About Wambui Bahati

wambui Christmas 2021

Wambui ———— Pronounced: WHAM BOO EE 

Spirited Survivor

This spirited survivor rose to new heights when everyone around her felt her life as a productive citizen was over. Her doctors told her she would spend the rest of her life in and out of mental institutions.

When it seemed like her life couldn't get any worse, she only had two options: live or die. Wambui Bahati chose to live.

For over 30 years, she researched, studied, and explored various "quality of life" altering strategies. This inspiring woman not only 'got up' when everyone thought she was 'out for the count' but rose to new heights and continues to soar.

It has been a long and winding journey. Her path finally led her to Lord Jesus Christ.

Today, she is a born-again Christian and knows that it is through God's grace and mercy that she is still standing.

Giving Inspiration Through Performing Arts

Don't let her youthful looks and boundless energy fool you! This captivating woman presents with over fifty years of professional theater and public speaking experience, spanning many venues, audiences, and cities throughout the United States, Canada, and Australia.

Since she was a child, Wambui Bahati has enjoyed entertaining others. She is a survivor of mental illness and domestic abuse. She has combined life lessons and wisdom gained through experiencing these adversities with her gifts as a performing artist. Wambui has inspired and motivated thousands of people in powerful and unique ways.

Wambui Bahati is her legal name taken on during what she refers to as a "re-invention" of herself. In Swahili, Wambui means singer of songs. Bahati means my fortune is good. At birth, she was named after her father. Her birth name and her early professional theater name was John-Ann Washington.

She studied theater at New York University School of the Arts (now the Tisch School of the Arts) and made her professional debut in Godspell at Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C. She has since performed in numerous Broadway shows and tours.

Wambui's regional and touring credits include starring roles in: 

  • Two Gentlemen of Verona  (Joseph Papp's rock version)
  • Jesus Christ Superstar
  • The Magic Show 
  • Little Ham 
  • Nunsense
  • Godspell
  •  Don't Bother Me; I Can't Cope
  • Gone With the Wind –the musical 
  • The Wiz 
  • Crowns

Wambui also writes and produces her own shows, including the one-woman musical Balancing Act, which deals with mental illness, and the play I Am Domestic Violence. Both have received international acclaim for their unique approach to addressing critical issues.

Some of her awards include:

  • Woman of Achievement Award from the Greensboro Commission on the Status of Women
  • A Belle Ringer Image Award from Bennett College
  • Lionel Aldridge Award (a national honor recognizing individuals who provide extraordinary service and courage on behalf of people with mental illnesses)
  • National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, North Carolina's President's Award
  • A proclamation from the mayor of the city of Toledo, Ohio

Additionally, Wambui can create customized shows and presentations based on specific themes or topics. She also shares her love of crafting through tutorial videos for a Netherlands-based company and on her YouTube channel, Wambui Made It. She is a native of Greensboro, North Carolina and is the proud mother of two adult daughters and granddaughters.

Books that she has written include autobiographical,
You Don't Know Crazy - My Life Before, During, After, Above, and Beyond Mental Illness