TALENT IN THE INDUSTRY ISSUE YUKI LIZ PRIMO G TOM MAC QUIMERA MUSIC DROP TANK
Patrick McCloskey PUNK IS NOT DEAD PHIL SPECTOR TANYA FRANKS US, FROM OUTSIDE MARISSA PONTECORVO KATRINA LENK MEM FERDA SUSAN KORWIN HENRY HEREFORD Elias Plagnios
ASHLEY ALEXISS GIVES BACK & GETS PERSONAL
AN INSIDE LOOK INTO THE PERSONALITIES IN THE INDUSTRY FASHION PICTORIALS FILM, THEATRE
STAFF EDITOR IN CHIEF Robert Guida ARTISTIC DIRECTOR Giselle Campos CONTRIBUTING EDITOR A Brooks MANAGING EDITOR A. Bronwyn Sheehan TALENT SCOUT Fred Coscia MARKETING DIRECTOR Stacey Jones THEATRE EDITOR Michael Martinez STAFF PHOTOGRAPHERS Michael Dydasco Joaquin Lares Lewis Sarofsky ENTERTAINMENT WRITER Nick Christophers CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Heather Archambault Lauren Brown Sandra Castillo Kerri Edelman Elisa Giordano Barbara Jeanne Sage Kristien Tracey Paleo Harlem Fides Lewis Sarofsky Rachel Sokol Mirella Caravella
business inquiries CONTACT email@example.com
Cover Photo: Carl Martucci
WINGS OF ANGELS- QUIMERA MUSIC… THE WORLD IS WAITING BY SANDRA CASTILLO PG 6 LIVING IN A STATE OF AMAZING - MEET LIZ PRIMO BY GISELLE CAMPOS PG 8 MARISSA PONTECORVO- MORE THAN FIFTEEN MINUTES OF FAME BY ROBERT GUIDA PG 11 POP PUNK IS NOT DEAD BY LAUREN BROWN PG 12 G TOM MAC UNTAME A. BRONWYN SHEEHAN PG 13
US, FROM OUTSIDE BY HEATHER ARCHAMBAULT PG 14 DROPPING THE BOMB ON THE MUSIC INDUSTRY DROPTANK - BY NICK CHRISTOPHERS PG 16 SEASONS OF LIFE:THE ART OF DOROTHY KRAKAUER COURTESY OF TALENT IN MOTION PG 17 MEET YUKI A REALLY GREAT ARTIST PG 18 PAUL LOPA DESIGNER PG 20 HOT SLOTS & TOYS PG 22 WELCOME TO THE WORLD OF PERSONALITIES IN THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY BY KERRI EDELMAN PG 24 AN INTERVIEW WITH SUSAN KORWIN - LIFE AND STYLE CONSULTANT BY HARLEM FIDES PG 27 NO NEED TO WAIT FOR LOVE BY BARBARA JEANNE PG 28
TABLE OF CONTENTS SECRETS FROM THE CASTLE PART 1 BY GISELLE CAMPOS PG 29 ART HAS NO BOUNDARIES BY MIRELLA CARAVELLA PG 39 BALANCE IN SIN BY PATRICK MCCLOSKEY PG 40 ON THE COVER: RAISING HER VOICE: LEANDRA RAMM (FEATURE BY RACHEL SOKOL) PG 47 ASLEY ALEXISS BY GISELLE CAMPOS PG 52 FEATURED MODEL AND DESIGNERS SARAH CLAYTON AND NUBIA PG 52 WHAT YOUR PROBLEM? BY TRACEY PALEO PG 55 INTERVIEW WITH ACTRESS KATRINA LENK FROM SPIDER-MAN TURN OFF THE DARK BY MICHAEL MARTINEZ PG 56 TANYA FRANKS PG 58 SAN DIEGO JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL PRESENTS: THE AGONY AND THE ECSTASY OF PHIL SPECTOR BY SNADRA CASTILLO PG 60 DEER CROSSING BY A. BRONWYN SHEEHAN PG 61 MEET MEM FERDA BY A. BRONWYN SHEEHAN PG 62 YOUNG GREEK - AN AMERICAN DREAM COME TRUE BY NICK CHRISTOPHERS PG 64 HENRY HEREFORD’S LIFETIME BY A. BRONWYN SHEEHAN PG 65 FEATURED ACTOR - EFRAIEM HANNA PG 66
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REALLY GREAT MUSIC
WINGS OF ANGELS:
QUIMERA MUSIC… THE WORLD IS WAITING BY SANDRA CASTILLO
he room is dark, save for the illumination radiating from the center of the stage. In the middle of the white light is a beautiful woman - her intense alto arrests the audience, which seems completely spellbound by her captivating aura. The music is the kind one might hear outside the walls of a very large fortress, under a full moon at midnight. As the tempo swells to new heights, the performer feels her heart leap in exaltation. It is here that she loses herself in the rhapsody of the moment, a place where time and space no longer exist. In its ascension, the zenith of her spirit has now transcended its temporary state to metamorphose into something else. As the music’s crescendo crashes into its climatic refrain, the raven-haired siren has become another worldly being.
For New York recording artist Quimera Music, performing live is akin to a transcendental dance, where the soul and universe become one. She explained this fascinating odyssey in splendid detail. “I MUST SAY, BEING A NEW ARTIST, I’M RGM © 6
STILL LEARNING TO ABSORB WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I’M ON STAGE. FOR ME, THERE IS A FEELING OF GOING ON A JOURNEY TO A FARAWAY LAND. WHEN MY OVERTURE PLAYS, MY HEART BEGINS TO BEAT FASTER AND A SENSE OF LOSING MY HUMAN FORM BEGINS TO SETTLE. IT FEELS AS IF I AM TRANSFORMING INTO A MYTHOLOGICAL CREATURE THAT CAME TO THIS WORLD WITH THE PURPOSE TO SING AND ONLY SING. BY THE TIME THE OVERTURE IS COMING TO AN END, I AM NO LONGER MY EVERYDAY SELF. I’M SOMEONE ELSE AND SOMEWHERE ELSE THAT I HAVE YET TO KNOW WHAT TO CALL.” Quimera… the hard-to-forget sobriquet is a derivative of the Latin word, chimera. According to her, it means “a mythological creature of different animals. My name Quimera means, to me, being part human, and part animal and part spirit.” Since the 2009 release of her debut album,
Love and Madness, Quimera has certainly seen her life come full circle. Fate would seemingly chart the course for the ambitious one who would ultimately cross paths with those who encouraged her to follow her own “starlight.” When asked what inspired her to make music, Quimera replied, “I feel there are things that can’t be expressed in any other way but with music. I had a vision in my mind of the kind of music that I wanted to hear, so I started working toward making it. I remember being at Java Joe’s in San Diego, California, listening to Jewel sing before she made it big. She inspired me so much.” In the fall of 1998, Quimera left California for New York City and never looked back. Music had always loomed large on the horizon for Quimera; however, it wasn’t until her adoptive father’s death that she decided to pursue those musical aspirations simmering just beneath the surface of her soul.
“I had been singing my entire life, for myself only, but I decided to finally do it professionally in ’07, after the loss of my dad. I began working on defining my style, voice, training, fitness, just devoting myself to my craft and investing every penny I had to make it happen. Then right in the middle of working on Love and Madness, in early 2009, I had to stop when my mother suddenly became ill. It was hard for me to believe this could
really be happening when I was informed that she had contracted stomach cancer and that it had metastasized. We tried everything, but there was very little we could do to save her,” said Quimera. Even from the darkest depths of her sorrow, the singer was able to see life and death beyond the pale. Quimera had now come to terms with her personal losses on a more pragmatic level.
“I THINK THAT WHEN WE LOSE LOVED ONES, WE GAIN A CERTAIN, NEW PERSPECTIVE ON LIFE, INCLUDING A (RENEWED) PERSPECTIVE ON LIFE’S GREATEST COMMODITY… OUR TIME ON EARTH,” SHE MUSED.
On Love and Madness, Quimera’s personal storms and spiritual revelations charge through shadowy, gilded halls as a kind of cinematic tour-de-force. The album, described as “symphonic gothic” (a combination of classical, baroque and gothic music), is as enigmatic and mysterious as the woman herself. On the project, she employed the assistance of three producers, including her husband, Patrick Rundbladh, who was responsible for most of the record’s soaring arrangements.
“The function of music is to release us from the ordinary” -Quimera Music
the courageous members of the police, fire and emergency departments in New York.. The experience for me, and I suspect for many New Yorkers, was as if I had become a zombie for a while. Everything was a constant shock and disbelief at the evil that is possible within some human beings. The things I saw… let me just say that it has taken me a while to consciously forget the images and sounds and focus on something more positive, which is life,” she said.
The complex nature of Quimera’s music, which channels its way through multiple layers of vocals, background choirs and massive, sonic assaults, is the secret weapon that truly distinguishes the artist from many of today’s performers. The singer described how she creates, from the beginning to the end, the aural moodscapes of her celestial dreams.
Because this unfathomable nightmare seemingly erupted from out of nowhere, 9/11 serves as an important reminder that life is much too precious to squander, even for one second. For Quimera, this day of infamy reinstated a personal conviction of hers that “this is not a dress rehearsal and that waiting for tomorrow to become who we came to this world to be should never be an option.”
“Patrick and I always start with a story. We discuss vividly what the song is going to be about. Then we ask ourselves - What is the setting? What is happening that is so important that it must be said with music? From there, with a bit of humming, an informed singing, some piano key strokes, Patrick begins to place the music and arrangements together. Once the music is finished, I begin writing the lyrics and diving into the planning of my vocal choirs and back-up arrangements. I record my own choirs and back-up singing, so all has to be planned very carefully.”
She has definitely taken this wisdom to heart since uniting her passion for music with the soul’s wayward sojourns. In 2009, Quimera mesmerized New York audiences at Duvet, the same venue that was featured in “Sex and the City,” with her stunning stage performance. She has also composed and recorded a number of songs for the big screen, including “Pray” for Return to Babylon (starring Maria Conchita Alonso and Jennifer Tilly) and “Somewhere In Between” for the independent film with the same title.
Long before Quimera ever pursued a career in music, she found herself deeply entrenched in the ground swell of a much blacker undercurrent. On Sept. 11, 2001, an insurmountable tragedy befell New York City and the world. After that horrible day, Quimera rolled up her sleeves and put her generous, caring heart to the task of helping out her neighbors across the way. During 2001, she was living in New Jersey and working in Manhattan.
On Jan. 2, 2010, Quimera sang the National Anthem before a crowd of more than 18,000 at the Nassau Coliseum for a hockey match between the New York Islanders and Atlantic Thrashers. The once-in-a-lifetime experience was “both intimidating and fascinating and a little addicting, too!” This was quite the career milestone for the singer since making the transition from performing in smaller, more intimate settings to entertaining thousands before a packed stadium.
“My help was little compared to the work of
QUIMERAMUSIC.COM FACEBOOK.COM/PAGES/QUIMERA-MUSIC/215456050319 YOUTUBE.COM QUIMERAMUSICVIDEOS REVERBNATION.COM/QUIMERAMUSIC MYSPACE.COM/QUIMERAMUSIC
During the summer of 2010, Quimera was back at Lofish Studios in New York City to arrange and record tracks for More Than Human (Remastered). Now two years later, Quimera Music has eclipsed her own expectations with the release of Immortal, her third album. A majestic, orchestral masterpiece encompassing love, triumph, loss and self-rumination, Immortal stands to inherit that honored position amongst its kind as one of the finest recordings to ever grace the universe.
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LIVING IN A STATE OF AMAZIN G
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rom her breath taking style, to her club smashing tracks, Liz Primo is one of the hottest artists to merge into the scene in the past decade. I got a change to meet Liz Primo this summer, during the shoot for her newest music video “I Want More” (check it out! Live on youtube.com/lizprimo), and what you see on the screen is exactly what you get in person; A firework, with bubbly personality who lives for fashion, music, and performing.
WE'VE WATCHED A COUPLE OF YOUR MUSIC VIDEOS, AND COULDN'T HELP BUT TO BE BLOWN AWAY BY THE AMOUNT OF THOUGHT PUT INTO THE SETS, AND OUTFITS, WHAT IS YOUR THOUGHT PROCESS LIKE? Thank you so much! My video Exposed was my most hands on video, I did everything pretty much but film it, it was so much fun, but I was exhausted. State Of Amazing, directed by Evan Winter, and Wind Me Up, directed by Afshin Shahidi, I had help with concept, sets, and the best part was I had craft services at those shoots! LOL!!! They were wonderful directors and fun to work with! I had my choreographer Phlex, put together wonderful dance moves for each video. Wind Me Up actually has an entire dance sequence, I hope to maybe make another video with that footage!!! For State Of Amazing I put together my wardrobe except the light suits, we had those specially made. I had a stylist, Marquita Lopez, for Wind Me Up, and we worked together for that shoot! For my newest single, I Want More, I grabbed a dress out of my closet, some earrings threw some make-up on we filmed in my living room directed by Giselle Campos, and Voila!!!
WOULD YOU CONSIDER YOURSELF A FASHIONISTA? I love fashion, but I wouldn’t consider myself a fashionista. I like to look at all the fun fashion magazines, but I couldn’t tell you what’s in or out, or this season, last season etc. If I see something and I like it, then it’s in season for me!!!
