Cliché Magazine June/July 2019 (Parker McKenna Posey)


Inside, cover star Parker McKenna Posey talks being a child actor, her role on Games People Play, and more; cover star Baby Ariel discusses her music, acting, and her anti-bullying activism; actress Sharon Blynn talks beating cancer and empowering women through her foundation; we chat with actress Tasya Teles about her role on The 100; and much more!

Taking a

Look at

The Met

Gala and





The 100

And More




Prise by



pg. 30


McKenna Posey

From Child Actor To All Grown Up

In Her Role On Games People Play


print is dead








Wilson Greene


Gabriella Saitta


Erin Tatum


Layla Abdeljabbar, Danielle Canniff, Ali Gay

Jamie Gerhartz, Justin Grant, Zayna Palmer,

Evan Quinones, Erick Sanchez, Gabriela Silva,

Kemberlie Spivey


Rose Wang, Marin Hamataj,

John Martinotti, Mark Jared Zufelt,

Marta Jimenez


Diana Siuta


For general information:

For advertising inquiries:

For submission and internship inquiries:

2019 © All content in this issue belongs to Cliché

Magazine. Reproduction of this product without

permission is prohibited.






Get to know this issue’s




The latest stories from









78 30 88






Why you should love your hair

as it naturally is.



We take at look at the fashion

brand Lâcher Prise by Marine




We go behind the scenes of

how actress Brooke Lewis

planned her "Old Hollywood"





Tasya Teles talks her experience

working on The 100 and

how she connects with her role

on the show.




Sharon Blynn discusses

beating cancer, her Bald is

Beautiful foundation, and her

role in Captain Marvel.



Parker McKenna Posey chats

about being a child actor and

the grown up role she now has

on Games People Play.




Baby Ariel tells us about her

music, acting, and how she's

taking a stand against bullying.






Fashion Director Gabriella

Saitta explores the 2019 Met

Gala and its theme of "Camp".





Take a look at how SZA and

Justine Skye have evolved their

personal styles.




YouTube star Sophie Michelle

talks her channel and her music.



Britney Sarpy discusses getting

involved in acting and her roles

on General Hospital, The Young

and the Restless, and The

Haves and the Have Nots.



Michael Tow talks overcoming

the stereotypes Asian actors

have to deal with and his role in

Lucky Grandma.



Mary Mouser chats about her

role on Cobra Kai and more.





for Cliché Magazine

June/July 2019








Planning Her

Old Hollywood














Tells Us About

Her Music, Acting,

And Anti-Bullying

Activism PG 108







Ian Verdun talks his passion for

acting and his role on Siren.




Veronika Slowikowska tells us

about working on What We Do

In The Shadows and more.



Sarah Abbott talks acting roles

and her upcoming series V-




Adam McArthur chats about

getting into voice acting and

working on Star vs. the Forces

of Evil.




for Cliché Magazine June/July


Photographer: ISAAC STER-







Jordyn Curet lets us know about

Life Hacks for Kids and more.



Tucker Meek chats his role in

Little and being an actor.



Spencer Trinwith discusses

battling a health condition while

pursuing his career as an actor.



Nikki Leigh tells us about acting,

modeling, hosting, and what's

next for her in 2019.



Hassie Harrison talks her role in

the comedy series Tacoma FD

and more.



Al Harrington discusses going

from the NBA to his new venture

in cannabis.



Kyle Thousand talks his role as

Roc Nation's Managing Director

of Baseball.



Kat Tat tells us about her experiences

as a tattoo artist.




Atlas the Plug talks hosting

BlapChat and his advice for up

and coming producers.



ALAENA discusses going solo

and her single "Paranoid".



Gavin Haley talks going from

cycling to music.



Ben Hagarty tells us about his

career and helping creators

through Black With No Cream.




Sage Charmaine talks about

developing her personal

musical style and her EP Don't

Leave Me.



60 11


Marta Jiménez.

Photographer pg.

Your favorite summer activity:

My favorite summer activity is going to the

beach. I live in Madrid, the capital of Spain, here

there is no beach and it is very very hot. That's

why the beach is so special for me. When the

summer arrives, I like to travel to some beautiful

city where I can be a tourist, because I am a

lover of art and also take the opportunity to go

to the beach. What I like the most is reading a

romantic book while I am listening the sound of

the waves of the sea and feeling the breeze. I

also love taking walks along the shore at sunset

and feeling those little details like water wetting

my feet; and of course seeing dawn without

noise, listening to the sound of nature, it makes

me feel peace. I know that is weird but I also

enjoy a lot when the sea is not calm, riding in

the bow of a small boat and going very fast. In

those moments is when I feel the most free. I

love the summer and do many activities, as I

said before traveling is one of my passions, and

especially if I go with the love of my life.

