Watch Out Hollywood: Grambling Graduate And Actor Ibraheem Farmer Prepares To Positively Transform Lives Through The Big Screen
He’s coming for you Denzel! Ibraheem Farmer, a 2017 Visual & Performing Arts graduate of Grambling State University with a heart as big as his presence on stage is preparing for a big screen near you!
He began acting around the age of 10-years-old at Northstar Missionary Baptist Church of Powhatan, Louisiana. There he acted in many of the Christmas and holiday skits.
In college, he reconnected with acting and spent several hours of practicing, performing and falling in love with his craft on stage in the recital hall of the Conrad Hutchinson Performing Arts Center in Grambling.
At GSU, Farmer was featured in several plays including ‘Bus Stop’ by William Inge, ‘The State of Mississippi and the face of Emmitt Till’ by Mamie Till Mobley and David Barr III, ‘A Lesson Before Dying’ by Romulus Linney, ‘The Bad Seed’ by Maxwell Anderson, ‘Blues for an Alabama Sky’ by Pearl Cleage and many more.
During his senior year, April of 2017, for a production project, Farmer directed a 1 Act play entitled ‘The Meeting’. The Meeting is a 1987 American play by Jeff Stetson about an imaginary meeting between Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X in 1965 in a hotel in Harlem during the height of the Civil Rights Movement.
The growing actor is the first in his immediate family to attend college. In addition to starring in theater productions at GSU, he was a member of the Earl Lester Cole Honors College, the National Association of Dramatic Speech and Arts, Floyd L. Sandle Theatre Guild and the Student Government Association in which he served as the senator of Colleges of Arts and Sciences.
The Grambling State University Department of Visual and Performing Arts strives to help students acquire and develop the tools they will need in order to succeed in their future pursuits and Farmer is on his way to making them proud!
On May 12, 2017, he graduated from GSU and shorty took off in the acting field, hitting the ground running, as he became a First Stage Academy fellow in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
First Stage Theater Academy is the nation’s largest high-impact theater training program for young people. The academy fosters life skills through stage skills through classes emphasizing creative drama, stage movement, voice and speech and scene study.
Farmer says at First Stage he’s had the opportunity to meet family that he didn’t even realize existed whom have now embraced him like their own child.
The Natchitoches native went to Milwaukee on nothing but a hope and a prayer that he would excel in his career as an actor/theatre practitioner further after attending GSU.
“I’m meeting so many talented actors and artists its crazy, and opportunities are consistently presenting themselves to me in this acting life,” he said.
First Stage Children’s Theater gave him an opportunity to grow beyond his comfort zone when he didn‘t quite know what direction he was going in after graduating from college.
Post First Stage, Next Act and Arts@Large, he has been featured in a number of productions including his first Shakespeare/ Classical play by way of ‘King Lear’ with Optimist Theatre, ‘White Privelege’ by Malaina Moore,’The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane’ by Kate DiCamillo, ‘I And You’ by Lauren Gunderson, ‘My Family Came For This’ by Jacque Troy and many many more!
“As a cast member of ‘White Privelege’, I just hoped that the play would raise awareness, deeper conversations, healing, and ultimately unity for race relations in the city, state, and America at large,” said Farmer.
“The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane” was actually Farmer’s first professional theater role as an understudy at First Stage.
He expressed his gratefulness to have been able to be apart and witness the talent and professionalism of the actors that joined him.
“I strongly support and to be able to say I know them personally is amazing,” he said.
With all the blessings and opportunities that have come to Farmer, he wanted to give back. He began visiting schools and speaking to the students about acting, him playing Emmitt Till, civil rights and the Black Arts Movement.
“As Ibraheem’s high school teacher at Natchitoches Central High School, its so rewarding to see your students succeed in life and come back to say “ thanks Mr Blake for all you did”, said Marvin Blake Jr. “It made my day!”
Want to see a bit of all of this great acting we’ve been talking about? Take a look at this clip! Farmer gave a powerful performance in the Next Act Theatre production, ‘I And You’ by Lauren Gunderson.
“Congratulations to my little cousin, Ibraheem Farmer,” said Demetrius Nelson, who got a chance to see him on WISN-TV Channel 12 news promoting the play ‘I And You’. “God is about to blow your mind! Stay focused. Have fun! We’re with you and stand behind you 100%. Be blessed! I know you are going to be great! We love you,” she said.
If that wasn’t enough, here’s more! Farmer also performed in “My Family Came For This” during the summer production with Arts@Large.
Here is a clip of a monologue he originally performed in the show. This video was recently shot for funders of Arts@Large.
He dedicated the performance to his homies who now watch over him and many others from Natchitoches. He also dedicated the performance to anyone who pursues a dream of living a better life.
“I have had very little experience with film so naturally I was a combination of nervous and excited when I did this a few weeks ago,” he said. “Thank you cast, crew, Arts@Large and Jacque Troy for this opportunity.”
Although Farmer has come a long way, he never forgets where he comes from and the people’s shoulders on whom he stand. He is most definitely known as a family man!
“My message to my all of my supporters is to constantly work on improving yourself and cultivating your personal growth. The right people and opportunities will make themselves known to you! Be patient with yourself! And if you believe in God, trust Him through your growing process. To all my family and true friends, I love y’all and thank God for you.”
Farmer said he’s always dreamed and pictured himself in film and TV and he is doesn’t plan on stopping until that very dream comes true!
“If the Lord says the same, one day soon I’ll be coming to a TV/screen near you!”
E'Vonne Gipson66 Posts
Follow E'Vonne: Instagram: @forever_evonne Twitter: @EVonneGipson SC: @byevonnegipson E'Vonne Gipson is an award winning journalist from Missouri City, TX. She is a graduate of Grambling State University where she received a B.A. degree in Mass Communication with a concentration in journalism and public relations. Gipson has written for several publications including Sheen Magazine, HBCU Buzz, The Black Beat, The News-Star, The Ruston Daily Leader, JubileeMag.com, and Houston Style Magazine. She is a former business reporting intern at Abilene Reporter-News in Abilene, TX and a current social media intern for MC Lyte's Hip Hop Sisters Network. She first began her journalism career writing for her school's newspaper "The Gramblinite". In 2016, Gipson worked with the Web Department at Houston television station, KHOU-11 TV where she gained professional photography and social media skills. Gipson is currently a producer at USA Today Network newspaper, The News-Star in Monroe. She is a member of The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW), and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.