One Jonesville Elementary/Middle School student is taking necessary steps toward fulfilling her dream.
Jamia Hames turns 12 years old on Apr. 15, and she is already on her way to becoming a star.
“She has been saying since she was three she was going to be famous,” said Jamia’s mom, Letitia Hames.
As a toddler, Jamia began to imitate her favorite movie scenes, and since that time, she has wanted to become an actor.
At age seven, she also became interested in singing.
After the passing of her cousin — Marisha Jeter — Jamia was inspired to sing, just as her cousin had done.
“One night I had a dream about her, and she told me I should start singing,” Jamia said.
Jamia’s dream led her to sing at her church — Bethel Baptist Church in Kelton. In addition to vocalist, Jamia is also a church usher, junior missionary and member of the praise team. She is also active at school as she, of course, participates in school plays, as well as the step team, orchestra, chorus and academic challenge team. This school year also marks her fifth consecutive year of perfect attendance.
Jamia also enjoys using her imagination through writing, as she keeps a journal and has had her work published in the Union County Schools’ District Anthology in previous years.
“She is a pretty amazing kid,” Letitia said.
Jamia also stays busy outside of school by taking dance classes at Margarette Bell Dance Studio in Spartanburg and acting classes through the Spartanburg Little Theatre. In her own words, Jamia said she believes she has a natural acting ability.
“When I do it, it feels like I’m supposed to, not like I’m trying to make myself do it,” she said.
She said her favorite role so far has been that of Rosa Parks in a Black History Month play at her church.
“She is my hero,” Jamia said. “She stood up for what she believed in.”
“Actually, she sat down for what she believed in,” Letitia smiled.
With performing always on the brain, when Jamia heard a call on the radio for a talent showcase in Greenville last month, she knew she wanted to go. She went for an audition among 400 other performers and was one of 38 performers to receive a callback to participate in the showcase, which included coaching and rehearsals before the event.
On March 24, she performed at the Children’s Hospital in Greenville, and in the showcase on March 25.
Jamia’s participation in the showcase included acting, singing and public speaking. She opened the show by singing “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele, who happens to be Jamia’s favorite artist. Then, she acted out a commercial for nail polish, which was followed by a duet scene including Jamia and a fellow performer. Finally, Jamia delivered a speech titled “The Golden Performer,” which discusses focus, confidence and dedication.
Out of the 38 performers in the showcase, Jamia was named “Best Performer.” Her performances landed her an invite to participate in a larger showcase in July — the iPop! showcase in Los Angeles.
At iPop! (International Presentation of Performers), children, teenagers and young adults audition in front of agents in specific categories such as head shots, commercial and television print, fashion print and runway, television, singing, dancing, monologue, scene and swimsuit.
iPOP! boasts that it has already introduced over ten thousand talented children, teenagers and young adults to the most respected agents, managers, producers and casting agents since it began in 2005. Billed as a unique training program, iPOP! provides participants hours of one-on-one training with top professionals in all mediums of entertainment. iPOP!’s goal is to prepare aspiring performers to meet perspective agents, managers and casting directors.
Jamia is excited about her upcoming trip to California.
“I’m going to need some sunglasses,” she said.
Her dreams are big.
“I want to be at the Grammys!” she said.
Her family is doing everything they can to get her there before their payment deadline on May 25. They will hold various fundraisers to raise money for her trip.
There is also an account set up at Arthur State Bank under “Jamia’s Dream” for those who would like to donate, and for anyone interested in their business sponsoring her performance, sponsorship forms are available at Wick’s Locksmith, located at 203 E. Main St., Union.