The last few days there has been some news that has The Fairy Princess like…

Does this negate the fact that there are still crimes being committed against AAPIs within the lusty month of May? Most recently in fact – YESTERDAY…

Yes, yesterday...the day before today, 3 Asian American women were shot in a hair salon. In TEXAS. One wonders, if this overturn of Roe V. Wade had happened already, and one of those women had been pregnant, if she would have been prosecuted for being shot while pregnant. As we are, to the GOP, just baby makers creating a domestic supply of infants for infertile couples….Food for thought.

Thankfully, they will be ok.

Still, they were shot. In their place of business.

The police have yet to label it a ‘hate crime’.

The wheels of justice are slow to turn, and let’s face it, the wheels of the giant monstrosity that is the Entertainment World are even slower than that. Just when you think you have it figured out, things change.

An example is NYC having it’s FIRST AAPI parade this coming Sunday, May 15th! Starting at 10:45 am, proceeding down 6th Avenue from it’s start on 44th Street.

When you consider the first St. Patrick’s Day Parade in NYC was in 1762, and the first AAPI parade is this year in 2022….

Back to the biz…there was a giant dust up in television, with 17 shows being cancelled.

Nora from Queens, still on the air – Congratulations to BD Wong, Lori Tan Chinn and Bowen Yang.

Magnum, P.I., however, did not get the renewal!

Which seems crazy because it had great ratings…but it seems there was a disagreement between the studio that produced it and the network that aired it. This is why we cannot have nice things- so ‘we’ lose a show everyone enjoyed and all those filming jobs from Hawaii.

Sadly, Kumu, played by the brilliant Amy Hill, will not be back – but Ms. Hill will be heard, in the new Netflix series of Kung Fu Panda;The Dragon Knight, where she will voice the character of Pei Pei.

It is because these giant monoliths of networks and studios move so slow and then speedrace into a different moment, that some things seem to take an eternity.

Some are over before they have even had a chance to begin.

Like, as an example- WHY would ABC pass on the pilot JOSEP based on Jo Koy’s comedy? A sitcom about a Fil-Am Fam? Slam dunk! To TFP, anyway.

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The Fairy Princess wishes a Happy USA Mother’s Day to those who celebrate.

Whether your Mother is with you, is watching you from ‘elsewhere’, know that she loves you. If your Mother figure is not the societal norm, and rather ‘Chosen Family’, that absolutely counts and please call them and take them to Drag Brunch if you can.

Anyway, if you are a Mother, contemplating a gift they made at school, with the the myriad of conflicted thoughts about said gift and where it will sit and how long before it disintegrates – know that you are not alone, TFP sees you and acknowledges all you do, even if the Supreme Court Ultra Conservatives want to control your uterus.

By the way, you know interracial marriage and LGBTQIA+ rights are next, yes? It’s not just about body autonomy – that is just where they are starting.

Politics aside – we have a new (to general audiences) Television star, Mr. Raymond Lee, coming to us on QUANTUM LEAP, where he will play Dr. Ben Seong.

Here is what you need to know – Mr. Lee is a New Yorker. He has been working quite a while, in fact, TFP saw his work first at an AAPI Film Festival where he appeared in KTown Cowboys in 2010. He’s been in a few series before beginning on YouTube where he was in ‘Best Couple Ever‘. He did 2 episodes on SCANDAL, before landing several episodes of MOZART IN THE JUNGLE (TFP went crazy for that), in 2018 he did a show called HERE AND NOW, and then in 2021, he was a regular on KEVIN CAN F*CK HIMSELF. He also had a lot of co-stars and guest stars along the way – and Folks, that is how it works.

Now, he is starring on the reboot of QUANTUM LEAP which takes place 30 years after the O.G. star of the show, Scott Bakula, playing Dr. Sam Beckett, supposedly ‘disappeared’ and did not come back. So expect to see Mr. Lee bopping through time and jumping in and out of various people’s experiences. Congratulations to Mr. Lee and his team.

Also please remember this was not always a show where it was a ‘nice’ jump into a ‘nice’ person – there were a few hairy jumps for Dr. Beckett, and one assumes, there will be some for Dr. Seong – so not a WORD of complaint from us, get me? He is not part of an ensemble cast here – he is the LEAD, he is number ONE on the call sheet on a Network Show, and we have not seen that as frequently as we would like.

Remember DDK saying how chuffed he was to get to that point? Being the face of a show? That was LAST YEAR.

In regards to his role on “The Hot Zone: Anthrax“. The only other one who is that status, who is of Asian heritage, is Sandra Oh for KILLING EVE, which just ended.

FRESH OFF THE BOAT and DR. KEN are no longer on the air, so…yeah, this is a big deal.

Another giant piece of news is that in the MCU, Folks are no longer sleeping on the potential of Wong, played by British East Asian Actor, Benedict Wong, and what is cool is that there is a hashtag and articles already out.

Mr. Wong joined the MCU in DR STRANGE in 2016, participated as Dr. Strange’s sidekick in quite a few of the films and most recently appeared in SHANG CHI. If you are hoping for a spinoff series like Marvel has done for other characters – keep hashtagging and tweeting and ‘gramming about #WongForWong – apparently it is gaining traction enough that Mr. Wong felt comfortable sharing it on late night television.

Now since the CRA script kerfuffle has really been overwhelming the actual filming of the sequel of the mega hit, we have learned yesterday that the role of Astrid, played so wonderfully by British East Asian talent, Gemma Chan, is going to get her own spinoff. In the second book, TFP recalls it generally being about Astrid and her romance with tech guru, Charlie Wu, played by Harry Shum Jr.

(Legit, she kinda skipped around to read their sections)

This screenplay is being done by Jason Kim, he has an EMMY nod for the show ‘Barry’…and….he also has a Broadway musical opening soon – KPOP, which he wrote the Book for. KPOP opens on Broadway in October. KPOP has a book by Mr. Kim, with Music and Lyrics by Max Vernon, and Music, Lyrics, and Arrangements by Helen Park.

The story is a behind the scenes look at what it takes to be a Kpop star, and in fact, there are Kpop stars that are part of the cast. If you want to know anymore, you have to get your tickets.

Get them NOW.

The cast is as announced:

Luna, Julia Abueva, Will Brill, Major Curda, Joomin Hwang, Jinwoo Jung, Jiho Kang, Amy Keum, James Kho, Bo Hyung Kim, Eddy Lee, Jully Lee, Min, Timothy H. Lee, Abraham Lim, Kate Mina Lin, Aubie Merrylees, Patrick Park, Kevin Woo, John Yi

Welcome to the Broadway, Folks.

As we close out this blog today, TFP wanted again to point out, during May, which is AAPI Heritage Month of how all these opportunities that people are seeing happen, are the result of years of work.

YEARS of work – and not just by the individuals whose names are on the front. There are educators, journalists, executives, bloggers, casting – as well as Artists, of course. There are people who do graphs and numbers, who provided valuable stats- hey whaddya know – your Parents were right, everyone needs math.

Nothing happens overnight- even if the internet makes you feel it does. It doesn’t. You are on your own path, and it is OK.

Thus, to add to the collective fun and the joy this month is supposed to embody- please watch this trailer of the Jo Koy film, EASTER SUNDAY

TFP wants to give a shout out to Lydia Gaston, Rodney To and Melody Butiu – Good to see them set up to shine on the big screen.

TFP hopes you get all that My Big, Fat Greek Wedding energy, and a sequel.

There are tons of books for kids that have been in the works and have ‘dropped’ as it were – and children are the future (Though if grown ass people do not get it together, the kids have 30 good years, and don’t act like that thought doesn’t keep TFP up at night). If it is important that your kids ‘see themselves’ and of course it is, make sure you give these, and the hundreds of others, a look see and help your kids see that they are deserving of ‘space’ in the world.

Happy Mother’s Day, Y’all

TFP Out.

The Fairy Princess has been on a self mandated break – because frankly, watching AAPIs get attacked via news reports, almost every day in the past few months, has made her very wary of engaging in any sort of debate because she has been doing this for ten years.

Yes, 10 years!

In her TEN YEARS of breaking it down for folks, it is super depressing to note that however many people she was able to ‘reach’, there was a far greater number who hate and would do violence to her simply because of the way she looks or where her family has heritage, she really had to ponder the worth of what she does.

The only thing that kept her hanging on was that Warrior got another season and starts filming in July 2022.

Sometimes it does not seem like anything has been accomplished at all. However that is defeatist and actually, quite a lot has changed, and not just her blood pressure.

Do AAPI’s have enough people on Broadway to represent the AAPI population of New York City at least?

No. Not even close.

However we do have Shoba Narayan in ALADDIN, Zach Piser in DEAR EVAN HANSEN, Manu Narayan (no relation) in COMPANY, Eva Noblezada and Kay Trinidad in HADESTOWN, Andrea Macaseaet in SIX, Kelvin Moon Loh in BEeTlEjUiCE, Marc Delacruz, Eddy Lee, and Preston Mui in HAMILTON on Broadway, as well as several AAPIs throughout their touring companies. In MUSIC MAN we have Ann Sanders in the Ensemble. In one of the ‘straight’ plays on The Broadway, POTUS, you can find Dr. Ken’s Suzy Nakamura as the Press Secretary and Lisa Helmi Johanson covering the role of Dusty.

