Posts Tagged ‘artist life’

Sketch Comedy Show Feedback

Aww man, I forgot to blog about our show experience! So, the weekend of 8/4 – 8/6, my comedy troupe had a show and we did 3 performances. Last year, we did 2 weeks with 6 performances because we usually have a show Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. This year, we decided to only do 1 weekend instead of two because I had tickets to see John Leguizamo on 8/12 and I was not going to miss that for the world. He is an incredible storyteller. If you’ve never seen his one man shows, I’m telling you: GO. It’s so good and he keeps everyone engaged, entertained and this time, educated. It’s called “Latin History For Morons.” Basically, it’s about his journey trying to help his child learn about Latin history so that he can stand up to his bullies. You know what they say: “No history, no self. Know history, know self.”

Anyway, we had our sold out show, “Bad Fruit” and the content consisted of gross humor, vegan humor, social injustice, social commentary, a bit of vulgarity(i.e. I dressed up as a dildo), menstruation, and outrageous premises. I especially enjoyed the outrageous premises we had. I ended up writing 6 of the sketches myself. My friend wrote 7, two others wrote 2, another wrote 1, and one of the sketches was split into 3 parts. Altogether, we had 20 sketches and we added 2 short films and a music video to start off the show. It ran for about 75 minutes and instead of having an intermission, we decided to just power through the entire thing in one punch.

We also passed out surveys to the audience members and upon reading the feedback, I would have to say that this was our best show yet. That made us feel like we made the right decisions to take out stand up sets and remove videos from showing in the middle of the show. People kept writing that they wanted to see more and we were happy to hear this! Some even requested our playlist of songs that we had for transitions! I also noticed that most of our audience that we thought were a repeat crowd from past shows were mostly people who had never seen our shows before! I even saw people who had never come before see the show twice! Amazing!!

Wow, what a dream come true. I’ve always wanted to have my own sketch comedy troupe and have people who enjoy our content. It was such a gratifying experience to hear so much great feedback from our audience. I am so proud of everyone. I think we will try to apply for Sketchfest next year and see how that goes. But even if we don’t get accepted, I am still confident that people love our troupe and our content and I’m so excited to get started on our next show. We haven’t edited any of the footage of our show yet but here are the three videos we put on at the top of the show. Enjoy!

You Mad, Bro?

Call Me? Maybe? (from our show last year)

“Run The World” (Parody of Beyonce’s Run The World)

Two Cool Weekends

It was such a great experience last weekend to have my first short film, “Accident,” showcased at APAture 2015! APAture is a multidisciplinary arts festival that focuses on Asian artists in film, comics, music, literary arts, This was actually the first event that I submitted to last year but I didn’t get in back then. My friend encouraged me to resubmit for this year and I’m really glad it got in this year. I’ve been submitting it since July 2014 and even up until now. It has been accepted into three festivals so far, including APAture. At first I was kind of bummed out that a lot of festivals did not accept it. However, I sent a message to Jason Marsden during the whole process and he reassured me that there is nothing wrong with that and to let it be a learning experience. I’ve really taken that to heart and I’m actually really happy now that it was accepted into APAture 2015. I feel like I’ve come full circle. I started with this festival so maybe I can end with this festival. No more submissions. They are costly and I’d really rather move on to my next project. Eventually, I will post my short film online and let the world judge it all they want. I love it and my opinion is the only one that really matters, right?

I did a Q&A afterwards…ok, I admit it. I HATE public speaking. Not that I don’t want to talk to people who saw my film. I’d LOVE to hear what they thought of it but being asked all these questions and being among my peers, I felt inferior, like I didn’t really belong there. People laughed at my answers. Maybe because of my delivery but I can’t help it. I hear it in my head and it comes out of my mouth differently than how I would have liked. It’s fine, I’m not mad. I don’t know how celebrities, teachers, politicians, etc. do it. Aren’t they afraid of saying something wrong? Or sounding like an idiot? Or being asked a question they don’t want to answer? I remember for the time before the screening and after I found out I had to do a Q&A, I told myself I wasn’t going to reveal the true inspiration for my film because I didn’t want people to think I was crazy or angry. Then I thought, well what are the chances they would ask that question anyway? It’s played out. Sure enough, the first question was “What was your inspiration for your respective film?” Oh man. In my head, I reached for everything I could think of to make up. I wanted to scroll through my phone and find my director’s statement so I could remind myself what I wrote. Then I thought of something I say instead of the truth, that I was inspired by my peers because they have been so supportive of my creative work. So when it was my turn to speak, the truth just rolled off my tongue. “I had an angry conversation with my dad on the phone one day and well, if you can’t do it in real life, you do it on film.” Please don’t think I’m crazy. Here’s a picture.

