Showing posts with label Manhattan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Manhattan. Show all posts

Monday, December 14, 2015

{#Theatre} Opening TODAY go see @MotherStruck a new play starring @staceyannchin #Review #Spon

Disclosure: I participated in the MotherStruck! blog program as a member of One2One Network. I received compensation but all opinions are my own.

New York City never fails to bring out my inner 'culture vulture', and this weekend I got to take in a new stage play in previews that opens TODAY called MotherStruck! - written and performed by StaceyAnn Chin (bestselling Author of "The Other Side of Paradise: A Memoir.") and Directed by Cynthia Nixon (Sex & The City). The show is produced by Rosie O'Donnell in conjuntion with NYC Culture Project.

Staceyann Chin co-wrote and performed on Broadway in Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam (she performed "If Only Out of Vanity", check it out on YouTube HERE) and she performed in THREE one-woman shows before creating her current show MotherStruck! 

"I want to be that woman that your parents use as a bad example of a lady" ~Staceyann Chin, from "If Only Out of Vanity" - Def Poetry Jam

You can also catch her piece "Nails" from Def Jam Poetry HERE. or "Three Frenzied Days" on Def Poetry Jam on YouTube HERE. "A City in Tragedy" - a powerful spoken word poetry on the tragedy of 09/11 on YouTube HERE.

I can get lost when it comes to Poetry - on the page or spoken. So I will get myself back on track and share a bit about what MotherStruck! is actually about!

About MotherStruck!

MotherStruck! sets forth Staceyann's personal journey to motherhood as a single woman, lesbian, and activist who does not have health insurance or a "serious, stable, financial set up", but wants to have a child. Told through Chin's uniquely personal and poetic lens, this solo show explores how the process changed her life and how she makes peace with what she learns from this profound experience.

Opening Night is TONIGHT - Monday, December 14th.


  • Tuesday through Thursday at 7:30pm
  • Friday at 8:00pm
  • Saturday at 4:00pm and 8:00pm
  • Sunday at 5:00pm

There is a piece in the show about her confronting an 'internet bully' which is truly powerful you can get a sort of preview of it via YouTube from The Nest Collective, I won't write the title here because Google might then deem this post as 'adult content', but you can watch it HERE.

I like to tell stories through photos and words, I nabbed some shots while I was in the lobby of The Lynn Redgrave Theater (45 Bleecker Street, New York City) while waiting for the show to start:

Above: Long time readers know I have a thing for two things butterflies and buddha art, needless to say this one caught my eye as soon as I walked in the door. It was my beautiful reminder to release pre-conceived thoughts and the craziness of my commute into the city.

Above: I loved the treatment on this door, it reads 'Subculture' and the screen with the instruments is just plain everything

When you enter the theater itself you can immediately tell that this performance is going to be 'in your face'. It's a small theatre and on stage is one large ottoman, Staceyann literally uses every part of the theatre to tell her story, she walks through the audience, and breaks the 'wall' - she makes eye contact and this is a show you can't just passively 'watch', you are forced to immerse yourself in it.

The show runs 1 hour and 40 minutes with one intermission and when the show arrived at the intermission point I thought it was funny how most people commented that the intermission seemed to arrive 'so fast'. That is how engrossed you will get in the story!


I don't have tickets to offer you this time around butterflies, but I can get you all 20% off tickets to the show - When selecting your seats, select 'Blissful Media Group' for the discounted rate, HERE!

Get Social:

Use Hashtag #MotherStruck
Visit Culture Project on Facebook

I worked up the nerve to get my program signed (sorry I should have been holding it the other way!) and nabbed a photo with Staceyann!


In addition to a middle name in common, like StaceyAnn I am also a poet. The very first moment I understood that writing could be a career is when I entered a writing contest in my freshman year of College, (well actually I didn't enter it, my Professor entered one of my short stories in progress without my consent) and my work won a cash prize! I was asked by my Professor to read my piece at Nuyorican Poets Cafe, but I didn't feel comfortable doing that (and sometimes I greatly regret that). Staceyann mentions in MotherStruck! that one of the first places she discovered when she got to NYC from Jamaica was the Nuyorican Poets Cafe.

