ASPiRE announces the world premiere of its first original weekly talk series, “exhale” (@exhaleTV). Hosted by five dynamic, successful African-American women — journalist and media maven Angela Burt-Murray; actress and comedian Erin Jackson; director, writer and actress Issa Rae; blogger, author and TV anchor Rene Syler; and actress Malinda Williams ““ “exhale” is designed to bring honest, entertaining and candid discussion on a wide range of topics affecting African American women. The eight-episode series will premiere on Thursday, June 27th at 8:00 p.m. EDT to mark the one-year anniversary of the ASPiRE network’s launch. After the premiere week, new episodes will debut starting July 10 in its regularly scheduled time slot on Wednesdays at 8:00 p.m. EDT each week for seven weeks.
With a unique mix of bold humor, sincerity and insight, Burt-Murray, Jackson, Rae, Syler and Williams will provide a fresh in-depth perspective on topics that are relevant and evergreen in the lives of African-American women. The five hosts from different generations, (FOR MORE INFO ON ASPIRE TV CLICK NEXT) fields and backgrounds get real about family, relationships, career, money, faith and other topics of interest to modern women. An intriguing range of special guests, from celebrities and authors to religious leaders and other experts, join in the conversation and fun.
“We are thrilled to add “˜exhale’ to our lineup of original programming,” said ASPiRE General Manager Paul Butler. “This new series will spark important and interesting conversation with its broad ranges of topics relevant to African American women, the African American family and community. We hope that viewers will be inspired, informed, entertained and that they continue the conversation wherever we gather as a community.”
“‘exhale’ is a show that features five amazing hosts, who will open up and talk about everything that is on the minds of women today,” says Lynne Robinson, executive producer. “In each episode, they share intimate, spirited and honest dialogue to make you laugh and sometimes make you cry. We are thrilled to bring these provocative, enlightening conversations with these dynamic women in a compelling new series to life on ASPiRE.”
“My interest in reflecting other perspectives extends beyond feature narrative. TV, in every capacity, needs to catch up with the times and minds of today,” said Victoria Mahoney, director. “˜exhale’ provides a perfect opportunity for me to help make traction in that expansion.”
ASPiRE presents a Black Robin Media production, “exhale.” Hosted by Angela Burt-Murray, Erin Jackson, Issa Raye, Rene Syler and Malinda Williams. Produced by Black Robin Media. Executive produced by Lynne Robinson. Supervising Producer is Allison Simmons. Director is Victoria Mahoney. Editor is Derek Allen. Director of Photography is Jonathan Barenboim.
The first three weekly episodes include:
Relationships ““ Airs Thursday, June 27, 8 p.m. EDT
From dating and marriage to divorce, the “exhale” crew gets answers to the hard questions about why so many black women are single, the signs of a toxic relationship and the secret to making the perfect match.
Judge Lynn Toler, Host of “Divorce Court” (@RealJudgeLynn)
Tichina Arnold, Actress (@TichinaArnold)
Jasmine Diaz, Celebrity Matchmaker, Author and Owner of The Shawn Mackenzi Agency (@BlackMatchmaker)
Dr. Nicole LaBeach, Author, Life Coach and CEO of Volition Enterprises (www.drlabeach.com)
Health and Wellness ““ Airs Wednesday, July 10, 8 p.m. EDT
The ladies of “exhale” get to the heart of one of the biggest issues impacting the lives of black women, health. The hosts are joined by experts and survivors who explore dieting and nutrition, secrets to becoming both mentally and physically fit and preventing illnesses devastating African American women like heart disease and HIV/AIDS.
AJ Johnson, Actress, Wellness Expert and Creator of The AJ Zone (@THEAJZONE)
Dr. Felicia Wade, Physician and Author of “The Heart Of The Matter: A New Beginning” (drfeliciawadeonline.com)
Simone Smith, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist and Cancer Survivor (wife of LL Cool J, @simoneismith)
Carrie Broadus, Executive Director of Women Alive (@women_alive)
Beauty and Style ““ Airs Wednesday, July 17, 8 p.m. EDT
Beauty and style is on tap with the ladies of “exhale” as they explore topics like fashion, the modeling industry, why hair is such a touchy subject in the African American community, and find out if black really does crack.
