Exclusive Interview: Michelle Williams is ready to shine

January 21, 2011  |  

What is it about your voice that makes people want to work with you?

Ann Nesby: The anointing. There are so many other beautiful voices that are not different from mine. It’s the anointing of God that makes me different

Describe your character:

AN: “I’m playing Eleanor, mother of Michelle Williams and mother in law to Clifton Davis [Franklin.] She’s a very proud, 65-year-old mother concerned about her daughter being married to an older man. I’m just that one mom that’s always got her [daughter’s] back and looking out for her.”

BW: “Paul just moved to town. He knows what he wants: to be like Franklin. It’s an interesting triangle. He’s a construction worker.  He finds the most successful guy in his town, gets hired by him to fix the structure of his house, specifically the plumbing. The main thing that’s wrong with the house is the relationship.

MW: [Lena] “She’s a married woman. She has everything she could ever want but she’d rather have more of her husband.

Do you identify with your character?

AN: “I identify very, very well, having several daughters and a granddaughter in the business. I’m always looking over their shoulders and trying to give them advice, whether they choose to follow my advice or not. They feel like you’re old and people don’t do it that way no more. Things change but the principles are usually the same. You have to pray them the rest of the way through.”

BW: No, not really. What I share with Paul is I’m a fan of strong healthy positive marriages and the two marriages [in the play] become stronger. Paul is a catalyst for the positive message.

MW: “It seems like with most of the roles [I play] I’m going through something similar…Well when you think of ways  you might feel like you’ve been neglected in past relationships, whether that be through business or personal. ‘I spent all this time with you and I ended up with nothing?’”

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