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Photographer: Omri Malul


CenterStage1 Magazine Wishes Everyone A Very Happy Holiday Season

CenterStage1 Magazine


November/December 2011 Tis the season for turkey, pumpkin pie, cranberry sauce, severe shopping, seasonal songs, gift giving, reaffirmations and lots of laughs. Just the same, office parties, holiday gatherings and events may come up last minute, thus the need for a little black dress with a twist. In the giving mood? Sure you are. Give the gift of Lalah Hathaway’s new album and support the charity efforts of Matt Damon. Grab your pumpkin flavored drink while you surf the net and read CenterStage1 Magazine of course!

Neeta Wooten

Neeta

Editor-in-Chief | Creative Director editor@idealpr.com http://idealpr.com/CenterStage1Magazine

Editor-in-Chief | Creative Director Neeta Wooten Copy Editor Stephanie Walker Layout Editors Joshua Rohrer Ideal PR Media Photographers Sisilia Piring Omri Omlul Shamel Williams Reggie Campbell Donell Sellow Contributors David J. Orr Yolonda “Coffeedreamz” Coleman David Gignillat Melody Simpson Tahira Mohamed Omri Malul Stephanie Walker Olishia Johnson Publicity Trevis Cage DeShauna Dennis Publisher Ideal PR Media www.idealpr.com Special Thanks: Stacie Gillan, Natasha Brown, Paige Porter, Monica Mathis, Cheyenne Martin, Michelle Rodriguez, Tosha Whitten-Griggs, Lana Allen, Eden Rothwell


Chado Ralph Rucci

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PLACES

New York, New York


Photography by Shamel Washington www.Melfolio.com

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PLACES

The

Sunday morning of

September 25, 2011 will be remembered by residents of Mount Pleasant, one of Washington DC’s most vibrant neighborhoods, as the day they woke up into a different reality. One that probably made them think they must have traveled to another country; only thanks to an amazing act of nature, they did not need their passports, nor did they have to pack.

Omri Malul Photography


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PLACES iterally, overnight the neighborhood transformed itself into something that could only be described as lively, colorful and very tasty. This Latina fiesta is known as Mount Pleasant Day. Celebrating Hispanic heritage and tradition, the event featured five stages of music, folklore, theatre and other performing arts. Climaxing around noon, thousands of people gathered to see the Parade of Nations; a vivid demonstration of the city’s cultural diversity. Hundreds of dancers representing 30 folkloric groups from Latin America, the Caribbean and Spain walked...or more accurately...danced, down the streets of Mount Pleasant. This carnival displayed the high energy and typical fashion of that seen in Rio de Janeiro and New Orleans.

Omri Malul Photography


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PLACES Omri Malul Photography


The organizers of Mount Pleasant Day, FIESTADC.org, are a coalition of more than 50 non-profit organizations, community leaders and members of the private sector. Their mission is to preserve and promote Latino culture in the Washington DC region, home to roughly one million Latinos. In addition to celebrating diversity, they also wanted this event to provide small businesses, corporations and government agencies an opportunity to interact with the community, and Inform people of their services and products.

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PLACES Omri Malul Photography


This year’s event has attracted many visitors. According to FIESTADC.org President, Ms. Maria Patricia Corrales, approximately 95,000 people attended the festival. “This year we had more live entertainment and activities for children than before,” says Corrales, “but FIESTADC.org is not just about Mount Pleasant Day. We are also having additional community events this coming Thanksgiving and Christmas.” Encouraged by the massive attendance this year, the organizers are still uncertain whether or not next year’s festivities will take place in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood, or move to a larger venue, better suited to accommodate larger crowds. Either way, DC residents and visitors will be able to celebrate and enjoy the city’s international diversity again, leaving behind their passports and travelers checks.

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THRIVING

Images: Derek Blanks

By David J. Orr


CenterStage1 Magazine


THRIVING

In

an era where technology has altered the landscape with synthesizedauto-tuned vocals, and the spread of bubble gum pop stars, singer/songwriter/ producer, Lalah Hathaway's latest album release, “Where it All Begins,” is just in time to save the people from despair. Lalah, a native of Chicago, was blessed to be born into a family of musical educators, during a time where the importance of education, including the arts, was emphasized in the culture, and it was a given for kids to take music lessons. Hathaway transcribed her first song during her sophomore year in high school. She credits her high school music composition teacher, the late Dr. Bruce Horst, who emphasized music fundamentals and taught her how to create rhythms.