12091370_10153804113401802_8025315725157345474_o

I just realized I’m not crazy. Just angry. Like Taylor Swift, writing about her ex-boyfriends and telling the world how she really feels. I guess the truth isn’t so bad. Ok, I’m rambling. Other eventful occurrences yesterday: Girl Meets Texas was a 3 part series this weekend. Damn, that’s good marketing! You know people like to binge on this kind of stuff. This love triangle thing is really suspenseful. I have to say I’m pretty blown away by how the producers have handled this situation. I know social media has given some insight as to which direction the GMW fans want it to go. It’s basically Rucas vs Lucaya. For anyone who doesn’t know, “Rucas” is the moniker for the highly anticipated Riley & Lucas union while “Lucaya” is the moniker for those who are team Maya & Lucas. The writers have been giving hints as to what might happen. They said the biggest clue was in the pilot. So, I went to Netflix and watched the pilot. Well, I started to anyway. Then I thought, maybe the clue is in the first conversation Maya had with Lucas where she compressed their whole faux relationship/breakup into 9 sentences. She said “You don’t pay enough attention to me” as one of those sentences. Well, from what I gather in Girl Meets Texas, I feel like while Lucas does pay attention to Maya, he pays more attention to Riley overall. So maybe everything is being played out in this arc, expanding on those 9 sentences throughout the season. That’s my theory and I’m sticking to it. For now. :0)

If you’re wondering which pair I’m in favor of(I refuse to use the word “ship”), I would have to say Lucas and Riley. After watching this 3-part melodrama, I feel like Riley and Lucas have been taking things slow. So slow, in fact, that no one even realized they were doing this. It’s like a silent “I like you, you like me but let’s be great friends first” kind of thing. I know some fans think Maya has more chemistry with Lucas but it just doesn’t seem like Lucas feels that way about Maya. I mean, he stopped himself from kissing Maya. If you had that chance with someone you liked, you go for it. If it doesn’t feel right, you shouldn’t lead someone on. And if they did kiss, that would be horrible. Maya and Riley’s friendship could change forever. Just because Maya thinks Riley loves Lucas like a brother doesn’t mean it’s actually true. Riley is obviously stepping back because she wants Maya to be happy and always puts others before herself. And judging from the dumbfounded & confused way Lucas reacted when Riley told him he was like a brother to her, he obviously thought they had a mutual crush thing going! I mean, come on…ok, I am way too invested in this. What’s going on?? I’m 38! Moving on…

Oh my gosh, I got to see my favorite band perform last night when they opened for Twenty One Pilots! They killed it!! I had such a great time watching them jam out on this big stage. They have always been meant for the bigger stages. I love it! And I especially enjoyed watching them perform their new songs! I’m just adding to my playlist. I guess i could have stayed to watch the other opening act, Echosmith and the headliner but I was starving and needed to feed so I bounced.

When I got home, I started uploading my videos to YouTube when lo and behold, my favorite guy in the whole wide world, Will Friedle, tweeted a picture of the shirt I gave him! Oh my gosh, I nearly fell off my stool because my legs turned into spaghetti, haha! That was so random. I had always wondered if it fit though. I have two of those shirts, one in white and one in purple. I love it. You can wash it and the artwork will last for awhile as long as you are washing it properly.

Ok, it’s time to go to sleep. Lots to do. Shows to produce, scripts to write, and videos to edit. Happy Halloweeny, Mr. Feeny!

My Next Producer Role Project

Woohoo! I finally got to launch my Indiegogo campaign for the full-length play I’m co-producing, “There’s The Moon And Then There’s You.” It also ended up trending on Indiegogo’s Theater tab! I hope that’s a good thing.

