stars has impacted Amajae, she emphasized how admirable their persistence is. “Being able to hear about moments where they’ve auditioned and they didn’t get in, [whether] they felt discouraged, [or] they felt like their time wasn’t coming… being able to hear their journey and be able to relate in that sense, inspires me.” Speaking to the future of her ‘Aspire to Inspire’ platform, Amajae aims to continue to create a space where the actors she features are “able to express who they are”, and where listeners interested in the entertainment industry are fueled with the motivation to continue developing their craft. 

Aside from speaking with industry professionals over social media, Amajae travelled to Park City, Utah in late January of this year to attend Sundance Film Festival alongside directors, filmmakers and producers. While speaking with Philly Youth, Amajae cited her encounter with director, writer and co-producer of the Oscar-winning short film ‘Hair Love’, Matthew A. Cherry, as one of the most inspiring moments of her experience at Sundance. “It was legendary to not only meet him and hear his advice, but to be surrounded by legendary people who are making impacts and major moves in the film and entertainment industry. Let alone, he’s an African-American male who received an Oscar for a film that he believed in so strongly… It was beautiful being able to talk to him.”

Separate from her acting and motivational speaking careers, Amajae touched on her love for travel and the educational opportunities she’s been met with while abroad. In 2018, Amajae travelled to Belize with Philly Youth. Describing h