Something you're loving at the moment:

Something that I love at this moment is that

I can combine my work perfectly with my

personal life. I am a very sensitive person who

needs stability and peace and thanks to my

fiancé, I have it both. We have parallel lives

and I love that. Something that I also like a lot

at this moment is the point of view from which

I work. In the world of fashion, there are many

superficial people who do not treat others

well. When they treat me badly, I try to learn

from experience. A wonderful designer, Fosca

Bertrán, one day told me, when bad things

happen to you, you have two options: to get

revenge or learn from it. I decided to choose the

second option. I prefer to try to make the world

that I live and see a better world, and for that

we must start being an example of behaviour

and respect, something that is very necessary

in today's society. I like to apply this to my work

and make the whole team feel comfortable.

Another thing that I love about my job is to try

to mix fashion photography, not showing only

clothes, but giving to my images a message,

so that a part of my soul is left in them.

Tell us about your contribution to the

June/July issue:

This editorial is part of a great project that

I started in April. This project is currently

composed of 6 shootings in which in each

session I collaborate with an emerging

designer with the intention of giving visibility

to young talents that do not have an easy

way. In this case, the designer Nacho

Gamma, a great professional and a better

person, lent me some pieces from one of his

collections called Resilience. This designer

won a contest and was able to show it at the

Madrid Mercedes Fashion Week Runway.

The looks of this editorial are very special

because they are unique pieces. When

Nacho agreed to make this collaboration, I

got in touch with Ana the wonderful model

that you can see, and Iria the fabulous make

up artist, through Instagram. I did not meet

them until the day we shot the photos. I really

like to meet new people who are starting

in this industry like me, and give us all the

opportunity to collaborate and create such

incredible things as this editorial. People

don't know the hours behind a photograph,

and in the end everything goes well because

we are people with the same love who work

with passion to fulfill their dreams. This is a

team effort and we all contribute something

that makes a better result. The publishing

house is made in La Quinta del Duque del

Arco, a beautiful palace in Madrid, that very

few people know. Thanks Ana, Iria and

Nacho, because this editorial belongs to

everyone. And I will continue with this project

to continue giving visibility to young talents

that we are the future of this industry.

To see more work from Marta:

At this moment I am creating a website

where people can see my work, but it is not

finished yet. The best place to follow my

work is Instagram @laluita_photo. I am also

a very outgoing and friendly person, they can

always contact me and ask me what they

want. I will be happy to answer them.

→Want to contribute to one of our issues? We’d love to work with you! Visit our Submissions

page on or get in touch at









We have all been through

it and cried about it;

we have all seen it and

laughed about it: that

painful walk that happens after wearing

uncomfortable shoes all day for the sake

of fashion. Sacrificing comfort for a pair

of shoes seems stupid until you’re put in

that position. It sounds ridiculous, but for

most of us, it’s a true story! I one time

had a bartender cut me off at a sweet

sixteen because I appeared too intoxicated.

Not sure which was a greater loss of

dignity, I decided not to tell her that my

walk was due to my new black, velvet

heels. Instead I just rolled my eyes and

walked like I was shot in both kneecaps

to the other bartender standing at the

opposite end of the bar. Those shoes sure

did elevate me to a new level of class.

Anyway, the gods and goddess of fashion

have blessed us with a trend that will

allow us to keep our style while keeping

feeling in all of our toes. I present to you

the chunky white sneaker and how it will

help you stay in style while going on all

of your spring/summer adventures. Now

we can spend our spring and summer

traversing the wonders of the world one

easy step at a time without sacrificing

the desire to keep a presentable outfit


Not only is the chunky white sneaker a

miracle for comfort, but it goes with just


Image Credit:

about anything. Any outfit you decide to put

on will most likely look just as good with a

chunky white sneaker rather than an anklebreaking


You don’t believe me? Surely these dad-like

sneakers can’t be worn with simply anything.

Just check out Olivia Culpo looking clean,

professional, and stylish while remaining

comfortable in her chunky white sneakers. She

demonstrates that a chunky white sneaker can

still help you dress to impress.

Still skeptical?...

Visit to continue reading this


Photo credit: Netflix





When Beyoncé hit the Coachella stage last

year, many of us expected amazing live vocals,

her iconic hits, and memorable choreography.

Instead, when she hit the stage, the

audience at Coachella and those watching

online were left in awe when Beyoncé delivered

more than just a regular performance.

In a 105-minute set, Beyoncé presented a

statement on Black culture and history. No

one could’ve guessed one of the many songs

she performed would be The Black National

Anthem. No one expected Beyonce to have

a full marching band (from Historically Black

Colleges and Universities) to help lead her

performance. And of course, no one expected

a Destiny’s Child reunion.

Beyoncé’s Coachella performance was not

only celebrated because of her amazing

talent, but because it was a tribute to Black

American culture. In the film, Beyoncé said

she “wanted every person that has ever been

dismissed because of the way they look to

feel like they were on that stage.” And that

night, she did just that.

Visit to continue

reading the full article.