“He really inspired me to learn music theory... how to really articulate my thoughts onto paper... that was the beginning of me understanding the mathematic theory of music.”

Lalah has carved out her own niche in the musical landscape having released six albums. She recently earned a 2011 “Best Gospel Song” Grammy award on

Kirk Whalum's album, “It's What I Do.”

While Lalah's original music stands by itself, she has a special gift for taking a classic song and remaking it as her own. Some of these include the #1 charting Adult R&B hit “Forever, For Always, For Love” (Luther Vandross), “Streetlife” (Randy Crawford/the Crusaders), and from her current album, the enchanting “You Were Meant For Me” (Donny Hathaway).

“The approach is to take something that is already beloved, pay homage to it, and then try to create something that, while it cradles what's already there, creates a new standard.”

“Wow” formed on the mouth of music icon, Prince, after performing several of his classics with Lalah, at New Jersey's Izod Center.


Amidst a lingering fog, in a stunning blue floor-length gown, Lalah looked quite royal herself. Lalah opened for, and sang with Prince, three times during the 2010-2011 “Welcome 2 America” tour. The audience was delighted, as well as Prince, who clearly appreciated the magnitude of performing alongside a musical treasure. This sentiment is shared by Hathaway, who described her emotions being personally invited to the tour and the “surreal reality” she experienced being on stage with one of her teen idols.

“It's one of those real moments that if you've ever had a dream, about performing with a giant like Prince, and you sort of let go of that dream, but then Prince will call, and it re-ignites that dream, that fervor, it lets you know that anything is possible.”

Lalah enjoys interacting with her fans. Prior to releasing “Where It All Begins,” Hathaway, a self proclaimed “gadget girl,” utilized the internet to publicize her first single to the new album, “If You Want To” (an upbeat song, which will move you to the dance floor). Fans are able to directly communicate feedback, to the singer, online via various sites. One popular sentiment is the call for her to do another song with Eric Roberson, after their last effort, “Dealing” was nominated for a Grammy, and won a Soul Train award. Lalah's new album has taken off, drawing rave reviews from fans and artists alike. Stellar gospel and R&B singer, Sol Edler, described the album in one word, “Incredible.” Eactly. During a recent show at the historic Birchmere Theatre, in Alexandria, Virginia, fan were in awe and appreciation of this incredible voice. With a diverse set of songs that displays her flawless vocals and dynamic range, Hathaway shines lyrically and vocally.

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THRIVING

“Where It All Begins” is filled with tracks that speak on the nuances of love and the trials and tribulations of relationships. The opening track, “Strong Woman,” “Small of My Back,” and the soulful “I'm Coming Back” (f/ Rachelle Ferrell) are a few of the fan favorites. Lalah takes her listeners on a musical journey and then leaves your soul in a mellow trance with “This Could Be Love.” Seeing Lalah perform these songs live only cements the widespread notion that her vocals are timeless, her show is a must see, and her album is a must have for any music lover. She'll make you dance, laugh, sing, and enhance your musical palette with exquisite cuisine, served with love, through a microphone. Lalah Hathaway was born to sing. How fortunate we are that she has shared with us, for her, “Where It All Begins.” Lalah, a strong advocate for breast cancer awareness, hosts a radio show on Sirius/XM 98 (Thursdays – 9:05pm Pacific Standard Time), and is currently on tour in support of her album. Twitter: @lalahhathaway Facebook: www.facebook.com/lalahhathaway Website: www.lalahhathaway.com


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THRIVING By Neeta Wooten | Photos: Donell Sellow - DES Photography

Where can you get great drinks, great food, great music and an amazing view in the Washington, DC area on a Thursday evening? Even if it was only for one night, The Westin Hotel’s “Sauciety” wins this battle. I am not sure if I was more impressed by the grilled Portobello mushroom salad made to order, or the seafood jambalaya prepared by the master chef at the “Taste of Sauciety.”