BIGGEST FASHION ADVICE: BE YOUR OWN PERSON, KNOW WHAT YOU LIKE, DON'T LOOK TO ANYONE ELSE'S APPROVAL, IF YOU LIKE IT YOU LIKE IT, BUT ALWAYS TRY AND LOOK AS FABULOUS AS YOU CAN! EVERY TIME WE THINK ABOUT YOUR MUSIC WE THINK OF “MAYBE YOU’LL GIVE ME A ____ ON THE BEACH” FROM “STATE OF AMAZING”, HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR SOUND? HAHAHA!!! Of course you want that!!!! How bout I hook you up to the Patron IV also!!! LOL!!!! I would say my sound is Fun, Upbeat, and Sexy!
WHAT INSPIRES YOU AS A PERFORMER? I’m not sure what inspires me, I know that sounds weird and maybe a bit ditsy, but it’s honestly just in me to do it. It’s almost as if my soul needs to perform, and I just do what it says. Maybe I perform because it gives me an excuse to color my hair all kinds of crazy, and wear whatever I want!
WHAT HAPPENS HERE
STAYS HERE S NOW!
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WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR WHAT IS THE CRAZIEST THING THAT BIGGEST STRUGGLE IN THE MUSIC HAS HAPPENED TO YOU SO FAR, IN INDUSTRY YOUR MUSICAL JOURNEY? The business side of things is my biggest struggle. I just wanna write, sing , and focus on the music. There is just so much other stuff you have to deal with, that sometimes the music gets pushed aside, and I even forget I'm an artist. It’s actually very sad.
WHAT WOULD BE THE ONE THING, THAT YOU THINK WOULD SCREAM "I'VE MADE IT "? In a way I guess I have made it! I have followed my dream, I have been on MTV, I’m being interviewed by fabulous people like you, I can honestly say, I have given my all and that is what matters to me. I can die happy knowing that I have worked hard, and that I did my best. It would be nice to wake up one day, get in my car, and hear myself on the radio. I’d also like to work with RedOne, so there is still room for lots more “I Made It” moments.
ANY EXCITING THINGS IN THE WORKS? I still have a lot of new songs I’m working on, and going to release!!!! My most exciting thing for me coming up is I’m going to take pics for a coffee table book that T.J. Scott, director of Spartacus, is putting together called In The Tub. All proceeds go to breast cancer, and I’m so excited to be a part of this!
Hhhhhmmmmm crazy good or crazy bad??? I could go on and on about crazy bad, that’s an entire book! HA! But, I’d rather say something crazy good... when I was in Miami performing during the Winter Music Conference, I was eating at the bar, at a place inside the hotel we were in. A guy sat next to me, and turned out he was a club promoter, Tiesto was playing in the hotel that night, so he got me and my friend into the venue for free!!(-; Then my friend paid the bouncer $20 to let us into the VIP section, which I can’t believe actually worked. So there we are just kinda sitting at other peoples’ tables and then Drake comes in and sits right next to the table beside us! His security guard was pretty serious, and within 15 min kicked a girl out. We eventually became friends with him, but we didn’t even dare to look at Drake because we didn’t wanna get kicked out! LOL!! But, we did become friends for the next few hours with his beautiful Princess friend, and his beautiful assistant that was with him. They were really sweet girls, I had a lot of fun that entire weekend!!!
ANY ADVICE YOU WOULD GIVE TO GIRLS TRYING TO FOLLOW IN YOUR FOOT STEPS? Music is like the board games you played when you were a kid. You don’t always win, you don’t always pass go, sometimes you miss your turn, and sometimes you end up in jail! LOL! But, you can have fun playing the game. My best advise would be to try your hardest and your best at whatever you do, practice, practice, practice, learn as much as you can about your craft, focus on music not on boys. Don’t base your success on Fame, Money, Awards, Magazine Covers, or other peoples’ success, be who you are, and do what your capable of. If you don’t get the Grammy or whatever it is that you want, it’s ok, and you are still a bright shining Star, and people will admire you for believing in yourself, doing your best, and working hard no matter what the outcome is
Starbucks Order: Green Tea Frap with no whip cream Designer: My good friend Punk Kouture is amazing and does most of my costumes, Gucci, Jean Paul Gaultier, McQueen, Im obsessed with Ted Baker right now because I just got back from London and found him there, Furne One is just to die for, and I'm obsessed with latex right now also, its called Westward Bound. Height:5'3
WEBSITE: LIZPRIMO.COM RGM © 10
More than Fifteen Minutes of Fame! by Robert Guida
n the late sixties Andy Warhol used the phrase “In the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes.” One person Mr. Warhol never counted on was Marissa Pontecorvo. Her musical talent began at the tender age of eight as a classical pianist and soon after made her debut at Juilliard, Merkin Hall in New York City. At only nine years old she also won a Young Artist Competition and played the prestigious Carnegie Hall. A Jazz/Rock fusion artist, Marissa was born and raised on Staten Island to a musical family. She teaches young artists music and is a real star to the community where she has led her church in worship at Our Lady Star of The Sea. Music ministry has been a part of her life since the age of 14. A fan of the show “American Idol” she auditioned multiple times eventually making it to Hollywood and she made it into the final 60 in American Idol’s eleventh season as all of Staten Island cheered her on. Currently this multi-talented singer/songwriter performs at venues in the Greater New York Area. Marissa can be seen and her music experienced at the Legendary Bitter End as well as Duane Park NYC. She has performed with the likes of Jesse McCartney, Grammy nominee Vanessa Carlton and Grammy winner Jesse Harris. Marissa is also working on her debut CD and you can bet Marissa will continue to defy Mr. Warhol’s theory of fifteen minutes of fame!
RGM: MARISSA, YOU RECENTLY BECAME INVOLVED WITH AN ANTI-BULLYING PROJECT - A SONG WRITTEN WITH ONE OF YOUR STUDENTS; TELL US ABOUT THAT?
One day, a little girl named Rose, who is my student, came up to me and said that she had written a song about a girl who was bullying her in school. The song is called “Unperfect,” and I helped her finish the song. After we wrote it, we put the song on Facebook where members of the youth council from the community beacon program heard the song and loved it. Currently, the community beacon program is doing a civic engagement project on bullying and suicide prevention. They heard our song on our Facebook page, and wanted to use it. Rose and I are now a part of the process with a fine group of young adults that are active members in their community.
RGM: SO MANY NEW OPPORTUNITIES HAVE COME FROM YOUR RECENT APPEARANCE ON AMERICAN IDOL; WHAT WAS IT LIKE TO BE A PART OF THIS ICONIC HIT SHOW? It was one of the best experiences of my life, and I learned so much about the business in the few weeks that I was there filming. Jennifer Lopez is beautiful and is such a sweet person all around. Both Randy Jackson and Steven Tyler are amazing in their own right as well, and gave good advice when it came to the performance aspect of the show. I will never forget my time there filming and I take away a wealth of knowledge that I learned from everyone there. So many amazing things have happened since the show has aired, and I have met so many people who tell me how my story has inspired them to never give up on their dream, and to work hard for everything and anything you want. I auditioned over twelve times for that show, and I never gave up until I got on.
RGM: WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE FUTURE AND WHAT SHOWS DO YOU HAVE COMING UP THIS YEAR? My plans for the future are still the same…be the best person you can be at all times, and surround yourself with true people who genuinely love you and care about you. I want to be famous and have a rockin’ music career like every other artist out there, but I also want to be happy with what I am doing, and I want to always keep the integrity of my messages in my music. I have performed this year in the New York area, most notably on July 10th, at the Aqueduct Casino, and August 7th at the famous Duplex; located at 61 Christopher Street. I also performed in October at the Laurie Beechman Theater. For more information on Marissa and future shows you can visit her Official website at:
MARISSAPONTECORVOMUSIC.COM For booking information contact: Joe Magnetico & Associates www.joemagnetico.com firstname.lastname@example.org 516-439-6651
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REALLY GREAT MUSIC
POP PUNK T
he “palmetto state” is proving that pop punk’s not dead. If you listen closely, pop punk can be heard just beneath the sounds of the down home country and grassroots indie music that have always been the favorite in South Carolina. Soon it will be blaring, as bands from all over the state are going against the norm and recreating a music scene that cannot be ignored. One of the loudest bands of the bunch is A Brighter Life. Based out of SC’s capital of Columbia, A Brighter Life has been busy spreading pop punk throughout the state, the
south, and along the east coast. In January of 2011, the band put out their very first EP, titled Where Tonight Can Go, and then released a two-song demo called I’m Not Fine later the same year. They released their second EP, Move On and Move Up, this past March. A Brighter Life was created in 2010 by a group of friends who frequently ended long nights of partying with sing-a-longs to pop punk favorites. The guys lead singer Jordan Kirk, bassist Walter Roesch, drummer Chris Seiferlein, and guitarists Byron Dooley and Alex Koss, let their party attitudes show through in the music they make. Their music,
some of which is actually about partying, is full of raw energy and honesty, with assertive vocals, catchy guitars, and crashing drums. And a live show from A Brighter Life can really only be described as one big party. To help keep pop punk alive and well, all of A Brighter Life’s music is available for free online; download it at www.abrighterlife. bandcamp.com. While you’re at it, follow A Brighter Life on Twitter and like them on Facebook. Do your part to turn up the volume on pop punk! By: Lauren Brown
“WE TAKE WRITING AND PERFORMING OUR MUSIC VERY SERIOUSLY, YET WE DON’T TAKE OURSELVES TOO SERIOUSLY. WE LIKE TO HAVE A GOOD TIME AND ENJOY LIFE,” SAYS JORDAN. “YOU ONLY GET ONE LIFE TO LIVE. IT’S BEST TO ENJOY IT AND KEEP A POSITIVE ATTITUDE!”
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G TOM MAC
UNTAME by A. Bronwyn Sheehan
HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE NAME OF THE NEW ALBUM? It came out of realizing I had written such a diverse selection of songs, that in some way had an unusual flow together for an artist such as myself, & in some ways sounded like many different sides of me. When I wrote the title track “Untame the Songs,” I really had no title to that song, & then it just came to me as a result of already wanting the album to be titled Untame the Songs, because they all sounded very untamed in their song written edge. Your description of the new album is exactly how I felt listening to it! I found the songs to be so diverse, in that one minute you are playing an acoustic guitar singing really deep, heartfelt lyrics and the next you are playing an electric guitar rockin out with some rippin vocals... Do you prefer one style to another or do you feel both emotions equally? Let’s not forget Led Zeppelin did that to a very courageous degree. Not that I’m comparing me to Zep! Well, I’m a songwriter that has always loved many different styles of music, in as much as that love has translated into writing rocked out tunes, to a reflective emotional song like “What’s left of me” or the sultry acoustic “Crave you” then back into
the somewhat rap/rocked stretch of “Killer head” (which I almost didn’t put on the album) because it seemed too much of a departure. Again, I guess this album is much of me showing off my songwriting abilities in my chameleon way. I just happen to feel these songs were all on time, in these very uncertain times, especially lyrically.
G, TELL US ABOUT YOUR LATEST PROJECTS… AND WHAT YOU ARE WORKING ON NOW, THAT THE FANS CAN LOOK FORWARD TO IN THE NEAR FUTURE. I’m really just gearing up for more Live Shows this year, trying out new things in rehearsals that I think will be quite affective for my fans when they come to my 2012/2013 shows. As far as TV goes there are several new fall shows to feature many of the new songs, from the new album .“The Vampire Diaries” & “The Big Bang Theory” will be using more of my songs as well.
WWW.GTOMMAC.COM FACEBOOK.COM/GTOMMAC TWITTER/GTOMMAC
hen RGM was lucky enough to snag an interview with G Tom Mac AKA Gerard McMann back in February of 2011 we were introduced to some interesting facts about the enigmatic performer… G told us that he has co-written music and performed with some of the biggest and most successful names out there. A few that stuck in my head were: Roger Daltrey, Carly Simon and Chicago. We were reminded of how much his music has been the soundtrack of our lives; whether it was featured in movies from our youth such as: Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Terminator and All the Right Moves. (I know I loved them all!) Or maybe from a popular television show such as: The police drama - The Shield, The edgy comedy - Scrubs, One of my personal TV favs - Charmed, Or even my Grandmother’s beloved soap - As The World Turns. We also learned from that interview how much respect his contemporaries have for him by recording his songs. Two of the artists that make up a very long and impressive list are: Kiss and Ice Cube! How is that for diversity? Finally, we were treated to the revelation that even accomplished artists like G Tom Mac have people that inspire him, musically on a personal level. He told us that John Lennon, Marvin Gaye, David Bowie and Annie Lennox certainly make that list. Now it’s August of 2012 and we are back talking with G about his latest project. Untame The Songs is the name of the album and “Untamed” is most definitely its feel. The album’s texture is an exotic carnival for the senses, where each song takes the listener on a thrilling ride of emotions. From the rockin/gritty vocals on Slave That You Are… to the burning melodies of the amatory Crave You (where G strums the acoustic guitar)… to the funky/upbeat Not Ready To Die… to the raw What’s Left Of Me, that sounds so sincere, it almost makes you feel like an intruder on a private lovers’ lament, just for listening… There is so much richness and depth on this album that I was thrilled to be able to talk with G and ask him how the album came to be and what his thoughts were.
YOU HAVE HAD SO MANY AMAZING PEOPLE RECORD YOUR SONGS AND SAMPLE YOUR MUSIC... IS THERE ONE PERSON WHO COULD CALL YOU, THAT WOULD LITERALLY BLOW YOUR MIND?