This year, an important discussion has come up in Hollywood

reflecting how black women in the industry

need women and men of color to do their hair/

makeup. Model Olivia Anakwe sparked this discussion

on Instagram about on-set hair styling; venting that hair stylists

at shoots, generally, are clueless when it comes to working

with Black hair/natural hair. This is why it is important for

black actresses to hire men and women of color to do their

hair and makeup.

It is an important topic because many women and men of

color in the entertainment business do not have the opportunity

to have black stylists do their hair or makeup as some do.

Black hair has different textures and thus has to be handled

carefully or it can be damaged PLUS it is styled differently (in

dozens of possible fun hairstyles) and non-people of color may

not know how to style certain hair. There are many black actors

like David Alan Grier that have brought their own barber to

set rather than take a chance on another barber who may not

know how to deal with his hair. For some diverse shows like

The Flash, many of the hair stylists are not black and may not

know how to do black women or men’s hair the way a black

stylists does. Recently at the SXSW panel in Austin, Candice

Patton, actress from The Flash, discussed feeling less beautiful

because the stylist does not know how to style black hair. “I do

not want to be labeled a diva for asking for a stylist who knows

how to do Black hair, knows how to do Black makeup,” Patton

said. “I want to be able to call up my producers and know that

they’ll have my back.” An actress or actor should not have to

feel less than anything because of how the person styles their

hair or makeup. Whenever they come on any set, they should

know someone is styling them greatly in order to shine on

screen. There are many Black hairstylists and MUAs who are

very good at doing their work and can be hired on sets.

Whenever I’m watching shows, I can tell the difference in a black

women’s hair and makeup based on her edges or the lighter

makeup they used to compel a person skin tone. Men and Women

of Color’s skin comes in different hues, and those hues

require different foundations and makeup styles that

people not used to doing their make-up won’t know.

As a Women of Color, I feel it’s truly important to have

someone who looks like me have the opportunity to do

ethnic hair on black actresses. For those who are not

People of Color, it’s important to get the proper training

instead of trying to figure out how to style someone hair

or makeup when they first get in the chair. Black actors/

actresses should not have to bring their own equipment

or have their hair done when coming to set because

they are not sure who will be styling their hair/makeup.

More makeup artists and hairstylists with experience in

black hair/skin tones need access to unions in order to

open doors. But also, remember there are stylists who

know how to style every race hair/makeup and can bring

people who can assist with the process.

Photo credit: @olivia_anakwe on Instagram 15

Richard Ansong

Debut Paris

Creative Director/Fashion Editor: NAZ AFSHAR




Photo Assistant: SAINT SAUNDERS

Designers, wardrobe designs and accessories provided by ZARA and GUSTAVO APITI



Location: FRANCE




SZA is an American singer and songwriter

who is signed to Top Dawg Entertainment

Records. In 2017, she released her first

album Ctrl which her fans love. Sza embraces

her unique style and she is known for her

beautiful curly hair. Many of her fans can relate

to her music because she is honest and shares her

personal story through her lyrics. She is a natural

beauty who wears minimal makeup and continues

to be herself.

Image Credit:

Image Credit:

SZA and


Justine Skye is an American singer, songwriter,

actress, and model who is passionate about music.

She was born in Brooklyn, New York and represents

her hometown. She was originally famous from

tumblr and began her music career signed with Atlantic

Records. In 2012, she released her first mixtape called

Skye High, and her first album, ULTRAVIOLET, in 2018.

Justine is known for her beautiful purple hair that makes

her unique. She isn’t afraid to be herself and she embraces

her confidence. She continues to grow and shine as an

artist through her vocals and classy style.

Image Credit:

Image Credit: @JustineSkye on Twitter



Women of color have natural curly hair that makes

them unique. Our hair stands out because it is versatile

and strong. Don’t be afraid to wear your hair

out because it shows who you truly are. The media

celebrates natural hair and the community has grown stronger over

the years.

Natural hair expresses your personality and your self confidence.

You may have gone through the big chop in the beginning, but

your hair will grow as fast as you think. Shrinkage is just a reminder

that your hair is healthy. Protective styles will be your best

friend because they will protect your hair all season.

Not sure of what products to use? Visit your local beauty supply

store and take a look at the different hair products that cater to

natural hair. Kinky, coily, and coarse hair textures are all created

beautifully and you have the power to express yourself.

Never give up on your hair because we all know that the struggle

is real. Instead, take your time and allow your hair to nourish and

shine just like you! Remember that your hair is beautiful and don’t

let anyone tell you otherwise. BY ZAYNA PALMER

Brand Spotlight: Lâcher

Prise by Marine Delmau

“Lâcher prise.”

That’s the French phrase for “to let go”, referring to the physical

movement of relinquishing one’s grasp on some sort of object,

but is even more often used to convey the idea of easing one’s

so-human desire to control. Put more simply, it’s about relaxing --

freeing oneself from high expectations and standards, and instead

moving as water does: smooth; adaptable; peaceful; consistent.