I do know that I was not the only one having a difficult time receiving the trio dish of a bacon wrapped scallop, a sirloin steak bite and lobster macaroni and cheese due to the swarm of people competing to get the waiter’s attention. By the time I was able to get my hands on the dish, I understood why; totally delectable.


DES Photography | CenterStage1

An array of food paired with the live jazz sounds of Cool Fire featuring B.Blunt (one of the city’s most coveted bands for upscale events) equals a great night on the National Harbor. With waterfront night views, the evening consisted of four hours of passed trays, made to order specials, overflowing desserts, an open bar in addition to premium tastings of Kenny “KAS” Flannagan’s new wine and cognac. Guests were more happy

and spirited as they mixed with some of DC’s decision makers and danced to the melodic tunes of CoolFire featuring B.Blunt. Although this was a special occasion event, which we hope makes a return, one thing is for sure, the menu and view are not going anywhere. A special thanks to the restaurant staff and KAS collection team.

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FASHION ARTS

The little black dress should be a standard item in every woman’s closet, no matter her size, shape or income bracket.

Chado Ralph Rucci

There is no need to ONLY have one simple black dress.

Chanel


Elie Tahari

Derek Lam

Securing a little black dress with a twist is recommended for those who have the occasional last minute invite to a VIP party, store opening, or dinner gathering with business associates or friends.

The staple little black dress is a sure safety net, but the little black dress with a twist will be the talk of the party!

Milly by Michelle Smith

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Tracy Reese

Elene Cassis

Jill Stuart

Chado Ralph Rucci

Calvin Klein

EDITOR’S PICK


Luca Luca

Michael Kors

Chado Ralph Rucci

Carolina Herrera

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Badgley Mischka

Naeem Khan

Tracy Reese

Farah Angsana


Photographer: Sisilia Piring www.idontdodigital.com


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RISING

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By Melody Simpson | Photo: Tiffany Kyees Italian born actor, Massimiliano Furlan, also known as Massi has a lot to be thankful for and anticipate in the coming year. He may not be flying helicopters in the army anymore, but he has traveled to the set of Days of Our Lives, Terminator: Sarah Connors Chronicles, General Hospital and One Tree Hill over the last few years. Very soon you will see him in the soon to be released Batman film, “Dark Knight Rises.”

Massi has his hopes set high for next year’s opportunities and is even hoping to return to Miami, his second home to film. Massi has often played the bad guy and the villain, but he enjoys it all. As most actors find aspects of the business challenging, for Massi, he feels it is his Italian accent that is a two edge sword when it comes to landing that All-American lead role.

He can rest assure that every “I’m supposed to go to Hawaii to woman will melt when they hear shoot a movie in the next few him speak, and there are no comweeks. And next Spring I am supplaints from hormone-carrying posed to shoot a movie in Cambo- heroines. In fact it is something dia. I’ve never been to either place many women look forward to. before, so I am very excited to go.” While casting directors are someWith directing credits to his name times uncertain of his accent, they and background in stand-up com- never deny his talent. For a fellow edy, Massi presents as an actor who speaks four languages, can fly with diverse talents . Mainly cona helicopter, run a business, and sisting of celebrity impersonations, has great comedic timing, he Massi’s first stand up comedy act should have no problem finding was at a disco club in Italy. those projects looking to embrace Recently in the states, he hit a all that he has to offer. Think home run on his first comedy about all of the actors whom you audition. But he struck out on the have fallen in love with...simply opportunity because it was in because of their accent. Massi is conflict with his first day on set of sure to be added to some to those The Dark Knight Rises. To add salt lists very soon. to the wound, the job was on a Chelsea Handler comedy show. Watch out Antonio Banderas.

