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article imageFaruq Tauheed opens up about 'Roots Less Traveled' on NBC Special

By Markos Papadatos     Mar 26, 2020 in Entertainment
Actor Faruq Tauheed chatted with Digital Journal about "Roots Less Traveled" which airs on NBC on April 4. He also spoke about being a host and an actor in the digital age.
On hosting the new NBC series, Roots Less Traveled, "It, is truly an honor and a blessing. Discovering and uncovering the myths and legends of one's family history is an amazing journey in and of itself and being along for the ride as a guide for these sets of families has become a dream job. Roots Less Traveled gives you everything - family, fun, love, hope, adventure, and emotion and so much more. I didn't just get a job, I joined a family, the Litton Entertainment family."
"I love bringing families together and empowering them with the priceless knowledge of their family history," he said. "Our amazing cast members get to fill in the blanks and answer questions that have been in their families for generations while gaining purpose for their own lives from the results. As the host, I didn’t anticipate how involved and attached I would become to these journeys, these stories, and these wonderful people. As we discover their history together, I kind of feel like part of the family."
When asked what motivates him each day, he responded, "My source of motivation changes depending on the day but the foundation is always with my family. Showing my mother, who had three boys by the time she was 24, that all the sacrifices and choices she made were worth it. My wife, although I don’t say it as much as I should, everyday her presence in my life forces me to be a better human to her, to others, but most importantly to myself. Just over 13 years ago, my greatest motivation came into my life, my son Sylas. He's, without a shadow of a doubt, my greatest motivation with his joy and unconditional love. I don’t know where I would be today without that little guy…well, he's not so little anymore.
Regarding his biggest influences, he said, "As I was going through the whole growing up thing, I didn't realize who or what influenced me. When I look back, it starts with Freedom Theater in Philadelphia and the positive, encouraging force that existed there. I couldn’t even enter the building without saying 'I respect myself' with confidence and boldness. Then, to the acting coaches who wouldn’t let me give up like Robert Christophe, Mel Williams, and Elsa Johnson-Bass to name a few. One coach, in particular, EJB, influenced me tremendously because she is among a village of strong black women that nurtured me, taught me and raised me, in many instances, as their own son. Many of the people I grew up within my neighborhood, in school and Freedom Theater influenced me as well. They showed me what paths to take, which to avoid and when to keep going. They have all been a big influence on me and my life."
On being a host and an actor in the digital age, he said, "It can be tough being a host and actor in the digital age and at the same time somewhat easier. On the tough side, if you don’t maintain an active social media presence you could potentially miss out on jobs to someone who has more followers or a more active/greater presence. You also have to be careful about what you post and how you interact on social media because we’ve seen people lose gigs as well. The power to create your own content, however, is the best aspect of this digital age we’re living in today. If you're not doing what you want in the entertainment industry, you can create your own content, write it, shoot it and post it. It can really be that easy."
For people that wish to pursue a career in the entertainment business, he said, "Become a master at managing your fear. Fear of failure, fear of success and doubt, along with many other things, can kill a career before it even begins. Be bold, be brave and know your worth. A strong sense of self will sustain you and without it, you may be broken. Be open, stay ready and learn everything you can. Don’t be afraid to add slashes to your name. I didn’t move to LA to be a host or to do voiceovers. I moved here to solely pursue on-screen acting. After moving to LA, I explored and learned. Now, I’m an actor/host/voiceover artist. Talent helps too."
He concluded about Roots Less Traveled, "It is a passion project for all involved and we hope it registers. I believe it will. If you have a love for your family history, this is the show for you. Watch it with the whole family, tell all your friends and family about the show and get ready to go on a brand new journey every week."
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