Screen Shot 2015-04-21 at 5.55.17 PM

The play is written by a friend of mine, Christina Ying, and it is absolutely beautiful. It is the story of a Vietnamese man, David Nguyen, who dreams of going to the moon while living the harsh reality that is his life. His wife is the 24-hr caretaker of her disabled brother, Caleb, and their married life is no longer the honeymoon it once was. David gets the chance of a lifetime to fulfill his dream of going to the moon but when his wife stands in the way of his dream, David resorts to drastic measures to find his happiness.

When I first read the play, I honestly fell in love. It was a real page turner! And that speaks volumes as I am not an avid reader unless they are diet books, cookbooks or notebooks. I’m really excited to for audiences to watch this play. It is a story worth telling. The characters are not your average, run-of-the-mill personas. They are people of color, they are relatable, and they play a poignant part of Asian-American storytelling.

Also, our director, Lorna Velasco, is dubbed the “Mother of Bindlestiff.” Bindlestiff Studio is a little blackbox theater that is like the Asian-American Northern Californian version of The Groundlings Theater in SoCal. Bindlestiff has given a creative voice to so many people in my community and I’m so proud to be a part of it. I don’t think I would be the person I am today if I didn’t have the Bindlestiff community in my life.

I would love for everyone to be supportive of this project. The story needs to be told and with enough help, we can make the run of this play an absolute success. I know we’re not Broadway but just because something is on Broadway doesn’t mean everyone will love it. With this play, I feel pretty confident that everyone will love it.

It will be mounted 5/30/15 – 6/13/15 at Bindlestiff Studio, 185 6th St @ Howard St., San Francisco.

I can’t wait. Check out our promo video!

Show In Progress

Tonight is the last night of the first week of our show, “The Ladies & The Tramps.” I am extremely proud of everyone for bringing it together the way it did. We had Q2Q and full runs throughs from Sunday – Wednesday that were pretty rough. We were told one of the pieces we were doing was on life support on Monday but got significantly better by Wednesday. Whew! On Wednesday night, we were still iffy and jittery and the pieces were not coming together like we had hoped. Not everyone was there and we still had to pummel through it and I felt like we had to do the show with our fingers crossed, which is exactly what we did. With each show, each piece of feedback we received from our peers, we made improvements. By the time Thursday night came around, we were on fire. I am not sure if it was the Moscato I was downing or first night excitement but everything went from a 7 to a 10 by opening night! Audiences were complimenting us on our mixture of comedy and I’m really happy it all turned out. I have to admit, every night this week, my solo set has been different but I think I’ve finally found the set I want to commit to and I’m excited to do it. Hope I don’t fuck up.

Having this sketch comedy troupe, Granny Cart Gangstas, is a dream come true. Something I’ve always wanted and I couldn’t be happier. My favorite part of the show is that I get to share my Will Friedle affection with the audience. It’s a bit ridiculous but I love it and so did the audience. Four more shows!

Here is an interview I did with Bindlestiff Studio.

This is a photo of me and Lauren patiently waiting backstage to perform my sketch, Plan B, dedicated to Will Friedle.

Ladies_Tramps1
Anyway, I need to take a shower and get ready but here is an unlisted link to a video shoot we did that is a part of the show. It’s a rough cut but nonetheless:

From 2014 To 2015

I have to say, 2014 was quite a year. I’m so happy with all the things that happened and I’m looking forward to what 2015 will bring. For the past 4 years, my New Year’s resolution was the same: “I want to meet Will Friedle‚Ķand lose weight, blah blah blah.” Now that I finally accomplished that goal, I work on the blah blah blah.

Best Things about 2014:

Co-produced two shows that I am very proud of:
Love Edition: Love Bytes

PCCN (Pilipino Counter Cultural Night)
PCCN

Got interviewed by SF Bay Guardian

Granny Cart Gangstas in SF Bay Guardian

Made a 90s R&B music video parody, inspired by Xscape’s “Understanding” video

Invited by Ben Savage to catch a closed taping of Girl Meets World
GMW Pass

Hung out with Jason Marsden and his friends after his Locker 13 film premiere at a bar
Jason Marsden

Had the best time filming The Love Edition web series, “Bender/Breaker” (Annotations must be turned on)

Finally got to meet my dream husband, Will Friedle
Will Friedle meets Miss Ava

Completed my first short film, Accident and having Jason Marsden tell me he thought it was “really well done” was icing on the cake

Moved into my own place which means I get to buy my own groceries
Farmer's Market Haul

Finally got my song from my favorite band, Finish Ticket! It took a whole year but you can’t rush creativity. The final result is perfect! I’ve included a clip of it on my site. I recently saw them perform at the legendary Fillmore and they covered Weezer and finally performed one of my favorite songs of theirs, Killing Me!