A CALL FROM THOSE WHO’VE PASSED ON WOULD BE NICE LOL! YOU KNOW JOHN LENNON, KURT COBAIN. BUT I’D LOVE TO WORK WITH EMINEM AGAIN & IT WOULD BE INCREDIBLE TO WORK WITH JACK WHITE! CAN’T SAY THAT LOUD ENOUGH! RGM © 13
REALLY GREAT MUSIC
By: Heather Archambault
hen life decides to hit you with challenge after challenge, do you fold under the pressure, or do you persevere and see what comes next? Musicians continually face roadblocks, which force many to choose between throwing in the towel, or risking everything in order to continue chasing their passion. Us, From Outside has dealt with everything from multiple line-up changes to constant trailer issues, shows being cancelled to surviving off of ramen; and the list only goes on from there. Despite all of this, the five-piece rock outfit (Johnny Galivan - Vocals, Kenny Davis Vocals/Bass, Steve Novoa - Guitar/Vocals, Derek Williams - Guitar, Ernie Slenkovich - Drums) is stronger than ever, and has yet to skip a beat. Their latest release, “Revived”, truly embodies its name, as it gave the band a fresh platform of expression to reach fans new and old. What started out as an EP
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quickly grew into a full-length album that showcases Us, From Outside’s various talents and solid song composition. With instrumentals, vocals, and screams fitting together to create songs that pack a punch, to effortlessly arranged interludes, and an acoustic ballad that offers up a slightly more vulnerable side, they have weaved together something that appeals to every listener. More impressive than the most recent addition to their discography would be the band’s energy packed live show. The extensive time they have spent touring, paired with committing to practice while home from the road, has developed a solid stage presence between members and the ability to connect with every audience placed before them. If for some reason you’re not quite convinced, the accidental stage injuries between members over their last few tours are proof enough that the guys are just as enveloped in the music that they create as you are.
Us, From Outside also does an exceptional job of producing more than an auditory experience, by keeping in touch with their fans. They take to a variety of social media sites in an effort to strike up conversation and provide updates on what they are up to while on and off of the road. You can also catch any one of them taking the time to speak with anyone in attendance at a show; as they have a great grasp on how important each supporter is. Whether you have simply taken the time to give the music a chance to pass your ears, or if you have gone as far as to house them for a night, they are grateful and are sure to make it known. This is one band which has proven that nothing can come between them and living out their dreams; and with continued and flourishing support, will only gain momentum. Us, From Outside can be seen on tour this fall with Broadway, so be sure to start learning the words to their songs and make it out to a date near you.
JOHN LENNON educational
By: Giselle Campos
THE ROAD TO THE TOP AS A SUCCESSFUL RECORDING ARTIST CAN BE BOTH CHALLENGING AND EXPENSIVE. THINK ABOUT IT, WHETHER YOU START OFF TAKING COURSES TO LEARN HOW TO WORK RECORDING EQUIPMENT, OR VENTURE OFF ON YOUR OWN, PUTTING TOGETHER MONEY FOR STUDIO TIME, YOU HAVE TO BE WILLING TO INVEST A COUPLE OF THOUSANDS INTO YOUR DREAM. TO EVEN GET NEAR A PROFESSIONAL PRODUCT.. THAT'S UNLESS YOU ARE LUCKY ENOUGH TO HOP ONTO THE JOHN LENNON EDUCATIONAL BUS!
WILL.I.AM recording IN the bus
ARE THE TOURING ARTISTS FROM WARPED TOUR INVITED TO RECORD INSIDE THE BUS? IF SO, WHO ARE SOME ACTS WHO HAVE CREATED MUSICAL MAGIC THROUGH THE BUS?
Lennon Educational Tour Bus and John Lennon’s 72nd birthday with a series of school visits throughout the city.
The Lennon Bus has had a partnership with the Vans Warped Tour for the past 15 years, traveling alongside the festival’s performers and providing concert-goers with exclusive tours and access to the bus. Artists are often invited to come on the bus for a chance to test out the bus’s equipment and for exclusive performances. Veteran Warped Tour acts such as Taking Back Sunday, Ballyhoo!, Lostprophets, and Senses Fail have all recorded or performed on the bus.
WHAT IS ONE THING YOU WOULD SAY TO KIDS, TEENS, OR EVEN ADULTS WHO ARE INTERESTED IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY, BUT ARE SCARED TO TAKE THE FIRST STEPS?
CAN ANYONE HOP ON AND EXPERIENCE THE PRODUCTION PROCESS? FERGIE & KIDS WHAT CAN PEOPLE EXPECT FROM VISITING THE BUS? The John Lennon Educational Tour bus provides visitors with an experience unlike any other. Since 1998, The Lennon Bus has provided millions of young people and students of all ages with increased access to music, audio, video, digital photography and broadcast technologies. On board the bus you’ll find an array of traditional musical instruments and the latest pro sound and HD video products and solutions. The bus houses three separate state-of-the-art studio spaces for music recording and production, where visitors get hands-on access to guitars, keyboards, percussion instruments, video equipment and more. In addition to interactive tours of the bus, visitors are sometimes treated to performances on the Lennon Stage featuring emerging and legendary artists.
Yes! The Lennon Bus offers interactive tours to young people, students, and music fans of all ages. The aim of the Lennon Bus is to provide greater access to music and production technologies to as many people as possible.
ARE THERE ANY PLANS TO EXPAND IN THE FUTURE? IF SO WHAT SHOULD WE EXPECT? The Lennon Bus has a lot of exciting things coming up. We’re hosting a backto-school event with the U.S. Department of Education and Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan in Silicon Valley for the kick-off of the “Education Drives America” back-to-school bus tour. In October, the bus headed back to New York City to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the John
Don’t allow yourself to be paralyzed by fear with anything you do in life. If going into music is what you really want to do, then you need to fully embrace it. You have got to be willing to work really hard, persevere through any setbacks you may face, and remember that at one point in their lives, the world’s greatest musicians all started where you are right now. Success will always come to those who remain positive and always believe in themselves. If you’re a songwriter, you might consider entering the John Lennon Songwriting Contest (jlsc.com). It’s a great way to get your music heard.
ANY TIPS FOR ARTISTS ON HOW TO GET CREATIVITY ROLLING? Surround yourself with people, places, things, and sounds that inspire or excite you. Inspiration can be found in just about everything, but it’s how we interpret and relate to everything around us that breeds individual creativity. Of course having some great tools like the Avid M-Box can really help keep the production elements simple and easy so you’re ideas can come through.
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REALLY GREAT MUSIC
DROPING THE BOMB ON THE MUSIC INDUSTRY THE BAND FROM “DOWN UNDER”
n 2012 the landscape of the music industry has changed drastically in every facet of the business. From the swift shift from CD to digital music the only prayer for recording artists to earn is to perform constantly. Unless you are a house hold name like Bruce Springsteen or Lady Gaga making a profit just from record sales in nearly impossible. Even stars like them have a hard time breaking even. Many individuals in the business have unwillingly depended on iTunes, Amazon or Beatport to generate sales. In addition the music industry has become so saturated with anyone who thinks they can sing is digitally putting out music. But there are those who still go about the business the “old fashion” way, by utilizing real instruments. One such band is the punk rock band “Drop Tank”.
“THE BEST SONGS ALWAYS WRITE THEMSELVES. IN A STRESSFUL OR FRUSTRATING SITUATION A RIFF OR MELODY CAN HIT YOU IN THE SIDE OF THE HEAD. I HAVE GOTTEN BETTER AT CAPTURING THESE IDEAS AS THEY HAPPEN IMMEDIATELY. FOR EXAMPLE, SINGING INTO MY PHONE OR WRITING SOMETHING DOWN. SPONTANEOUS IDEAS ARE USUALLY THE MOST FUN AND INTERESTING AND WHEN YOU EXERCISE YOUR WRITING MUSCLE ON TOP OF IT CREATING SONGS BECOMES EASIER AS YOU HAVE MORE TRICKS TO USE.” RGM © 16
The band was formed in 2008 after the first group Zebidy was involved with dissolved. To produce a new band she would frequent various venues and listened to bands and see if she can find one to build on. After a few visits she found the right “chemistry” and formed the group. Her bass player at the time came up with the name “Drop Tank” which seemed fitting for her. Especially, since it signified the reserve fuel tank for a “muscle car”, the type of car that she prefers. Being the only female in the band and the front – woman, most would think it would be a demanding task. Yet Zebidy honestly confides that it’s not as difficult as it may seem. Zebidy grew up attending an all girl school and was tired of the “cliquey” attitudes
The band hails from the land “down under”, Australia. The band is a female fronted group that has a cutting edge “in your face” approach. The leader Zebidy Tank is the driving force behind this edgy band. As a teenager growing up she had a strong punk rock influence which led her to experiment with heavy rock and metal. Both of these genres are reflected in her music. Zebidy, whose real name is Phillipa, is an attractive blonde with a slim figure. But don’t let the pretty look fool you, on stage she is a force that delivers a strong performance that can leave you stunned. The band’s popularity in Australia is very solid and is going global. When it comes to developing lyrics Zebidy has an odd way of coming up with concepts for her music. She gave us a breakdown.
and actually welcomed male friends. She did perform with some great female musicians during her time but still preferred to work with an all male group. Because of their stage presence Zebidy admits that they are viewed more seriously in the music world. The band has been together for the past five years. Drop Tank has so far released two albums, the first was self-titled and the second was titled “Vice”. Zebidy admits that there are two singles that stand out most for her, “White Lady” and “Saw Nothing”. The titles of most of the band’s tracks have an edgy relentless image invoking a “no hold’s bar” attitude. “Lyrics are written to suit the song. They are based on creative ideas and
nothing more. I have never set out to shock or offend. I have only written ideas for the lyrics to suit the riff or music. I feel if you become too conscious of your material it can hinder the creative process. So I guess it is purely entertainment. Lyrics always come last when writing. If you look closely there are good messages in there too.” Currently, Zebidy is in the process of searching for a producer to work with them on some new tracks they have recently laid down, and is hoping to release these to the public soon.
REALLY GREAT ART
of life: the art of
COURTESY OF TALENT IN MOTION
OROTHY KRAKAUER works in oils, watercolors, pencils, charcoal, pastels and photography. She has exhibited her artwork in Japan, Turkey, Europe, Colombia, and the United States, including numerous group and solo exhibits in greater Metropolitan Boston, New York, and Playa del Ingles de Gran Canaria.
Recent exhibits in New York City include Ensemble 212 Fourth Annual Gala Concert & Fundraising Event, ArtistsintheKitchen Hell’s Kitchen Artist Open Studio Tour, Art for Healing Gallery NYC, International Women Artists Salon, Paul Cabezas Art Gallery, The Jackson Gallery of Art MCC and Jadite Gallery. Dorothy is a cofounder of Fountain Gallery, New York; and has curated numerous exhibits in Turkey and the United States. Her artwork appears in publications including Talent in Motion Magazine, New York, The Edge, Hell’s Kitchen New York City, Arte News publishing magazine, New York, London and Spain, Fresh View, and Art for Healing Gallery, New York, NY. During the years 1973-1975 Dorothy lived in Izmir, Turkey, where she was responsible for the renovation of the sanctuary and created an original oil painting of Saint Francis of Assisi, designated a National Art Treasure of Turkey, in the then 101-year-old Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist. She also restored frescoes in the seventeenth century Church of Saint Polycarp in Izmir, and did photography for books on Turkish embroidery and the old gates of Bornova. She is the recipient of several awards including Honoree, International Women Artists Salon in New York, Second Place in the Angel Orensanz Foundation Fourth International Artists Award in New York, Paris and Venice 2004, and the NATO Award for Women for her work in Turkey. Dorothy was born on the Indian Nations Reservations at Columbia Falls, Montana. She studied oil painting in Tokyo, Japan, with Shunjiro Nakamura, received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Massachusetts Boston, and studied drawing and painting from live models at the Massachusetts College of Art. Her artwork hangs in private collections throughout the United States, Europe, Hong Kong, Japan, Turkey, South and Central America.
For more information contact: email@example.com or dorothykrakauer.com
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REALLY GREAT ART
A R E A L LY G R E AT A R T I S T RGM © 18
uki was born in Japan on the 30th, June,1979. He now lives in the third biggest city, Nagoya in Japan. His illustrations are drawn mainly with pure watercolor. He is fond of drawing fashionable works such as women, interior or a lifestyle in a delicate touch. In 2011 he was noted as one of 200 BEST ILLUSTRATORS WORLDWIDE 2011/2012 in Lurzer’s Archive. YUKIMINAMI.COM CONTACT@YUKIMINAMI.COM SOLO EXHIBITION Dear MOON (Japan 2009) Hold On Me (Japan 2012) SAKURA (Japan 2012) GROUP EXHIBITION Sakura Exhibition (Japan USA 2010-2012) AWARD 200 BEST ILLUSTRATORS WORLDWIDE 2011/2012 (Austria 2011) COLLABORATION WITH Nagoya Art Life (illustration×novel 2009-2010 Japan) My Space From JP (2009 JAPAN) Pretty Shiny Spakly (desktop background May 2010 USA) Fashionary (2010 HONG KONG) Masketeer (A1size poster 2010 JAPAN) Hoimi (designed T-shirts 2011 JAPAN) NU-MODE’ MAGAZINE (2011 USA) New York Optimist (2012 USA) Superior Magazine (2012 Germany) NeverLazy Magazine (2012 UK) VECU Magazine(2012 USA)
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REALLY GREAT DESIGNER
REALLY GREAT DESIGNER:
aul Lopa got started designing when he was 23 years old. First buying property and building on speculation, an experience that organically led to the process of true designing, rather than the average contractor/client relationship. Paul’s own designing within a budget (in order to make a profit on homes he purchased for resale) led to a true understanding of a home owner’s perspective
PAUL FELT THE DESIRE TO ALWAYS DESIGN NEW, EXCITING AND WELCOMING SPACES RATHER THAN JUST REPEAT THE SAME PRODUCT OVER AND OVER, WHICH MANY OTHER BUILDERS OFTEN DO. HIS EXPERTISE CAME FROM SELECTING ALL THE MATERIALS THAT WENT INTO HIS OWN HOMES. FROM WINDOW STYLES, COLORS, EXTERIOR AND INTERIOR SELECTIONS, ALL ON A BUDGET & FINISHING EVERY DETAIL ON SCHEDULE.