It’s also the name of the ready-to-wear label launched by Frenchborn

and New York City-based designer Marine Delmau in 2016,

as well as the philosophy at the heart of not only her artistic approach,

but also her lifestyle. This notion of “letting go” is what

Delmau sees as the ideal way of tackling our hectic modern lives

-- “not holding onto grudges or taking things too personally” –

as she explains, that in turn allows us to maximize enjoyment

and minimize stress. A meditator, yogi, and practitioner of music

healing and tarot, just to name a few of the creative’s mindful habits,

Delmau’s spiritual perspective, coupled with her long-time

love of fashion, fueled her to make her own mark in the industry.

Born into an entrepreneurial-spirited family and inspired by her

mother, an accomplished businesswoman, Delmau always knew

that she, too, wished to create a brand of her own one day. Like

many young French girls, she found that she had a natural, if not

traditional, appreciation for fashion and the creativity that comes

with how we dress ourselves. She spent a lot of her time as a

child playing dress up, mixing and matching pieces in front of

her mirror. The designer concedes that her upbringing in France

undeniably impacted her creative sensibility -- it being the wellknown

“fashion capital of the world” -- and cites her homeland as

a major reason for her love affair with fashion. This passion eventually

led her to cross the Pond to New York City to pursue an Associate’s

Degree in Fashion Marketing at the esteemed Parsons

School of Design in 2011, which allowed her to marry her interests

in both the quantitative and qualitative sides of garment design.

Upon her graduation, the Parsons alumna further built upon her

design cred at various respected fashion houses, where she served

as an emerging designer. Delmau quickly became well-acquainted

with all aspects of what it takes to create a clothing collection,

from start to finish, as well as how to get it into the closets of today’s

choosy customers. Yet, one aspect of the business never sat

right with her: the all-too-common superficiality of it all. While

fashion design of course prioritizes aesthetics, Delmau noticed

a void in the market with regard to the emphasis on the spiritual

power of dressing -- how a piece of clothing makes us feel as soon

as we put it on -- and why we choose our garments in the first

place. For Delmau, an easygoing soul drawn to that effortlessly

elegant look synonymous with French women, this lack led to her

aha moment: a versatile ready-to-wear line meant to evoke the

feeling of comfort and liberty, while remaining easily chic and

suitable for a variety of activities. Hence, Lâcher Prise was born.

The Lâcher Prise concept draws its aesthetic from Delmau’s

original “Liberté” design, which adheres to the four pillars of

her approach: freedom, simplicity, comfort, and style. This

minimalist silhouette can be worn in a multitude of ways – as

an infinity scarf on an unexpectedly chilly day; a luxe take on

a hoodie; a cocktail dress for an elegant date night; or even a

wrap skirt while traveling on a summer getaway. How we

wear it is up to us, and that’s really the core intention of her

collection – dynamic, genderless designs that adapt to the lifestyle

of the wearer. The line’s pieces are meant to “feel good on

the skin,” and function like “a protective layer,” as she puts it,

so the wearer can look good and feel good, at the same time.

Textile selection is, for this reason, of paramount importance in

the designer’s process, because not all fabrics are created equally, or

are able to achieve the same tangible and visual effect. Known for her

softly-draped, body-skimming styles, Delmau’s preferred medium

is stretchy jersey, composed of botanical fibers such as MicroModal®

and TENCEL® lyocell. These fibers are employed for their

unparalleled softness, but also due to their eco-friendly nature, nodding

to another one of the brand’s critical core values: sustainability.

Hand-in-hand with her spirituality comes Delmau’s fervent

connection with nature and its elements, and unsurprisingly, this

has guided her to join many other modern designers in their quest

to purify fashion manufacturing and create chic clothing while

remaining kind to Mother Earth. Delmau similarly believes in the

necessity of reinvigorating New York’s fashion economy in the

name of keeping production local and prioritizing quality over cutting

costs, partnering with local manufacturers to create her pieces

in place of outsourcing production as many companies do. This

way, the company’s carbon footprint is kept as small as possible.

This deep bond with the natural world largely influenced her most

recent collection, as did her own Mediterranean roots. With her

family history rooted in the ruggedly beautiful lands of Southern

France and sandy expanses of Northern Africa, Delmau selected one

special landscape to inspire her Spring/Summer designs: the desert.

At once stark and mysteriously gorgeous, the desert setting functions

as the perfect vehicle for the contrasts she explores in her line.

Photographed by the masterful Duncan Mellor against the stunning

backdrop of the California desert, the brand’s latest lookbook illustrates

the effortless elegance that defines the designer’s collection.

Softly-draped jackets romantically cloak the body, accented

with shawl lapels and elongated straps dangling at the sleeves

and hem. Breezy button-front blouses offer a comfortable

yet polished staple essential to any classic wardrobe. Lusty,

semi-sheer versions of the designer’s iconic Liberté tops expose

some skin for a more daring look while still retaining sophistication.