Whilst downtown at NY’s Public Theater they just closed THE CHINESE LADY by Lloyd Suh, starring Daniel K. Issacs and Shannon Tyo, understudied by Cindy Im and Jon Norman Schneider. The Public currently have on the boards, SUFFS with Philippa Soo, Nadia Dandashi, Jaygee Macapuguay, and Mia Pak as Suffragettes.

Not to mention, but mention must be made of Conrad Ricamora in LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS…

Plus, the cast of INTO THE WOODS at City Center, going up with a limited run till May 15th, has Ann Harada,, Albert Guerson, Brooke Ishibashi, Kennedy Kanagawa!

Ms Kristina Wong won the Lucille Lortel Award for Best Solo Show! For her show Sweatshop Overloard, about her Auntie Sewing Squad making masks during the pandemic!

Lia Chang, photographer , filmmaker, actress and archivist won the Prospect Muse Award for her excellent, artistic photographs

One also has to get excited about CITIZEN WONG at Pan Asian Rep in New York City – a new play about social activist Wong Chin Foo, a Gilded Age pioneer who was the first to fight US law banning any people of any race from the United States – imagine where we’d be now if he had not done that?

Get your tickets here: https://ci.ovationtix.com/252/production/1110862

Other news includes ….BHANGIN’ IT with a book by Rehana Lew Mirza and Mike Lew slayed in La Jolla!

The new workshop production of COME FALL IN LOVE, direction by Aditya Chopra, with book & lyrics by Nell Benjamin, Choreo by Rob Ashford and Associate Choreo by Shruti Merchant which starred Shoba Narayan and Vishal Vaidya according to little birdies, went amazingly well!

Let’s say that again – there were TWO South Asian Musical Theater Projects happening one right after the other….TFP has never been able to write that about Broadway bound South Asian projects.

It’s slightly better.

What TFP does keep reminding people is that change is slow.

She just said that to a group of students up at University of CT. You might really want to jump up and down and scream your face off because you are on a schedule and opportunity is running late – and feel free – but real and actual change is slow. It takes time… building a career in musical theater, just as it does in television and film. Not to mention, building it so that Executives trust you with their project…it takes building those credits one at a time, getting better at auditioning, honing the acting…nothing happens overnight.

When TFP first began this blog, there were no de facto AAPI Film or Television stars except Lucy Liu, Sandra Oh, Tamlyn Tomita, Daniel Dae Kim, Reggie Lee, Grace Park, Roger Fan, Sung Kang, Parry Shen, Masi Oka, James Kyson Lee and John Cho.

That was who was working.

Pretty much that was it.

Of course there were people who starred in films or who were on television shows who everyone predicted big things for, but the big things did not materialize in a lot of cases, and that’s not mean, that’s what happened. Guest stars and let’s be honest, mainly co-stars was where the majority of AAPI actors were relegated.

AAPIS got knocked down a lot – but we got up again, every time.

Over the past decade TFP has seen a lot of new faces – not a plastic surgery joke btw – some via reality tv, some coming from modeling, some coming from comedy, some from prestigious universities – the point is, there has been change and there will be more change. We will likely not ever be ubiquitous in the United States, but we will become more visible, which is all we are asking.

We have a diversity that is only beginning to be recognized – Rizwan Manji and Annie Chang on Peacemaker fills TFP with joy.

Ali Wong, Aparna Nancherla, Hari Kongabolu, Ronny Chieng, Romesh Ranganathan and Jo Koy make her laugh till she cannot breath and look, Jo Koy has a pilot that looks like it is being picked up.

Who does it focus on? Jo Koy’s family. So who is hired to play his family growing up?

Filipino American Actors! However, keep in mind, Jo Koy has been doing comedy for close to twenty years. This is what TFP means – he had to build his career – and now that it is going gangbusters, he has the opportunity to launch a show and help other Fil-Am Actors.

He has always been funny – America just needed to catch up.

That’s how it works. Same with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson – it takes time, Folks.

To that end, and because TFP doesn’t want this part to be too ‘preachy’, she is going to ask you to celebrate AAPI Month by purchasing a copy of RISE for yourself and asking you to actually open the book, not just put it on the coffee table.

In here you will find, (TFP is very fond of pages 44 and 45), much of where AAPIs have been, and why noted journalists and bloggers and film makers who curated and contributed to it – (TFP mentioned pages 44 and 45, yes?)- predict greater moments to come.

TFP cannot show you better than to show you this book and request that you find out your past to foresee your future. You can follow the book on Instagram, to see signings and readings near you.

It was an honor to be asked to contribute – thank you Jeff, Phil, and Philip.

There is much to be grateful for – we can look to streamers and see ourselves!

It is exciting to see Bridgerton embracing South Asians in their storyline, and it must be said, very refreshing to see people with darker complexions being hailed in the storyline as ‘diamonds’ – because in Bollywood, they are not. HUGE. Everything that TFP hoped for when she wrote about the first season of Bridgerton.

The Daniels (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert) have done a brilliant job relaunching International Film Goddess Michelle Yeoh in “Everything Everywhere All At Once”

May was looking ok – barring the attacks on the street and in the subways… and then few celebrities or their stylists seem to understand the concept of the Gilded Age and started putting their clients in their best Golden Girls drag (Mrs. Astor would have NEVER…), at the MET Gala…TFP was distraught

and then SCOTUS leaked…

All the while, a war is continuing in the Ukraine, the planet has 30 years to continue on if we do not change, and oh yeah, men will be completely in charge of female bodies if you live in a Red State.

That is correct – SCOTUS is planning an overthrow of Roe V. Wade, which grants people the right to a safe medical procedure, known as an abortion. Something that should not be happening, especially given the climate crisis the world is facing whether it wants to, or not.

The planet is dying. Read the report.

You can get all up in your feelings about this procedure, but TFP believes that if one truly did not want abortions in the world, then men would get vasectomies, which are reversible. That way, the man is fully in control of when he wants to procreate, and there would be no ‘mistakes’ because if one is taking care of one’s own reproductive health with authority and responsibility, there would be less unwanted pregnancies and less abandoned children.

Vasectomies are safe, as well as being about male health and thus will never be in jeopardy of not being covered by insurance. Nor will people who have uteri ever try to jump in and ‘mandate’ them in any way, shape or form – because people with uteri know that that ‘procedure’ is between the person with the penis and their doctor. Does not matter the reason for the procedure.

The Person with the penis has the sperm for full term, while the vessel…

In other words, men do not care about…hold up – Cisgendered Straight Men – do not care about access to abortion, because even if their proclivities wind up in an unwanted pregnancy, they can and do walk away.

Yes, there are some that care – if you are a cisgendered straight man and feeling attacked after you read this whole blog, trust and believe, you will feel the sting for all of twenty seconds – the rest of us LIVE there. You will be fine.

It is time for LGBTQIA+ peoples and Women and Indigenous People and People of Color across all boundaries to come together and vote.

Come together and fight.

Body Autonomy is first on the list, next is Marriage Equality, and your ability to gain access to vote.

There are no ‘both sides’ – we are past that, America. We have to get them out of power, we have to get them out of even having a dream of a semblance of power. We cannot mess around any longer – the planet needs change, the people need change, the future must change or there will be no future.

TFP is choosing violence for her first blog in a while – because she remembered to NOT act, is to let evil win.

TFP out.

The Fairy Princess knows this last few years have been rough – if you are in Show business, as she is – it has been particularly tricky. In fact, she was wondering if her wings had been ‘clipped’ as it were, by the pandemic – because if entertainment takes a permanent dive, particularly live entertainment – there would be nothing for her to prattle on about, and effectively – nothing to write about.

Plus which, there are now AAPI Movie Stars, and Television Stars, Hollywood is beginning to get it!

TFP’s blog is TEN YEARS OLD this year – A DECADE!

Whilst Broadway is still super under-repping not just AAPIs, but Latinx and Indigenous Performers and Creatives – there IS hope.

You know what gives her the most ‘hope’?

Female Creatives. Female Creatives who understood TFP‘s message long before anyone else besides marginalized performers. They did not need to be told twice, they understood the assignment – and it is leading to breathtaking productions around the country that are diverse and inclusive and speaking to everyone.

(Talking to you, Marcia Milgrom Dodge, Rachel Chavkin, Tina Landau, Tisa Chang, Mia Katigbak, Leigh Silverman, Lainie Sakakura, Jennifer Phang, Maurissa Tancharoen, Lynn Chen, Larissa FastHorse, Camille A. Brown, Liesel Tommy, Dawn Monique Williams, Diane Rodriguez, Rachel Spencer Hewitt, Patricia Cardoso, Christine Henry, Lorna Ventura, etc etc)

Makes TFP‘s little Grinchy heart grow two thousand times bigger.

TFP thought, “Ok, perhaps it is time to wrap it up, given the current state of the world is just screaming, perhaps she should get out while the getting is good?

