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Entries from October 2017

Salon Radio: The Werewolf of Washington Heights; Shengning Lang

October 18th, 2017 · Comments

Salon Radio

podcast 7, release 10-18-17


For today's Salon Radio Special Feature we are talking with actor/director/producer Charmaine Broad and actor Lori Funk about The Werewolf of Washington Heights, an original timely show from Carnival Girls Production Company, with an all-female multi-ethnic cast ranging from 20-80 in ages.

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Today's Salon Solo {Radio} presents Shengning Lang, speaking in English and Mandarin to tell us more about Cosplay.


This podcast is hosted by IWAS founder Heidi Russell, presenting our guests with Jenny Green. Salon Radio is rounded out with our Women in The Arts world bulletin highlighting news about women in all The Arts, this week’s editor is Barbara Sullivan, and our Salon Bulletin for upcoming week's happenings of Salonistas around the world, this week’s editor is IWAS founder Heidi Russell.   This podcast was recorded at our production partner Funkadelic Studios with sound engineer Jade Zabric.




Salon Solo {Radio}: Shengning Lang

Shengning Lang hails from China and is currently a student of SUNY Stony Brook University, with a double major in Math and Economy.   The Arts is an important part of her life and she has found creative expression through Cosplay in her home town of Hangzhou in China and now with a group here in New York.

Listen to her speak English and Mandarin to tell us more about Cosplay.


Cosplay, a contraction of the words costume play, is a hobby in which participants called cosplayers wear costumes and fashion accessories to represent a specific character. Cosplayers often interact to create a subculture, and a broader use of the term "cosplay" applies to any costumed role-playing in venues apart from the stage. Any entity that lends itself to dramatic interpretation may be taken up as a subject and it is not unusual to see genders switched. Favorite sources include anime, cartoons, comic books, live-action films, television series and video games.

The rapid growth in the number of people cosplaying as a hobby since 1990s has made the phenomenon a significant aspect of popular culture in Japan and some other parts of Asia and in the Western world. Cosplay events are common features of fan conventions and there are also dedicated conventions and local and international competitions, as well as social networks, websites and other forms of media centered on cosplay activities.

The term "cosplay" was coined in Japan in 1984. It was inspired by and grew out of the practice then-known as fan costuming at science fiction conventions, beginning with the 1st World Science Fiction Convention in New York City in 1939.






Salon Radio Special: The Werewolf of Washington Heights, an original timely show from Carnival Girls Production Company, with an all-female multi-ethnic cast ranging from 20-80 in age. In studio talking with actor/director Charmaine Broad and actor Lori Funk.

The CARNIVAL GIRLS PRODUCTION COMPANY has been in existence for over 10 years.  All their shows are ORIGINAL and most plays they produce are written and produced by Christie Perfetti Williams.  Christie founded the company and is at the Helm!  They are an all-female company although they do use men for different scripts (a promise!).  They are doing plays that all should see--real slips of time with real characters. 


Their current show, "The Werewolf of Washington Heights" is a JOY!  Timely, Ferocious, Joyful, Terrifying and Funny all at the same time.  It features 11 Actors--an ALL FEMALE cast that encompasses ages 20-80, and a multitude of cultures and ethnicities.  It is a Beautiful but Scary representation of our current state of affairs and what can become of them...A MUST SEE!!   

Charmaine Broad is a proud originating member of the “Carnival Girls” where she has acted, directed and produced numerous shows both for stage versions and for their Bridge Street Run which is more cabaret in style. She recently directed “Cougar” for the Estrogenius Festival in May, where it won: “The Best Of”, and was an Audience favorite. Charmaine has also directed the Emmy-Winning, “Off the Beaten Palate,” and “Happy Hour” for the small screen. She has also won accolades for another Audience Favorite show featured in “The Strawberry Festival”. “Talkin’ Gumbo”, a New Orleans collection of Characters, was another favorite foray. What a GREAT HONOR to Direct Christie’s Werewolf! I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!


Lori Funk has appeared Off Broadway, in TV, film, commercials, and is even a character in a video game. After the amazing 'Werewolf of Washington Heights,' her next project is 'Human Telegraphs,' a quirky female-driven web series. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.


"The Werewolf of Washington Heights" is running at The Kraine Theatre on October 11, 12, 13, 14, 19, 20, 21 at 7:00 pm and on October 22 at 2:00 pm.  It is an Equity Approved Showcase.  Tickets are $18 and can be purchased at  There will be others in the Future, of course!


Find out more at:


Facebook Page--Carnival Girls



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Salon Radio: PREformances with Allison Charney; Viola-Tianni Bao

October 11th, 2017 · Comments

Salon Radio

podcast 6, release 10-11-17



For today's Salon Radio Special Feature we are talking with Soprano Allison Charney, founder, curator and host of the unique classical concert series "PREformances with Allison Charney", about to launch its 9th season in its new home, Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Music Center.