Paired with the model’s sensual smoky eye, this series

of styles whispers quiet danger, the kind that comes disguised

in breathtaking beauty -- reminiscent of her muse: the Sahara.

The particularly fickle nature of today’s fad-driven fashion

landscape makes another facet of Delmau’s designs especially

worth noting: their timelessness. In an era obsessed with

constant change and shock value -- think of those neon hues,

the “logo mania” craze, and the extreme shredding detailing almost

anything these days -- Delmau’s easy silhouettes reflect on

a necessary return to the kind of clothing that truly never fades

from favor: soft, simply-chic pieces meant to be worn anytime,

anywhere. In other words, clothes that make us glow from within.




The 2019 Met Gala may have just been the epitome of everything fashion. Worshipers of fashion, art, literature, design,

and even social revolution found their fulfillment this past May. The vindication of every step towards appreciation for

the pleasures of basic and wonderful humanity was displayed right on our New York pink carpet at the Metropolitan

Museum of Art. For all of you who took the deepest breaths of your life on May 6, I hope you can appreciate the magnificent

stories we’ve gained from such a night of elegance and freedom. For those of you who feel like you’re missing the hype, I

hope I can help you gain some insight on everything the Met Gala represents and how it relates to our very unique humanity.

“Indeed the essence of Camp is its love of the unnatural: of artifice and

exaggeration. And camp is esoteric—something of a private code, a

badge of identity even.”

~ Susan Sontag Notes On “Camp” published 1964

For those of you who thought “camp” meant tents, bonfires, canoeing, and secret games of truth or dare after curfew, you

were certainly wrong, but certainly not alone! Many celebrities joked about how they had to do their research and assumed everyone

would be dressed up in sleeping bags and badges. Trevor Noah even jokes on his late night show about the Met Gala’s “dirty

little secret,” which is that no one really knows what the theme is. He says “imagine if everyone got invited to an event and got a

different dress code. That’s the Met Gala.” So what exactly was the theme? Well, this is the perfect opportunity to say that it’s up

to your interpretation. “Camp,” according to Susan Sontag’s piece Notes On “Camp” is simply an exaggeration on everything you

Image Credit:

Image Credit:

are. The idea of “camp” is to tell the story of who

you are and whatever makes you unique. It means to

take an oath to live out loud with no bounds. If there

is anything actors, actresses, musicians, designers,

and all other artists know how to do, it’s to exaggerate.

It only seems fitting that the hosts for such a historical

theme were none other than Lady Gaga and

Harry Styles. These two musicians are true devotees

to not only music, but to entire concepts of art and

individuality. You can hear it in their music, feel it in

their voices, and of course, see it in their fashion—

trust me, I’m a Taurus; I know a great artist when I

see one.

From the start of her career, Lady Gaga

was all about individuality and exaggeration. She

has repeatedly wowed us with one esoteric ensemble

of fashion choices after another. Who could forget

her music videos for “Judas,” “Born This Way,” and

dare I bring it back up, her meat dress from the 2010

MTV Video Music Awards. If anyone was going to

pay tribute to Sontag’s Notes On “Camp” with the

fullest intent on exaggeration and art, it had to be


Lady Gaga arrived on the pink carpet with

enough material in theatrics and fashion for an entire

sub-gala of her own. She began her act with large

pink dress that gained most of its volume through the

seemingly endless train, all held together and guided

by a group of dancers with black umbrellas. Just as

everyone was gawking and cheering, she quickly

stole the crowd even further by removing

the tent-like garment to reveal a

long, elegant black dress which she

revealed with smug smiles and laughter.

Little did everyone know that Gaga was

only halfway done. After tantalizing

the crowd with some umbrella twirls

of her own, she then peeled away the

black dress to reveal a hot pink dress

that climbed down each of her gorgeous

curves. She pretended to cover herself

up and act embarrassed as if the entire

act was a wardrobe malfunction. One

of the dancers ran to her and threw on

large black sunglasses and handed her

a large black cellphone which she mocked

obnoxious conversation on. Her

performance finally hit the peak when

she threw away the third dress to show

off an entire look of lingerie with a

glimmering black bra and high-waisted

undergarment completed with sheer

black stockings and high boot heels.

She proudly posed and danced along

the stairs as she made her way inside.

She really didn’t let us breathe!

Harry Styles is one of the

greatest, yet underrated artists of our

generation. His talent, dedication, and

artistic eye set him apart from hundreds

of other musicians in the last

century. Emerging from the beloved

boy band One Direction, Harry Styles

has completely redefined who he is as

a pure artist derived from his ability to

compose music of any genre, develop

wholesome concepts for shows and

albums, and create some of the best

fashion statements in such a delicate


Harry Styles graced the Met

Gala with a much different approach

from Gaga. His Gucci sheer top definitely

made a statement of itself. Through

its centered, unique ruffle, we were able

to get a taste of each brilliant tattoo

and brought a whole new meaning to

“free the nipple.” Each frill and lace

surrounding the top did not disappoint.

