Known for playing the role of the mother in the sitcom, ‘Everybody Hates Chris’, Tichina Rolanda Arnold was recognised for her singing abilities and acting skills from a very young age. She started her career by acting in various productions and films during her teenage years. She got her first break when she was chosen to star in a primetime soap opera, after which there was no turning back for her. A deluge of offers started coming her way and she took up comedy roles on various TV sitcoms. She became a popular face on television with her first major supporting role in the sitcom, ‘Martin’. She has also played various small roles in films and has appeared on countless TV talk shows. She has ventured into the business world after launching her line of headgears. Apart from being an actor, she is also a gifted singer and one of her songs was charted at the number 2 position in the Billboard countdown. She is also one of the founding members of the famous music band, ‘KNOW Pressure’ that performs in front of a packed audience every year. She has been nominated for several prestigious television awards and is also the recipient of some of the TV Awards.
Childhood & Early Life
Tichina Arnold was born to African-American parents in Queens, New York. From the tender age of four, she started singing at church. She played a part in the play, ‘The Me Nobody Knows’ in Brooklyn, when she was just eight.
She graduated from ‘Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts’, Amsterdam Avenue, New York.
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She acted in various productions like ‘Hard Times’ and ‘Hair’ and played small parts in television films like ‘The Brass Ring’ (1983) and ‘House of Dies Drear’ (1984).
Her first break in primetime came in 1987, when she was casted as Zena Brown in the soap opera, ‘Ryan’s Hope’, for which she won a nomination at the Daytime Emmy Awards show in 1988.
In 1992, she landed an important role as ‘Pamela James’ in the American sitcom, ‘Martin’, alongside actor/comedian, Martin Lawrence. The show ran till 1997.
In 1998, she started her own designer headgear company, ‘China Moon Rags’, which produced bandanas adorned with Swarovski crystals. Her collections have been modelled by celebrities like Janet Jackson, Christina Aguilera and Vivica Fox.
In 2000, she once again teamed up with Martin Lawrence in Raja Gosnell directed crime comedy film 'Big Momma's House'.
She was also a part of the sitcom, ‘One on One’, wherein she portrayed ‘Nicole Barnes’ in 2001.
In 2005, she played the role of a mother of three children in the sitcom, ‘Everybody Hates Chris’.
In 2008, she essayed the role of Lena Baker in ‘The Lena Baker Story’. Lena Baker was African-American woman in Georgia who was convicted in 1945 of murder by an all-white, male jury.
She appeared as Aunt Nancy in the 2010 episode premiere of Disney XD Original Series, ‘Pair of Kings’, which was also reprised by her later.
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The duet ‘Movin Up’ which was co-written and sung by her, with her high school friend Inaya Day, charted the number 2 position on the Billboard Countdown.
She has also done a voice-over role in the episode ‘Attack of the Killer Kung-Fu Wolf Bitch’ of the American animated series, ‘The Boondocks’ as Nicole/Brenda Richie.
Arnold has made guest appearances on the shows like ‘The Jamie Foxx Show’ and ‘Soul Food’.
Currently, she stars in the TV Land sitcom, ‘Happily Divorced’ as Judi Mann, who is the best friend of the main character, Fran Drescher.
Though she is known for her role in the sitcom, ‘Marvin’, it was for the UPN/CW sitcom ‘Everybody Hates Chris’, for which she was widely appreciated. She played the role of Rochelle, the mother of three children. In 2007, it was selected as one of the best 10 TV series by the ‘American Film Institute’.
Awards & Achievements
In 1996, she won the ‘Image Award’ for ‘Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series’ for the sitcom, Martin (1992).
In 2006, she was the recipient of the ‘Image Award’ for ‘Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series’ for ‘Everybody Hates Chris’.
Personal Life & Legacy
From 1992 to 1995, she was married to American heavyweight boxer, Lamon Brewster.
She has a daughter named Alijah Kai with music producer Carvin Haggins. Alijah was born on March 16, 2004
She married basketball coach, Rico Hines in Honolulu, Hawaii on August 19, 2012.
She uses the moniker/nickname ‘China Ro’, the first part of which is derived from the latter half of her first name, ’Tichina’ and the second part is derived from the first two alphabets of her middle name ‘Rolanda’.