Back in the day when we had those huge, flat-screen television sets and annoying satellite dishes, there were countless shows for all ages. Daytime television had some funny, and amazing shows like the ‘Andy Griffin Show’, ‘The Young And The Restless’ and one of my favorites of all time ‘The Price is Right’ . Whenever I went to visit my grandmother and grandfather, they would often have on the price is right streaming on tv; my favorite game on the show was the game where you dropped the disc in a slot to score the most points. As a child, I was not allowed to watch late-night shows like ‘Seinfield’, ‘The Tonight Show With Jay Leno’, and ‘The Late Show With David Letterman’ but when I got older I was fortunate enough to experience ‘The Arsenio Hall’ show and funny improv shows like ‘In Living Color; I often wondered why they did not have any African American game host until one day I discovered ‘The Dave Chappell Show.; it was full of hilarious skits, musical performances, and included other great comedic acts such as the late Charlie Murphy and Paul Mooney. One of Dave’s funniest skits was when he played an African American game show host for “Do You Know Black People’; it was like the black version of ‘Jeopardy.’ Dave once brought Wayne Brady to guest host his show; Wayne showed a hilarious skit with him and Dave that made my sides hurt from laughing so hard at the skit and from that day I wanted to know more about this comedic, creative soul.
Wayne Brady was born in Columbus, Georgia on June 2, 1972, but he grew up in Orlando, Florida. Wayne’s heritage spawns from the beautiful island of St. Croix in the Virgin Islands; Wayne was mostly raised by his grandmother, Valerie Peterson because his father was out serving in the Army during the ‘Vietnam War.’ There is not much known about Wayne’s mother and siblings. Wayne is currently not married but he is good friends with his ex-wife, Mandy and together they co-parent with their firstborn Malie Masako Brady. Mailey is currently a freshman at Loyola Marymount University this year.
Growing up, Wayne often spent his time inside his house reading, books and watching educational shows on PBS. At sixteen, he discovered that he had something special to offer the world; he was like a modern-day Sammy Davis Jr. waiting to blow up on the scene. In high school, Wayne participated in ROTC but knew musical theater was his true calling. Wayne once worked for ‘Universal Studios’ and played as one of the characters of the ‘Beetle Juice Rock & Roll Show.’ In 1998, one of Wayne’s big breaks in the industry was when he was a part of the hit sitcom series ‘Whose Line Is It Anyway?’ In 2001, Wayne also starred in his own hit series ‘The Wayne Brady Show.’ Wayne continued to build his success by appearing on other shows like ‘Clarissa Explains It All’ and the ‘Drew Carey Show’ just to name a few. Wayne even dabbled in the music industry and released two albums titled ‘A Long Time Coming’ and ‘Radio Wayne.’ In 2009, Wayne took the place of Monty Hall, the Canadian-American native that was the original host of the ‘Let’s Make A Deal’ show; Wayne had often received some racial backlash since the show had first aired but he became a host that brought smiles and laughter to audiences from around the world each and every morning. Behind the camera, Wayne had often dealt with some depression but with the help of a therapist on his side depression had no way of defeating Wayne. Today, Wayne is still hosting his game show and he has made more appearances in other shows such as ‘Black Lightning’, ‘The Masked Singer’ and has even released his latest EP titled ‘Been Here.’ Wayne is now a part of a new improv series titled ‘Freestyle Love Supreme’ which is similar to Nick Cannon’s ‘Wild N’ Out’ series.
Wayne Brady’s story is a testament to life’s ups and downs but one thing that stood out the most was his humbleness. Wayne was often quiet but little did they know, Wayne was brewing up his success and now it is making a way for him. Improv was an outlet and Wayne’s passion and he followed it. Wayne was able to be friends with his child’s mother and together they were able to put aside their differences and raise their child. Life is about balance and helping each other reach their goals and Wayne Brady is proof of that.