Looking Like Sex & Love At First Sight

Oh don’t mind me, I’m just getting mentally and physically prepared for another New York summer. Watching this Sex and The City episode where Carrie is wearing the slinky, white dress for her “date” with Mr. Big. The one where Samantha let it be known that Carrie wasn’t interested in HAVING sex, she merely wanted to look like it. Lately I’ve been grooving to Lauryn Hill, and Fiona Apple, The Roots, Zhane, plus a little Janet. Drumming up wardrobe ideas for the summer. Check the images below, don’t you love how bronzed everyone looks? Fiona Apple’s ‘Criminal’ video is one of my all time favorite videos.  If only NYC weather would get consistent, the closet switcheroo I did a couple of weeks ago would make sense. Instead I’m still pulling out down coats for evening chills. I am ready for slinky dresses, layered jewelry — lots of bangles, wild hair and attitude!

This video Break You Off by The Roots is another all-time favorite. Home-girls braids are taking me BACK!

In other news, I left my favorite pair of melanieDIZON shoes on the subway. I was all up & through my phone and almost missed my stop; I jumped up off at the last possible second, FELT my load was light, turned and saw my shoes continue on their journey. Meanwhile I had just picked them up for the 4th time from the cobbler. They’d got the works: new soles, heels, tightened straps and polishing. There’s some lucky SOB in Coney Island having the time of their life in my damn shoes. But on a fro-yo run — to numb the pain I stopped into the Telco and fell in love. Sure they’re NOTHING like the shoes I lost, but aren’t they sickening!!!

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Some work, some play. My friend Matt  and I are participating in the NBC’s Comedy Playground contest. We met up at Saraghina for lunch, he took some quick flicks of me outside the restaurant. My feet look ashy, but I assure you I Shea buttered down that morning! lol

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I was NOT in the mood for pizza, so I got the grilled eggplant sandwich, I added a side of fries and Matt and I churned out our pilot episode.

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When I was a teen I watched A LOT of Katie Brown, and Rachel Ashwell’s show Shabby Chic.  I love the shabby chic aesthetic.  And I love the decor inside Saraghina. It has a very rustic appeal. It’s low-key, minimal and yet very warm. Plus its quite sexy at night, even at the communal tables. The next time you’re visiting Bed-Stuy check it out!

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Bloop!

I have my 2nd audition tomorrow for a feature film that I sent in a video for earlier in the week! I am super excited about it!!!

So I’ll be logging off now to continue preparing! Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

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Live The Moment

Last week I worked on the crime reenactment show – My Dirty Little Secret

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Myself and the unsuspecting victim, in happier times.

The show airs sometime next year. I was originally signed on to play a congregation member and when I got there the CD asked me if I’d like to take on an  additional part. I said YASSSS Jesus! It was so much fun, the cast and crew were great. All the actors talked about what else, acting, and giving tips on getting more work. But, it was a long day. I took 6 trains to get there,  3 of them were different 6 trains for various issues. It was hard to keep it cute though. The delays made me late to set, but I made it, and got FAVOR!

Last week I also finished The Essentials of Burlesque. I learned the history of Burlesque, came up with a on the fly name using ONLY a cheese and a flower – I came up with “Muenster Rose”. We also Tassel Twirled ON. THE. FIRST. DAY!

It was a lot of fun and I’m glad I did it, after the tassel twirling, wasn’t nothing to it. Our headmistress Jo even let us play with her HUGE red feather fans when she taught the Art of Fan Dancing. I felt like a showgirl.

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Get into THIS girl, and check out The School of Burlesque’s tumblr here.

Out here in these streets with friends and family last week.

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Lastly, I just can’t stop listening to Gabriel Garzon-Montano. I was on THE Spotify, which I love, and the cover art caught my eye and I started listening. I fell HARD!

