by Lauryn Bray
On Oct. 24 and 25, TraeAnna Holiday of Converge Media hosted a two-day live broadcast of her TV show and podcast, The Day With Trae, at the Paramount Theatre. For her first broadcast, Holiday invited Jack McLarnan of Seattle Theatre Group (STG), The Drive Project Podcast’s Jay Martin Jr., and musical duo Black Stax. The next day Holiday spoke with Converge Media founder Omari Salisbury, Rex Kinney of STG, Proof N The Play of Converge’s The Truth With Proof, and Africatown President and CEO K. Wyking Garrett to engage in conversation about the phenomenal work they are doing in their respective communities.
Converge Media, a Black production company focused towards telling stories that inspire and uplift the Black community through accurate representation, was founded in 2017 by President and CEO Omari Salisbury. Five years after its conception, the production company gained Academy Award recognition when Converge received the Governor’s Award during the 2022 National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) Northwest Emmy Awards.
Holiday is the former cohost of the Morning Update Show, a daily broadcast which previously aired Monday through Friday at 11 a.m. on Converge. Alongside Omari Salisbury, Holiday brought listeners consistent coverage and commentary on issues concerning the Black community. With the conclusion of the Morning Update Show in June, TraeAnna Holiday’s The Day With Trae has stepped in to give listeners something to look forward to on weekday mornings.
Holiday’s new show is not something entirely different, as she strives to always make content that inspires her Black listeners to create the change they wish to see. However, instead of conversing with a singular cohost every morning, Holiday introduces her listeners to a variety of guests who are committed to inspiring and uplifting their communities in unique ways.
“There’s this thorough line of ‘How can I bring someone on The Day With Trae [who] is doing something phenomenal in community that can be an inspiration to others?’ Because at the end of every show, I want to tell people to see themselves as part of the solution,” explained Holiday in an interview with the Emerald.
“I see myself as a conduit for these stories and for these other amazing people. But the show, even though it’s called The Day With Trae — it isn’t about Trae,” said Holiday. “It is about all of the people who come to spend time with me on that couch in my living room set. It is about all of the years of struggle or successes or challenges that they have faced to get them there. So I love to take myself out of it.”
Holiday’s need to showcase the work of people making a difference in their communities comes from watching her mother as a child. Holiday’s mother, Tracie Holiday Robinson, worked at T.T. Minor Elementary School and then Madrona Elementary as a family support worker for years. For as long as Holiday can remember, her mother has worked with students in grades K–8. “I witnessed her do so many different amazing things out in community: being a great resource, bringing resources into the school, making sure families had what they needed beyond the scope of her job. She saw it all as her job. There’s so many young people outside of my family that have so much love for my mom because of that.”
From organizers to musicians to artists, when it comes to showcasing Black talent and excellence, Converge Media is certainly the place to do it. Just recently, Converge has expanded from video production to documentary filmmaking.
“We just produced Finding Go, which was an amazing story of an artist that was born in the South and grew his artistry in Chicago,” said Holiday. Finding Go: The Legacy of Adé Hogue premiered Sept. 1 at the convocation event for the UNC Charlotte College of Arts and Architecture. The film tells the story of the late designer Broderick Adé Hogue. “He was killed in a bicycle accident, and to just tell the story of him and his work and his family and how they saw him, how they knew him … it was such a beautiful story. We’ve gotten so much amazing feedback from that.”
Converge also has an array of regular weekly programming viewers can look forward to. In addition to The Day With Trae weekdays at 11 a.m., listeners can also tune into The Truth With Proof every Tuesday at 8:30 p.m., Seattle News, Views, and Brews every Wednesday at 7 p.m., Weird at Night every Saturday at 10 p.m., and many other programs listed on the Converge Media website. New viewers and listeners can also choose from hundreds of previously aired episodes from over a dozen shows.
“Rewards come when you put a full amount of dedication into your craft,” said Holiday when asked what advice she has for creatives looking to replicate her success, “I think the craft of [creatives] sometimes goes out the window. Because people think if they have enough following, or if one of their videos goes viral, everyone is going to know them. But, actually no … If any creative wants to have longevity in this, they have to be dedicated to their craft.”
The Paramount Theatre Oct. 24 and 25 live broadcasts of The Day With Trae and Rewind with Besa can be watched from the Converge Media Facebook page, located under the “Live” tab, or on the Converge Media Youtube page.
Lauryn Bray is a writer and reporter for the South Seattle Emerald. She has a degree in English with a concentration in creative writing from CUNY Hunter College. She is from Sacramento, California, and has been living in King County since June 2022.
📸 Featured Image: Trae Holiday in front of the Paramount Theatre before her show on Oct. 25. (Photo: Jordan Somers)
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