His pearl earring and black heels were

the perfect touch to create an all around

boundless approach to the idea of


Both Lady Gaga and Harry

Styles swept eyes away through their

own unique style. Perhaps the most important

aspect to understand in the light

of “camp” is that no look was more

“campy” than the last—that would take

away from Susan Sontag’s message

all together. This year’s Met Gala was

arguably one of the most significant

themes to date because it absolutely

screamed the need of acceptance and

boldness to be who you are in the most

exaggerated way possible.

I could quite honestly go on

and on for pages, for novels about each

and every look that sent chills up the

spines of artists everywhere. To name a

few, Zendaya went as Cinderella, light

up dress and all. Celine Dion’s dress

weighed over 20 lbs and Cardi B’s

dress took over 30000 feathers; imagine

the dedication to carry so much extra

bulk with so much extra grace! Jared

Leto carried a replica of his own head

while Billy Porter was carried over the

carpet by six shirtless men in a throne

where he laid wearing golden wings.

Kacey Musgraves went as Barbie and

Katy Perry went as a chandelier. Ezra

Miller displayed his wisdom with extra

eyes tattooing his entire face. Janelle

Monae, to absolutely no one’s surprise,

stole breaths away with a Pablo Picasso

inspired piece completed with a winking


Why? Why in the world

is this relevant enough to talk about,

let alone dedicate hours and hours to

create? Often times, art is linked to a

culture’s current political state. While

politicians scream to have their voices

heard, artists use images and rely on

shattering sensitivity to spread their

ideas. One of the most prime examples

of this method was seen through Lena

Waithe’s suit designed by Kerby Jean-

Raymond who is no stranger to using

fashion as a platform for a political statement.

From far away the suit seemed

to be decorated with pinstripes, but was

actually the lyrics from “I’m Coming

Out” by Dianna Ross while across the

back wrote “Black Drag Queens Inventend

Camp” (and no, “Inventend” is not

a typo). Standing proudly and courageously,

Lena Waithe was wearing

the epitome of the theme in relation to

its relevance to the American culture


There is a colossal amount

of pressure today to suppress who you

are for anyone who isn’t a rich, straight,

white, Christian, cis-man. Falling into 35

Image Credit:

any one of those categories is a golden ticket to privilege. For centuries, the rest of America have fought

hard and tirelessly for equality while only achieving baby-steps due to incredulous discrimination had by

those in power, just to have even that ripped away in a matter of a couple of years. There is an ominous

counter-revolution that is engulfing imperative progress towards equality.

Lena Waithe chose to represent a culture that has had exceptional bravery for centuries and

even more so in recent decades. The culture behind Black Drag Queens is to live boldly despite the, quite

frankly, dangerous hatred towards them. It is an innate part of our beautiful humanity to want to live

with distinction. Denying someone the freedom to be who they are, no matter how loud, no matter how

different, is denying them as human. This year’s Met Gala theme, even if only for a moment, has come to

the rescue for many losing their humanity over the ever present ignorance and hatred that has plagued our

country since the dawn of America. That same ignorance and hatred that is being outwardly praised and

reinforced by our leaders.

Fashion has always been about adorning your unique body with an outward explanation of who

you are. Whether that taste is subtle or grandiose, that taste deserves, at the very least, acceptance. Susan

Sontag’s Notes on “Camp” was the theme we all needed to see in the midst of such a dismal time for the

sake of individuality. For fashionistas, for artists, for the passionate, this was a small glimmer of hope

flashing back at us that the revolution towards equality still marches. It may not be winning at the very

moment, but not a tired soul is throwing their white flag. Burn it. And then wear the ashes in the most

exaggerated way your guts know how.


36 37












There’s no better place to have

a joyous wedding than at a

magical wonderland like The

Houdini Estate. So who is the

next person to bring the magic of Old

Hollywood back to life with a super

fancy soiree? It is none other than the

gorgeous award-winning actress and

Scream Queen, Brooke Lewis, who is

having her marriage soiree at the famous

Hollywood landmark. The night will

kick off with a private family ceremony

before the red carpet opens up and the

celebrity performers take the stage for a

Dance Party USA. We chatted with the

soon bride to be, Brooke Lewis, about

how she feels the wedding theme fits her

and her fiancé’s personality, the most difficult

detail of her wedding to agree upon

and what she is most looking forward

to on her wedding day. BY JUSTIN


Cliché: Can you describe the emotions

and feelings that you got once your

boyfriend Mark proposed to you at

Griffith Observatory?

Brooke Lewis: Let me start by saying

that I knew that Mark was going to propose

to me, but what took me by surprise

was the fact that he decided to ask to

marry me on my birthday. It just so happened

that day was the hottest day of the

year in Hollywood on September 1, 2017

– and with that said – the old Cadillac

limousine that he rented to pick me up

and take me to Griffith Observatory, well

as it turns out the air conditioning broke

inside the car due to the extreme heat.

