Story by Stereo Williams
Photographer: DeWayne Rogers
Makeup: AJ Crimson
Hair: Maisha Oliver
Stylist: Seth Brundle
LeToya Luckett has been a star for quite a while now. After rising to fame as an original member of the famed girl group Destiny’s Child in the late 1990s, then stepping out on her own as a solo singer in the mid-2000s, the beauty from Houston has spent almost half of her life in the international spotlight. As she embarks on even more new professional beginnings — she’s set to release her new film, From the Rough and is working hard on her upcoming third solo album, Until Then …, the 33-year-old star who spent much of her adolescence sharing a stage with the likes of Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland admits that it took a while for her to feel comfortable in her own skin. She had to learn to truly love herself.
“I had things about myself that I [didn’t] like,” say Luckett. “I [would always say] ‘I wish I had this, I wish I had that.’ I used to have this thing about my legs. If you look at all of the Destiny’s Child albums from when I was a part of the group, you never saw me in a skirt. I was always the one who wore the pants, because I felt like my legs were too skinny.”
Luckett has quietly developed a strong acting résumé, generating buzz with her appearances on “Single Ladies,” (which was recently canceled by VH1 and picked up by Centric); HBO’s “Treme,” and a host of other TV shows and films — the newest being the drama From the Rough (opens nationwide April 25.) The film tells the true story of the first African American woman, Catana Starks, to coach a PGA national collegiate team. Oscar-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson plays Starks in the film.
“She did this on her own, by herself without a lot to work with, and she did some amazing things with these boys,” says Luckett. “Not only in helping them to grow in their craft, but also to grow them up as young men. Taraji did an amazing job with this. She taught me a lot, I learned a lot from just watching her on set. It’s one of the first films [I’ve done.] And the story of [Stark’s] life … is just crazy. I was blessed to meet her.
“I think it’s very important, especially in our community, to celebrate the hard work of people who sacrifice themselves and their time to try and better people. And regardless of — especially with Catana — [who] was dealing with things on her own but was so selfless. She opened the doors for so many women. And as a matter of fact, one of the guys she coached ended up being Tiger Woods’ golf coach,” she adds.
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