Janelle Monáe

7 Black Celebrities You Didn't Know Had Hidden Talents

Dive into the surprising side of stardom with the unexpected talents of Black celebrities. Find out who's a master archer, a comedic genius, and more!


Feb. 15 2024, Published 5:22 p.m. ET

While we often associate celebrities with their on-screen charisma or musical prowess, many Black stars possess hidden talents that extend far beyond their primary fields. Like many of us 'common folk, celebrities have hidden talents, interests, and hobbies- some of which might surprise us!

Beyond the glamor of Hollywood or the stage, these individuals have cultivated skills that showcase their diverse interests and capabilities. From singing to dancing to other 'normal' hobbies they have a range of creative interests that help reveal something about them. NotSoBoringLife noted that "even the biggest names in showbiz need something to do when they’re not making blockbuster movies or topping the charts. From crocheting to curling, celebrity hobbies are as diverse as they are entertaining."

In this article, we unveil the hidden talents of seven Black celebrities that might surprise you. Are you ready to learn some interesting tidbits about your favorite Black celebrities? Then let's go!

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1. Donald Glover - Comedic Brilliance

Widely known for his acting and musical talents under the moniker Childish Gambino, Donald Glover also boasts a skillful comedic side in the world of entertainment.

Before his meteoric rise to fame, Glover honed his comedic prowess as a writer for the hit TV series 30 Rock.

His stand-up comedy showcases a sharp wit and clever observations, proving that his talents extend beyond music and acting.

2. Aisha Tyler - Proficient Gamer

Aisha Tyler, recognized for her roles in shows like Friends and Archer and as a co-host on The Talk, has a surprising hidden talent – she is a fan of snowboarding and also loves playing video games.

The uprising contrast between her talent for voice and acting and her 'normal' hobbies such as gaming often catches people by surprise.

It just goes to show there is much more to the talented Black celebrities than what is seen on the big screen.

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3. Janelle Monáe - Lover of Science Fiction

As a Grammy-nominated musician and actress, Janelle Monáe is celebrated for her avant-garde style and genre-defying music. However, few may know that Monáe is also a fan of sci-fi books and movies.

This interest is easy to spot when one looks at the lyrics and art of some of her albums as an article in Wired notes, indicating touches of sci-fi inspiration in her works.

The combination of interests is refreshing and helps bring new life to the works of Monae as she continues to wow her audience.

4. Idris Elba - Kickboxing Enthusiast

Idris Elba's commanding presence on-screen is well-established, but many may not know that he is a dedicated kickboxer.

Elba, who took up kickboxing as a form of fitness training, documented his journey in the television series Idris Elba: Fighter.

This hidden talent showcases Elba's commitment to pushing his physical and mental boundaries beyond the confines of his acting career.

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5. Taraji P. Henson - Health Minded Powerhouse

Renowned for her powerhouse performances in films and TV shows like Empire, Taraji P. Henson possesses a talent that promotes physical and mental well-being.

Henson is committed to health and wellness and has taken the initiative to help spread the message of healthy living to Black women everywhere.

With outreach and community work she is making an impact on and off the film set for many in the Black community.

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6. Common - Poetic Wordsmith

Common, the Grammy-winning rapper and actor, is not only a master of rhythm and rhyme but also a gifted poet.

His talents extend beyond the music industry into literature, where he has published a memoir and a collection of poetry titled "One Day It'll All Make Sense."

Common's ability to articulate profound thoughts through verse showcases a hidden talent that adds depth to his artistic repertoire.

7. Zoe Saldana - Ballet Dancer

Zoe Saldana, recognized for her roles in blockbuster franchises like Avatar and Guardians of the Galaxy, has a background in ballet that may surprise many.

Trained as a ballet dancer since childhood, Saldana studied at the ECOS Espacio de Danza Academy in the Dominican Republic.

Her disciplined approach to ballet has likely contributed to the grace and poise she brings to her roles on the big screen.

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Unveiling Hobbies of Popular Black Celebrities

The hidden talents of these Black celebrities reveal the depth and diversity beyond their public personas. From Donald Glover's comedic flair to Aisha Tyler's unique gaming skills, these individuals showcase a range of abilities that contribute to their multifaceted identities. It is far too easy at times to forget that actors and celebrities are people just like us. They have hobbies, special interests, and talents that might seem surprising. That is what makes them so interesting!

As we continue celebrating their achievements in the entertainment industry, we must recognize and appreciate the richness of their hidden talents that extend far beyond the spotlight.

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