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Today's Salon Solo {Radio} presents actress, singer and performer Viola-Tianni Bao.


This podcast is hosted by Maureen Van Trease, presenting our guests. Salon Radio is rounded out with our Women in The Arts world bulletin highlighting news about women in all The Arts and our Salon Bulletin for upcoming week's happenings of Salonistas around the world; this week's editor is IWAS founder Heidi Russell.   This podcast was recorded at our production partner Funkadelic Studios with sound engineer Jade Zabric.



Salon Radio Special: PREformance with Allison Charney, celebrating a season of milestones...

the 9th Season of this unique classical music concert series moves to a new home: Merkin Hall at Kaufman Music Center; heralded by new artwork by the NY-based visual artist and director, Doug Fitch;
and grounded by a new website:
PREformances with Allison Charney moves to a new home at Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Music Center on Monday October 16, 2017 at 1PM.
PREFORMANCES WITH ALLISON CHARNEY invites audience to experience celebrated classical musicians in “PREformances” anticipating their upcoming engagements on the world’s most prestigious stages. Acclaimed opera singer Allison Charney hosts a behind-the-scenes glimpse into top-level artists’ practices and performance, deliberately blurring the traditional barriers which exist between classical musicians and audience in concerts by providing "un-Google-able" insights into these great performers thoughts and practices.  PREFORMANCES WITH ALLISON CHARNEY has presented over 95 of the preeminent musicians of our time. Notable appearances include those by New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert, Metropolitan Opera stars William Burden and Maria Zifchak, flutist Carol WIncenc, violinist Kelly Hall-Tompkins, pianists Joel Fan and Navah Perlman. The series has presented new classical works by composers Michael Ching, Moshe KnollKim D. Sherman and Dina Pruzhansky. Together with Craig Ketter, PREformances’ noted collaborative pianist, soprano Allison Charney, performs on every concert. Each evening and matinee concert typically run an hour and a half, with no intermission. PREformances with Allison Charney” maintains a charitable relationship with the Basser Center for BRCA at the University of Pennsylvania - both contributing to its cutting-edge research efforts and promoting awareness of the Basser Center’s mission of advancing the care of individuals living with BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations.
Soprano Allison Charney, made her New York City Opera debut as Musetta in LA BOHÈME and went on to critical acclaim in opera houses across the US.  Concert appearances include performances at Alice Tully Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, with the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Boston Pops under the baton of NY Philharmonic music director, Alan Gilbert.  A champion of contemporary classical music, Ms. Charney has commissioned and premiered many new works, including 6 pieces written for the ARK Trio, of which she is a founding member. Ms. Charney is the founder and host of the classical concert series, PREformances with Allison Charney (now in its 9th season)  This fall, she will be the soprano soloist at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center  in "Prayer for Peace: The Power of One Voice” singing Beethoven’s NINTH SYMPHONY and Knoll’s PSALM 133. Ms. Charney is featured in the recently-released, first recording of the Pulitzer Prize nominated oratorio Choose Life, by composer Mona Lyn Reese and can be heard in a CD of American song with pianist, Benjamin Loeb, on the DSC Label. Ms. Charney is an active recitalist and master teacher and is the founder and curator of the concert series, PREFORMANCES WITH ALLISON CHARNEY. After receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree, magna cum laude with highest honors, in Special Concentrations from Harvard University, she went on to earn two graduate degrees in music from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. Ms. Charney now lives in New York City with her husband and their two sons.

On October 16 Soprano Allison Charney, with long time collaborative pianist Craig Ketter, will launch  the 2017-2018 Classical Concert Series and Debut of PREformances with Allison Charney at Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Music Center.

The matinee concert will feature ‘preformance’ appearances by special guests pianists Joel Fan and Julia Zilberquit, conductor Jason Tramm, actor Jordan Charney and violinist Kelly Hall Tompkins -

Violinist Kelly Hall-Tompkins and soprano Allison Charney will “preform” Israeli composer Moshe Knoll's lush setting of Psalm 133. Maestro Jason Tramm will conduct veteran actor of stage and screen Jordan Charney in Schoenberg's gripping cantata "A Survivor from Warsaw" along with a special performance by the Seton Hall University Choir in anticipation of “Prayer for Peace: The Power of One Voice” classical music concert, October 27th at NJPAC.

Violinist Kelly Hall-Tompkins will also play a suite from Fiddler on the Roof, arranged for her, that she will both perform with orchestra and record later this year. She will be accompanied by Stephen Benson, guitar; Joshua Camp, accordion and Steve Moran, bass.