Thank goodness for Charlotte St. Martin, President of the Broadway League – whose members are the Producers of Broadway, because she issued this absolutely insane and egregious statement when Playbill asked her about the current state of Broadway

Which had TFP, a former Broadway Understudy for a TONY Winning Show like…

Now of course, of course, when there was pushback on Twitter and elsewhere on Social Media – St. Martin quickly issued an apology…

However, the statement itself has TFP thinking that it is time for Ms. St. Martin to ‘exit stage right’ as quickly as possible. No one who calls themselves a Producer, much less someone who is speaking for the Producers during a friggin’ PANDEMIC, would ever issue that kind of statement.

Producers raise money and put up shows. Then they do it again. Then they do it AGAIN. They can pick someone from obscurity and give them a chance at a life they had only dared to whisper to the mirror in the their teen bedroom into a brush, they can ALSO fire your ass and make sure you likely never work again by whispering in some ears.

They have a lot of power. Broadway does not exist without them. TFP is venturing to guess that Ms. St. Martin had to deal with some very irate members of the League, who know the value of their understudies. The fact that the retraction happened as quickly as it did, is proof something went down behind doors.

Broadway also does not exist without Understudies and Swings and Covers. They are the ‘emergency brake glass’ of Broadway and elsewhere. Producers know this. Sometimes the search for the Understudies and Covers and Swings is more arduous than the search for the original company because these are people who have to have the mental and physical capability to jump from role to role without a qualm.

In fact, TFP was in a show which was struck by sudden illness, and the Understudy had not even been put in rehearsal yet – however he learned the role in a few days, and wound up doing several performances. She had a conversation with the Producer off the cuff, and the Producer told her “I told them when we auditioned folks that we had to have him. He saved the day in the other show I did, and here he is doing it again.”

Understudies and Swings, unlike lead performers who only have one role to learn, often have to learn several ‘tracks’ within the same show.

She remembers seeing her friend in THE PRODUCERS on Broadway when he went on for one of the leads – then after the show he let her know he ‘covered’ all the larger male roles in the show – 5 tracks!

It is an absolute skill set to be able to keep track in your brain of which harmony you are supposed to sing because of which part you are ‘on’ for -not to mention blocking and costume changes. And of course, Choreography!

Think Charlotte St. Martin has ever covered 5 tracks?

To the ‘layperson’ who has no idea what TFP is talking about – she is going to ‘splain it in HAMILTON.

You are part of the Cast of HAMILTON (Disclaimer: TFP has no idea if these are the tracks assigned to the understudy, this is just an example for the non-biz folk)

Say you usually go to your job and do “Bullet’, (which is the track that Ariana DeBose did originally).

Let’s say the track of “Bullet” is the main Understudy for Eliza, but she also ‘covers’ Peggy and Angelica in dire emergency. That performer is required to know 4 tracks cold – they know this when they get the job.

Oh, here is Ariana in WEST SIDE STORY, in theaters now…

However this next night, you get to the theater and you hear that “Bullet’ is being done by your understudy because You (Regularly Bullet) are going on for ‘Eliza’ (Which is your main u/s track) for this evening’s performance.

By the way, you hear this when you walk into the theater at 7:30pm for an 8pm show.

Fine, you are prepared, you enjoy this track and you have done it before, the show goes great.

That is the job – that the show goes great – EVERY TIME. Awesome.

The next afternoon for the matinee, you are again, not playing Bullet – you are now “And, Peggy“. Regular ‘Eliza” is back on, so you are free to go and do your third track. Why you ask?

You are “And, Peggy” because the Actress that usually plays “And, Peggy‘ has food poisoning and is currently ill in the dressing room. You are pinned in a wig and a mic and a yellow dress, running blocking and lines in your head. You have never run “And, Peggy” outside of a rehearsal that has only been with a Stage Manager telling you where the other actors are standing, and perhaps another understudy or two standing in for the roles they are understudying.

And, Peggy” – GO!

Show goes great.

For the next couple of days everything is fine and normal and you are back to ‘Bullet”, except that Angelica is filming a soap opera during the day and it ran over and she cannot get there by ‘half hour’ so guess what – you are no longer “Bullet“, you are badass Angelica and in an orange dress. This one you have an hour to prep because you wanted to get to the theater early and stretch. Which is great, because this is the track that you are only supposed to cover in dire emergency, however two dancers collided with one another and they are out with sprained ankles.

However, you are a pro, and this is again, not an issue – the show continues, no one asks for refunds, and all are happy. Particularly the Producers, who pat themselves on the back for having the great good fortune to have such amazing performers in the show, who have this capacity.

This ‘story’ is not uncommon. Happens every day. With Covid that was ‘Just Covid’ that was then “Delta Dawn” that is now “Omicron, the Rebirth” – it is happening more than that. Nothing happened at all for 18 months remember? Everyone was clamoring, “We have to get Broadway back!”

However it could not come ‘back’ because no one was allowed to be near one another. Now with proof of vaccination and a rapid test CPR, there is an option of Broadway being ‘back’ as a theatergoer or a performer or a crew member or a front of house person.

Only if you have the vaccine and the booster folks!

If you want “Broadway’ and theater in and of itself ‘back’ – you need Understudies and Swings and Covers, oh myyyy.

Any Producer knows this – that the woman heading up the most powerful theatrical producing entity in the Country where the musical theater art form grew into what is the current day Broadway musical does NOT seem to know this, is a problem.

That she initially felt that understudies would not be prepared, when they train to be ready at a moment’s notice, is honestly, a theatrical crime.

It seems her opinion about understudies comes from more of an audience perspective, “I wanted to see Kristin Chenoweth, but she is out and her understudy is on, oh boooo” – which is literally the wrong mindset completely. When you see an Understudy go on, you are seeing the highest level of theatrical agility out there – you are seeing a thoroughbred.

TFP loves seeing understudies.

TFP has been a lead and she has been an understudy and trust and believe, it is way less stressful to have a run as a lead of a show, than being an understudy. One role vs several. Does keep you on your toes though!

It is a fact, as she stated above, that Ms. St. Martin does NOT create theater.

Clearly this is an issue, because in the words of the late, (Sob), great Sondheim, theater is ‘Bit by bit, putting it together” – that is what Producers do – they put it all together.

Sometimes they put the creative team together from the beginning, sometimes they come up with the concept and hire people for it, sometimes they just provide the money and rehearsal space – whatever they do to “PRODUCE” it, ultimately it brings the show to life.

TFP has a real question – If Ms. St. Martin does not create theater – why is she the mouthpiece for those who do?

Theater is not her background, and yet she joined The Broadway League as Executive Director and is now the current President since 2006!

Yet, she had to have a ‘sit down’ with Broadway understudies to find out what they do?

WTF does not know what an Understudy does if you are in theater?

Which got TFP to thinking – what is Ms. St. Martin’s background anyway?

TFP thought it would be great to go to the League’s website and see…here is a link to the whole thing, but this is a most telling ‘clip’.

TFP is not attacking Ms. St. Martin, however a working knowledge of what an Understudy does, should be required for the position she has. Perhaps the position she has is more administrative, and the skill set she took from the hospitality world is easily transferable, however she should not need a primer on the mechanics of what makes a show run.

Since she has been working with the Organization since 2006.

She should understand the how to’s of what needs to happen to get a show up and running.

Understudies, Swings, and Covers keep the show running in the worst of times. They keep shows running in the best of times. They are the reason catastrophes, or accidents, or illness does not sink a long running show – there would be NO long running show without understudies.

Producers know this.

So come get your girl….

TFP gives a thousand whacks of the wand and a primer on producing for Ms. St. Martin.

If you dare make an ‘educated guess’ – perhaps have the education to make one.

TFP out.

PS. If you click the link below, please see Hugh Jackman give it up for the Marian Understudy, Kathy Voytko and LISTEN to what he says…

https://vm.tiktok.com/ZM8T9JYmB/

Yesterday, The Fairy Princess woke up and watched, via Internet, one of the more interesting and well acted pieces she has ever seen, via Internet, at The Edinburgh Fringe.

It is called “Every Dollar is a Soldier/With Money You’re A Dragon “ and it was a commissioned piece by the Arts Council England, hosted by Chinese Arts Now, written by TFP‘s overseas ‘brother from another mother’, Daniel York Loh – it mixed gaming tech, newly composed music with British East Asian musicians, dance, and drama – and frankly, it was enthralling.

Coming off that delightful piece, imagine how dismayed TFP was this morning to see that the Royal Botanical Garden’s Kew Garden’s location was producing The Wind In the Willows, which is a production paid for by British tax dollars – just as “Every Dollar is a Solider”, only with a much more troubling result.

See if you can guess why TFP would be upset – and keep in mind – these performances are in a public park and designed for children….

What could TFP possibly be annoyed about in this scenario?

Well, first – this is a story about animals.

Thus there is no need for Edwardian or Victorian (aka white white white faces only ) mores and that esthetic should not have made their way into a public park.

England honestly does not look like that anymore, and more to the point – their children do not look like that anymore.

If this is paid for by the tax payers, and the goal is to educate and delight children, how do you justify this?