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FINE ART

CoMural Development By Omri Malul Photography: Omri Malul

ake a walk on Connecticut Ave, Adams Morgan or Columbia Heights and you will see the art work of Byron Peck. The city is developing fast with cranes and scaffoldings all around. The highly desired commodity of space is running out. While not a huge problem for most, a mural artist still prefers the canvas of unobstructed public walls. “We are running out of public space, but we do work increasingly with private developers as well,” says Byron Peck. Peck is a DC muralist and the founder and director of City Arts, a DC organization dedicated to creating large-scale artworks with the assistance of local artists. In an environment where development is synonymous with construction, one just has to look beyond the concrete and metal, and catch a glimpse of Byron’s contribution to community development, a key practice in a city as diverse as DC. “Our murals have the kind of aesthetic integrity and depth difficult to achieve through other visual art mediums displayed on public walls, like graffiti,” says Byron, “and the process involves working with the local people and DC’s Commission on the Arts and Humanities in order to find out what they want us to put on their walls.” Working with residents is not only City Arts’ artistic mission, but also its vision of actual community development. The Duke Ellington mural on U Street is a good example. Overlooking the Lincoln theatre, this project not only brought local talent together to produce an impressive mural, but also helped revitalize the neighborhood and reclaim its past glory as a bustling art and entertainment district.


CenterStage1 Magazine


FINE ART


Our murals have the kind of aesthetic integrity and depth difficult to achieve through other visual art mediums displayed on public walls, like graffiti� -Byron Peck (pictured to the left) Center-


FINE ART


In addition to their aesthetic quality, murals also reflect the history and makeup of the community they are designed to portray. As for inspiration, Washington DC has plenty of materials to work with; through Byron’s murals, every neighborhood reveals the unique, and sometimes dark, history of the area, but not without a message of unity and harmony. The mural in Adams Morgan, for example, was inspired by the riots that took place in the neighborhood in the early 90’s. Overlooking Columbia road, it depicts the diversity of an area with more than 30 ethnic backgrounds, encompassing African, Asian and Central American themes. In a city with limited space where the only way to develop is up, Washingtonians are lucky to have diverse neighborhoods with cultural foundations that run deeper than any construction pit and City Arts’ murals to tell their stories. Find out more at www.cityarts.org

CenterStage1 Magazine


I’ve

never thought of myself as handy, but Brian J. White in conjunction with publishing expert Anna Cheshire Levitan turned this city girl with southern roots into a fan of tools. Practical life lessons live in the text of Brian J. White’s latest book The Black

Carpenter: Straight Talk to Build a Solid Foundation. Beyond his celebrity

status as an actor in movies such as “Stomp the Yard” and “The Heart Specialist,” White is candid about his life experience in the areas of education, health and fitness, the arts, relationships and spirituality. He also tells readers about the carpentry tools he used to reach desired goals in Black

Carpenter.

Written with youth in mind, White scaffolds and layers the lessons for successful living. White recollects moments when he made mistakes, learned from them and made informed decisions to correct those errors. Although Brian J. White is the son of former NBA player Joseph Henry “Jo Jo” White, a village of people reared him and placed in his hands the “hammer of education”, “the tape measure of accountability”, the “locking pliers of

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determination” and a level to check and balance his thoughts even when he’s among the stars or going through tough times.

Black Carpenter is a teaching toolbox

full of coaching quotes. White challenges readers to be persistent, to try new things that may ultimately lead them to their destiny and to live a healthy lifestyle in pursuit of dreams and a well-balanced life. He encourages readers to “ride through the dark moments” and to stay the course. “Black carpenters throughout the ages have revealed dreams, sorrows, injustice, likes, hates and hopes throughout numerous channels of creativity and changed the world,” White writes. Readers learn about White’s impressive academic background and legendary family ties, but he is quite grounded and Black Carpenter is merely an extension of the values instilled in him through years of mentoring. It is clear that he has a passion to transform lives and ignite dreams in Black Carpenter. As I researched the words “black carpenter,” the results revealed


an insect called the black carpenter ant. They are hard working ants, and they do colonize. Black carpenter ants are hard to get rid of once they take possession of a space. If those with drive, passion, and dreams to do well and right in this world adopted the work ethic of black carpenter ants, the plans of those who want to destroy our world, our youth, and our future can be derailed. Black carpenters are resilient. Brian White hits the nail on the head with this motivational tool kit. White never leaves room for anyone to make any excuses about any circumstances they might summon. No one has time to cry, "Woe is me." Adults who read the book will realize it's time to get to work so children will begin to understand and mimic the work ethic that helps build them up as towers of power.

