INTERVIEW: Annie Chen on Dancing, Acting and Playing Frenchy in Grease, The Musical on Stage

Talented and hardworking, Annie Chen was born and raised in Taiwan and found her passion for the performing arts at a very young age. Annie trained at the prestigious School of Toronto Dance Theatre and started her career with a bang— she danced with Lady Gaga on stage at the 2011 Much Music Video Awards and Korean pop star, PSY at the 2013 Much Music Video Awards. Despite her success in dance, Annie is also currently pursuing a growing acting career. Read our interview with her to find out more about her journey.

Hi Annie, thanks for speaking with us! You have had an interesting creative journey, can you tell us more about how you got into acting?

I had always wanted to be an actor as a kid but didn’t think it was something that I could do for a living because I didn’t see many representations of myself on screen. Two years into my career as a professional dancer I decided to go for it and paid for my first acting class. It was exhilarating, and from there on I have been pursuing it professionally and of course, always updating and training. It was not an easy transition especially coming from a strong dance background. I was put in a box and not taken seriously as an actor. On top of all that I was also a female ethnic actor and would often audition for roles that required an accent or spoke mandarin. However, the industry is slowly evolving. There are more female directors, writers, and the lack of diversity on screen is being acknowledged.

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INTERVIEW: Justine Iaboni Talks From Blogger to Following Her Dreams In Music as Stellina

Justine Iaboni, known for her fashion blog in Toronto, is officially leaving the blogging world in order to pursue her dreams: to make music. We are introduced to STELLINA, an electronic artist and pianist with
high soprano vocals who will be releasing her first mixtape, STAR SEVENTEEN, which is now available on  is now available on Apple Music and also Spotify. Stellina opens up about the emotional abuse she experienced while learning music in her youth and the spiritual journey that led her back to music.

Thank you so much for talking with us, Justine! Please tell us about your creative journey, leaving your blog and returning to music as Stellina.

Thanks so much for this opportunity to share my story with your readers. I had long given up on my dream to be a singer. My blogging career was overall, on paper, super successful. But I wasn’t fully happy because I was turning my back on something that fed my soul, which was music. I told myself, “not this lifetime.”

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I Love Rose Tico

Today, I wandered into Barnes & Noble in an attempt to procrastinate from real life. After perusing my usual aisles (aka manga and Young Adult books), I happen to wander into the toy section where I immediately came across a Rose Tico Funko Pop. Insert my immediate excitement, especially after I just read Buzzfeed’s feature on her this morning. Although I didn’t impulsively buy her at that very moment, I am here to share my rising happiness that she exists. An Asian woman who has a lead role in a Star Wars movie? It almost feels like a personal achievement.

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INTERVIEW: Jessica Rose On the Vulnerability in Acting and Her Short Film, ‘Alison’

Jessica Rose is a creative powerhouse and you may recognize her from television shows such as Man Seeking Woman and Saving Hope. She has also written and starred in her own short film called Alison which explores the intimacy between a couple during one particular strange night. Read more below to find out what acting means to her and her upcoming projects.

Your short film, ‘Alison,’ is so simple yet conveys so much about a relationship in one single night. I love how the short started out a bit silly then the emotional roller coaster escalates. What was the inspiration for it and what did you hope to show people?

Thank you! I think relationships are a subject that have always fascinated me. There is a specific kind of intimacy you develop in long term relationships that I hadn’t seen on screen before, and a particular kind of work involved that isn’t often talked about. There is a vulnerability, sometimes a very dark side, that we share with our partners that no one else sees. I know many couples who appear to always be fighting or dealing with some sort of drama, but they remain extremely determined and committed to staying together. Love is complicated, and our need for intimacy and partnership is powerful. I’m fascinated by the equation behind it: what and how much we are willing to endure in order to keep a relationship going, and whether the rewards of companionship outweigh the challenges.

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INTERVIEW: Risa Stone on Creating and Starring in the Thriller Film ‘Man Eater’

Risa Stone explores the fears and doubts most have when it comes to meeting strangers through dating apps with her short film, Man Eater. What would you do when your dream man or woman becomes your worst nightmare? Man Eater will premiere on October 15th 2017 at the 2017 ReelWorld Film Festival as part of the ACTRA Shorts Program. Find out more from Risa below!

Thanks for doing this interview with us, Risa! Can you tell us about yourself and how you got started acting?

Thank you for interviewing me! Some people, mainly my parents, would say that I started acting as soon as I was old enough to engage, so let’s call it age three. As a child, I was always putting on some kind of home-show but I would have to say that my acting career got “serious” over the last six years when I started actively working in commercials, film and TV.

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INTERVIEW: Ronnie Rowe Jr. Star of ‘Black Cop’ Talks Art Challenging Views

The highly-anticipated feature film, Black Cop, made its world premiere this year at the Toronto International Film Festival and will be making its festival rounds this fall as well. Ronnie Rowe Jr. stars in the film as a rogue police officer who becomes sick and tired of the systematic abuse of black people. The film hopes to bring thoughtful conversation to its audience through satire.

Thank you for chatting with us about your upcoming new film! Please tell our readers about Black Cop.

Black Cop is a satire psychological drama about an officer that is struggling between his duty as a cop and being a black man. Things take an interesting turn, when he is profiled off duty by another officer.

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INTERVIEW: ‘Suck It Up’ Star Erin Carter Talks Female Comedy & Summer Getaways

Suck It Up is written by Julia Hoff and directed by Jordan Canning, explores the story of two best friends who go on an adventure in hopes of getting over the death of a loved one. Erin Carter plays Faye, and with Ronnie (played by Grace Glowicki), the two women deal with their grief together during a summer getaway. The movie is set to make its festival rounds starting at the 2017 Atlantic Film Festival on September 17.

Carter is an accomplished actress and filmmaker, an alumni of The American Academy of Dramatic Arts and a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre’s prestigious Actors Conservatory. In this interview, she discusses her role in Suck It Up and what inspired her to pursue acting.

Hi Erin, thank you so much for doing this interview with us. Suck It Up looks like an amazing movie about women for women. Can you tell us more about it? 

Oh my goodness, that is quite the way to put it! I am very proud to call this a female driven project, so many of our cast and crew were female, and the project was conceived by women, but, I think the beauty of the film is that it’s not just for women, it’s definitely a story for everyone. It’s a movie about two young women who suffer a mutual loss. Faye’s love of her life, Garrett, happens to also be her best friend Ronnie’s brother, and when Garrett passes away of cancer it forces the two of them to redefine their lives without him. Which for Ronnie means an epic drinking spree, but for my character, Faye, it means taking care of her best friend Ronnie. The two end up in the quaint town of Invermere, BC, due to a rash decision on Faye’s part, and they’re then forced to face their grief at Ronnie’s childhood cabin.

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