Especially when this is the makeup that the actors are wearing?

Pretty sure greenface does not have an ethnic component.

This is how they are ‘selling it’ at the Kew Gardens:

Let TFP get this straight – it is about animals, it is magical, it is interactive, and there are no People of Color in this show that was directed by, it must be said, a white man?

This is when TFP does get mad – not at the actors cast, she gets mad at the people in charge.

This is the Director who did this, and it is to him that TFP directs this knowledge.

Sir, please look at this graph, about the population of the U.K. and tell us how your production serves the children of London.

TFP got this graph off of the official government site, and she also screen shot this little nugget of information:

40.2% of London is not white.

40.2% of the children that come to see your show, will not see images of themselves, in any way.

Which means they will feel, on some level, excluded from this oh so very English story.

This show, set in the beautiful Kew Gardens in Southwest London, is designed to ‘save’ the examples of biodiversity that exist, that is their mission – watch:

Isn’t it hypocritical in a place devoted to biodiversity, that there is no diversity on the stage? A stage set in the middle of a park to educate – and yet, what is going on there? Examples of privilege. Examples of exclusion.

Perhaps some of the kids, not seeing themselves on the stage will, like Daniel York Loh, grow up and create really brilliant theater. Daniel HAD to do that – and of course others like Lucy Miller Sheen and Madame Miaow and all the very amazing East and Southeast and South Asian talent – well, the BAME talent you have over there – they HAD to do this because from the GO – from when they were CHILDREN, people like YOU excluded them from the story.

This production is actively hurting the psychological development of 40.2% of your audience, and their Parents who have to ‘explain’ all this when they get home – because of blindness and lack of forethought.

Theaters should reflect their audiences. More people would come

Oh but wait, you say – Kew Gardens has a Japanese Garden installation in August.

So what?

It’s framed as Japanese Gardens, no?

Which is not British.

It’s like The Mikado in a garden – you will showcase all the wonder and creativity of the Japanese concepts of gardening and proportion, but as it is ‘foreign’, it will likely not touch the feelings of belonging that British East, South and Southeast Asians and others in the BAME group need to feel.

That work should start in childhood.

We collectively have a real shot at making the world more accessible and inclusive for our kids, and theater for children is one of the ways in which we do that.

Just think of it this way – whatever your thoughts on Megan and Harry – think about Archie and Lilibet – if THEY came to see your show, would they see anyone on the stage that looked like their Mummy? Would they see anyone on the stage that looked like the friends of their parents or the kids they will attend school with? Or their honorary American Aunties and Uncles? Or the diverse people that attended their parents’ wedding?

No, they wouldn’t.

Seems to TFP, a ‘Royal’ Garden should do better than that, doesn’t it?

When you see what taxpayer dollars can encourage – like the interactive piece “Every Dollar is a Soldier/With Money You’re A Dragon” and how progressive that is, and then you see something like the cast of The Wind In The Willows – which ignores 40.2% of the London population, but proclaims their own genius at education and diversity – well, one step forward and ten back, innit?

TFP fines you 1,000 whacks of the wand and for heaven’s sake – go to diversity training, ya wankers!

TFP out.

The Fairy Princess is thrilled right now to be able to say the following:

  1. Happy Opening Night to PASS OVER on Broadway. Buy tickets here.
  2. SNAKE EYES – the feature film starring mixed race star, HENRY GOLDING is in theaters and avail to rent ON DEMAND and various other platforms
  3. Sandra Oh has a show that has just dropped on Netflix called THE CHAIR and it is a subversive and snarky peek into the world of academia – although it is NOT a documentary. So – for those of us who do teach at Universities, it is not meant to do anything but entertain and provide a star vehicle, and honestly – YES to that. The load of representing need not be consistently load bearing to be entertaining.
  4. SHANG CHI had a premiere in Hollywood and will be available for the first month to only be screened in movie theaters. If you feel ‘safe enough’ to do so, please see it in theaters, and for those of us with children under 12 who cannot be vaccinated – it will be streamed after the first month, so no – you will not miss it. It stars former Kim’s Convenience star, Simu Liu – and from what pals say – it is a welcome addition to the Marvel Universe.
  5. TFP would also like to pre-emptively welcome back the companies of WAITRESS, SIX, WICKED, HAMILTON, PHANTOM, LION KING et all – to rehearsal, as they all have scheduled openings in September.
  6. Congratulations to all the finalists and winners of the Asian American Film 72 Hour Lab’s Shootout – where they crew and cast and writers come together and shoot an entire short, edit it, and so forth in 72 hours. TFP has been to the Award Ceremony and while she is sure things are slightly different this year – it is amazing the amount of art that was accomplished.
  7. WARRIOR which moved to HBO Max, has been greenlit for a third season!
  8. Adele Lim has a new movie starring a bunch of AAPI women on a road trip
  9. Courtney Kang’s new show, Dougie Kamealoha, M.D. drops on Sept 8. on Disney+

All those things are amazing, all those things are such a nice relief from what has been terrible news from across the globe – earthquakes, troop withdrawls, new COVID cases from those, primarily who would not get a vaccine – thus insuring that their genetic material continues on only if they already have progeny OR somehow they survive OR they do society at large the great benefit of eliminating their gene pool of stupidity.

Darwinism is harsh, y’all.

TFP is honestly still reeling from the death of her amazing friend, TV, Broadway, and FILM Actor, ALVIN ING from COVID complications – aka he fought it for two weeks and then passed from heart failure the day before he was going to be moved from the COVID ward. They texted back and forth the night before, and she was so thrilled he seemed like ‘himself’, and then…

What makes her angry for her friend is that he was fully vaccinated and more to the point – he was LIVING AS LARGE as any person could given pandemic circumstances. No one knows how he caught it – he should not have. Vaccinations are now readily available, and what is clear is that if more people had been vaccinated – he would still be with us. While in hospital, he was reviewing sheet music and going over song choices for his 90th Birthday concert with full orchestra.

This is a video TFP shot herself, when he was speaking at the luncheon to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Flower Drum Song.

It seems amazing to TFP that Alvin could pass away, she still struggles with it – and while his ‘official’ obituary lists many of his accomplishments – two Broadway runs of PACIFIC OVERTURES, Broadway run of FLOWER DRUM SONG with the revised book by David Henry Hwang, National Tour of CITY OF ANGELS – what it did not list is how RARE it was that Alvin, a ‘local boy’ from Hawaii, came to New York to get his MFA from Columbia University in Music, had the happenstance to fall into a series of ‘Fortunate’ events – despite Asians not being able to be cast as Asians at the time – and how he built his life and career around changing that narrative.

There would be no TFP without Alvin Ing and others of his generation. If they had not been determined to change the world – there would have been no opportunity for any of ‘us’ who came after.

REST IN MUSIC, MY FRIEND.

You are our Hundred Millionth Miracle. TFP will see you again.

Now, on to the SAG AFTRA Elections...and TFP really did not want to write about it.

We should be able to have non partisan elections in our Unions without it turning into a knock down drag out fight.

However that is not what is happening, and much like…honestly Alexander Hamilton in Act 2, TFP has been asked to share her thoughts on what is at stake in the latest upcoming election. She is NOT TELLING YOU HOW TO VOTE, she is telling you which group she is supporting as a longtime Guild member.

It is about Healthcare, but it is also about what do we want moving forward. Actors have seen their industry – and yes, all, it is a damn INDUSTRY, a job creating machine – decimated and then slowly building back over the past 18 months.

Our Insurance plan, which TFP broke down a while back – does very little to support the working class actor. It bounced people off the plan to cut costs by raising the deductible, raising the amount one has to earn in order to have the coverage in the first place – and it looks like there is no going back. Health care costs are rising, no one seems to be reining in insurance companies, and essentially, if you happen to be a working actor – do not depend on SAG AFTRA for your heathcare unless you are working regularly on a television show. Remember – they threw off Oscar Winner, Hillary Swank!

Health care is going to be an eternal obstacle and the best way to handle it, TFP believes, is to back those running who have extensive contract negotiation experience. Those who have been on, been off insurance, those who have had true health crisis on insurance and off – a variety of experiences support a wealth of knowledge.

However this is not the only issue facing the Union. We have to look at streaming revenues – most recently brought into the spotlight by ScarJo’s lawsuit against Disney. While hers seems to be a misinterpretation of what the actual contract stated – you can read it a number of different ways – the ‘danger’ of reduce fees based on a non theatrical release is valid. You, as the Actor, stand to make less money. This model needs to be re-examined. We need to go back and look at internet fees and commercial fees – we are in an ever ongoing battle with studios and producers over what is fair and equitable.

Which will never change. Better to have a solid group of people who have worked a wide, wide range of contracts.

Safety is an issue – and always will be.

Protection of minors is an issue – and always will be.

Sexual Harassment is an issue – and very sadly – always will be.

Intimacy Coordinators, recently added to the negotiations – is a welcome and much needed change – and always will be.

We have representation issues – yes, STILL – and we have a resentful bunch of folks who miss ‘the way things used to be’ who ‘blame’ minorities – wrongly – for their lack of work. This is an issue. It is a deeply embedded issue steeped in supremacy and privilege and there is no quick fix for this problem.

