*Taylour Paige stars as Ahsha Hayes on the hit VH1 drama series “Hit the Floor,” returning for its third season January 18th. Taylor was a Lakers girl (and finishing up college) when she landed the lead role as a naive but ambitious young woman who joins the dance team for the fictional NBA team Los Angeles Devils.
EUR/Electronic Urban Report chatted with Taylour about her character’s growth over the three seasons, which has now seen her get fired from the dance team and return to her college boyfriend (and Devils Assistant Coach) German, who viewers learned last season is a murderer! She also shared with us her empowering New Year’s resolutions, which actor she would most like to share an onscreen romance with, and how she hopes her future work helps open doors for the next generation of black actresses “because there are stories that need to be told,” she said.
During Season 1 you talked about how naive Ahsha was and her optimism. What has been most rewarding for you about Asha’s growth over the seasons?
Taylour: It’s fun because, as an actress, I’m growing as a human being as I’m playing this person. I’ve gone through a lot of life experiences simultaneously as Ahsha has. I take these heartfelt experiences and things that push me to grow to be the best Taylour, and then I bring this to Asha. It’s fun to play someone that went from being this naive, quiet, soft-spoken, hungry, cute girl – to this girl who is standing on her own two feet and taking responsibility for where she’s messed up. I get to play someone who is actually going to be more confident and assertive and just being a concrete example of how far we can all go as young women.
What type of responses do you receive from female fans about how your character’s choices have personally helped them through tough situations?
Taylour: The most often I get to interact with people that watch the show is at the airport. It seems to happen all the time. First it was like, ‘When is it coming back?,’ and for a while we didn’t know that, so we would just get into that conversation. Then it would be like, ‘Girl, why you go back to him? You gonna date a killer?’ Then it would be like, ‘You inspired me to want to keep dancing. You inspired me to be who I am.’ I haven’t gotten a lot of feedback about, ‘Oh, you helped me in this way.’ But on social media, people are like, ‘Thank you for your positive posts,’ or ‘It’s fun to see you grow and your character. I feel like I’m growing with you.’
How has “Hit The Floor,” and the rewards that come with it, helped influence the types of characters you would like to explore in the future?
Taylour: I like being able to play women that are growing or aren’t easy to love. Maybe they are really likable but they’re annoying because they’re not tapping into who they’re suppose to be. You’re watching them and you’re like, ‘Oh, why does she keep making this decision?’
Any New Year’s resolutions?
Taylour: I’m trying to be more organized, put together and be more kind to myself. I’m really hard on myself and really just self-critical and always striving for this perfection which doesn’t exist. I’m actually going to cut myself some slack this year. I promised myself to honor me. I’m going to check in with me more and loving me first this year. I think a lot of us were raised to feel we we’re put on this Earth to suffer, and it’s like, you did not come (here) to suffer! It’s almost like you feel guilty for honoring yourself. I feel like you are doing better for the world if you’re honoring you because everything is getting the authentic you.
Who would be your ideal male co-star in a big screen romantic comedy?
Taylour: Well, since it can’t be my boyfriend cause he’s not an actor, I would like to work with Michael B. Jordan cause he’s a hottie and I think he’s really talented, and he’s on his way to being a household name. I love his work.
“Hit The Floor” Season 3 returns Monday, January 18 at 9/8c on VH1, and check out the one-hour special airing tonight, January 11, at 9/8c. Peep the extended preview here.
You can also get caught up on episodes here.