Yes, 2014 was wonderful but life moves forward and so must I. There are soooo….many things I want to do but take baby steps, I shall. Turn my dreams into goals, I will. Not sure why I’m speaking like Yoda but I felt it necessary.

So for 2015, I have little goals I want to achieve and some bigger goals I want to reach for. I say goals instead of dreams because I find that when you turn your dreams into goals, you are more likely to achieve them. Essentially, the word “dream” almost subliminally tells you that it’s not real, that it’s just a fantasy. However, the word “goal” implies a direction, a motivational force so to speak. With that said, my goals for 2015 include the following:

1. Be more girly – I want to buy more dresses and dress more like a girl and yet still be comfortable, but I don’t want to pull a George Costanza and wear sweatpants all day. I want people to know I will NOT give up!

2. Eat vegetables every day – My friend once told me that when you eat, you’re either fighting disease or feeding it. Yes, she obviously cannot accept my incessant love for my self-made ice cream tours in every city but I see her point and will take it into consideration. Are avocados considered a vegetable? It’s green.

3. Cut your portions and consume less meat – I want to eat like a normal person and eat the portion size they eat. Problem is, my mother put me on a diet when I was 12 and I have been dieting ever since. I haven’t the slightest clue what a normal portion is! America has a problem with portion distortion and I’m wallowing in the thick of it all. I also want to eat less meat and lose some weight. I mean, if Will Friedle can do it, so can I.

4. Cut my hair every 4 months – They say that your hair changes every 7 years. I don’t know how true that is but I’ve always felt like my hair grows too slowly so I never cut it. However, when I finally did cut it 4 months ago, I noticed that my hair has grown a lot faster since then so maybe I will spend that $65 and get that amazing haircut I love and just enjoy seeing it grow.

5. Drink more water – I am guilty of not drinking much water unless I have access to it easily but the adult female body is about 55% water on average and I am going to keep drinking until that 55% reaches 75% and my pee is no longer the slightest bit yellow. That’s how I tell when I’m dehydrated. When your pee looks like Mountain Dew, you’d better go get yourself some Aquafina because chances are, you’re probably dying.

6. Produce at least one show this year, two if I have time – So far, I have two shows I am involved in this year. One is a feature length play and the other is a Women’s show for Women’s History Month. I’m excited about both shows because A) I really love the story of the feature length play and B) I really love the theme of the Women show, which is also going to be a comedy show and the theme I came up with is “No Filter.” What do I mean by that? Well, I just wanna explore, what would it be like if we lived in a world where we didn’t have to be polite to each other? What if you didn’t have to tell your friend that her baby was cute? What if she really does look fat in that outfit? Let’s explore this realm, shall we? I’m still debating on a title.

7. Go to Paris & Prague – Haven’t been to Paris since 2001 and I have never been to Prague. When I get to these countries, I am going to create my own food tour. I wanna eat French sushi, buy Huckleberry jam at Maison du Chocolat, and find me some drinking chocolate. I am not familiar with Prague at all so I’m just going to wing it. Who knows? Maybe I’ll fall in love, but first, I’ll have to fall out of love with Will Friedle and make myself available for love. I only have room in here for one at a time.

8. Pay off one of my student loans – I’m sooooo close to killing of one of them! Back in 2011, my student loans totalled around $40K and today, they are less than $10K. I think that’s pretty awesome. I can’t wait to pay all of it off. And when I do, it will be the same as when I paid off my car. I’m going to celebrate!

9. Take more risks – Life is short, life is a gift, life is supposed to be lived, enjoyed, cherished. I have spent wayyyyy too much time worrying about the negative. Perhaps if I thought more positively, my world would just start to get better and better. Oh who am I kidding, with all these amazing experiences I’ve had the past few years, I’d say I’ve already taken plenty of risks and have been able to accomplish a LOT! Keep it up though, keep it up.

