Hey you!, reading my bio; hi, thanks for coming. I'm Toni Belafonte. Pronounced Tah-Nee or like ToniC without the C. I am Jamaican born - Bronx bred, and a long time resident of, what I love to call it, Money Making Manhattan! As a proud SAG-AFTRA member, it is a sheer honor to be a 'working actor' in this industry, representing and partnering with some amazingly talented artists and brands, from the business side all the way to the show side, that's show business baby!
At a - dare I say, striking 5'9," I am often cast embodying power house roles, and visceral characters like an undercover cop, nurturing mother, love interest, wife, sometimes thug - "Stick 'em up!" I am in good fortune to work and share the space with some really brilliant and generous actors, thus far in my career.
One special character I am blessed to have served, domesticly abuse girlfriend - Vanessa - in Last Love Lost, directed by Jahmar Hill. My first feature film, lands me my first award as BEST ACTRESS, at the 2014 Chelsea Film Festival Competition in Manhattan, NYC. Just prior to LLL, I was able to channel my 'die-hard fandimonium,' for BET's longstanding #1 show - The Game and earn the crown of superfan, and I got to host a 10-episode recap show, called The Game: Sideline Wrap. These segments, I dish on the shows drama and encourage fans to share their views on what would happen next.
I embarked on a really scary journey to shoot my video short, of the late, legendary singer, Whitney Houston. For me it is a montage of "private moments - beyond the music." #TheWhitneyProject has been viewed almost 20,000+ times on the YouTube sharing platform [before being blocked], and has afforded me interviews with populated radio blogs and led to my first magazine cover, which came through the honor given by SYM Magazine, where the titled publication, "My Name is Not Whitney Houston" earns me top seller for the company to date. I am humbled to receive my first honorary award at WBLS's own, DJ Jon Quick's Beauty and the Beat, 6th annual - Heroines of Excellence Awards, fundraising event. The award honors women who are undeniable shooting stars in their respective industries. More career achieving milestone's include being named 2012's & 2014's IMDB's Top 40 Actors on the Rise to Watch Out For; and most recently my alma mater Temple University, afforded me a prominent feature on Candid Career.com, where I provide viewers with an inside-guide to my respective field of interest.
With on-air being a first love in this business, I am glad to keep the fire alive, hosting red-carpet events, music and film festivals, travel shows, and talent showcases across the nation. I'm grateful to also be invited to school speakings, career fairs, pep rally's and graduations.
Supporting the community and arts are so important to me. I use my skill-set as a former student-athlete, to Coach girls Varsity and AAU Basketball. I participate with literacy programs, SAG BookPAL's, The Glenn Toby Book Bank Foundation - and it's annual Shelter from the Streets tour; where as a team we gather clothes and books which we distribute at shelters across NYC. I am also creator of a visionary media company, COPETV™ - Change of Pace Entertainment Television, Inc.; a distribution company, providing an exclusive platform for artists to market and monetize their brands and new media projects. July 2019 will mark the 3rd musical performance summer-stage produced by COPETV™ for Cutting for a Cure; a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, that brings the barbershop and the healthcare professional communities together to raise awareness on health issues in minority communities across NYC.
Wondering about my free time?? I have some! Let's start with, I enjoy the 'art of sleeping.' lol) I enjoy seeking knowledge, I strive to be in the service of gratitude, dining in great company, sailing in the sun, all while reading great literature and enjoying good music; whether at home or on the dance floor, you'll most likely find me moving to the groove! I fall in love with the moments of life and love.
~ Thanks for sharing in a bit of me xox!