Leaders of the Union should look like the change we want to see. They should be inclusive and diverse.

Even when the ‘representation issue itself’ is solidified to a certain degree because it is supposed to highlight a particular group – there are still issues, as we have seen with RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON, MOANA, IN THE HEIGHTS, CRAZY RICH ASIANS, and there are, even within those projects, issues of colorism. We, the PGM, have to have wins that are in the larger public eye, but we also have to acknowledge missteps that have occurred and yet while HAVING the discussions, NOT DERAIL the entire project because of the toxicity of some of the discussions that could make the larger audience for that piece, wary of even going to see it.

Dwayne The Rock Johnson and Keanu Reeves cannot be in everything. Oh that they could.

Who will lead these very important ongoing discussions? Hopefully those who have experienced discrimination and marginalization – not those who have to have it explained to them and require explanation as to why it is an issue.

Yes, it’s exhausting. Our union deals with exhausting issues because show business is exhausting. It is also, to many actors, kind of boring – and so, they vote for their friends.

That may have been fine in the past, but that is not fine going forward – TFP has friends she admires in both groups – however, she shares who she is backing as an individual and the reasons why, for those who have questions still.

Your way to make your voice heard as a Union member, is to VOTE.

After thought and analysis, TFP is endorsing the platform put forth by UNITE FOR STRENGTH.

They are more diverse, incorporating members not only of different ethnic backgrounds, but also the LGBTQIA community, age, body type, in lived experiences. The union is changing – TFP wants people who reflect that change, who ALSO have lots of experience in different contracts.

After having read the candidacy statements, she truly believes that UFS has the broader mindset with people whose long term careers within the SAG AFTRA structure. Which gives them the capacity to make decisions based on experience in both production – so many of them have self produced efforts – and performance.

She is… wary of people running for office who, when they did not get their way, sued the very union they are members of – not because she does not think challenges to leadership should be made – but because in the midst of dwindling revenues – they had SAG AFTRA having to engage in very expensive arbitration – and who paid for that?

SAG AFTRA MEMBERS.

Yes, mailed postcards are a waste, you know what else is a waste? Locking the Union in arbitration! Having a known confrontational history with Guild staff and other Members is also something leadership should not have in it’s wheelhouse of party tricks, yet here we are.

Frankly, at the current moment, TFP sees no benefit in supporting a group headed up by a straight white man who has been well known as an actor since his late teens & a straight white woman who is of Hollywood ‘royalty’ – both of whom have attacked the Union again and again.

She cannot see the benefit in supporting that candidacy. She does not think they reflect her, nor her beliefs in what will be of most benefit moving forward.

TFP is endorsing Fran Drescher and Anthony Rapp – and all the members of the Unite For Strength platform because it is time our union looked like us. We need moxie in this Union. It is time we broaden our thoughts as to what ‘qualifies’ a person to run for office – and people with experience running their own production companies, self producing and creating work while having to use grit and awareness to carve out a career in this business, which, in other times they would have been firmly locked out of – seem a better bet to TFP as we move forward.

TFP out.

The Fairy Princess has seen a whole lot of tragic stupidity as this last year and a half have rolled by.

She has seen her business come to a standstill.

She has seen friends leave the business completely and move out of New York. Truly talented people called ‘enough’. They have now been ‘lost’ to the business because of actual living space, a regular paycheck, and a change at what life looks like when you do not have to make it to the theater by half hour.

(Half Hour is 7:30pm) (or 1:30pm) (Half hour before the show)

She has seen people in the business die. Horribly, horrible deaths from COVID-19.

HEALTHY PEOPLE DEAD – because someone came to the theater, and passed disease through their breath. They left behind families, who are now broken, all because no one knew it was around at the time.

We KNOW the Delta Variant is here – get the shot. No one cares about your ‘reasons’ for not. Death is on the line.

She has seen leadership, and lack of leadership,and then leadership again – …you know who you are.

Here is what – if you do not have a rule that all Theater Professionals and those who enter the building and those who work in the building MUST be vaccinated and show proof – we are going to experience COVID-19 Groundhog Day, THE MUSICAL!!!

More people will die.

More people will become ill and suffer lifelong weaknesses that will prevent them from living their life as a normal human.

People will get infected and ‘take it home’ to their kids under 12 that are still unable to BE vaccinated, and then THOSE children – who have not yet fallen in love with theater – could develop life long illnesses affecting vital organs.

IF YOU LOVE THEATER, IF YOU WORK IN THEATER AND YOU DO NOT GET VACCINATED – AND THEN WILLFULLY THROUGH SOCIAL MEDIA TRY AND CONVINCE OTHERS THAT YOU PERSONALLY KNOW MORE THAN SCIENTISTS AND MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS…

Your personal beliefs do not matter.

Yes, that is an affront to most Americans – because we are told, over and over again, that we do matter – however…

YOUR BELIEFS are NOT worth OTHER PEOPLE’S LIVES.

This DELTA Variant is not plucked from the timeline – it is what happens when the environment in which the original virus is exposed, combines with local factors and becomes EXTRA deadly.

Yeah, this one is EXTRA deadly.

It’s more powerful.

It’s more easily spread.

There is no guarantee that you will not get the COVID-19 DELTA Variant, even if you are fully vaccinated but GUESS WHAT? We already know that from the flu shots.

YES!

WE ALREADY EXPERIENCE VACCINE INSUFFICIENCY from the FLU Shot – but if you have the FLU shot and you get the FLU, you will not die.

IF you have the COVID 19 Vaccination – and you get the Delta – YOU WILL NOT DIE.

You will just get sick.

Guess what? An outdoor performance in Central Park had to be cancelled because someone tested positive for COVID-19!

Outdoors is supposed to be relatively safe – if everyone is vaccinated.

THEY STILL CANCELLED.

Clearly, people who have been vaccinated can get the virus.

Therefore ALL performances must have masked audience members with proof of vaccination.

All “Houses” must require vaccination to work within those walls.

Will some still get sick – YES DAMMIT!

But not 600K in one year.

TFP is calling on the Theatrical Leadership to make hard, fast rules about admission into the audience, the crew, the company, and anyone who enters the buildings – that vaccination proof is required. The Unions must require vaccinations in order to work. All the Unions.

MAKE THE MEMBERS GET THE SHOTS.

This is a note too for the Labor Unions in general – Police, Firepeople, Medical Professionals – if your members do not get vaccinated, they must be put on furlough with no pay, no ability to apply for benefits – until they show proof of immunization.

We cannot screw around any more.

People who on the signed note from a Dr who are unable to be vaccinated, or who did get the shots and are still not able to consider themselves immune from this killer virus – they need the protection, the herd immunity.

We are too smart to go through this bullshit again, aren’t we?

If you ARE NOT SMART ENOUGH to NOT go through the same damn thing – well, sorry Karen, sorry Karl – you don’t get to come to see the show.

You don’t get to work.

That’s it.

You have to think of the larger picture, and not be an asshole.

TFP does not care what kind of politics you have – this is not about politics – this is about SELFISHNESS.

This is about ARROGANCE.

Theater is not a ‘right’ – you have to earn it. You earn it through experience and talent and determination – or you earn the $$$ to buy a ticket.

What you will NOT do is say that your $$$ is worth more than anyone’s life.

What you will NOT do is decide that your fear of a day or two of side effects is worth more than your fellow cast member’s LIFE.

It is not. Ya BIG BABY!

If TFP could wave her wand and impart herd immunity to the world – she would. If it spared even an ounce of suffering – not just for her and hers, but for you and yours – and all she had to do was get jabbed in the arm – she would do it – oh wait a MINUTE….

SHE HAS DONE IT.

SHE HAS BEEN FULLY VAXXED SINCE MAY – AND SHE STILL WEARS A DAMN MASK TO PROTECT OTHERS!

THIS ONE IS NOT ON TFP – it’s on YOU, MF-er!

If you don’t get the vaccination – you don’t have a right to walk around in common areas. That is it.

Polio and Measles are two things that vaccines helped eradicate from our society – and if these moronic anti vaxxers had social media then? We’d still be seeing deaths and crippling repercussions from those two diseases.

If you don’t get vaxxed – stay the hell away from TFP – she fines you a wack of the wand from the 10K Covid Deaths of the past week or so – all non vaccinated people.

Maybe that will knock some sense in your heads!

TFP out.

The Fairy Princess is a member of Actor’s Equity, which is the Union that covers stage managers and performers.

She has written about some things once or twice….

When she first saw the released statement, she will admit she had a hard time wrapping her head around some points, specifically this one point:

“…we are opening Union membership to any Actor or Stage Manager who can demonstrate they have worked professionally (i.e. received compensation) as an Actor or Stage Manger in the United States.”

Which, she has to admit left her feeling like,


Which was of course, a reaction to the implied understanding that there are different ways of being ‘paid professionally’ and what ‘standard’ that did or did not meet, and what effect would that have on what constitutes professional theater?

She took time to read through the information available, and honestly – it is FINE.