At one point when we were in the car I

thought we were going on some yacht

or cruise ship for dinner, but little did I

know that Mark was going to propose to

me at the Griffith Observatory. He proposed

to me right next to the James Dean

statue and across from the Hollywood

sign; it was magical. It is one of the most

memorable nights of my life.

Photo Credit: Greg Doherty

Why did you choose the wedding theme,

‘Old Hollywood’? How do you feel the

wedding theme fits you and your fiancé’s


Mark and I love everything about Old

Hollywood, and we thought what better

place to transport our guests into Hollywood

than an old famous Hollywood landmark

from one of the most notable entertainers in

the world – Harry Houdini. We envisioned

Old Hollywood movie posters everywhere,

black and white dance floors and Old Hollywood


I feel that it’s the undying love that we have

for one another. He pursued me, which

made me fall madly in love with him and

then I stayed by his side through a lot of

tough times, and here we are, almost four

years later, and we feel like our life is a


How would you describe the style of your


As much as I want it to be a super fancy

soiree, we also want everyone to dance with

us like it’s a rockstar party. At the wedding,

there will be two big red carpets and a ton

of talented celebrity performers. We chose

not to make it black tie on purpose but

instead we made it “Dress to your Oscars

Best...of any kind! Taylor & Burton and Rat

Pace Style.”

First, I want to shout out to our celebrity DJ,

Jon Gosselin, who is a friend of mine and

my family in Philadelphia. He is a reality

TV star of Jon & Kate Plus 8, and on top

of that, he was voted last year as the No. 2

celebrity DJ in the country. He’s known for

playing at clubs in the Northeast as well as

Atlanta, but I don’t think the West Coast

folks know how badass he is. He was the

first person I reached out to when Mark

and I decided that we were going full force

with this marriage soiree and I said to him,

“Dude, I beg you to come out. All I want

is my dream for you to spend time at our

wedding.” He responded, “I’m in.”

Another celebrity performer who will be

the MC for the evening is none other than

the veteran actor Kyle T. Heffner. Kyle and

I had worked on a film project years ago,

and I’ve always known him to be funny and

talented. When I thought who could handle

such a challenging job at this incredible

long event and who can understand and

embody that Old Hollywood vibe, it was

Kyle. As for Kyle, he was discovered by

Garry Marshall, who put him to work in

Young Doctor’s in Love which led to his

portrayal of Richie Blazik in Flashdance.

Also, he appeared in other films such as

Runaway Train, The Woman in Red, and

When Harry Met Sally.

The next person I would like to shout out is

our officiant Mitra Rahbar who has been a

spiritual guide and a friend of mine for 18

years. She got praise from Jennifer Aniston,

Gisele Bundchen, Sheryl Crow, and spiritual

leader Michael Beckwith. She was one of

the officiants for Brad Pitt and Jennifer

Aniston’s wedding as well as one of the

officiants for Tom Brady and Gisele’s wedding.

When Mark and I got engaged, she

offered us to do a blessing at the wedding, 51

and we were grateful and shocked.

I also would like to shout out the

officiant guy for the wedding, and

that is Chris Robinson. He has

become a dear friend of Mark and

me over the years, and he is the top

non-denominational Wedding Minister

in Southern California. Not

to mention that he did the marriage

ceremonies for Hugh Hefner, Gene

Simmons, Tori Spelling, Gordan

Ramsay, and The Real Housewives.

Last but not least, Mark and I were

looking for a perfect Rabbi to do a

blessing for my dad, but the truth is

that I didn’t know where to go and

we found Rabbi Craig Wyckoff

whose the Rabbi at Congregation

Tikkun Olam in Studio City, California.

After we found him, I soon

discovered that he was the owner

of the first Talent Agency that

signed me in Los Angeles 18 years

ago. We are honored to have Rabbi

Craig Wyckoff doing a blessing for

my dad.

How many people are expected

to attend? What is the order of

events at your reception?

There will be 500 guests attending

my wedding on June 1. Recently,

I have been receiving messages

and DM’s daily on Instagram from

fans telling me that they are going

to climb the gate at the Houdini

Estate and crash my wedding and

then take me away so that I won’t

marry Mark. I felt that even at my

level that I had to get a full security

team and bodyguards to stand

by the gate and I’m counting on

my Public Relations team to stop

people who try to crash our marriage

soiree. The reason Mark and

I are pretty open about the wedding

is that everybody already knows

about it and we need to protect

everyone in every way.

Since we are expecting so many

guests, who will be coming in

from all over the world, we will

have a private family ceremony.

Afterward, all of the performances

will open up, and then the soiree

will open up, starting with the red

carpet. Following that, there will

be another small ceremony with

the officiant Chris Robinson, and

we will have a performance by the

Frank Sinatra impersonator singing

“Once Upon A Time.” Later on,

Mark and I aim to have DJ Jon

Gosselin come in to spin for the

I think having to create a balanced relationship

with Mark and understanding each other’s

emotions. There were nights where I cried all

night because I wasn’t sure if we can pull off

this marriage soiree and on top of that we had

a lot to deal with emotionally and financially.

