( ENSPIRE Entertainment ) Critically Acclaimed BIPOC Artist, Influencer, and Content Creator Bri Hall Launches Weekly Podcast ‘Count to Ten’
ENSPIRE Contributor: LaShonda Thompson
Multi-hyphenate artist/influencer Bri Hall launches her ‘Count to Ten’ podcast presented by RedCircle on January 18th, with new episodes airing weekly through March. Raised in the DMV area (D.C., Maryland, Virginia) and now based in Los Angeles, Hall has achieved over 1.1 million followers across social media plus 50 million views and counting on YouTube as a content creator. Through her various work, including partnerships with Fenty Beauty, Calvin Klein, Facebook, Google, and her music project under the moniker La Hara, the rising thought leader has garnered positive praise from ABC, Allure, BET, Bustle, Elite Daily, Harper’s BAZAAR, ESSENCE, NBC, NYLON, PopSugar, Refinery29, Washington Post, among several others. Utilizing her dedicated fanbase and established platform, Hall hopes to open an honest dialogue around delicate and indispensable topics such as race/racism, intersectionality, feminism, the model minority, DACA/Dreamers, invisible disabilities, mental health, and more.
‘Count to Ten’ is a statement of defiance against the notion of “staying calm”—something individuals in marginalized groups are told to undermine their experiences when facing complex issues around social and racial injustices, gender or identity inequality, mental health, and more. Taking ownership of the phrase “count to ten,” the podcast is Bri Hall’s way of breaking that silence and creating a safe, educational, yet entertaining space where listeners can feel seen and heard. Hall will tap a special guest throughout the podcast to provide their unique insight and expertise on select themes. For example, in the first episode, Hall and Keziah Dhamma (aka Swirly Curly) unpack The CROWN Act (Creating A Respectful and Open World for Naturals)—a law that forbids race-based hair discrimination, which many minorities face in academic and professional settings. Upcoming guests in the first season also include Brittany Lackey and Germani Manning (Black Bravado), Bukola Odeosun, Darian Harvin, Aliza Kelly, Kristopher Head, Charlotte Nguyen, Helya Mohammadian (Slick Chicks), and Marta Elena Cortez-Neaval (Abilitee), MANNYWELLZ, and Jen Winston (The Greedy Bisexual).
For Bri Hall, every project is an opportunity to explore new avenues to push boundaries and showcase different sides of her as an ever-evolving creator and trend maker. On the ‘Count to Ten’ podcast launch, she states, “I’m excited to share a huge part of myself that supporters don’t always get to see from an Instagram photo or a makeup tutorial. I’m deeply engaged in conversations with colleagues, friends, and family about social justice, personal struggles, and marginalized identity between filming for videos and creating content. It feels like such an organic step to use my platform to delve into these stories on a larger scale further. I hope people will learn more about marginalized identities and themselves through this podcast. Often, the gap between empathy and apathy is a lack of understanding and a fear of asking the wrong questions. By having a first-person, fly-on-the-wall invitation into these conversations, I hope a deep feeling of connection between diverse communities will emerge for my fans and new listeners.”
‘Count to Ten’ episodes:
January 18th — Do I Seem Relaxed with Keziah Dhamma (Swirly Curly)
January 25th — Race & Royalty with Brittany Lackey & Germani Manning of Black Girl Bravado
February 1st — Being First-Gen with Bukola Odeosun
February 8th — Do the Write Thing with Darian Harvin
February 15th — Hex and the City with Aliza Kelly
February 22nd — The Truth of Invisible Disabilities with Kris Head
March 1st — Excluded? The Model Minority Myth with Charlotte Nguyên
March 8th — Ableism in Fashion with Helya Mohammadian (Slick Chicks) and Marta Elena Cortez-Neaval (Abilitee)
March 15th — Show Dates: How DACA has Impacted Artists with MANNYWELLZ
March 22nd — The Greedy Bisexual with Jen Winston
About Bri Hall:
One of the brightest cultural leaders of her generation, Bri Hall embodies the kind of visionary creativity that defies all boundaries and transforms the way we view the world around us. With a global reach that now includes over 1.1 million followers across all platforms, the 27-year-old artist, social-media creator, and motivational speaker has continually turned her creative passions into a conduit for community-building and increased awareness of such crucial issues like social justice and mental health—all while channeling the singular joy of unbridled self-expression.
A first-generation American whose mother immigrated from Jamaica, Hall was born in New York but moved to Maryland at the age of five. As a young child, she started drawing portraits, discovering an affinity for art that she partly attributes to an urge to connect with her absent biological father (a stained-glass artist). A lifelong creative polymath, Hall took up poetry in third grade, and within just two years, saw one of her pieces published in a national poetry journal. Later on, she earned the distinction of being one of two students in the entire state to be accepted into a highly competitive visual and performing artists middle school, which helped refine her raw talents and self-taught skills. Hall further broadened her artistic horizons throughout her childhood by learning to play clarinet in elementary school and later taking up piano while enrolled in a prestigious science and technology program in high school. During her junior year, she began exploring social media by kicking off a weekly Facebook feature in which she created time-lapse videos documenting her work as she drew or painted a portrait based on subject requests submitted by her followers. The feature was an instant hit, and in 2011 Hall launched a YouTube channel to showcase her increasingly in-demand speed portraits.
While studying animation and game design at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Hall continued posting art videos and began appearing on camera—a turn of events that soon led to the launch of Smartista Beauty. This separate YouTube channel served as a hub for the hair and beauty tutorials her viewers immediately clamored for. With her very first Smartista Beauty post amassing a staggering number of views, Hall quickly emerged as a beauty guru backed by an immensely devoted following (as well as support from global brands like Calvin Klein and Google). Not only known for the awe-inspiring ingenuity behind her wildly popular tutorials, but she also gained widespread recognition for the vulnerability and openness of her content, often using her videos as a sounding board for such complex and intensely personal topics as self-love and Black feminism. As more and more viewers tuned in for Hall’s insights into living a more fulfilled and empowered life, she took the stage for a TEDx Talk in 2018 and detailed her journey in following her creative dreams to incredible success.
Hall merges her limitless imagination with a profound sense of purpose in all of her endeavors. In 2019, for instance, she made her musical debut under the name La Hara, an R&B project whose first round of singles included “Hereafter”—a quietly powerful track she wrote after the death of a close friend, then released during National Suicide Prevention Month in order to help others struggling with grief. More recently, Hall has aligned her longtime mission of increasing representation in media with her growing fascination with cosplay, tapping into her extensive makeup savvy and morphing into a series of iconic characters rarely performed by Black artists and creators.
In her commitment to endlessly magnifying the impact of her platform, Hall is now set to launch a weekly podcast called ‘Count to Ten.’ Presented by RedCircle, the show will include intimate and unfiltered conversations with guests whose personal experience speaks to the inequities affecting marginalized populations worldwide. To that end, the first season of ‘Count to Ten’ finds Hall and her guests discussing everything from the model minority myth and the intersectionality of race and class to ableism in fashion and the politics of natural hair. Inspired by the heart-to-heart talks she engages in daily—and the moment of re-centering pause many people with intersectional identities must frequently take to coexist in a variety of spaces—’Count to Ten’ ultimately reflects the driving force behind all of Hall’s output: a one-of-a-kind gift for taking the ordinary stuff of everyday life (a conversation, a bare face, a blank page), then introducing the extraordinary to expand our sense of possibility and reshape the way we live, work, and care for each other.
Keep up with Bri Hall online.
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