Beverly Johnson, Supermodel, Actress and Modelprenuer (@BeverlyJohnson1)
Dr. Susan Evans, Dermatologist and Skin Care Specialist (@DrSusanEvans)
Vanessa Simmons, Actress and Fashion Entrepreneur (@NessaSimmons)
Kim Kimble, Celebrity Hair Guru and Entrepreneur (@KimbleHairCare)
Additional episodes include:
Faith / Religion
The ladies of “exhale” are having some spirited conversation as they talk about getting through trials that put our faith to the test, religious controversies like homosexuality and the role of women in the Church and the increasing number African Americans who don’t believe ““ black Atheists.
Devon Franklin, Columbia Pictures Executive and Author of “Produced By Faith”
Kelly Price, R&B Artist
Pastor Beverly (“BAM”) Crawford
Dr. Sikivu Hutchinson, Atheist and Author of “Moral Combat: Black Atheists, Gender Politics, and The Value Wars”
In this episode of “exhale,” the ladies talk to some veterans of entertainment and take us inside the world of music, television and film to see just what it takes to achieve success, and keep it. Viewers will hear what goes on behind the scenes of some of the biggest projects in Hollywood and how they overcome the unique challenges blacks in the entertainment industry face.
Jeffrey Osborne, R&B Singer
Keisha Knight Pulliam, Actress
Kym Whitley, Actress and Comedienne
Kevin Rodney Sullivan, Director, Producer and Writer
Career / Finance
Can black women really have it all? Career, money and a family? That’s what the ladies of “exhale” are trying to find out as they sit down with experts and talk about the secrets to a successful career, the biggest career and financial mistakes that black women make, how to keep disputes over money from ruining relationships and how to come back from financial disaster.
Vanessa Bell Calloway, Actress
Sharon Epperson, CNBC Correspondent
Keith Douglas, Entrepreneur and Author
Paula Madison, a partner in The Williams Group Holdings and CEO of The LA Sparks.
In this episode, the ladies are talking about the taboo subject of sex as they focus on topics like women’s sexual expression and obsessions, healthy versus unhealthy sex, the objectification of black women and being a sex symbol in Hollywood.
Lance Gross, Actor
Antonique Smith, Actor
Dr. Elana Clark Faler, Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Sex Specialist
Nourbese Flint, Program Manager with Black Women for Wellness.
The “exhale” team explores breaking free from hurts that can hold us captive – fear, anger, depression, addictions and other vices. Covering the all too real struggles many of us have with overcoming past hurts and the importance of forgiveness.
Kim Coles, Actress, Comedienne, Author and Host
Sarah Jakes, Senior Project Manager of The Potter’s House Woman-To-Woman Ministry and daughter of TD Jakes
Todd Bridges, Actor, Writer and Director
Gabriella Jordan, Executive Coach and President of the Education Division of The Handel Group,
ASPiRE and the hosts will use digital and social media to further connect, engage and continue dynamic, nimble dialogue with the audience. For more information, please go to www.aspire.tv/exhale, Twitter on @ExhaleTV, and Facebook at facebook.com/ExhaleTV.
Follow our hosts at:
· Angela Burt-Murray on Twitter @AngelaCocoaFab, and on her websites cocoafab.com and cocoafab-tv.
· Erin Jackson on Twitter @EJthecomic, and on her website erinjackson.net.
· Issa Rae on Twitter @IssaRae, and on her website awkwardblackgirl.com.
· Rene Syler on Twitter @goodenufmother, and on her website goodenoughmother.com.
· Malinda Williams on Twitter @MalinsWorld, and on her website malindawilliams.com.
“exhale” is ASPiRE’s third original project following, “ABFF Independent” and “The Root 100.”