PAUL’S LIFE PARTNER AND DESIGNER, FRANCES SAKADINSKY, DESIGNS AREAS, LIKE THIS DINING ROOM, ON AN IKEA BUDGET! THIS HOME DESIGNER’S FAVORITE TEXTURES ARE USUALLY NATURAL MATERIALS LIKE CEMENT, WOOD, STEEL AND GLASS ARE ALWAYS A GOOD MIXTURE. TO ME IT’S JUST SIMPLICITY, BE AUTHENTIC WHEN DESIGNING. SOMETHING THAT IS MASS PRODUCED USUALLY FADES OUT, IT’S BEST TO STAY AWAY FROM TRENDS.
LOPA DESIGNS IS BEST KNOWN FOR BRINGING OUT THE LOOK THAT BEST FITS THEIR CLIENT’S PERSONALITIES AND COMBINE ELEGANCE WITH THE SIMPLE CONVENIENCE OF THEIR DAILY NEEDS FOR THE LIVING SPACE
PAUL LOPA DESIGNS IS A FULL SERVICE COMPANY. THEY DO IT ALL, FROM PLANNING AND DESIGNING TO BUILDING THEIR CLIENT’S DREAM SPACE. THEY MAKE THE PROCESS EASY WHILE WORKING WITH YOUR BUDGET AND FINDING THE BEST QUALITY PRODUCTS AND MATERIALS THAT BEST FIT EACH CLIENT’S NEEDS
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ho said manufacturing is dead in the USA? A D.J. by trade, Michael Swick is a perfect example of how creative minds can take their passion and actually create something new and unique in the process. Many say the US is no longer a place for manufacturing but Hot Slots proves that to be untrue. In this case while its not the first time someone took a new body and placed it on a slot car chassis, it is the best, so good Michael is seeking a patent on the newly made combination. Michael takes custom made to a whole new level by creating HO scale die-cast cars with slot chassis , each one taking a few hours to meticulously put together using his own unique design.
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REALLY GREAT LIFESTYLE
Egos, Suspiciousness, Interpersonal Difficulties,
D e c e i t f u l n e s s & At t e n t i o n S e e k i n g :
Welcome to the World of Personalities in the Entertainment In dustry
here are an array of personality dynamics & characteristics that one will encounter when working in the entertainment industry. As with most personality traits, they can be viewed on a continuum where they are benign and work in the personâ€™s favor all the way up to becoming destructive and pathological when they are exhibited in an extreme fashion. Personality traits not only impact the person himself, but all of the people he becomes involved with.
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by Kerri Edelman
he personality structure of an individual develops early on in childhood. Personality traits and characteristics are exhibited as a pattern of long standing behaviors and internal experiences, which can present in one or a combination of the following areas. First, personality traits can consist of the way a person thinks, which impacts how the person interprets or perceives himself, others and events. Second, personality characteristics can consist of an emotional component, which is how a person expresses his feelings. Third, personality traits can deal with interpersonal relationships and how a person gets along with others. And, lastly, personality traits can deal with a personâ€™s ability to control his impulses and delay gratification. Personality traits also tend to be inflexible, carry across a wide range of social/interpersonal situations and may lead to significant distress in a variety of social, work and other areas of functioning for the person (American Psychiatric
Paranoid Personality Traits Individuals with paranoid personality traits are often suspicious and distrustful of the motives of others. They tend to interpret the motives of others as harmful, believe that people are trying to deceive them or misinterpret the meaning of what people are saying to them (American Psychiatric Association [DSM-IV], 2000). In the entertainment industry, having some of these traits is not necessarily a negative thing and can help people avoid being taken advantage of, which can lead to unfortunate outcomes such as losing a lot of money and being made promises that are never kept. For example, before an entertainer or musician signs with a manager, it is important to do your research, be diligent and ask questions. Please do not assume that everything the manager says is accurate and truthful. If a manager is closed off to being open to everything you want answered and gets annoyed or frustrated, then that is a tell tale sign that some manipulation may be going on. On the other hand, when these personality traits become extreme, it can lead to serious interpersonal problems, difficultly establishing any kind of trust in people and the belief that people are only out to harm them. For example, it will be extremely difficult for a band to be able to stay together if a member continues to have trust issues, feels that other members are
Association [DSM-IV], 2000). It is not atypical to see that entertainers tend to present as quirky, idiosyncratic and charismatic. The nature of the industry, in and of itself, calls for a particular type of individual. But with all of the personality traits we encounter, it is important to be aware of how they reveal themselves, along with when they can be useful as well as become destructive. We will review several of the common personality traits and characteristics that are readily apparent in the entertainment industry along with providing examples to assist the reader in understanding the dynamics of them as well as how to become insightful when these traits become over the top and pathological. Keep in mind that each person who exhibits some of these traits may not fit into one category and can have a variety of these personality traits.
trying to exploit him or becomes enraged when he perceives the motives of others as an attack on his character.
Borderline PERSONALITY TRAITS Individuals with borderline personality traits present with a significant pattern of instability in interpersonal relationships, intense emotions and problems with self-image along with a tendency to display traits of impulsivity. These individuals have intense/unstable relationships where one moment they love you and the next they hate you, fears of being criticized or abandoned, disturbances in their identity/sense of self, intense mood swings, impulsive and self destructive behaviors (such as overspending of money, alcohol & drug abuse, suicidal behaviors and other reckless behaviors) and chronic feelings/displays of anger (American Psychiatric Association [DSM-IV], 2000). Although a higher percentage of females display these characteristics, they are also present in males. There is not really a productive component of having any of these traits. A fan with these traits who befriends a musician in a band, which she looks up to, will immediately develop an intensely close relationship where she idealizes the musician. The fan may want to help out and provide support by promoting the musician and his band. However, the musi-
cian may not see or have the same intentions of developing the close relationship that the fan expects. When the fan is not getting back in return what she anticipated (such as the band member calling her, getting together with her, etc), the fan is likely to become enraged and feel abandoned. As a result of this perceived rejection, the fan may verbalize or engage in self-destructive behaviors in an attempt to make him feel bad and get the relationship back to where she wants it to be.
Antisocial PERSONALITY TRAITS Individuals with antisocial personality traits engage in behaviors where they disregard and violate the rights of others. These individuals perform acts where they violate laws, deceive others for profit or personal pleasure, lack remorse and can be irritable and aggressive (American Psychiatric Association [DSM-IV], 2000).
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REALLY GREAT LIFESTYLE
Many people in the entertainment industry present with some varying degree of these traits. These traits can often been seen in managers and business persons. Entertainers who are empathic and care about others, may use these traits such as exaggerating their relationship with an big name acquaintance (without saying this specific person can help him or another person out) by saying that he knows the person better than he does, if he feels the person’s name holds some weight. Is this deceitful? Yes, the person is exaggerating the truth. But in this scenario, he is not trying to take advantage of another person or violating the rights of the other person he is talking to. On the other hand, it is unfortunately all too often that one will run into persons who display the extreme aspects of these traits. These tend to be successful managers, business persons and attorneys. For example, an amateur band may be approached by a manager who is interested in signing them. The band is so excited that a manager is taking an interest in them and only looks at the notion of ‘we are going to get signed.’ The manager then starts using these traits to lure the band in, make promises that are probably not all going to come to fruition, asks for a lot of money (as without money the manager can’t do anything) and in the end will display no remorse or empathy when the band walks away empty handed.
Narcissistic Personality Traits Individuals with narcissistic personality traits present as grandiose, have an excessive need for admiration and lack empathy. These individuals feel that they are extremely special and unique, have an exaggerated sense of self importance, are self-entitled, interpersonally exploitative, display arrogance and believe that others are envious of them (American Psychiatric Association [DSM-IV], 2000). The interesting aspect about persons with these traits is that despite them appearing to be highly self-confident and special, many of them actually have an extremely fragile sense of self, which can begin to fall apart at the slightest attack by someone on their self-worth. The entertainment industry is wrought with people displaying these traits from CEOs to musicians to actors and the list goes on. Let’s not confuse self-confidence with being arrogant and grandiose. Having some of these traits such as being confident in one’s abilities and enjoying being admired are important to being successful and thriving in an industry that is challenging and will chew you up, then spit you out. Actors and musicians need some of these traits as they enhance their performances and ability to draw the crowd in. On the other hand, narcissistic personality traits in their severe form can be seriously destructive to the person (even though they are not aware of their deleterious effects) and those around them. The classical example is what musicians describe as Lead Singers Disease (LSD). Lead singers who display these traits to the extreme must have everyone admire them, show others how important they are, are arrogant, haughty towards others and will interpersonally exploit others by yelling at them and degrading them when their every need and demand is not fulfilled. It is unfortunate to see many entertainers who have been self-destructive to themselves and careers by letting these traits get out of control. And how many bands have we seen fall apart as a result of LSD? Case closed! Reference American Psychiatric Association (2000). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Revised 4th ed.). Washington, DC: Author. Kerri Edelman, Psy.D. is a Clinical Psychologist, Contributing Magazine Writer, Singer-Songwriter and Radio Talk Show Host of The Kerri Edelman Show. For more information on Kerri Edelman and her music, please visit www.kerriedelman.com and to listen to her radio show, visit blogtalkradio.com/kerriedelman RGM © 26
An Interview with real Lifestyle
Susan Korwin Life and Style Consultant
uthor Susan Korwin of “Simple Strides toward Positive Change, Lessons from Life Coaching” is taking Manhattan by storm. Susan composed 200 pages fiery pages packed with focused on life’s finer qualities, such as inner peace, inner confidence, inner self formation and the passion to deliver yourself as a picture of beauty to display to the world. No star can take away that shine, and no sun can put outs its own light. A positive change seems to be something so easily said but not as easily attained. This book delivers a new perspective to readers offering the gift of, “Real advice.” It’s about choices and choosing to be something better and as a woman this advice is priceless. As human beings, we have the intelligence, we have our jobs, family, homes and capacity to make our own choices, but after a lunch date in Soho, now I have come to the realization that I have choices that can shape and form my own legacy. Being the confident Redhead Bombshell that she is, Author Susan Korwin of “Simple Strides toward Positive Change, Lessons from Life Coaching” is a real person that has been thru real situations. Today women have to uphold and maintain their self respect. Many women do not even know what their own self confidence feels like. It almost hints on “Valentine’s Day blues,” the Hallmark holiday that supposed to be fun and romantic. Often Valentine’s Day is dreaded holiday when we celebrate our beloveds with Chocolates, Flowers, and Dinners. When I say often dreaded, I mean this to the people who sometimes have the right feelings and make the wrong choices. People worry about this holiday, because if you don’t have a Valentine then there is something so wrong with you. Susan Korwin says, “Having a valentine, or a boyfriend, husband or significant other, is not about how you feel. It’s about that person being your friend and your soul mate. So even of times of trial, raising children, your friendship and loyalty is always there.” Well that’s news! An author that is talking about some real girth and truth in relationships, and not just relationships that make you feel good, but relationships forged in love, truth, honesty, loyalty and friendship In “Simple Strides toward Positive Change, Lessons from Life Coaching,” Susan says, “Beauty comes from within. I truly believe that the definition of beauty is being confident
BY HARLEM FIDES
and comfortable in your own skin. It’s about believing in you and living a life of integrity, character and self-respect. Show people that you’re truly more than meets the eye, and you will be more beautiful and desirable than you’ll ever know.” Integrity is one of the greatest virtues one can offer them. Integrity is not easily obtained, but when upheld creates character and substance. It makes the individual more proud and confident. This is true beauty. Men and women feel like they have to be the perfect packages and have the perfect job to achieve the perfect life. Life is about taking the positive road and striving for a better self. Simple Strides toward Positive Change, Lessons from Life Coaching, is real advice on how to make yourself empowered into being who you want to be. By confronting yourself and saying I want to be a better person, you’re already taking a step towards a positive change. Susan Korwin reassures her audience that it’s normal to make mistakes and go through hardships. She explains by taking steps to realize how beautiful you are and not doubting yourself, that you’re too fat, or too whatever, you make yourself feel better about whom you are. The best memory of Susan Korwin, is her heartfelt advice she lent to me during a time of hardship. She made me feel better, by being an open heart of wisdom and support. The words, “You know what, I have been there.” This is real comfort that allows one’s own progress and true friendship to commence. This is what her book is all about. The simplest and most touching thing about being in Susan Korwins world, is the positive source of feelings and genuine wisdom in your life. Imagine this Susan Korwin, Life and Style Consultant experience with all this beauty and realizations of love. What true love of one’s life and the perseverance to become your own best friend is such a loving message that stems from the book “Simple Strides toward Positive Change, Lessons from Life Coaching.” From her own personal painful experiences, Susan Korwin speaks to the hearts of so many. She wakens the hearts pain, and produces beauty as a result of the many years of kindness and humility. After a beautiful exchange of souls and an amazing Manhattan’s Egg Benedict later, it become a realization to me that it’s an honor to sit with her and gain knowledge into her thoughts on Love and Humanity.
