VH1 star Amara La Negra and Black Panther actor Winston Duke open the fall lineup
TAMPA, Fla. (Aug. 27, 2018) – The University of South Florida will welcome Afro-Latina recording artist and actor Amara La Negra and Tobagonian-American actor Winston Duke as its first two speakers of the 2018-2019 University Lecture Series, a student-run program. La Negra will appear on Tuesday, Sept. 25 and Duke will lecture on Thursday, Oct. 25. Both lectures will be at 8 p.m. (doors open at 7:30 p.m.) in the Marshall Student Center Oval Theater.
La Negra, a Dominican-American native of Miami, was selected to appear in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, which is recognized nationally and at USF from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15. Although best known as the breakout star of this season’s Love and Hip Hop: Miami, La Negra’s lecture is expected to focus on the challenges of navigating the entertainment industry—including sexism, classism, colorism and racism—as an Afro-Latina. Her industry experience runs deep given the 27-year-old started her career as a young child with appearances on Univision’s Sábado Gigante. Her music, like the reggae-tinged current hit “What a Bam Bam,” draws from a multitude of musical genres, particularly rhythms from the Caribbean, and inspiration from music legends Celia Cruz and Beyoncé.
Duke recently made his feature film debut in Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther, in which he played the fan-favorite character M’Baku, leader of the Jabari Tribe. Duke reprises the character in the current Avengers: Infinity War. Born in Tobago, Duke emigrated to the U.S. at the age of nine. He got his start in theater with the Portland Stage Company before going on to the Yale Repertory Theatre and graduating from the Yale School of Drama. Prior to landing his Marvel comic character role, Duke appeared in recurring roles on television in “Person of Interest,” “Major Crimes” and “The Messengers.” He is expected to lecture about his life experiences and the influence of films like Black Panther on black culture.
Both lectures are free and open to the public on a limited first-come, first-served basis following priority seating for USF Tampa students. For more information about the lecture series, including the audience policy, visit www.usf.edu/uls.
The University of South Florida, established in 1956 and located in Tampa, is a high-impact global research university dedicated to student success. The USF System includes three separately accredited institutions: USF, USF St. Petersburg and USF Sarasota-Manatee. Serving more than 50,000 students, the USF System has an annual budget of $1.8 billion and an annual economic impact of $4.4 billion. USF ranks in the top 30 nationally for research expenditures among public universities, according to the National Science Foundation. In 2018, the Florida Board of Governors designated USF as a Preeminent State Research University, placing USF in the most elite category among the state’s 12 public universities. USF is a member of the American Athletic Conference.