While writing this I was listening to an interview Staceyann did for The Rock Newman Show and I loved this quote:

"I believe holy is what you do when there is nothing between your actions and your truth" ~StaceyAnn Chin

I have a great respect for the 'one-woman show' format, it requires a great deal of stamina and a whole lot of nerve/heart! The last time I saw a one woman show that powerful was 'Ann' starring Holland Taylor, see my review of that HERE, the difference is Staceyann is not playing someone else in MotherStruck!, she is relaying her experience, her life and her truth. And she does it boldly and un-apologetically. Hers is a life lived out loud and her journey to Motherhood is certainly not a 'straight' road (no pun intended!) - what I am not seeing enough of is this story ON BROADWAY. Every single time I have seen a powerful one-woman show it has been off-Broadway. I would like think that Broadway has room for human stories with different faces, with strong women leads. I want to see something new on Broadway. I want to see more of THIS!

I urge you to make it a point to go see MotherStruck! Lets move 'diversity' from a boardroom buzzword to a DEMAND. I want to see more theatre where women take the lead in every way, from creative conception, to director and producer like MotherStruck! does.

The end is very much the beginning, while the play chronicles her journey to Motherhood, she recognizes that this is exactly where the story actually begins.

This play is very much poetry come to life, so readers today I ask you:

What work of poetry has resonated with you and greatly impacted YOUR life? (Is it your own? Do you write Poetry?) Do you like 'Memoirs'?

˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙

FTC Disclosure:  This is a compensated/sponsored Post, All opinions are 100% my own! Tickets were provided for Editorial Consideration. This post also contains affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

{Op-Ed} An Open Letter to #NewYorkCity - Just say NO to "The Poor Door" #oped #poordoor

View of New York City, NYC

I am not a visitor, a lurker, a stalker, a dreamer or 'NYC Wannabee' I was born here. I was raised here. I have worked hard my entire life here. 

Forging a life in this City is not an easy task.  This city isn't all endless cocktail parties.

It takes a lot of hard work and quite frankly cojones to make it here. No one hands you anything, there is a reason the song lyrics say 'If I can make it there, I'll make it anywhere, it's up to you New York, NEW YORK'.

I sat on this Op-Ed for days, hoping that when my fingers met my keyboard somewhere amid my furious typing that my emotions would level off a bit, that I could approach this from a place of neutrality and tap into my News Writing Background, but I am still as emotional right now as I was when a status update from a wide variety of my friends hit my feed with a link to a Huffington Post article entitled "Luxury New York Condo Will Have A 'Poor Door' For Lower-Income Residents." The link I provided to it will open in a new window for you, please read it. Then come back here and tell me how it made YOU feel.

A 33-story building now under construction at 40 Riverside Boulevard on the Upper West Side of Manhattan in New York City will contain 219 luxury units facing the Hudson River, there will also be a segment on floors two through six that will contain 55 street-facing units for the building's 'poorer' residents. The 'poor' residents will have their own entrance. These 'affordable' units are being made available to families of four whose annual income is $51,540 or less - which amounts to 60% of the area's median income. The lower-income residents will not only have to go through a 'poor door' to get in and out of the building, they will also be prohibited from using the amenities found in most properties by the New York-based developer Extell like the gym and swimming pool. The Developers will receive millions in tax breaks and hard working New Yorkers deemed by them as 'poor' will be stigmatized as they enter and exit their own place of residence each and every single day. Demoralizing much?

We all opted to tweet Mayor Bill Di Blasio (who may have still been on his vacation to Italy at the time) and I am sure none of us will get a direct response, but that tweet I sent just didn't feel like it was enough. This doesn't sit right with me on any level.

I spent time post College doing Public Relations for my local district's City Councilman and all throughout my School Years and while working with him I was constantly told I should pursue a career in Politics, and I scoffed at the idea, until now.

The Huff Post article has left me with a knot in my stomach that has been churning for days, and while part of me wants to break up with this City, another part of me questions if it's time for me to make change in a way that really matters, from the inside out.

The New York Times noted in May that minorities and the elderly largely make up the city's rent-regulated population, but by far the best quote I've read so far on the issue comes from Assemblywoman Linda B. Rosenthal who said:

"A mandatory affordable housing plan is not license to segregate lower-income tenants from those who are well-off."

Haven't we battled hard enough to end segregation in America? Is history really doomed to repeat itself because we never learn from our mistakes?