SUSAN KORWIN'S BOOK IS AVAILABLE ON THE MARKET AND IS ALWAYS AVAILABLE AT SUSANKORWIN.COM, AND ALMOST DAILY DIVINE WISDOM IS DISPLAYED ON FACEBOOK SEARCH: SUSAN KORWIN LIFE AND STYLE CONSULTANT. RGM © 27
NO NEED TO WAIT by Barbara Jeanne
or many decades it has been the man that worked and the woman that would stay at home to tend to the children. Even if she did get to go to college once she was married, it was all “mommy and housewife” from there on in. As the years have gone by many women are no longer happy with this role and are now furthering their education to be basically anything they want to be. All the dreams that we had as a child are actually turning out to be true. The only problem with both genders in full careers is it is putting marriage on hold. At times it gets postponed so many years that we now have lifetime bachelors and bachelorettes. his is not a bad thing but it is putting off marriage to a much later date and having children at a much older age. Having my daughter at a very young age, I had much energy to play with her and really enjoyed her with full energy. This is a choice I chose. I had the best of both worlds… college, marriage and a baby. I was young but I seemed to want it and I feel I handled it as mature as a young mom could have. But I think at any age being a mom will always be a new and exciting experience. What’s my point?
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ALTHOUGH IT FEELS FABULOUS HAVING
A CAREER AND THE FINANCIAL BENEFIT THAT COMES WITH IT, (WHICH IS ALSO INDEPENDENCE) I FEEL WE NEED TO BALANCE OUT HAVING A CAREER AND A RELATIONSHIP
hy is it we have to put anything on the back burner to achieve the other? A relationship is one of the most rewarding and boosting experiences you can feel. Why would we want to put it off? Why can’t we have it all? I know I did it. I had my career, my child and a great relationship, and no one lacked. So no one should feel like they need to put love, a child or career off for a later date. Live life as it is supposed to be… to its fullest and sometimes that brings the most wonderful surprises.
BY GISELLE CAMPOS
THE CASTLE PART I
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REALLY GREAT FASHION
REALLY GREAT FASHION
REALLY GREAT FASHION
PHOTOGRAPHER: GISELLE CAMPOS DESIGNER(S): Riza Clave WERIZA MODELS: Mikah Sullivan Stephanie de la Cruz ASSISTANT: Christina Niles
ITS ALL ABOUT LYING & MAKING PEOPLE THINK THEY NEED YOU
hen Woody Allen arrived in Rome to direct his last movie, he said in an interview that all Americans have a feeling of appreciation towards Italy, considered a very friendly country, which has given a huge contribution to history, culture, poetry, literature and music all around the world. He also said that directing a movie in Rome was like a dream that came true and that an American realizes he is in Europe only when he arrives in the amazing cities such as Rome, London, Paris and Madrid: places with a magical mystery that will never be completely discovered. Mr. Allen, the genius of the art of filmmaking, generally directed his movies in New York, but in the last few years he has set his stories in the most romantic European cities like London (Match Point, Scoop, Cassandra’s Dream, You will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger); Paris (Midnight in Paris); Barcelona (Vicky Cristina Barcelona) and Rome (To Rome With Love). The eternal city, with its own charming atmosphere, where the past and the future blend with each other to build our present, is the perfect place for the surreal, intricate, picturesque plot of Allen’s last movie. The outstanding actors of this intelligent comedy film were enthusiastic to play their roles in Rome also, because the city of La dolce Vita has always had a special bond with America in the history since this great country has given so many Italians the chance to give voice to their art, through which they became famous: the powerful voices of Luciano Pavarotti and Andrea Bocelli, the Oscar winning actor/director Roberto Benigni, the evergreen producer Tony Renis and the exceptional Italian-Americans John Turturro, Robert De Niro, Liza Minnelli, Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett. There are many extremely talented and hardworking Italian artists who are nourishing their talent in
the United States of America and who have already been recognized as a promise for the future. Among these are Enrico de Trizio a pianist and a composer, who started to play the piano at a very young age. He took a degree in classical piano and jazz music and graduated from Berklee College of Boston in Electronic production and Design, where he received a scholarship and an award. He is also the music director and the pianist of The Oregon Trail: Quest for the West, a computer game. Currently, he is working on his first jazz album Mind’s Eyes and on his first electronic album Night Thoughts. Enrico appeared in 106&Park, an American hip hop and R&B music video show on BET network and also wrote the music for Survived By, a show produced by Columbia University. He lives in New York. As Pope John Paul II said:
"ARTISTIC TALENT IS A GIFT FROM GOD AND WHOEVER DISCOVERS IT IN HIMSELF HAS A CERTAIN OBLIGATION: TO KNOW THAT HE CANNOT WASTE THIS TALENT, BUT MUST DEVELOP IT" It is undeniable that the world is full of witty talents in every artistic field and to whoever recognizes it, that mankind should be grateful because it is part of our nature. From Woody Allen to Enrico de Trizio, in different ways, talent has been discovered and thankfully we have the chance to plunge into a different world where the soul of the art never dies.
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These photographs are from a series that reflects on a lifestyle of being as natural and organic, inside and out, as possible. In a world as fast-paced as ours, simple aesthetics often take over and become first priority, leaving health and well-being behind. These photos provoke the question of whether or not we would change what we put into our body if it was visible on the outside.
ABOUT THE ARTIST: The photographer, Patrick McCloskey, has always considered himself a slash artist (photographer/designer/painter/sculptor). He currently lives and works in San Diego, CA, but grew up in small town, central Pennsylvania. He attended Juniata College and earned a degree in Visual and Historical Arts and Design.
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Where do you turn when you have a small business and need help but do not have a full staff or a staff at all? delegateitsolutions.com of course!
n a job market that is bleak, a business sprang up out of necessity and has expanded ever since. Melissa Serpico proves that thinking outside the box is the way to find your niche and become financially independent. Many actors, musicians and creative types find themselves seeking income but often choose jobs that leave them frazzled and worn out. Oh, there is always bartending and waiting tables but maybe you’re an artist or designer and need to be around new technology and computer programs to stay current. Perhaps its fashion, writing or art that you are into. Just look at what your set of skills are and how they can be applied to helping others; that’s the start of a business, simply put, your future is in what you can do for others. Melissa Serpico took her passion for helping others and then put together a winning team of people who will work their hardest to move your business forward. The only way www.delegateitsolutions.com succeeds is if your business succeeds. So from the moment you hire them for any project big or small, rest assured it will be handled as the most important task at hand! That’s the secret to success in anything, taking what you feel passionate about and applying it to your business. RGM has known Melissa as she has helped us along the way and we can highly recommend www.delegateitsolutions.com, but this is the first time we took the chance to interview Melissa and ask her a few questions first hand.
MELISSA, WHEN DID YOU FIRST ENVISION DELEGATE IT? I first envisioned Delegate It when I saw my husband struggling with his own start up business. Not quite making enough money to hire full time help, but too much business to do it all himself. I was already helping a few other clients with small projects like customer service, drop shipping, and order fulfillment (sweating the small stuff) so they could focus on growing their business instead of wasting time on tedious day to day tasks (that all businesses must do to be successful, but never really have the time to get to). That was my “light bulb” moment, the moment I realized I could be a real asset to all entrepreneurs and small business owners. In this economy there are so many small businesses and entrepreneurs struggling to make it, many of them at that tipping point like my husband. That’s where Delegate It steps in. We fill that gap, sweating your small stuff, so you can grow past that tipping point and become a huge success. That is when Delegate It was born and I decided to make a go for it and grow my own business while helping others grow theirs.
Melissa, what suggestions would you have for our readers who may be considering starting their own business? My suggestion to those who want to start their own business is just go for it. I am a big fan of doing. Don’t be afraid of failing, you really have nothing to lose by trying and so much more to gain by succeeding (or even attempting). Everything is an opportunity to learn and that in itself is success. Most of all, you have to be willing to do the work others do not want to do as in Albert E.N. Gray’s quote: “The common denominator of success --- the secret of success of every man who has ever been successful --- lies in the fact that he formed the habit of doing things that failures don’t like to do.”
Lastly, tell us a little more about the services Delegate It offers; is there any type of job you won’t do? For example would you... say, import Bengal Tigers for a small Zoo (or at least do the paperwork)? We are always up for a challenge and the opportunity to learn something new so if a small zoo needed us to do some paperwork to import Bengal Tigers we would definitely sweat that small stuff (as long as it’s legal of course). We do everything from data entry to custom website design. We can help you deliver exceptional customer service so that your clients keep coming back for more. We can handle drop shipping and order fulfillment, mass mailing and even help you file for your LLC. We do custom projects that don’t fit the norm and we’re always happy to take a stab at something new. Check out our website for more at
ON THE COVER
Really Great Magazine caught up with singer Leandra Ramm, who shares her next career steps and theatrical dreams.
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COVER ARTIST LEANDRA SHARES SOME ADVICE FOR OTHER ASPIRING SINGERS.
s a lead singer for Celebrity Cruises, vocal talent Leandra Ramm has traveled around the world—but the sassy artist knows where her heart truly lays. “I love New York,” gushes the Roosevelt Island native, who recently settled into a new apartment with roommates.
Honestly, I’ve been to Turkey, I’ve been to Greece…after traveling, I can definitely say I love New York more than any other place. There’s a zillion things to do on every block.”
A talented opera and classical singer who won a national competition at age 14, Leandra, who is in her late 20s, is also a model, actress, and dancer. “I’ve been singing my whole life, plus my mom is a pianist. I was recently watching an old home video and there I was, singing,” laughs Leandra. “Winning that opera competition as a teen motivated me to take music seriously. I see it as a gift I can share with others.” Leandra is featured on five self-titled albums, availableon amazon.com and iTunes, and has performed at the La MaMa Experimental Theater Club, Center for Contemporary Opera, and the UK’s Buxton Opera House—to name just a few. Other recent performances include Antonia in Man of La Mancha with the Diablo Theater Company, and Estelle in The Full Monty at The Media Theater in Pennsylvania.
Back in New York Back in her home city, Leandra is excited for the future. First up—more music. “My goal as an artist is to integrate opera into the mainstream,” she says. “Opera music was always very separate from mainstream music, but we’re getting there. Look at Josh Groban.”
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“You have to love it,” says Leandra, a fan of the TV show Smash which chronicles the lives of Broadway actors and writers. “Pursuing your dreams can be discouraging, especially in New York City, the hub of everything, but sing for yourself, not for the fame and fortune. Find a voice coach, get Backstage magazine to learn about local auditions, and keep going.”
Calling music she is partial to nowadays “pop-opera,” Leandra hopes to eliminate the stereotype that opera music is its own world; its own bubble. “Music is music; it doesn’t have to be a style. I don’t sing just opera; I enjoy combining opera with other genres.” Additionally, Leandra doesn’t pigeonhole herself by listening to opera all day long. “Opera is in my heart, but I’m merging it and excited about singing other styles.” Not only does she give singing lessons, but Leandra’s iPod is filled with all genres of music. “I listen to everything, depending on my mood,” she explains. “When I want to relax, I’ll listen to Bach, but not when I’m working out! I listen to country and rap and everything in-between,” she says, admits the “huge” Maria Callas fan. “She’s my favorite,” says Leandra of the legendary opera singer. “Maria was such a beauty, as a person and an artist.”
Reality Bites Leandra recently filmed a reality show for Lifetime which highlights every aspect of her life her craft, her career, and sadly, her scary scandal. Her episode of “My Life is a Lifetime Movie” aired at the end of November. In the reality show, Leandra opens up about an incident that haunted her for many years—she was cyberstalked. And Leandra decided to fight back and use her voice for more than singing. Here’s the backstory: After watching her interview with TV personality Anderson Cooper, in 2005, a man in Singapore posed as a talent agent and contacted Leandra. He ended up stalking her, hell-bent on destroying her reputation and scaring her and her family.
The stalking incident is absolutely documented on the reality show says Leandra, who co-authored a book about her stalking experience called Stalking a Diva. “I’ve been through so much in my life and the documentary, plus the book, will explain it all, while raising further awareness about cyberstalking. I decided to tell my story because I was a victor in the end. I won.” Today, Leandra’s cyberstalker is behind bars, and Leandra says the whole ordeal made her stronger. “Nothing scares me anymore. I grew from the entire experience. Today, when I am I find myself so mad and frustrated, I’ll think, ‘Ok, there’s always a solution...’” Besides her stalking activism, Leandra works with autism awareness groups. Motivated by her special-needs younger brother, Leandra explains “I always help him as much as I can. I just participated in a celebrity portrait event, in which all proceeds go to Autism Now.”
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Born to be wild' and special The reality show also highlights Leandra’s birth. You see, she was born special. Of course, all babies are, but Leandra’s history is quite unique. Her parents—her father in particular— were unable to conceive children, so in the early 80s, they went to a sperm bank called the Repository for Germinal Choice, seeking assistance. Known as the “genius” sperm bank, its founder, scientist Robert Graham, collected sperm from men with high-IQs and special talents. Leandra has never met her biological father— and absolutely considers the man who raised her to be her father—but does know he was an intelligent college Professor. Her younger sister and brother were also conceived from the same sperm bank; although they have the same Biological father, while Leandra’s is someone else. Leandra has been interviewed by Barbara Walters, Star Jones, Morley Safer and Robin Roberts about her biological history and vocal talent.
