*What is “The Come Up”?
“The Come Up” follows 6 young creatives in iconic downtown New York as they pursue love, art and friendship on their own terms. It’s a “hive of creativity,” says one of the cast members, and its teeming with young adults just trying to establish their careers and lives among groups of equally creative folks.
They are all based in “downtown New York” and all are pursing a form of creativity from acting and designing to stand up and photography. Some have made their marks already and some are just starting out. This cast of Gen Z adults are going to change the world.
Let’s meet the cast below.
At 24, Taofeek Abijako is the youngest designer to have ever shown at New York Fashion Week (NYFW) with his fashion line, Head of State. His last collection, “Homecoming,” received critical acclaim and has been picked up by SSENSE for luxury retail sales. Abijako is preparing for his NYFW 2022 collection, a continuation of his menswear and womenswear designs. In April, he was selected as a recipient of the prestigious CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund. In May, he was invited to dress two celebrities, Danai Gurira and Evan Mock, at the renowned Met Gala and made a splash with his stunning red carpet designs.
Brazilian-born Fernando Casablancas is on the cusp of becoming the modeling world’s next international star. In less than one year of his emergence on the modeling scene, he appeared in campaigns for top brands Balmain, Charlotte Tilbury, Wales Bonner and Chrome Hearts. During the fashion week season of fall 2021, Casablancas took to the catwalk for Balmain and Bottega Veneta and, most recently, he walked for cutting-edge designer Ludovic de Saint Sernin.
Casablancas is breaking the mold as a non-binary talent by modeling both menswear and womenswear.
Coming from San Antonio, Texas, Ben Hard is quickly making New York his home after graduating from The University of Texas at Austin with two degrees in film and theater. A rising performer, Hard is honing his skills as an actor, comedian and dancer — the stage is where he wants to be, and New York is the place to take chances!
A Tribeca native, Claude Shwartz is a true New Yorker. She is a rising actress who has studied the practical aesthetics technique at David Mamet’s Atlantic Theater Company, the Meisner technique, and graduated from Tufts in 2020. Recently, Shwartz appeared in an off-off-broadway at the Tank in February 2022, directed by Alton Alburo. A lover of fashion, Shwartz worked as a model during New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2022, walking in the Batsheva show.
A budding entertainer on her way to becoming a multi-hyphenate in the public eye, Ebon Gore is a staple in Brooklyn nightlife as a sought-after party host and fixture of the rave circuit. She most recently threw a party for Pride 2022 and is a member of Nosferatu collective, known for their show-stopping Baroque Ball in summer 2021.
For Gore, the well-being of the Trans community is paramount. As an active and crucial organizer of queer nightlife, she has recently participated in town hall panels to discuss club safety and accountability. Beyond nightlife, Gore’s modeling career is quickly gaining momentum as she models for the likes of Milk Makeup, Parade and Ganni.
Sophia Wilson is a photography prodigy who has been behind the camera since age 13. She has shot campaigns for major brands like Vogue, Nike and Google and established publications like i-D, Vanity Fair and Nylon. Wilson shoots analog only and develops and prints all photos by hand in the color darkroom, a highly technical process that imbues her images with a signature look. Continuing to chart her own path, she deferred her senior year at NYU to focus full time on her artistic pursuits and career in true trailblazing Gen Z fashion.
“The Come Up” reminds us all that we are unique, we have dreams and passions and every generation is out to change the world on their own terms. This Docu-Reality also reminds us that it is never too late to pursue your passions in an ever changing world!
Check out our conversation with a few of the cast members below!