Bishouné: Alma del Huila

His EP is so worth the money. It’s perfect for every part of the day, and this video for ‘Keep On Running’…WOW! It really, really puts the lyrics into perspective. Speaking of lyrics, I searched for a couple songs and came up empty handed, I am sooo pressed (eager) to connect with them. Cause I know they’re all ovah (fantastic)! OMG, and I just checked his website and he’s coming to NYC 3 times starting this week! JESUS. IS. REAL! Now I really NEEDS these lyrics, so its authentic when I’m sanging in the crowd, waving my lighter and what not. Please check out the video and let me know what you think. I am really interested in hearing from you.

 

 

Editorials I Love – Elle, November 2012

It’s consistently been over 60 degrees in New York and with this long holiday weekend, I decided to switch out the drag (wardrobe)!!! Plus my mother sent me a huge box of clothes, shoes and other accessories and I’m excited to revamp my look for Spring. I actually love when the Seasons change, any season. I love going through my old clothes and seeing what stays, what goes, what has lasted year after year and deciding what new to add to my wardrobe. In any event, I was at the laundro, flipping through an old issue of Elle magazine and fell and in love with this spread. Leather vest, jewel tones, bold patterns, decadent jewelry and fringe…its everything a girl needs, Enjoy!

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Its All About: Studio Sessions

“Can you come to Harlem today? I want to show you something special.” @sirjacobs

I donned my best superhero costume, a vintage terry jumpsuit I got at a secondhand shop in Instanbul and went on my merry way!

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That camel toe though…

It’s not often that you get an opportunity to look through the lives of legendary, iconic performers. I had no idea what Randal was setting me up for, however if you know Randal, then you know he’ll take you on a cultural journey. From Randal hosting brunch parties that turn into voguing parties in pre-war buildings that overlook the Hudson river, to him curating art/fashion exhibitions in Detroit museums Randal really does it all. He’s got a great sense of style, and an eye for decorating with elegance and ease. He’s a true class act! Check out Randal  here in these beautiful shots by Weston Wells.

Imagine my surprise and shock when I got to Harlem and he tells me who’s space it was, and his newest project regarding it all! Unfortunately where we were, must remain a secret, but know that the pictures below do not do justice to the archival heaven of the space we occupied. While Randal and I caught up on his recent European excursion, I soaked in all the culture that was at my fingertips. Later we got a surprise drop-in by way of Olu from Streetlevelculture  who was also in need of some inspiration.

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Reference Magazines

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Randal and Olu

Randal and Olu

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Olu and Jesus...reading

Olu and Jesus…reading

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Randal…in work mode.

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Fashion Stylist Lonnie McQuarters

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Husband and wife, and living legends in the world of American Dance

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Black Mammy & Aunt Jemima Cookie Jars

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There was so much to see, including all the costumes from The Wiz, yes, THE Wiz. And when Randal told me this was only 1 of 3 other spaces filled with relics I almost died.

Afterwards we headed to a little sushi spot in the neighborhood and then I made my way back to Brooklyn, while they went to a Housing Works $20 all you can stuff sale.

And, here’s message from Olu…

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Its All About: Sisterhood

My sister and I live together, yet we don’t get to spend much time together. She’s a dancer, and I, an actress; so between training, work, and separate social lives our time together is limited.  In any event, we schedule time to spend together and this was one of those weekends. We walked from our place in Bedford-Stuyvesant to downtown Brooklyn, around the Ft. Greene area and this is what we saw and did along the way…

Our first stop was to Bedford Galleries for some decorating inspiration. A few years ago my mother and I stopped inside and I picked up a pair of over-sized, mustard colored, velvet lampshades for $20. Billz (my sister) and I are in the mood to redecorate our place, and we saw so much stuff. Bedford Galleries is always filled with crystal bowls, glassware and dish sets, chandeliers, lamps and great furniture. I just love vintage and thrift stores. They’re filled with one of a kind items and tons of inspiration. Plus,  you can haggle. And over the years I’ve gotten pretty good at it. Everything’s negotiable!

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Wouldn’t these be great on your patio, deck, hell…balcony!