Broadway Baby All singers find themselves ill or with a strained voice at times, and Leandra is no exception. “The best thing for my voice when I can’t perform is vocal rest,” she says. “The voice will heal itself; I believe that. But to help my voice when I’m not feeling well, I use slippery elm lozenges, tea, a steamer, plus homeopathic drops under my tongue. Of course, I drink water, water, water!” To unwind when things get crazy—Leandra describes herself as a “hermit” when she wants to relax—she “takes times for myself to calm my nerves.” “I don’t answer e-mails; I meditate or take a long bath. To me, relaxing is so much better than going to a club or something,” she says. Fans can catch Leandra in a Mitsubishi commercial , or on stage once again. This summer and fall, she’s participating in the New York Fringe Festival and working on a solo show. Her dream role would be Christine in Phantom of the Opera. “I love theatre, I’ve been doing musical theatre since I was a kid growing up in Roosevelt Island,” says Leandra, who was featured in the Off-Broadway show Hell’s Kitchen: The Musical in 2009. “I’m trying to get into a Broadway show. That’s my next big goal, and would make me feel complete.” For more info, visit leandraramm.com or Talent Management Group Photographer - Carl Martucci
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Manager - Fred Coscia
pproximately 4 months ago, I had a Breast Enlargement to DDs. As a result, none of my old bras fit. Fairly new, each of these bras cost between $80 and $120, so throwing them away doesn’t seem feasible. Instead I am matching up each bra with a photo from one of my many shoots in that very bra, signing both the picture and bra and auctioning them off on Ebay. There will also be a “buy it now” price, but I really want to focus on making this an auction. I’m naming this “Cleavage for the Cure.” I feel we will easily hit our goal of $1000.00 — when we do, I’ll be posting all over my social media the screen shot of the great donation to the foundation.
I am also hosting a night at a club in Boston where music artists come and perform and the entire night is dedicated and donated to Susan G Komen. I have personal experience losing family members and friends due to cancer and want to do my part to help find a cure, and have fun at the same time. facebook.com/ashleyalexiss twitter.com/ashalexiss Susan G Komen for the Cure
BY: GISELLE CAMPOS
GIVES BACK & GETS PERSONAL
Last time we spoke to Ashley we found out many things about her, including the fact that she is beautiful inside and out, she is an active role model when it comes to believing in your dreams, as she is no stranger to be being bullied because of the way she looks, her accomplishments, and her driveâ€Ś and it gets better. Not only is she a bombshell featured i n Playboy, but she is also a hopeless romantic, who dearly loves her family, including her mother and grandmother, who recently passed away after a long fight with cancer, RG magazine wishes Ashley the best, and call out for a moment of silence in her honor.
PHOTOS BY SAMUEL ERWIN SRE PHOTOGRAPHY SREPHOTO.COM
LAST TIME WE SPOKE, YOU WERE ON TOP OF THE WORLD WITH OPPORTUNITIES COMING LEFT AND RIGHT, ANYTHING EXCITING YOU CAN FILL US IN? A lot had happened! I’ve been traveling a lot with Cintron [@CintronEnergy] & I’ve been in a few contests. I’m running for Playboy South Africa’s first girl next door & that means a pictorial in their Magazine, that contest ends Sept. 1. I’m also going to be going to Australia at some point at the end of the year or the beginning of next to shoot for Playboy Australia & New Zealand.. I also have a few charity things I’m working on! So excited! UPDATE: Ashley Alexiss is now the first ever Playboy South Africa’s girl next door! making her an international playboy model! Proof you can do anything if you set your mind and heart into it!
ANY TIPS FOR GIRLS TRYING TO FOLLOW IN YOUR FOOTSTEPS? It’s such a critical industry, thicken your skin and remember that the only opinion that matters is your own! Help others, because they will in-turn help you as well. Make sure to do ALL your research, everyone has some sort of motive, you need to make sure everything you involved yourself in will benefit you. Simply never settle, put yourself on a ‘humble’ pedestal & don’t let anyone knock you off!
COCO/CHANEL, WHAT LEAD YOU TO GETTING THE ENHANCEMENT? Oh my amazing big and beautiful new girls haha I’ve always wanted to ‘fill’ my boobs.. They just didn’t look the way I wanted them. So I decided to take matters into my own hands and get the surgery :) I just made them fuller, with an increase of a size. I’m happy. That’s all that matters ;]
ASHLEY IS OFFICIALLY AN INTERNATIONAL PLAYBOY MODEL, CONGRATS!
A NOTE FROM ASHLEY: Along with everything that has been amazing over the last few months, this is my first interview since I lost one of my biggest supporters and one of my best friends... My Nanna. It’s been a rough couple of months and it’s not getting easier, but I am using her as my motivation to continue to make her proud. With that being said, she passed from cancer, so I’m going to be involving myself in many different charitable ideas to raise money for cancer. Follow me on all my social networks to find out the full details when I decide to dish the details ;)
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REALLY GREAT TALENT
eather it’s a collection inspired by ‘Angel’ Ziggy Gurnick,’ Nubia’s 23 year old boyfriend who passed on September 25th 2009 after a battle with melanoma, a fund-raiser for St. Jude Children’s hospital or various print work and modeling for fortune 500 companies this si one designer to keep your eyes on. Not only is she graceful,elegant and a Really Great model her designs are Chic and very wearable. Nuba collections are currently featured at Hillary Flowers Boutique 40 Clinton Street NYC as well as Le Bourgeosie Boutique in Jamaica, Queens (make-up artist for both “Ziggy G. ANGEL Collection” designs especially the army fatigue I submitted was by Japanese make-up artist Mitsuko Okusa. The shoot was done locally at Staten Island landmark ‘Snug Harbor’.
NUBIA'S WEBSITE: NUBIA007.COM FACEBOOK: NUBIA-UNIQUE-BOUTIQUE
arah’s been modeling for several years and already has been featured three different times in Playboy’s Special Edition issues as well as their website. She was a hostess for Playboy Girls of Golf. Sarah has been featured on numerous websites including Maxim.com, adorned numerous calendars, publications & print ads, as well as hosted events and appeared in television commercials. When she is not modeling, Mrs. Clayton (That’s right, Sarah is married to one fortunate guy) is a Physical Therapist Assistant & fitness enthusiast. She also enjoys playing with her English Bulldog Iggy, watching “her” 76ers play and date night with her husband. Sarah is currently hosting her own meet and greets in Cancun. To check out more on Sarah go to:
TWITTER: SARAH_CLAYTON81 FACEBOOK: FACEBOOK.COM/MSCLAYTONFANS FACEBOOK.COM/MODELSARAHCLAYTON Photographer credit: Robert Sleeper, Scott Church
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t’s one thing to try and create an interactively fabulous social media page but it’s another, entirely, to take it to “reality.” So many web casters, producers, gurus and retailers of every kind are attempting to live podcast, blog and video sell on sites like YouTube, Vimeo and Contact Radio. Who would even imagine that a Facebook timeline could be used for a live web show? But What’s Your Problem? TV is doing it - daily, weekly and monthly, asking fans and followers to share events, food, photos and fantasies while checking in for impressive advice on how to solve life’s little problems. Playing games is becoming an interesting habit with What’s Your Problem? TV and host Janet Arneau, who dices out some pretty neat repartee and more than a few gut busting solutions. Ok, so what’s bothering you today? Is something upsetting you about your workout? Need a suggestion on how to sweeten or salt a beer? Is your Dog lying around too much? Before you let your friends go rolling their eyes at your quest for the seemingly impossible or the insane, What’s Your Problem? TV has a solution. And what’s more, Problem connected friends will most likely be chiming in with a heck of a lot more advice than you even wanted!
Problem: “I’m tired of being shot down by girls because I’m short.” Solution: “ Move to a place where the girls on average are shorter than American girls – like China!” Problem: “My parents are making me crazy!” Solution: “Tell them to take a vacation, go to THEIR parents’ house!” Problem: “I gained weight. I can’t go out to the beach!” Solution: “Move it! Move it! Move it! At least 15 minutes a day. Constant movement for 12 minutes puts the body in fat burning mode and movement past 12 minutes is eating away the fat!”
Problem: “I am depressed.” Solution: “Take your clothes off right now. Now! Get naked right here. If you are standing in public naked the last thing you will be thinking about is anything that will make you sad!” Well, you asked for it! Check the listing below for the show you want to solve your problem. Don’t forget to like the page and ask a question. What's Your Problem? facebook.com/whatsyourproblemtv# you can post any problem 24/7 on the What’s Your Problem? page and get a solution that same day from host “Janet Arneau”.
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Interview with actress Katrina Lenk from Spider-Man Turn Off The Dark By Michael Martinez
Broadway’s hit musical Spider-Man Turn Off The Dark has a new Arachne casting a spell and singing above the stage at the Foxwoods Theatre. The mysterious and seductive character is now played by actress Katrina Lenk. Katrina’s credits include theworld premiere of Lost Land at the Steppenwolf Theatre and the title role in Lovelace: A Rock Opera, for which she won L.A. Weekly and Garland awards. RG MAG: The first thought that enters my mind
when I think of an actor working in Spider-Man Turn Off The Dark is what a unique and thrilling experience it must be for the actor. It’s not like you’re coming into a revival of a classic musical, this is production that was world renowned before it ever opened. What was your experience like during the early stages of your involvement with this production, from landing the role to your opening night? Katrina: I
have never been a replacement for a broadway musical before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect- but I didn’t have much time to worry. After all the contract details were worked out, I had less than two weeks, while closing ‘Cloudlands’ at South Coast Rep, to pack up my apartment in LA and get to NYC. Once here, I was immediately put at ease by stage management who were extremely warm and welcoming... As well as the cast and crew. I felt at home right away. I had three weeks before my debut in the role. The first days were filled with costume, wig and make-up fittings with the fantastic wardrobe and makeup/ hair departments. Then there was the job of learning the part: Spider-Man often has daily rehearsals for other purposes so AD , SM, dance captain, assist choreographer and myself were a constant little posee, and had only just a few hours each week available to practice flying and scene work. Then I got to ‘shadow’ the current Arachne, the wonderful and generous Christina Sajous, to see what exactly her track entailed in show-time. In following her backstage, I was stunned, and still am, by the fluidity of the backstage traffic and scenery shifts. The crew is so focused and professional and calm, and the show knows itself so well by now, that all I had to do was slip right in to the spot carved out for me. And then wooosh, I was on. RGM © 56
RGMAG: Your character Arachne has gone through changes since the show first previewed and has garnered almost as much press and Broadway chat room chatter as the main character. How did you view your role when you were first cast and how do you see Arachne now that you have had the chance to play her in front of live audiences?
I had only a small idea what to expect about the role when first cast. I knew Arachne’s track had been drastically modified from version 1.0, and I knew two of the songs I would be singing (Rise Above and Turn Off the Dark, which hooked me, as soon as I heard them, hunched over my computer watching YouTube pre-audition), and I knew that I would be flying, but that’s all I knew. I had heard tell that she is like Peter’s fairy godmother, but I think she is more than that. And not quite so benevolent. Through rehearsals and performances we crafted her (or attempted to- I hope we succeeded!) as a creature trying to connect with the only other creature like herself in existence: half human/ half spider. She sees her chance to connect with and inspire someone like her to go the route she should have gone, and, also, to turn his seemingly random ‘punishment’ into a gift. It’s a kind of redemption not just for Peter Parker but for herself. Even though her full story is gracefully fluttering around the edges, I think that is her role in the show, and I truly hope audiences might catch a glimmer of that in what I’m doing. Katrina:
REALLY GREAT theater
Reeve Carney where you sing “ Turn Off The Dark”. Besides being a beautiful song , the scene was brilliantly staged and it created a tighter connection between Peter Parker and Arachne. What does the scene and song mean to you? What is Arachne feeling while she is floating into Peter’s dreams? How cool is it to sing a Bono and Edge song on Broadway?
gifted and self-effacingly charming. What can I say? It’s bloody maddening! Matthew James Thomas, the Peter Parker standby, is another one of those creatures. Both of them are such pleasures to work with, and very giving actors as well as fierce, expressive rock singers. If they are the future of Broadway, hallelujah!