10. Stop condemning my body and start celebrating it – Instead of complaining about what I don’t have, comparing myself to others and feeling bad about myself, I’m going to celebrate the things I do have, the parts I love about myself and all the things my body has allowed me to do. Walking, running, seeing, dancing, exercising, all these things should be celebrated.

I am making a promise to myself to live life as if every day is the last day. Take chances, make changes and enjoy everything life has to offer. All these positive adventures have far outweighed the negative experiences I’ve been through. I am so thankful for it all. This is my last post for 2014. It’s been a wild ride. Be safe, take care, and may 2015 be even better. Good night…

“Consequences”

I’m not sure if I ever mentioned this but my friends and I started an all-female comedy troupe back in 2011. Granted, we didn’t do anything until 2012 but the idea for the troupe originally began in 2011. Our name is Granny Cart Gangstas. Currently, we are on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram and Tumblr. We just finished hosting a show on March 8, 2014 in honor of International Women’s Day. It was called “Bad Ass B!tches” and was held at Bindlestiff Studio.

I can’t even begin to tell you how much fun it is when we get together and create. We all have a similar sense of humor so it’s easy for our minds to connect and come up with ideas for sketches, films, music, etc. Of course we also have our differences and sometimes, our ideas will clash but that’s where we collectively make decisions that we all eventually agree on.

Our latest video is a 90s music video parody inspired by Xscape’s “Understanding” video with original lyrics written by Andrea Almario. You can check it out here.

My favorite part of working on this video was how we all had these ridiculous ideas and the filmmakers who helped us film the video (Revelcade Entertainment, Project W Production, Torrid Productions & I Don’t Care Productions) trusted our decisions no matter what they were. We are planning on doing another show sometime this year so look out for information on our Facebook page!

Inspirecreational Weekend

This weekend has been full of inspiration, recreation, and creativity all rolled into one. I am losing sleep each night and my schedule is going insane. Obviously, filming is going well. We shot a bloody killing scene on Saturday where we ended up spraying fake blood all over someone’s van. That was a serious cleanup job. It’s made of corn syrup so imagine syrup all over your vehicle’s interior. Imagine that? Yeah. Afterwards, I got to see my friend dance in a show called “Tagabanua” at the Oakland Asian Cultural Center. It was a beautiful show with great moves and some kick ass indeigenous Filipino music. Very inspiring, I have to say. It made me want to play kulintang again.

And Sunday, we shot a music video for the band, Seeking Empire. It was on their song “Fairytale.” I haven’t shot a music video since 2007 when I helped with Kiwi’s “Imagine” video so it was fun. This time, it was a lot different though because of all the extras that were there. I’ve never really been around so many model-type women and punk rocker dudes. The band was fantastic and the venue we shot the video at was fabulous too! I got to meet Paul Thomas, the bassist from the band Good Charlotte, so that was cool. I can’t wait to see the video when it is done being edited.

On Monday, I got to play a different side of me. I dressed up in goth to celebrate a friend’s birthday at a goth club called Death Guild. I’ve never seen myself look this way before. It was nice to hear that everybody loved my outfit. I have to admit, I loved it too. I wore a short black dress that had tulle for the skirt part. I wore a wide belt that had a corset pattern on it. I also had a lacy bolero on along with a black headband that had a black flower on top. I painted my nails blood red, wore dark cherry lipstick, fishnet thigh-his and as my guy friends would call it, a pair of “come fuck me” heels. I looked like a Goth Lolita. Overall, I had a blast playing dress up. It cost me a fortune though. I think I spent over $200 on everything but I accomplished what I wanted to accomplish so all is right in the world. I would upload a photo except it’s in someone else’s camera and I don’t have it yet.

Reflection: I never thought I would see the things I see in my life. I know I’ve said this before but it’s truly amazing what one can accomplish if you maintain your focus, passion and dedication. I think my only problem is thank there are too many things I want to do. Sticking to one thing doesn’t seem to be my shtick, given my history. I’m a jack of all trades and things can only get better from here. Thank you, Lord! I am feeling truly blessed to be.