25 years ago, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air premiered on NBC. In honor of this milestone, we asked Tatyana Ali, who played adorable Ashley Banks, to reflect about her experiences on the show.

“In West Philadelphia, born and raised, on a playground is where I spent…”

If I had a penny for every time someone stops me to sing that theme song, I could give my residuals away to charity. And it’s always with a special sparkle in the eye — like it’s the cleverest way to say “hi” to me. It makes me giggle

We went all out for the audience, so it’s kind of cool that people feel comfortable enough to go all out for us — even if it’s at the gas station

I grew up on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. If someone’s singing me the theme song, they probably grew up on it too. There were episodes where Ashley’s adolescent milestones were also my own, even my first kiss. Those are the ones I remember best. Read more…

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Growing up on ‘Fresh Prince’: Tatyana Ali looks back on first kisses and feathered bangs