“This eligibility will extend for two years, with application and down payment of initiation fee and any applicable re-instatement fees required by May 1, 2023

Stop freaking out – this is FINE.

The applicant has to be evaluated by a committee, they have to submit pay stubs and a resume and while this is more open than it has been in the past, it is not carte blanche for anyone who has ever trod the boards in a local production to waltz in and demand a Union Card.

Experience is still being prized, the only thing that is being examined is the pay grade.

She thought about all the things she has learned as an AEA member over the years – about safety, and health regulations, and self care – and guess what? None of that is going to be affected by opening up. Anyone who calls themselves an Actor or an SM who is going out of town, or pulling insane hours, or doing Summer Stock, not being compensated for overtime – they should be protected from predatory producers.

The Union was formed to PROTECT PEOPLE FROM PREDATORY PRODUCERS – and THAT is what this is about.

It has been the PRODUCERS who decided which actors were able to garner “POINTS’ towards AEA Membership, and it has been PRODUCERS who have negotiated just how many AEA Contracts they will ‘allow” – so what this does is take the power out of the hands of those same PRODUCERS and puts the power of collective bargaining back in the hands of AEA.

Why should we support PRODUCERS determining who they will ‘allow’ into AEA?

If you have the talent to be hired over a season – a summer season, a winter season by one theater, or for a large role by an Off Broadway or Regional Theater – you should be able to be an AEA Member.

After all – if the MAJORITY of Actors are AEA Members, then it is going to be a LOT HARDER to find Actors to fill the slots for a Non Union tour or large regional space. This is not about Broadway at all – this is about losing tours and regional theater to Non Union opportunities. This is to save the protections that AEA Members are entitled to – to prevent people from being abused by a tradition that is, let’s face it, rife with opportunities for “poor sportsmanship”.

Opportunities that will STILL BE THERE for those who do not want to ‘go Union’ just yet – which could be financial or could be experience related – but it will be in the hands of the ACTOR or STAGE MANAGER to determine for themselves what the timeline is.

The only thing that will be of concern is going to Open AEA Calls, with newly minted members who possibly could decide that they deserve their shot (Which they do) and so…you add people to that equation, yes, it may get crowded – but overall- if you have been a member already, this is NOT going to affect you.

It is on the PRODUCERS to add additional casting days. Days they already agreed to.

You are already a member.

You already pay dues.

You are already entitled to support from your Union when you work under a Union contract.

You know that TFP loves writing about the ‘systemic racism’ nature of theater, yes?

Well…NO, she does NOT, but as she is an AAPI Actor, she has seen how lack of opportunity through the years has taken a toll on the careers of very talented people who simply cannot get a job.

TFP herself is an AAPI Ethel Merman – ask yourself how often that combination is called for?

AVENUE Q and the revamped FLOWER DRUM SONG are the only shows that call for an AAPI Ethel Merman type.

TFP has done both those shows

Neither of them are currently running on Broadway.

She is ‘too Asian” for white shows, “too White’ for specific AAPI shows that do not require singing – she is in a pickle that has nothing to do with training or talent, but has everything to do with opportunity she can meet with talent and experience – and that, is systemic.

When TFP joined the Union, it was because she happen to be cast in a Pre-Bway Workshop.

The AEA Rep came to explain membership, as it turned out – only three of us, all AAPI, were Non Union. She sat through a rehearsal, and when the time came, she told us she was just going to let us apply for membership, and as long as we paid the fee within a certain time, we were to consider ourselves AEA Members. She said she was saving herself paperwork for when we were going to join AEA, which she estimated would be in a matter of months.

She just cut out the interim period because she felt our employment in this workshop was indicative of future members.

(Out of the three, two of us went on to have rather long careers, one was male – so he worked quite a bit on Broadway, and the other was TFP, which…yes, there was work, but it was work and long spaces of unemployment. Very typical of being a stage actor. She too eventually made it to Broadway.)

This was NOT a typical way to join, and TFP remembers being told to ‘keep it quiet’ about how they got in, but that was how. Someone showed generosity of spirit.

Which meant that by late September of the year post graduation, TFP was an AEA Member.

Now, this came with it some disadvantages and some advantages.

  1. Though it took several of her friends years and years to become AEA Members, they did a lot of Non Union Work – Work TFP was not able to do. So their resumes were honestly quite full when they came to AEA, and hers was not. Which is absolutely something to consider when deciding to join. Do you have the resume to get those AEA contracts? If you are just beginning, probably not – get some experience. Being Non Union only is a finite time in your life, hopefully – so learn as much as you can, make as many mistakes as you can, learn how to conduct yourself within theater as much as you can.

2. She could sign up for Open AEA Auditions and audition for higher paying contracts and honestly, higher caliber shows than they were able to – they would sit outside in the non Union Lobby – waiting all day to sing for whatever the ‘big’ show was, and she could ‘go in.’

Over time, Casting Directors got to know her quite a bit before she was ever cast – and that was, honestly, kind of okay. When she was ‘ready’, she was cast.

Thus TFP can say that being a member of AEA gave her the mental fortitude to say to herself when days were bad – that ‘at least’ she was a member of a Union. She took pride in paying her dues, because even if she had not worked in a bit, it meant she was still a part of ‘the business’.

Which made the ‘day jobs’ easier to take. At least she was in NYC, at least she was an AEA Member, at LEAST she could go use the bathroom in the AEA Lounge! She had a space in the middle of Manhattan to sit, and wait, and make sure her makeup was ok before venturing forth – something like that, in the middle of Manhattan, is a big deal.

She did not take some of those back breaking, carry the sets and tour on a school bus or mini van and do it six times a day “type’ of shows – because as a member of AEA which has rules, and has standards, she could not. She was not being housed in a closet that doubled as a bedroom in a shack next to the theater, she had to be housed according to AEA standards. She was able to get breaks while working on a new show.

Protections which likely saved her from some experiences that had her friends quitting the business left and right.

It did not ‘save’ her from having to get temp jobs or work in a catering house, or be in production jobs – it did not ‘save’ her from looking in Backstage and seeing she was clearly unwanted within theater – all of that was glaringly apparent.

Years could go by without a ‘call’ for anyone vaguely resembling TFP. Forget about Producers wanting to ‘take a chance’ on casting AAPIs when it was not specifically written in the script – that work was few and far between. Unless it happened to require an additional special skill that only that one AAPI performer had in their wheelhouse.

Not to mention which, the companies that did tend to be AAPI focused did not hire TFP because they considered that hiring her was a ‘watering-down’ of their message – which, does have to be stated. She was told she was not ‘submissive enough’ for jobs, she was “too American”, she was asked “who do you think you are” – all the hideous things that being a member of AEA cannot protect you from – that all happened.

But NOT in rehearsal.

Never under a AEA Contract.

TFP thought she was ‘a belter’.

The world thought she was ‘an Asian”.

That kind of stuff, AEA cannot protect you from.

THAT is systemic.

TFP is not at all worried about these potential new members. If they have been working, they can pay their dues and fees, and if it has been – as has been said by AEA – discriminatory Casting practices that has kept people from obtaining Union membership up until now, then that should be rectified by allowing them to have protections and opportunity to rise.

If the AAPAC Visibility Report proves nothing else, it has shown that Caucasian performers are OVERLY represented on our stages and are not representative of the population at large. Which means that, prior to – Producers were awarding contracts and points to White performers over PGM performers simply because of the glut of roles for those types of performers, and because well, they wanted to.

It took much longer as a Person of the Global Majority to get your AEA Card – TFP’s experience is an exception.

We were all in a Pixar movie, over and over and over.

Yeah, hideous.

New rules means we get the opportunity to ‘welcome back’ people who have talent who could not get cast and use their AEA membership, for whatever reason – perhaps they moved to a ‘right to work’ state. Perhaps there is not a large regional theater that has enough AEA contracts to support them? They already ‘earned it’, they just could not sustain it through no fault of their own.

The point is – we should not lose AEA Members to geography. Or Disability or LGBTQIA status. Or any of it. If they have chosen ‘this life’, and all it entails- let them have the shot. Their shot has nothing to do with you and your shot.

We should not be ‘afraid’ of people coming and auditioning from other countries – that is ludicrous. Who is to say that someone from Australia or Nigeria cannot belt their face off? Not TFP, and not AEA either, btw.

It is not upon the members or the officials to judge the talent of a potential Union member based on point of origin. If the US Government let them in, and allows them to work, they auditioned and are offered a contract – who is AEA to stand in the way?

If this new policy does not work, they have until May 2023 to revise it – so let’s just wait and see.

TFP thinks it is going to be ok – not that there will not be bumps, however this is not ‘a thing’ unless current AEA Members make it “a thing”.

Don’t make it ‘a thing’ or TFP will have to smack you in the head with her wand.

TFP out.

The Fairy Princess had hoped that – magically – that pandemic would have really changed people. That all the diversity statements that occurred when people were murdered or attacked would affect genuine change – but that is not the case in theater, and frankly, though TFP was ‘hopeful’, she knew that POC who are not in charge of much, were going to return to our ‘designated‘ spots once theater opened back up again – and she has been proven absolutely whi….er…right.