Even when times get tough, White reminds his audience, “There is no short cut for success.” One thing he hopes youth will get out of Black Carpenter is that they refrain from relying so much on the “one big shot” opportunities through reality television shows and lean more on the tools that yield longterm success. “Without multiple tools and a solid foundation most will not be able to weather life’s storms or reach any of their dreams at all. But if young people plan well and build from the bottom up on top of a rock solid foundation, the sky is truly the limit!” White says.

Black Carpenter is this generation’s guide to success in every aspect of life. It is a GPS for achieving a fulfilling life as readers prepare to do better, be better, and like a black carpenter ant, work harder. Copies of Black Carpenter are available on Kindle through amazon.com keywords: Black Carpenter.

CenterStage1 Magazine


FOOD

All Things Pumpkin W

ho needs an excuse to have a great drink? We all

know that family is a two edged sword that can inspire the creativity of great drinks for holiday meals. Thanksgiving is November’s highlight of great food and great seasonal drinks using pumpkins, cinnamon, cream, caramel, apples and other flavors we anticipate during this time of year. As always, no matter if you are at home, a friend's house or your favorite restaurant or bar, remember to drink responsibly and never drink and drive. Pumpkin Pie Martini (Before Your First Thanksgiving Dinner with the In-Laws)

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg Graham cracker crumbs, optional

Fill your cocktail shaker with ice. Add 1 oz of Pumpkin Liqueur, 1/2 oz of Coffee Liqueur, 1/2 oz of Butterscotch Schnapps, and 1/2 oz of Cream. Add another splash of Bailey’s Irish Cream and all that is left to do is shake it well, strain it into a cocktail glass and garnish with a Cinnamon Stick..

Place all ingredients except graham cracker crumbs in a blender and blend until silky. Pour into large shot glasses and top each serving with a teaspoon of graham cracker crumbs.

Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake Dessert Shots (While mother compares her recipes to yours)

2 tablespoons graham cracker crumbs 1-1/2 ounces milk 1-1/2 ounces vanilla vodka 1-1/2 ounces Bailey’s Crème Caramel 1-1/2 ounce spiced pumpkin liqueur Cinnamon stick for garnish Whipped cream for garnish

1 (14-ounce) can of pure pumpkin, chilled 3 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese 6 ounces low-fat vanilla yogurt 1 cup low-fat milk 1/4 cup Van Gogh Dutch Caramel Vodka 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Caramel Pumpkin Pie-Tini (After being ridiculed for not having any...or having more children)

Dip the rim of a martini glass in water and then dip in graham cracker crumbs. Combine crème caramel, vodka, milk and pumpkin liqueur in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well


and strain into prepared martini glass. Garnish with a cinnamon stick add whipped cream or ice cream. Mrs. McMullen's Pumpkin Appleberry Pie Cocktail (Just because...everyone got through dinner alive) 2-1/2 oz. cognac 2-1/2 oz. apple juice 1/2 oz. simple syrup 1-1/2 ounce spiced pumpkin liqueur Add 10-12 red grapes, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries Muddle all of the fruit in a glass cocktail shaker. Add ice. Add cognac and apple juice. Shake and strain over fresh ice in a large wine goblet. Garnish with a mix of your choice of berries and enjoy!

Smashed Pumpkin Cocktail (While your favorite sports team plays as if they had one too many before the game) 1 oz Wild Turkey 101 1/4 oz almond liqueur 1/4 oz cinnamon schnapps 2 oz pumpkin pie filling 1/2 oz heavy cream Puree the pumpkin pie filling with heavy cream. Mix with other ingredients in a shaker with ice; shake well and strain into a martini glass. Rim with crumbled graham crackers and a cinnamon stick; top with a dash of cinnamon or nutmeg.

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Omri Malul Photography


Shamel Washington


Profile for Ideal PR Media

CenterStage1 Magazine Nov/Dec 2011 Issue  

With Lalah Hathaway, Susana, Matt Damon, Massi Furlan, Bochic Jewelry, Fall Fashion, The Little Black Dress With A Twist, A Taste of Sauciet...

CenterStage1 Magazine Nov/Dec 2011 Issue  

With Lalah Hathaway, Susana, Matt Damon, Massi Furlan, Bochic Jewelry, Fall Fashion, The Little Black Dress With A Twist, A Taste of Sauciet...

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