RGMAG: You had the opportunity to work
RGMAG: I loved the scene with you and
I gotta say, it’s pretty #$#%!) cool. I mean, a musical written by uber passionate rock stars about a superhero??!! And Turn Off The Dark is a pretty magical song... I am honored to get to play the character that sings the title of the show- that’s pretty cool too. What Arachne is feeling in that scene is that combination of joy and agony that you feel when you see someone you love in a dream who is no longer alive, or someone you love that is not yours to have... she knows what he has yet to learn, and she is has been aching to connect with someone for so long, yet still she can only do it on a certain half-real level... it’s thrilling and heartbreaking at the same time. Peter has called her somehow, through his fear and his need for help, and she has very important things to tell him, but she can only speak in rhyme, and when he is half-asleep... will he remember what she said? will he even remember the feeling of a companion in her? Agony. What the scene means to me, to be truly honest, is a 7 minute foot cramp, then a charlie horse, then worrying that our flight lines might not get connected in time, that my crown might fall off when we go upside down, that my lipstick has gotten on my teeth, that someone in the audience might be yawning, and that I might accidently drool and/or have a runny nose while I’m hanging over Peter’s head. Ahh ha ha ha ha! It’s amazing that we can have those two brains running at once! RGMAG: What is it like to work with Reeve Carney? KATRINA: Arachne’s track is so isolated,
the only time she sees anyone it’s Peter Parker, and even then it’s in the air for only a split second, so I wish i had more time to actually WORK with Reeve. He’s young and handsome and
with the Steppenwolf Theatre Company and work with John Malkovich in Lost Land. One of my great theatre experiences was seeing Malkovich in Burn This. What was it like to work with Steppenwolf and Malkovich? KATRINA: I
grew up in Chicago, so Steppenwolf was a place I wanted to work since I knew it existed- it wasn’t until
in Lovelace: A Rock Opera. What was it about the musical and role that attracted you? KATRINA: The
original score by Anna Waronker and Charlotte Caffey is what caught me at first. They were able to zero in on Linda Lovelace’s emotional life with their music. That’s one of the great things about a well done musicalwhen the music can move you, touch your heart , go without apology to the source of every emotion... that’s what we do it for, and that’s why people go to see it. And I think this music did just that. I also had very little idea of Linda’s life before the audition came up, so I hadn’t any preconceived notions about her... when I read her story I was immediately struck by it, as well: the depths to which humans will go, and the courage it takes to pull themselves out of those depths. Fascinating and inspiring story to hear, and also morbidly challenging and fulfilling for an actor to play. RGMAG: The audiences I have seen at
Spider-Man Turn Off The Dark leave the theater entertained and thrilled by the experience. Besides the dazzling spectacle of the musical, in your view, what is it about the show that touches the audience? KATRINA: I
I moved to Los Angeles that I booked a play there- doesn’t it figure? It was a thrill. John is exquisite and challenging and fiercely present as an actor... There were several moments he took my breath away while in rehearsal. I remember saying to myself “oh. Yes. THIS is what this craft is for...” He showed me how to be fearless and vulnerable at the same time. It was one of the most inspiring theatre experiences i have had and I count myself every day lucky to have had it. I still often think to myself when working on a role, ‘ what would John have done?’
think it is the heart of the show that makes people leap to their feet. This heart is in each and every one of the cast, crew, orchestra and stage management. From those that have been in it from the beginning, seen it through all of it’s complicated past, to those that are newly joined. You can feel it the moment the show begins- the absolute commitment to every moment, and to tell this story, and to enjoy the telling of it. That’s what’s infectious, and that’s what keeps people coming back. katrinalenk.com SPIDER-MAN TURN OFF THE DARK IS AT FOXWOODS THEATRE - 213 WEST 42ND STREET IN NEW YORK CITY SPIDERMANONBROADWAY.MARVEL.COM
RGMAG: You won awards for your title role
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lthough award winning actress Tanya Franks is well known in the USA, her role playing Richard Burton’s first wife Sybil in Lifetime’s “Liz & Dick” is a new first for Tanya. Most of her fans know her as the drunken school teacher Karen in BBC’s award winning comedy “Pulling” or the drug addicted RAINIE in “EastEnders” but this is surprisingly her first role in Hollywood! Long overdue, no doubt, but Tanya is giving her fans much to look forward to. A new series, “Broadchurch” is presently in production and her recently launched U.S.- based feature film company called Stock-pot Films LLC has already given plenty back to the Arts. Stock-pot Films, to date, has produced several shorts including “One Day”, (a finalist for Kodak’s Best Short Film 2007) and created drama workshops in Girls Secondary Schools (funded by the National Lottery) as well as “The Talking Film Series” (a series of live interviews with film directors). Stock-pot is presently in development with their first feature film “Fly Me.” Ms. Franks may be best known for her award-winning performances in television but has adorned the stages of the Royal National Theatre, The Royal Exchange Theatre and many regional theaters. But it was her portrayal of Rainie Cross in “EastEnders” that drew attention. (specifically the crack smoking scene) When it drew some complaints, Tanya responded in an interview, “I think it can be massively helpful when a popular show like “EastEnders” covers an issue as important as drugs. If “EastEnders” has saved one life by putting this story out, it’s worth it.” Worth it indeed! RGMAG interviewed Tanya and we look forward to seeing much more of her in many new projects to come.
RGMAG: WHAT WAS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE THEATRE ROLE YOU PLAYED AND WHY?
I think it would have to be Sylv from the play East. It’s an amazing play written by Steven Berkoff and it was a very special time working with and being directed by him. I did his 25th anniversary production of it in the West End, Edinburgh, Paris, and Italy. It can still be bought today on DVD at the National Theatre in London and online. RGMAG: STOCK-POT FILMS LLC HAS GIVEN BACK TO THE ARTS THROUGH ITS PROGRAMS AND ESPECIALLY “THE TALKING FILM SERIES.” WHAT ELSE IS IN THE FUTURE FOR STOCK- POT? PLEASE ELABORATE ON PROJECTS LIKE “THE TALKING FILM SERIES”.
“The Talking Film Series” was a series of live interviews with an audience in London. We interviewed the great filmmakers Mike Leigh, Alan Parker, Terry Jones, Mike Figgis, and Terry Gilliam in the late 90’s raising funds for Stock-pot Prods and the London International Film School (now LFS). Stock-pot Films LLC and Stock-pot Productions (www. stockpotproductions.com) are slightly different, in the sense that Stock-pot Films is my American based company, whereas Stock-pot Productions is UK based and is the original company I set up. My US based co-producer, Todd Shill, and I are producing ‘Fly Me’ under Stock-pot Productions in the UK. We are currently raising finance for the movie and as soon as we have the green light we will be able to release much more information on it. Stock-pot Productions’ last film was a short called ‘One Day’ starring TimMcInnerny, which was successful on the UK and international festival circuit. It was voted
Kodak Best Short Film Finalist and was actually the film that brought me to LA in the first place. ‘One Day’ can be downloaded from iTunes now if you’re interested to watch it. As for Stock-pot Films LLC we already have a *rom-com feature in development which will be shot predominantly in the US.
RGMAG: MANY OF THE TELEVISION ROLES YOU PLAY ARE DYSFUNCTIONAL CHARACTERS; SO OPPOSITE FROM YOUR OWN PERSONALITY, WHAT HAS THAT EXPERIENCE BEEN LIKE AND IS THAT BY CHOICE OR A TINY BIT OF TYPECASTING?
Well it’s a mixture of choice and type-casting. I think because I don’t class myself as a very dark person naturally - I’m a bit of a chicken in real life - I like playing characters that allow me to explore and understand personalities and areas of life that I wouldn’t otherwise. The fact that a couple of these characters have been popular with audiences means I am now often thought of for new roles with similar dark qualities. I don’t take up all the queries and offers I receive, it depends if I feel the role will challenge me in some way. However, I do intersperse these characters with roles like Sybil Burton in the movie, ‘Liz & Dick’ premiering on Lifetime on Thanksgiving weekend. Sybil is Richard Burton’s first wife whom he left for Elizabeth Taylor, being played by Lindsay Lohan. (* rom-com - shorthand for a Romantic Comedy)
SAN DIEGO JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL PRESENTS: THE AGONY AND THE ECSTASY OF PHIL SPECTOR
BY SANDRA CASTILLO
or many an artist, there exists a very fine line between the id’s creative ardor and its insufferable bouts with madness. Oftentimes these conflicted mental paradigms may thrust its host into a tailspin of tragic, irreversible consequences. Certainly if there was ever a soul in all of humanity who carried that insurmountable burden of proof, it is the legendary record producer, Phil Spector. Responsible for some of the most exciting, innovative music of the 20th century, Spector was in the eye of the storm in: “The Agony and the Ecstasy of Phil Spector,” that was part of 2012’s San Diego Jewish Film Festival. The documentary focused on Spector’s murder trial involving actress Lana Clarkson, who was shot to death at his Alhambra mansion in the early morning hours of Feb. 3, 2003. Spector was eventually found guilty of the crime and charged with second-degree murder in 2009, some two years after a Los Angeles jury deadlocked 10-2 on its decision to convict him at his first trial in 2007. Sentenced to 19 years to life, Spector is now serving time in a maximum-security penitentiary in Corcoran, CA. The news surrounding Spector and the murder of Clarkson, a former screen star of such low-budget fare as “Barbarian Queen” and “Amazon Women on the Moon,” spread across the continent like wildfire. At the time of her death, she was working as a hostess in the VIP room at the House of Blues in Hollywood, where Spector had gone for a cocktail. As fate would have it, the two met and at the end of her shift, she accepted his offer to accompany him back to his home for a drink. Before the sun rose on L.A. the next morning, Clarkson was dead.
Over in England, the British film director Vikram Jayanti was paying very close attention to what was taking place in California and decided to contact Spector for an upcoming project which he was developing. It would become Jayanti’s personal mission to deliver a lasting testament of Spector’s significant contributions to music and remind the public that his legacy, however controversial his reputation, is indisputable. It was his Wagnerian-inspired requiems of passionate, bittersweet teen-age angst that Spector provided for America’s youth in the 1960s. As “The Agony and the Ecstasy” RGM © 60
played out on the screen, those epiphanies of love’s great divide swept across the audience like rolling thunder. For those who served under Spector’s tutelage - The Ronettes, Righteous Brothers, Tina Turner - it was their dynamic vocals and stage moves that accompanied footage rocked by intense courtroom drama and graphic crime scene photographs. Although there were those in the industry who never did inherit Spector’s loyalty, he felt much affection for John Lennon. Spector is the owner of Lennon’s white piano, which was used in the 1970 recording of “Imagine” and could be seen in the background of the
sitting room where Jayanti interviewed his subject. As Spector spoke candidly about his life and his music, the instrument was a touching reminder of the bond that had been forged between the maestro and a Beatle. There is a poignant epitaph inscribed in the headstone of Spector’s father’s grave which reads: TO KNOW HIM WAS TO LOVE HIM. Perhaps that is all we need to know about Phil Spector.
…So a mother and her young son are riding in a car… They hit a deer… Are they okay… Alive… Dead… No one knows what happened to them… Have they been rescued… Years later a grieving husband sets the wheels in motion to look for them… A retired detective is enlisted to help…Will he find them… If they are found alive, will it be a good thing… Or would it have been more humane if they had perished in the crash…
n January 28, 2012 I find myself at the Radisson Hotel in Philadelphia, PA. I am there to see the first East Coast screening of the new Christian Jude Grillo film, Deer Crossing. When I arrive at the hotel, I realize my idea is not so original. There are people everywhere waiting for the screening to begin. Finally a line forms at the door to purchase tickets. I think to myself: “You should have arrived earlier! Look at this line! You’ll never make the cut!” But I got lucky, and with a quick stamp on my hand, I am in. I am surrounded by a huge crowd of people
Before I get into the reason we were all there, obviously to watch Deer Crossing, I wanted to touch on something I take pride in. Since I am writing this article, my opinion might be a teensy bit biased. Fans of the horror genre are simply the most loyal fans out there. Being one of them, I can say that first hand. We live and die for all things horror. There were a lot of people in the audience that night, like myself, who had no connection to the film in any way, except for the fact that there was a horror film being screened in their area. There was no question if they would attend or not; there would be no other place they would rather have been that night. You also have fans that take it to the next level. I spoke with one such fan in the ticket line. His name was Mike Vankirk from Bensalem, Pennsylvania. He came across a link on a friend’s facebook page about the site IndieGoGo for a new movie idea. “After reading the short summary of the movie, I liked it a lot,” says Vankirk. There were different packages supporters could purchase in the form of making donations, starting at $25.00 going up to $200.00. When I chat with Vankirk about the link he saw, he tells me: “I really liked the idea behind the film
and love independent horror movies, so I made a $100.00 donation. It was awesome seeing them take the movie from that idea to the movie that we watched!” For his donation he received a Deer Crossing t-shirt, a Deer Crossing DVD and his name in the ending credits of the film. I also got the chance to talk with one of the cast members at the after party. He tells me his name is Jonathan Patrick Hughes and he portrayed the part of “Chris.” I asked him what it was like to be a first time actor in a movie and also asked about the vibe on the set of such a “dark” film. “The experience was amazing! As long as I can remember I have always wanted to be in a film or direct one. It was a lot of fun being a part of Deer Crossing!” I also asked him what it was like to shoot his scenes. Hughes tells me, “We shot my scene in two different parts of Philly. (That’s Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for you Non-East Coasters out there.) The dialogue between me & Tom Detrik, who plays the role of “Dick,” took place in the basement of a school, and that is pretty cool considering in the film it looks like it is some sort of power plant. My death scene took place outside of an actual power plant. It is really cool
buzzing with excitement about what we are about to see. It is impressive how many members of the cast and crew (including their families and friends) have shown up to watch their work on the big screen. I think that always adds to the excitement for the fans. Just to name a few of those in attendance that night were: Christopher Mann, Carmela Hayslett, Laura Lynn Cottrel, Christopher Inlow, K.J. Linhein, Warren Hemenway, Jonathan Patrick Hughes, Producer : John Kent and Writer/Director : Christian Jude Grillo. I might add that all of these fine people attended the “after party” and graciously posed for photos, signed autographs, answered questions and more…
when you see the finished product on film; it looks completely different than when you are on site.” I had to ask him my “fun fact”: If his career had started one year earlier, what role in what 2010 film would he have liked to have had… Hughes tells me: “I would have loved to be in the horror film, Insidious. I just thought that was one of the best films of 2010. I would have loved to play one of the paranormalists who helped out Lin Shaye’s character!” I leave Jonathan Patrick Hughes with one question: What’s next for him? He tells me he does have another project lined up, but cannot discuss it at the moment, as the director hasn’t given the actors the green light to talk about it publicly yet. Looks like we will have to wait and see… The movie itself was amazing! I don’t want to give too many details away, incase you have not seen it yet. If that is the case, make sure you run out and purchase it today, wherever DVD’s are sold! In my personal experiences watching movies, there is usually a lull, where you think: “I can make a quick run for popcorn or let me check my messages real fast.” I found myself (and my not so easily impressed husband) transfixed by what was happening
on the screen. There were grotesque moments… that as much as I wanted to look away, I couldn’t... There are times you think: “I’ve got this… I know what’s going to happen”… And you’re wrong… Christian Jude Grillo takes you on a thrilling psychological ride of emotions. Visually and mentally this film burns deep into your psyche and makes you ask the age old question: What if that was happening to me? What would I do? Did the characters make the right decisions? Are there really people out there, riding the rails of life along with us that are capable of such atrocities? If you think I am making this sound grim, you are both correct and incorrect at the same time. When you are a horror fan, there is no grim, this is the stuff you crave, you will devour this movie! That is not to say that even the most die hard of us cannot be affected by the macabre at times. It is all part of the viewing experience and I would not have had it any other way. Isn’t that what you want in a great film? To have it eerily leave the theater with you… A part of you… And stay for a while…
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by A. Bronwyn Sheehan
em Ferda (The Devil’s Double & Legacy) is known for being both a hero and a villain on screen. Soon you will know him as Hakan, when he stars in Nicolas Winding Refn’s new film, Pusher, a fast paced action film! Born in Chelsea, South West London, Mem Ferda earned degrees in both psychology and business administration before he began acting. He trained at and graduated from The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. He has been perfecting his craft with rave reviews ever since. Known for movies such as Guy Ritchie’s Revolver and Legacy with Idris Elba, Mem is sought after for his emotional versatility on screen as well as his physical characteristics. When you think of an actor drawing from personal experiences in life, Mem has a much deeper well than most. As a child he witnessed an assignation attempt against his own father. While he was a student, he was held at the Serbian border as a suspected drug smuggler and he was once threatened at gunpoint in Istanbul! I would say those experiences would give an actor a rich amount of emotion to work with… Let’s find out from Mem.