I don't want to be part of a system where it's OK for some to hold their head high and others be made to feel like they should drop theirs in shame.

You know what families may end up qualifying for the 'poor apartments' those of teachers, doctors, fire fighters, sanitation workers - you know just the folks who keep this city running, IN the actual trenches. You mean to tell me the local teacher and his/her family should enter from a separate door? That a Police Officer who puts his/her life on the line each and every single day should come home from a hard day's work keeping this city safe and enter through a 'Separate Door'?

What about that hard working young College Grad working at a Not-For-Profit? Should they feel 'shamed' when they come home too?

Butterflies I am always super careful to use this space as a place to inspire. I try to keep Religion, Sex and Politics off these pages, as my goal was to always keep my online home rant and snark free, but I can't pretend this doesn't hit me where it hurts. As a New Yorker I find this shameful. I know that the city where dreams are made of has always had a rough 'underbelly' and I never want to cover the sky with one hand, but I can only hope that everyone apartment hunting sees the Huff Post article or this one, and that even if they can afford the apartments there, that they will put their money where their mouth and conscious is, and NOT buy an apartment in ANY building with a "Poor Door".

As a lifelong New Yorker, there is one and only one 'separate entrance/exit' I find acceptable. The one at the theatre that allows actors to quickly exit after a play. When that play ends they are off the clock. Some days they may stop and sign playbills, other nights just like us they need to get home to family obligations or just de-stress. That is the only 'separate' door I can find acceptable in this day and age.

Since Sundays is usually the day I reserve to share my Weekly Moment of Gratitude, all I can say for today is that I am grateful not to live in a building with a "Poor Door".

I found AND SIGNED an online petition that is intended directly for Gary Barnett, President of Extell Development Company who is building the Apartment Building at 40 Riverside Boulevard, I hope you will considering signing it! I want this to remain a City that rewards you for your hardwork, but can't it do so without shaming anyone? NYC median rents continue to skyrocket, the average right now is at $3,247 per MONTH, longtime residents are being pushed out of the City, so in essence most of us can work here, just not afford to continue to live here.

What do you think of the "Poor Door"?

˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙

FTC Disclosure: I would assume it goes without saying for this one, but this is NOT a Sponsored Post!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

{#WordlessWednesday} @StPatsNYC This Landmark Church May be Under Repair, but it's Still a Respite in a Busy City!

St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Archdiocese of New York. Manhattan Landmark Catholic Church
Entrance to the stairway to heaven? You Decide!

The Landmark Church St. Patrick's Cathedral may be under construction but it is still very much an amazing respite in a busy city. It's a moment to make the crazy, hectic day come to a stop so you can center yourself, and re-set your spiritual battery!

Here are some photos I took amid the construction:

St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Archdiocese of New York. Manhattan Landmark Catholic Church

St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Archdiocese of New York. Manhattan Landmark Catholic Church
Taken from the perspective of the row I was kneeling down in, can't you almost feel the peace and stillness?

St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Archdiocese of New York. Manhattan Landmark Catholic Church
Prayer To Saint Patrick  is framed under a beautiful Waterford Crystal Cross at St. Patrick's Catedral in New York City (You definitely want to press into this photo to make it bigger, this way you can read the prayer, and then don't forget to hit the backspace to come back here and leave your comment!
Happy Wordless Wednesday Bloggers! Link us to your Wordless Wednesday Photos by leaving your link as a reply to this thread and we will be sure to check them out! (No Giveaways Please!)

Don't forget to check out the giveaways section to enter our current giveaway for a $100 Staples Gift Card or go directly HERE+ A little fashion loving butterfly whispered in my ear that a fun Fashion Contest is coming up this week next so stay tuned!

˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙

FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored or Compensated Post. As a life long New Yorker who spent a great deal of time working in near proximity to the Church, I find myself always stopping in when I am near the area! But if any camera companies want to get involved and Sponsor a Wordless Wednesday I am always game! :-)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Flowers Invade Park Avenue!

I was on my way to the Fisher Price event at The Loews on Park Avenue when I came upon these flowers and couldn't resist taking a picture of them! Just something cheery to make a busy day in New York City brighter! Inspiration Dear Butterflies really can be found everywhere!

˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙˙·٠•● Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ●•●•٠·˙