'The Chi' Season 5: How Nia Jervier's love for acting was inspired by musical theater
'I went Saturday for musical theater and Wednesday for drama until I graduated from High School', says Nia Jervier about her love for acting
Showtime’s hit and iconic series ‘The Chi’ Season 5 marked its comeback on screens on June 26, 2022. This show has created its own place in the hearts of avid fans and audiences that have seen how all the characters have constantly evolved throughout the course of the past four seasons. The series ever since its first season back in 2018 has been applauded each time by both fans and critics for the superb depiction of Black people in the series with a focus on their emotional turmoil and personal life struggles that they go through whilst living in Southern California.
Emmy award-winning director Lena Waithe has done outstanding work in showcasing the real-life struggles and personal battles of the main characters. This time in ‘The Chi’ Season 5, Nia Jervier is seen playing the character of Tierra, who is a poised and spunky spirited god-niece of Mayor Otis ‘Douda’ Perry (Curtiss Cook) that has been hired by him for his rebranding as a person. Tierra just knows what she wants and isn’t scared to go after it, no matter whatever the costs and consequences are. In the current season, there’s a focus on Black love by emphasizing how the relationship arcs keep on changing constantly.
Nia Jervier’s career
In an old interview with A Book of Us magazine dated 2015, opening up on how her love for acting began right from her first audition gig at The City Light Youth TheaterJervier said, “It started for me when I was 8 years old. My mother enrolled me in musical theater classes at a school called The City Lights Youth Theater. I went every Saturday for musical theater, and every Wednesday for drama until I graduated from High School. I did a countless number of musicals and plays there including ‘Once on this Island’ ‘The Apple Tree’ and ’The Music Man’. It was the most magical of places to me.”
Nia Jervier’s first audition gig at The City Light Youth Theater
Talking about her first-ever audition gig, Jervier shared, “My first audition was at City Lights Youth Theater in order to be accepted into the program. My Mum was in the room and I think I sang ‘The Wind Beneath’ by Wings.”
Nia Jervier’s source of inspiration
Talking about what people inspire her most as an actor, she said, “I draw my creative inspiration from the classics; they always stand the test of time and inspire my art even when I’m working on a project as modern and millennially relevant as ‘Dear White People’. Shakespeare, Moliere and Sondheim are all friends in my head. Classic music like Cole Porter, Jazz standards, Bob Marley and Dina Washington speak to my heart.”
Nia Jervier’s favorite acting icon
Opening up on who is her favorite acting icon, the actress said, “Diahann Carroll! Her style and grace are unrivaled. She’s the first African American woman to win a Tony award for best actress on Broadway, and the first to star in her own weekly primetime television series. She is also a Golden Globe winner and a best actress Oscar nominee. I’m encouraged by the trails she blazed despite the obstacles of prejudice and hurdles of racism she endured in the political wilderness of the 50’s 60’s and 70’s. Her career has spanned 60 years and counting. She’s a classic Lady. My muse.”
Nia Jervier’s career breakthrough with ‘Dear White People’
Opening up on how she felt lucky and blessed to be part of both the film and television series ‘Dear White People’, Jervier said, “Being part of both the movie and TV show is a unique and gratifying experience. It has been a gift to see this project blossom and morph into the brilliance that is the TV series. I was elated when I was invited to be part of the Netflix cast. The biggest difference for me personally would simply have to be that I get to play Kelsey; she wasn’t in the movie. Being given the opportunity to play a fully fleshed out role in a greater capacity means so very much to me. It’s an honor to be a part of this groundbreaking project and talented cast. Dear White People is an ode to the culture.”