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RG MAG: You have been quoted as saying “I guess it was a natural progression, bound to happen. As a child, villains and immoral characters excited me to no end, now here I am portraying such types on screen.” Do you feel you are living your childhood dream everyday? In terms of making movies, yes, very much so. The quote refers to watching villains on screen and being excited by them, and to a degree being influenced by them. Growing up I had a friend who would always say ‘live in the movies Mem’ I guess this saying stayed with me. As a teen, I did take this to the extreme, the divide between reality and fantasy sometimes being somewhat blurred. RG MAG: I was curious about all your schooling and multiple degrees. Did you, at one time, think of having a career in something other than acting? There isn’t a profession I didn’t consider. I guess it was this indecisiveness that led me to become an actor. As an actor you can be many characters with an endless array of various occupations. This is what I most love about being an actor. After my Psychology degree, I wanted to work for the police in forensics, after passing the tests, I found out I was colorblind, so that was the end of that ambition. Then my masters in Business led me to work as an Executive recruitment consultant, though well paid, I found the work monotonous and very soul destroying. Innate in me was this desire to perform, and it never
subsided, hence, I had to follow this desire and I’m so delighted I did. My advice is to always follow your passion and be the best you can be, in doing what you love the most. RG MAG: I wrote above that I thought everything that you survived in your life was something you could draw from as an actor. Do you feel the same? How did you survive all those experiences that would cripple some of us? My life experience certainly makes me the actor I am today. I feel it is safe to say that all actors draw from their life experiences. However, if someone’s life has been colorful or challenging, and as a result, this would make for a ‘better actor’, I’m not sure. Life’s prerogative is to throw challenges at us, aggravating, as they are; we all have an inner strength that comes to surface when we most need it. I survived, as I had no other option, I also had a lot of luck, which helped tremendously. RG MAG: Please tell us all about your new film, Pusher! Sure. This is an English language remake of the original Danish cult movie created and directed back in 1996 by Nicolas Winding Refn. The 2012 version of PUSHER is set in London instead of Copenhagen; it is about a week in the life of a mid-level drug pusher named Frank played by Richard Coyle. When Frank’s aspirations of making lots of money fast, spiral out of control due to a drug bust,
he is thrown into a dangerous situation of owing large sums of money to a Turkish drug baron, Milo (Zlatko Buric) and his enforcer Hakan, played by yours truly. Frank’s life soon descends into a living hell, as he slowly losses everything he ever had, his best friend, Tony, (Bronson Webb) and his girlfriend, Flo, played by supermodel Agyness Deyn, both give up on him. The film is a no-holds-barred, gritty and real, journey into the underworld of the drug pusher. It is extremely entertaining with flashes of humor, hard-core action, violence and a twisted plot. It also has a super soundtrack by Orbital. The script had me totally engrossed from start to finish, a real page-turner. I like stories about people who are destroying themselves and are aware that they are doing it yet knowing this; they still can’t prevent it from happening. For me, the role of Hakan depicted an accurate reflection and examination of how some immigrants come to the UK in search of a better life and find themselves entangled in crime because opportunities they had hoped for never transpired. The character of Hakan is very layered and complex, he is not your stereotypical villain. He is a victim of circumstance, trapped in doing a job as an enforcer when he’d rather have his own legitimate business as a pub owner. I was confident I could do justice to the role and recent reviews have been very positive, so I’m very happy about that
RG MAG FUN FACT: SINCE YOU ARE BILINGUAL, SPEAKING BOTH ENGLISH AND TURKISH, IS THERE A CHARACTER YOU HAVE PORTRAYED IN EITHER LANGUAGE THAT YOU WOULD HAVE LOVED TO HAVE DONE IN THE OTHER? No, not really, as a lot of films are translated to different languages, it reaches both Turkish and English audiences. One role I enjoyed playing immensely was Kamel Hannah in The Devil’s Double; this film has been translated into over 20 languages and was well received in Turkey as well as the UK and US.
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"The theme of "The Crimson Mask" was inspired by my family's struggles in Greece during WW II as part of the resistance and even more so by my Great Uncle Sarantos Ekonomakis, who stood up for his beliefs during the Greek Civil War and was murdered by the establishment of former Nazi Collaborators who were put in control of the government at the time“ “The lessons I learned from their life story in collaboration with the rich ancient history of Sparta that I was exposed to growing up greatly affected the way I see the world and therefore I think were integral to my success as a filmmaker. "
YOUNG GREEK-AMERICAN DIRECTOR TAKING ON THE FILM INDUSTRY by Nick Christophers
ince Nia Vardalos lit the Greek fire in Hollywood with her blockbuster “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”, more talented GreekAmericans have come forth with great works. Actors like Costas Mandylor, Nick Cassavetes, Louis Mandylor and Melina Kanakaredes have proven what they are made of. Yet there are those who are still breaking the “red tape” of Hollywood to make their Greek mark. Elias Plagnios has recently done that. A young Greek-American who was raised in Brooklyn has brought his background to the forefront of his work in many ways. His first production and first attempt at directing a film was in high school. The production was titled “Fried Cheese” which was really a TV show. A local cable company provided a Public Access channel that provided a half hour slot every week. All Elias had to do was provide content that fit the channel’s guidelines. “I took advantage of that and along with some friends, produced a sketch comedy show. I was forced to learn how to shoot, edit, write and act in order to get this show on the air every week. It allowed me to experiment with different ways to tell stories and I quickly realized I enjoyed the challenge of being behind the camera more than telling jokes in front of it.” He admits that he learned more about his career in High School than in College. This was due mostly in part to his teacher, Hy Shuster. He was a big inspiration for him. Hy taught him the key elements
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of visual storytelling and then allowed him to spend hours upon hours in the editing bays to discover his own unique voice. Elias’ teacher battled to get the school system to invest in certain equipment and his fellow students would soon go out into the world and do their best to prove it was worth the investment. Elias grew up admiring such legends as Robert Rodriguez, Sam Raimi, Steven Soderbergh and John Cassavetes. He was inspired by film directors who worked against the system and who discovered ways to create stories in a different light. This gave him the confidence to forge ahead and develop films his way. Before Elias was able to work fully on a feature, he produced many smaller projects. He has done everything from workout videos to travel documentaries. The knowledge and skills he picked up through these projects enabled him to transfer them to his current works. At times when he directed a live event with multiple cameras he was forced to make quick decisions. For example he would have to decide which camera to use for each moment of the production. He would actually be editing a two hour production on the spot, a task that is not easy to perfect. Yet Elias welcomed the challenge and succeeded. As a young boy Elias was introduced to the invoking Greek myths by his father; those stories would play a role in his future as a director. Also the heroic characters of Batman and Superman attracted his attention. He soon became a comic book fanatic and
began building a collection. This fusion of the myths and comics inspired him to produce the film “Redskins Revenge.” The film is based on the subject of zombies. The production was soon to see the light of day and won first place at the Zombiefest which was judged by the original team behind the film “Night Of The Living Dead.” Recently, Elias has completed and released a new film entitled “Crimson Mask.” The production was based on some true events in his life. From the films location in Brooklyn, New York to the inspiration to do the project, which derived from his ethnic roots; the film has managed to win over 35 awards at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival and was showcased there as well. Elias has always had the support of his family at every turn. Whether he succeeded or failed. He admits that his parents gave him the greatest gift of all, patience. They would always be there to catch him if he ever falls, then pick him up. Elias also added that there is another supporter who has attempted to bring together Greek actors and directors, Jim Gianopoulos, CEO of Fox. Through Jim, he had the opportunity to meet and share ideas with actors like Michael Chiklis, Nia Vardalos and others. Currently, Elias is working on a new project with Jason Riley and Lindsay MacAdam of Evos Media / Redbear Entertainment. The project which is in its infant stages appears to have more financial resources for Elias to really expand on his talents.
by A. Bronwyn Sheehan
English actor, Henry Hereford is coming to America, again! Well, not literally… He is going to be lighting up one of America’s most watched channels: Lifetime Network. Hereford will play Martin, the manager of the refined Dorchester Hotel, in the much awaited Lifetime drama: Liz & Dick. Although Liz & Dick is a drama, Henry Hereford will be putting the funny in his easily embarrassed, much abused character. Lindsay Lohan will portray Elizabeth Taylor and Grant Bowler will take on Richard Burton. If you did not catch Hereford in Liz & Dick’s premier on November 25th be sure to keep an eye out for him in the future. Audiences worldwide already know Henry for his portrayal of Lars in 2011’s blockbuster hit: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. But something they might not know is how deeply set Henry’s roots are in English heritage. His name, Hereford, is a city in historical Herefordshire. So I guess we are lucky he crosses the pond every now and then to grace our television and movie screens.
Q&A w/ Henry RG MAG: So Henry… Do you prefer to act in British productions as opposed to American productions because that is your Country of origin? Or do you like to change it up? I love working regardless of the production being British or American. In many ways there are not so many differences between them. Playing a Brit is always much easier, however I love the challenge to play an American; it is a lot of fun. RG MAG: : I have heard you can be quite the comedienne. Do you enjoy comedic or dramatic performances more? I love to play comedy. When you have a great comedy script, there is nothing that beats the experience. I also love to get my teeth into a really dramatic role. RG MAG: Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton were an iconic American couple, to say the least. Did you know a lot about them before shooting Liz & Dick? Also,
what was the filming experience like? To be honest, I really did not know that much about them, but it was interesting to find out and see what an amazing journey they had. I had a fantastic experience on set, the cast and crew were very welcoming and I cannot wait to see the final cut. RG MAG FUN FACT: I have an English father-in-law: So I know a little bit about the culture. Can you, without using Google, tell us: 1) What traditional British fish and chips are wrapped in when served? 2) If someone ordered a Ploughman’s lunch in a pub, in England, what are they getting? 1) Newspaper 2) Cheese, bread, ham, branston pickle and grapes RGMAG: HE NAILED THAT FUN FACT… TOUCHÉ HENRY!
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An American Dream Comes True
fraiem Hanna is one funny guy…which is amazing given his story of struggles and challenges in a brand new country where he is sometimes hindered by discrimination and the occasional language barrier (though Hanna speaks English he can at times be rather difficult to comprehend).
One thing that never gets lost in translation, however, is that effervescent smile, all the more striking given that Hanna was born in Egypt and raised in strife. He finally immigrated to the United States to join his family who had already made the trip from Cairo. Once on American soil, it didn’t take long for Hanna to realize his purpose in life: that of becoming a full-time actor. In between studies to obtain his green card (he will soon become an American citizen), Hanna researched acting opportunities: on the Internet, in newspapers, wherever information could be found. Never one to succumb to disappointment, Hanna then researched production companies that specialized in new talent (he had none). With a staunch belief in himself and his acting capabilities (as limited as they were), Hanna struck gold in an independent film called “Terror at Ten Acres.” The low budget film was just the impetus he needed to muddle through an already saturated industry. Before long he was seen in short films, all the while making connections – and good friends – along the way.
Hanna’s hard work finally paid off. He recently completed “Sex, Lies and Fish,” as well as an unnamed TV pilot (in both projects Hanna plays the lead character). Not bad at all for a relatively new artist with just one acting class under his belt. An obvious non-conformist, while Hanna is a firm believer in proper instruction, he also has his own way of looking at the multitude of acting courses one can feel pressured to take. As he puts it,
“We all act in our everyday life, so why not just act like an actor?” Humor aside, the thespian has a solid outlook regarding his place in the industry. “I am proud to be an actor but would absolutely love to produce my own films,” he says. With a serious tone, he then offers his best advice for up-and-comers who wish to follow his path. “Keep a positive and cheerful attitude. Be nice to everyone you meet because word travels quickly in this industry. Have goals and stay focused. Know the industry; there are far too many scammers out here who will try to take advantage of your naïveté. And lastly, separate yourself from the naysayers who don’t believe in you.
“Once you doubt yourself, it’s hard to bounce back.” Wise words from the future award-winning actor – Mr. Efraiem Hanna. You can keep up with Efraiem Hanna at
efraiemhanna.com/ & imdb.com/name/nm4767031 J Blair Brown is a publicist and freelance writer from Harrisburg, PA, as well as the host of the popular internet radio talk show “Livin’ the Dream! with J Blair Brown
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