As she walked on stage, her mocha smooth skin began to illuminate from the stage lighting, the audience instantly gazed at her. The radiation of her light was as of a single lit candle in a dark room.
As she began to perform, she commanded and hunted the attention of the crowd as of a praying leopard with her deep resonating voice, as they stared into her cat eyes and faint freckles that lightly spotted her face. Whether it was the sweet precious words of wisdom she spoke through women she played or through the poetry of Shakespeare she portrayed, characters she played traveled through the ears of the audience; softly playing through raw nerves like a harp.
Through her years of hard work, dedication, perfection and later mentorship, she bestowed admirable words of encouragement and empowerment to those around her; giving her peers the feeling of elevation to soar through any tribulation to be the best person that they could be.
Yet, through her years of sparking a light in others, her own light has now faded out. Houston’s very own distinctive and distinguished actress Detria Ward passed away at the age of 57 on Nov. 17, 2019. Ward’s incredible work in media, theatre, teaching, music and performance is what has garnered her as Houston’s own theatrical jewel.
Love, faith and family created Third Ward’s very own beloved South Union belle. Ward left her handprint at Whidby Elementary School, Cullen Middle School, Jack Yates School of Communication and Texas Southern University.
Once Ward stepped foot on the historic Tiger Walk of TSU, the theatre bug lit a flame in her candle; as she performed in a leaf pile of plays for TSU like Langston Hughes’ “A Dream Deferred,” said Dianne Jemison Pollard, TSU’s Dean of Thomas F. Freeman Honors College and Professor of Theatre. The South Union belle nurtured and cultivated her “God-given gift” through her rigorous studies, becoming only one of two students from the historically Black college to graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in theatre.