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The detail on these tables …

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All of the lights

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Have you gotten your summer flask? BBQ’s and summer concerts are already starting.

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We kept trekking and ran into a flea market on Fulton St. This older gent was selling some cute sunglasses…Billz modeling a pair.

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Then I fell in love with a  wall of art…

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Then a wall of art fell into us…

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Handwritten biblical scriptures – click to enlarge

We saw this beautiful fence and had to get a closer look.

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And when we finally found food…

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pork tenderloin with fried yucca, and pineapple/black bean salsa

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Icelandic cod with pearl onions and fingerling potatoes

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We ate ALL of it. Thanks

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My sister and I had such a great day!

 

Inside The Actors Studio, Where are the black legends?

Dave Chappelle on Inside the Actors Studio – Season 12

After watching a riveting performance by James Earl Jones on an episode of Law and Order SVU, I wondered, had James Earl Jones ever been on Inside the Actors Studio. Had James Earl Jones ever sat on the coveted couch? As I navigate my acting career, watching Inside the Actors Studio is a MUST! A couple of years ago I would spend hours watching available episodes on YouTube, and making sure to catch the current seasons on Bravo. You know hearing the journey of some of my favorite actors keeps me inspired, humble, and hungry for my “Big Break”. Dreaming of someday having a similar, intimate conversation with host James Lipton; hopefully inspiring someone else to reach for the stars.

Soooo I googled.

SURPRISE!!! James Earl Jones has NOT been on Inside the Actors Studio. How the hell does that happen? The voice of Mufasa AND Darth Vader has never been on this show. Seriously, James Earl Jones career spans over 50 years and includes numerous awards including an Honorary Oscar. Of course discovering this made me frustrated, so I looked through all the seasons of Inside the Actors Studio and saw they’ve been missing the mark on educating generations of aspiring actors and film-makers since 1994.

I came up with my own list of actors and film-makers of color that I feel are more than deserving of time on that stage.

For instance:

  1. Diahann Carroll
  2. Ruby Dee
  3. James Earl Jones 
  4. Cicely Tyson
  5. Billy Dee Williams
  6. Phylicia Rashād
  7. Debbie Allen
  8. Stan Lathan
  9. Della Reese
  10. Melvin Van Peebles
  11. Angela Bassett
  12. Jefferey Wright
  13. Damon Wayans
  14. Honorable mention the late: Sherman Hemsley and Richard Pryor
  15. The casts of Good Times, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Martin, A Different World, In Living Color

Honestly, this could be the list that never ends. But the only way to really start moving Hollywood forward would be to start at the root – education.

Don’t get me wrong, Inside the Actors Studio has had legendary African-American entertainers on the show. Such as Eddie Murphy who spoke candidly about his relationship and the work of both Redd Foxx and Richard Pryor. Of course other black folk have been on the show: Spike Lee, Denzel Washington, Samuel L. Jackson, Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, Halle Berry, and hell – even Jennifer Lopez’s been on the show twice. But it wasn’t until Season 4 in 1998 that any African Americans showed up at all. Don’t believe me, here’s a list of guest. Lets not even discuss the sad amount, or lack thereof of African-American female actors that have been featured.

I don’t know, perhaps Inside the Actors Studio just doesn’t value the experience, education, and careers of the above artists. Maybe they just don’t feel their contribution to cinema and theatre is relevant to their students — as the show is taped and apart of the curriculum at Pace University, not to mention the vast Bravo TV audience available to them. Lord knows all the colored folk watching shows over there, myself included. Or just maybe those listed above are just not requested by the students, probably because they aren’t being exposed to their work. #insertsideeye

But shucks… what the hell do I know? I don’t know what the curriculum is, nor do I know for sure what people want to watch. I’m just an actress with a blog. Dreaming of some day sitting on that stage with ole Jimmy my damn self. Hopefully this blog doesn’t ruin my chances. However, should I make it to that stage, please have a plate of cookies waiting for me like the ones you gave Barbara Streisand when she inquired of food for her 2 hour special, because as you know…