Pianist Julia Zilberquit will play selections of the great Russian composers - Rachmaninoff, Scriabin and Tchaikovsky - in advance of her upcoming concerts in London and St. Petersburg.

And, in preparation for Open Source Music Festival, pianist Joel Fan will “preform” several new pieces by contemporary composers.

The series continues with evening concerts at Merkin Hall at Kaufman Music Center on Monday, November 27th and Monday, March 5th and will conclude with a final matinee concert on Monday, April 23rd.



Salon Solo {Radio}: actor, singer and performer Viola-Tianni Bao


Viola-Tianni Bao, from China, is currently a NYC based actress, singer and performer who just graduated from NYU with a Master’s degree in Performance Studies. Her versatile arts backgrounds in acting, singing, creative writing and drawing enable her to fully explore and celebrate different aspects of humanity along her life journey across the world.

Viola started acting, singing, doing pencil sketch and Chinese calligraphy since an early age, and she owns a very sentimental mentality. This always is fully revealed in her own work and performing style. However, it was the tremendous difficulties and pain she experienced in her life gave her the vision for life and arts. When she was young, Viola has suffered emotional abuse from her aunts for a long period of time, which at point significantly influenced her mind and emotion. Later on, she had an extremely hard time going through the trauma and the wound. Throughout the battle against brokenness, Viola has received the unconditional love of God and learnt how to sing for love and forgiveness, embracing the imperfections and the vulnerability, and turned all of these into her works.

Her other degree in Media & Journalism Studies enabled her to develop a well-round skill set in performing and on production side. Her documentary performance I Become My Fantasy was selected into the NYU annual GSAS Thesis Competition, in 2012, she was entitled The Best Campus Singer in Jilin University in China. Her film credits include 1988 which is a short film that will be released in late fall 2017.

The themes of her own works in the past years have focused on exploring selfness, vulnerability, shame-culture, fantasy, psychoanalysis, as well as experiencing identity mergence and divergence through the disjunction of time and space. One of her work Witness (Directed by Richard Schechner) was an experimental live performance that advocated for vulnerability, openness and fought against using shame as oppression.

To learn more about her works, please contact Viola at via 


Artist Statement:

"I would like to share with you a documentary performance I did this year as my thesis performance, which has completely changed my life as an artist and as a person. It’s called I become my fantasy. It is a 3-month-long, time and site-specific live performance in New York City.

I dreamed about living in New York since I was a kid. I have been working with everything I had to make it happen throughout the entire time. Along this journey, I have had thousands of moments when I actually “experienced” those dreamful moments in my imagination—even if they had never happened by then—everything was so real. When I was daydreaming, watching the movie with scenes…till one day I am finally made my journey here. Yay, right?

But, somehow my life moments here didn't quite feel the same as those I experienced in my fantasy. I didn’t enjoy my life as much as I thought I would – then, inspiration came: I was thinking about using some practice to change my mentality: to re-activate the excitement of the reality which I once fantasized about, and to live out my fantasy in real life moments. I call this The Bridging Acts. Bridging means to update my embodied perception in real life to the one in my fantasy. when I was able to bridge, the fantasy is being lived out! and that’s the moment you are like “Oh yeah! I am right in my dream!!!). Through a deep feeling of the world around me: images, sound, smell, touch and synesthesia, I project my current moment onto my embodied perceptual experience in my fantasy.

When the bridging moment happens, I accessed to different temporalities at the same time: me in the past and the present, me in day-dream and real life. therefore, I bridged different time and space together. Many concepts I took in this projects allowed audience to re-explore their own consumes, feelings and emotions, raising ontological questions about their own presence, exploring into the mentalities and emotions when someone is experiencing the disjunction of time and space, the dislocation and interlacement of fantasy and reality, one’s physical presence. It is about uncovering one’s consciousness and her embodiment perception during the bridging.

The media of the documentary included journaling, images and sound clips."  ~ Viola


The show coming up:

I am going to appear in Twelve Angry Women. which is a female version of the Emmy-winning performance Twelve Angry Men, written by Reginald Rose. The play was an adaption by Sherman L. Serge. It will be at New York City's Roebuck Theater at Times Square Arts Center, run between October 13th-15th. We have different cast for the show, I am in one of the 3 cast now, you can buy the ticket online.



I would like to share one quote from Ang Lee:

“The fear factor actually brings the genuineness.”


A mini poem by me:

 Title: No Caption


She lives in the picture

Quite and vigorous

She views her own elegance

Seeing him watching her,


Someone of No Importance

Sitting on the chair,

Looking herself in the frame

Smiles, and leaves.



I am still building up my own website. Please stay tuned!

Follow me on Instagram @viola_felicity, and I would like to know you and your work!


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