TFP is correct. She doesn’t want to be, but that’s the way it is kids, that’s the way it is.

Strides have, of course, been made – a body in motion will remain in motion unless acted upon by a greater force. There are some who were ‘in motion’ prior to the pandemic and used the pandemic for the personal reset that it has turned out to be for many. If you were one of the people who were ‘in motion’ and you formed a coalition and made strides – awesome for you!

TFP happened to be extremely busy (yes, unusual) during the pandemic, and she is grateful because if writing this blog has taught her nothing else, it is that, bad stuff happens, but you carry on. She wants to applaud some of the good stuff, and then we shall get to what she is going to write about that will, once again, stall her career, because that is what truth telling seems to do…anyway, here is some good stuff:

TFP was featured on the podcast – Mama’s Talkin Loud with Hosts, Cara Cooper & Jessica Rush – here is the link: https://broadwaypodcastnetwork.com/podcast/mamas-talkin-loud/

Ms. Cooper and Ms. Rush have talked with several AAPI Parents – TONY Winner, Ruthie Ann Miles, Raymond J. Lee, Pearl Sun – so make sure you check them out where you get your podcasts.

TFP hosted a panel with the Cast and Creatives of SOFT POWER for BroadwayCon, and you can check that out here on YouTube or on their Facebook Page:

TFP also spoke with Actor, Jeffrey Omura who is running for NYC’s City Council – and if elected to serve, he will be the only Japanese American to be elected to office in New York State, and the only Openly LGBTQIA Candidate to serve in his District.

The election is June 22, New Yorkers – so if you can vote – please do, and let’s help things change for the better!

Now, Broadway is set to reopen September 14, 2021 at full capacity.

Take that in for a minute- FULL CAPACITY.

Which means, your butt will not be socially distanced from anyone else’s butt. Likely proof of vacination will have to be shown, and masks possibly worn – but TFP does not have the mental wherewithal to take in that, as of the 14th – full capacity will be ‘a thing’.

TFP just gonna self medicate…

The tickets selling the best are for – hold please while she gathers herself – for The Music Man revival that producer, Scott Rudin excommunicated himself from so that he could still make money and badger people over the phone.

He just cannot be in the office to throw it at them.

Ultimately, what it does prove is that Broadway success is a self fulfilling prophecy – he stated he wanted Broadway back to it’s “Golden Age”, aka no People of Color. He proceeded to cast the show without People of Color (according to the last announced cast), and people are buying them up like hotcakes because well, a lot of folks like Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster, and they would like to go back to a ‘less complicated time’ where no one has to worry about other people and their feelings and being held accountable.

They do not want to acknowledge any privilege. They do not want to hear the word ‘systemic’, they just want to go forth, comforted in the fact that they will not be able to confront their own prejudices, and instead have an ‘enjoyable night out’ watching performers that should just ‘sing and dance and keep their mouths shut’.

Broadway crowds have so far, proven Mr. Rudin right.

All of this ‘accountability’ is not holding anyone accountable. Sexual predators are still working. Problematic Producers are still producing. Costume Designers who have several accusations against them over time…still sewing.

Heck, Garth Drabinsky is back! He was not held accountable by Broadway, but by the Federal Government, but again, back he comes.

Maybe it will be ok, TFP loves RAGTIME.

Tell TFP now about ‘cancel culture”.

In fact, while there is NO POSSIBLE REASON to invest in an All White Creative Team on Broadway – that is precisely what Producers are funding – with the odd exception being, well, THOUGHTS OF A COLORED MAN written by Playwright Keenan Scott II.

That play will open with an entirely Black Cast and a minority led Creative Team, and is written by a Black Playwright. It will be in one of the Schubert theaters – so at least the Schuberts seem to be acknowledging some progressimovement.

But that’s pretty much it.

Unless SOFT POWER transfers to Broadway, which would be amazing as very few of the shows that are returning have an AAPI in a lead role – with the exception of HADESTOWN, HAMILTON, DEAR EVAN HANSON (on occasion), (possibly) ALADDIN and SIX – so…it would be nice to see.

BTW, when they do – they usually have ‘just the one’.

Ahem.

However, as referenced by the above video – when you have POC Creators, you have POC visible. When you do not have any POC behind the table, the show tries to wedge them in when the can, but not really. Or they are there in a super supportive role that facilitates the lead character who does not share their background.

Nothing has changed. Off Broadway & Regional Theater is possibly more ‘open’ to change than Broadway, but it is apparent, Broadway is not changing any time soon – after all, who holds rich Producers accountable?

No one.

Thus far two revivals announced for the next season and their Creative Teams are decidedly without POC. The Music Man, directed by Jerry Zaks, has a female lighting designer – Natasha Katz, a white British Choreographer, and an Italian American, Santo Loquasto, as lead designer- the Creative Team are almost exclusively past TONY Winners- and they are not People of the Global Majority.

Leaving TFP like, “What happened to all those inclusion statements?”

Then there is DANCIN” the Bob Fosse musical that is a tribute to the works of…well, Bob Fosse, is also coming around again, directed by Wayne Cilento who was in the Original Company.

 “We plan on delivering a Dancin’ that is every bit as eclectic and uplifting as the original, full of all its inherent edginess, but is also relevant to our current era,” he says. “Every creative decision will be made through that lens to meet this moment.”

Except on the announced Creative Team.

They are not going to be wearing lenses that are naturally tinted – they are going to be ahem, clear glass. Those are the lenses.

If ONLY there were some POC who intimately knew the work of Bob Fosse, who had been, perhaps, taught it by Gwen Verdon and there was proof of that expertise on the internet…

Anyway – while his statement promises, on the stage visible to the audience, at least – a sense of People of Color and their contributions to dance, which will be great to see – what is missing on Broadway – consistently – is the presence of People of Color BEHIND THE TABLE.

DANCIN’ is not the only show that is guilty of this – it is an ongoing issue. Lack of Diversity behind the table happens in almost every show on Broadway. The problem is no one seems to be doing anything about it- even given that we have had an entire year off to figure it out.

Yes, yes, every single corporation has put out perfectly vetted statements of intent in terms of diversity – but unlike the Networks, there has been no announcements that TFP is aware of, of – for example – funded internships for People of the Global Majority in the theatrical world; or if there are, and they have ‘just’ been announced and are looking for viable candidates.

Internships are great, actual JOBS are better- and there cannot be only one Person of Color in your Office- it is not HIGHLANDER.

Changing and expanding hiring practices is all well and good, it is twenty years too late, and they will take years to become effective. START ANYWAY.

If you meant those diversity statements of support – TFP is going to need receipts.

Show us your staff.

Be as brave as those at Tara Rubin Casting when they sent out to the world, a photographic representation of their staff, right after showing a very supportive image of Mr. George Floyd.

This photo tells us that they have learned very little from the debacle at La Jolla with The Nightingale, which they also cast, but they are ‘excited to get back to work.’

We cannot tell, but they are smiling behind those masks.

Which is why they had to issue the following when people responded to their Instagram post and freaked out:

While this blog post is not specifically about TRC, what is interesting to TFP is that when the workshop for Farewell My Concubine was being cast – which is a new musical – Tara Rubin Casting was able to find an AAPI Casting Director, but TFP does not see her in that photo.

Guess it is a case by case hire….

At least we know now.

What the photo really means is, the more things change – or swear they will change – the less change actually happens. There are statements and memes and gifs, but in the end, no white person is going to step aside for a Person of Color.

They aren’t. Particularly in a field as competitive as theater and entertainment at large. The Folks in charge are fine with the status quo – they call us when they ‘need’ us, and unless someone sets the dogs on them, they do not budge. Which is not TFP calling all and sundry the ‘r’ word- it is saying people who benefit from ‘the system’ are not going to actively try and change the system unless they have unbelievable moral fiber.

Honestly if they are good at their job, and provide opportunities to help show business become more equitable, that is fine. However make yourself a personal pledge to change the status quo. Get some more ‘fiber’ in your life- it is good for you!

Mentor people. Actively look to diversify your office!

TFP is not attacking you for the color of your skin – she does not do that with anyone.

Pointing out what needs to change, is not an attack.

Change needs to be across the board – Producers, Casting Directors, Directors, Choreographers – you ALL have to do ‘the work’.

TFP knows doing ‘the work’ kinda stinks. She knows it is annoying to confront ones own biases – but it has to be done – we are all learning, but let’s be honest – you could see this coming from miles away, and you waited to be called out on it.

SOME people are doing it – MAESTRA, MUSE – but it could and should be so much more.

TFP is sick to death of having to reiterate that People of the Global Majority belong in Entertainment and beyond, and yet – here she is saying it once again.

Look at that photo – while TFP does not know who are interns or Associate CDs she does know there is an absence of Color for all of us to see. Mirror, mirror.

Gleefully posted. They want to get back to work – we all want to find the joy that comes from working and yet, to TFP, the door to that office is resoundingly shut, and she is likely not the only one feeling that way. They hire us when they ‘have’ to- when the story requires us to be there- on occasion it does not- so we are hired to prove a point – but if we are never behind the table…contributing to overall change? Nothing will change.

Casting Offices should look like New York – TFP knows at least one that absolutely does, and are actively bringing POC along to succeed, and she believes that should be instituted in every Casting Office around the country.

Immediately – from local networks, to major streamers, to theater – a diversity statement means nothing if you do not show us you are serious.

People of the Global Majority need to start putting our money where our power should be. We also need to do it TOGETHER.

We need all our glorious alphabet to pull this off – and we must be careful about building alliances and supporting one another. Row together. Diversity equals dollars.

If nothing else, lean into the fact that AAPAC will soon be dropping it’s study for the previous season – and what it tells us, is that POC are not repped behind the table. Almost at all.

If you do not believe TFP, you can believe TONY Winner, Clint Ramos – who is fired up, and honestly it is a joy to see.

Just sit with that information a moment – 153 Design Contracts available on Broadway.

13 People of Color hired. Out of 153 possibilities. You cannot explain that away – you cannot reason that it is equitable or fair or in any way inclusive.

We are eating ***t sandwiches every day and we are always telling ourselves to be ‘grateful to be there’.

TFP does not think you need to be grateful for a ***T sandwich.

Stop attacking one another -start attacking the issues at hand, which are not having any agency in the stories told of us – stories that we are hired to tell, but cannot contribute to.

We have stories. We have agents. There have been lists after lists of available talent, glorious in all it’s technicolor and stereophonic sound, and yet we are relegated to fighting for scraps, and being told to be grateful to be there at all.

It’s enough. TFP is tired. This has to change – and if you are reading it and thinking ‘Well, I don’t do that‘ –

YOU DO! You DO.

If you have no one to call on in your immediate professional circle who you can include behind the table, who has a different skin tone from yourself…either in stage management, design, or the producers office, or in casting – YOU DO, DO THAT.

If you are seriously bewildered by the need to ‘do that’ – then YES, you are contributing to the issue.

Make it a mission. Provide opportunity. Don’t hire your nephew. Don’t hire your neighbor’s kid – hire someone who is dying to be there. Hire someone who is motivated for change – and then LISTEN TO THEM.

TFP also wants to say…there are allies and there are places that can be lifted up and held as examples.

She was brought in during the pandemic via Zoom by more than one office to talk about representation and how things can be better. It is not even hard, that is the kicker. It is literally sticking your head out of the door, looking at the street and what it looks like, and then trying to make that world come to life in your production.

As a matter of fact, one of the companies that has instituted a new policy that she is in love with, which she has nothing to do with in the slightest – is ADVENTURE THEATER in the DMV area – and what she was told is that they have a company policy – no Person of Color shall be the ONLY Person of Color in a Creative Space.

Yes, their AD is a Person of the Global Majority – but he does not count as one of the ‘two’.

Imagine the thrill and the support you would feel by not being ‘the only’. When you contribute to the discussion in a Creative way, you are backed up and do not feel undermined.

That, in itself, would alleviate so many things we, as minorities, feel when we go into spaces that are deemed ‘safe spaces’ but are, in fact, white spaces, where we are gaslite and made to feel our presence is conditional, and can be taken away at any time.

If nothing else will convince you – please read this article about what Actress, Jean Yoon, from Kim’s Convenience had to say about her experience about working on the show after Creator, Ins Choi, de facto left.

TFP has rarely felt as angry as she did when reading Ms. Yoon’s words about cultural misunderstanding and the undermining of the Cast, which was left to fester given that they had no Korean Canadians nor Women in the Writer’s Room, and which eventually led to the cancellation of the show.

You all proclaimed so loudly that the world should change and thanked people for pointing it out – so the ball is in your court.

We are tired of volleying for serve.

It is damn exhausting.

Just do what you SAID you intended to do.

Or TFP is going cabbage shopping.

Got it?

TFP out.

The Fairy Princess has been informed that it is May – Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month – and so, while she would like to focus on some fun stories –

she is fully aware that the White Supremacists and those who enable their thinking are really, but REALLY ‘stepping it up’ with their attacks on our people. More shootings, more killings, more brutal attacks to elderly people when they are walking about – it is not enough to be horrified when reading about it – if you have kids, talk about it – talk about how wrong it is. If you are a community leader, speak on it. If you are a pastor, preach about it – all attacks on AAPIs do is pit ‘us’ vs ‘others’ – and the truth is – if we are divided, we fall.

If we unite – we can change the world.

Here is one way to ‘get into’ the month – take a look at this panel TFP put together just for YOU, yes she did.

It is frank, it is bold, and it is honestly ( if you can ignore TFP‘s very old headshot, which frankly, she does not use and has not used in several years) – you can get a lot of joy from the panel. It feels cathartic.

Talking to these people made TFP think that things are changing – not just because of the vaccines, but because the thought process behind what makes theater is changing.

TFP has two more interviews coming for BwayCon in May – one with Alec Mapa, and one with Jeffrey Omura who is running for NY City Council.

Second, there is a new book TFP wants you to be aware of –

RISE :A Pop History of Asian America from the 90’s to Now – by Jeff Yang, Phil Yu, and Philip Wang

You can order this book from your various websites, or may TFP suggest your local Indie Bookstore?

The book promises to be fun and informative, and for areas where they were not as versed, the writers reached out to friends – who maybe also have blogs that have expertise on these areas – so it is not ‘just’ a book by three men. It is a love letter to AAPIs from AAPIs of all kinds.

Buy it. You’ll like it. Pinky swear.

South Asian Americans should rejoice – everyone should, but in particular, biracial South Asians – because BHANGIN’ IT – the winner of the Richard Rogers Award, and the new musical from the team of Rehana Lew Mirza, Mike Lew, with Music and Lyrics by Sam Willmott is premiering at La Jolla Playhouse in March of 2022.

Yes, La Jolla Playhouse – (where they did The Nightingale, which started this whole thing off) – anyway, look how far they have come!

This musical revolves around a biracial college student who wants to join her college’s Bhangra team – for those unfamilar, it is a dance style unique that has evolved from traditional Punjabi folk dances – however she is told she is ‘not Indian enough’ to be on the team. She and her roommate decide to form their own team – but will it be good enough in time to win Nationals?

TFP saw a past reading, she really, really enjoyed herself – and frankly, the inclusion of the issues faced by multi-racial people was a surprise to her, she did not know about it going in – and she felt – though it is not ‘her’ particular culture – very ‘seen’.

Congratulations to the Creative Team – which includes now, her very good friend Vishal Vaidya as Associate Choreographer – and you can see/hear both Playwright Rehana Lew Mirza and Vishal speak on past BwayCon Panels hosted by TFP if you go to the Official Erin Quill FB Page.

TFP wants to thank you all for making MORTAL KOMBAT the film the number one in streams etc etc etc. Well done folks, appreciate it. If you have not seen MORTAL KOMBAT and you have HBO or a theater you think is ‘safe’ – give it a looks see – if you are squeamish about video game-esque violence – take a TUMS.

For those needing more Family friendly entertainment – you can breathe a sigh of relief – YOUNG ROCK – the story of a biracial AAPI child in the world of Professional Wrestling, based on the life of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, has been renewed. Many congratulations to the Cast and Crew and Creatives of that show.

Very Exciting for All.

Nice one, Jeff Bader and NBC.

Let’s hope more of the Networks and Cable Channels follow your example.

It is official – many of you likely know, but it is worth repeating – WARRIOR got a Season 3 Order, and TFP finds that glorious!

She’s very excited, and moved – and one of the best things she has seen in the last week, is a friend who posted about how much he and his wife were enjoying the show – and asked the question how was everyone on the show so talented and good lookin’ – and they WERE NOT EVEN AAPI!

To which TFP had all the emotions- cuz guess what – they gave it a whirl because of the blog, she felt…

Now, they are hooked – and again, if you have HBO Max and you have not watched it, you really, really should check it out.

It is bloody – but so is history – take a TUMS.

One of the things that makes TFP so very, very – very, very happy is seeing her Actor pals succeed, but it is extra special of course, seeing when their children succeed – knowing how very hard this business is, and how much inner strength is needed to continue in it.

So please allow TFP to introduce you all to Ms. Ayana Manji of the HOUSE of MANJI!!!! singing on Miram Royal Detective – where she is voicing the recurring character of Sadia Khan, as is her brother, Aariq, who plays Amir Khan on the show.

Congratulations to all!

Finally, there is a Marvel super hero fast approaching, and the name of course is…SHANG CHI – here is the trailer.

Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton based on a screenplay by David Callaham and Andrew Lanaham – yes, oh AAPI Bigots, Cretton and Callaham, they are biracial – cool the purity jets.

This film looks to follow in the MARVEL Tradition just fine, comes out this coming SEPTEMBER, but you of course, can use May to purchase the MERCH.

So there you go – some things to be excited about – not all doom and gloom – HOWEVER, stay vigilant, stay prepared, do your stretching daily – you may be called upon to help or be a witness – and if that day comes, sadly – you pull on YOUR inner Dragon, and you sail forth with pride – you hear TFP?

PRIDE.

You got this!

HAPPY MAY!