Also, Mark has put up with a lot of my

emotional crying and challenges, and I think

the most beautiful thing is that it has given us

both insight into one another as well as the

strength that we need. I feel that if we can get

through this wedding, then we can get through

anything. Lastly, we are incredibly grateful for

all the support our families have given us.

Can you talk about some of the most important

moments leading up to your wedding?

I think some of the crucial moments leading up

to my wedding has been the simple moments,

emotional and heartfelt moments and the

challenging moments which have shown our

strengths as a couple and it has shown that

if we can get through the wedding and not

give up, it will show how strong we are as a

couple. Hopefully, the rest of our lives will be

easy-breezy from here. The other thing that is

magical to me is that I feel reconnected with

some of my closest friends from childhood,

college, and New York.

soiree before we dance to the song “I’ll

Be” by Edwin McCain and then I’ll be

dancing with my dad to the song “Just the

Way You Are” by Billy Joel.

The schedule is as follows: From 8 p.m.

to 10 p.m. we will have a Dance Party

USA, and then from 10 p.m. to 11 p.m.

we will have our dessert display and cake

cutting and cocktails. Following dessert,

we will have an incredible acoustic guitar

player Dani Vargas performing a few


What’s been the most fun detail of your

wedding to plan? What’s been the most

difficult detail of your wedding to agree


One of the most fun details of my

wedding to plan was picking out a bridal

gown. I remember walking into the

Jovani store and instantly falling in love

with their dresses, and Jovani is styling

my bridal gown in New York. Another

incredible and magical thing that I could

ever dream of is the other gown that I’ll

be wearing made by one of the most

famous Israeli designers – Inbal Dror.

What are you most looking forward to on

your wedding day?

I am looking for it to be over. The last year

and a half has been so stressful about production,

and I’ve been under a lot and also not

living a fun life. Mark and I chose something

bigger than us, and it has blown into something

enormous. I decided not to have a bachelorette

party and a bridal shower because we just

wanted to focus on this big event and have everyone

with us. We are looking forward to our

love and taking our vows, and I can’t believe I

will be calling somebody my husband.

Is there anything you would like to add or


I want to shout out my team at Katz Public

Relations and Allison Noelle who has done my

hair and make-up. I couldn’t even imagine not

having her by my side, and she will be doing

all my glam, hair, and makeup. I also want to

shout out to Eddie at Universal Print and Copy

and to our incredible invitation designer Judith

Campbell who has a company called Hott Mutt

Creative. Lastly, I want to shout out to SHAN

Social House, where we will have our family

welcome dinner. 53



From making funny YouTube

videos to releasing her first

very single,13-year-old

Sophie Michelle has had

quite the year so far! She never

would have thought her channel,

Sophie Michelle Says, would reach

over 1 million views after releasing

a video on her experience getting bullied

and choosing to encourage her

fans through positive messages. Now,

she’s making herself known in the

music business with her new single,

“Imperfectly Perfect”. Sophie talked

to Cliché Magazine about her inspiration

behind creating her YouTube

channel and inspiring young girls and

boys not to give up on their dreams.


Cliché: Where did the inspiration

to create a YouTube channel come


Sophie Michelle: I started my

YouTube about 2 years ago and to be

honest I really didn't have a big plan

in mind. I just told my mom I wanted

to make videos and she said okay. I

grew up watching lots of amazing

creators on YouTube and thought to

myself I wanted to somehow become

one of them.

What is your endgame for your

YouTube channel?

I don't have an endgame for my

YouTube channel. I love posting my

video for my Sophienatics and I'm

so grateful to each one of them. I see

myself making YouTube videos as

long as I have my audience watching

them. I don't see myself putting an

end on my channel any time soon.

Photo credit: Karina Michelle

Why is it important for young girls

to be inspired? Who inspires you the


I remember growing up and watching

TV and YouTube and how much the

creators, actors, singers influenced me

in a very positive way. I feel like having

positive influences and role models are

extremely important to young girls and

boys out there looking for ways to make

a difference or just by having a positive

approach to life in general.

What have been some of your favorite

videos you’ve made so far?

I really enjoy making routine videos, but

I must say my favorites are usually the

funny ones. I really like the "how teens

get ready" video. I had a blast filming

it and I'm really happy with the way it

turned out, I think that one is probably my

favorite so far.


Can fans expect more music from you in the


Oh yes!! Definitely! Singing has always been

a huge part of who I am and also my YouTube

channel. I've been posting cover song videos for

a long time now and I love to interact with my

fans through music. I recently released my very

first single, "Imperfectly Perfect", which had such

an incredible response with my fans and I'm so

excited to announce that I'm coming out with a

couple of new songs soon and there are really

awesome projects that are currently in the works

and I'm super excited to be working with some

amazing and extremely talented people. I can't say

too much right now other that it's worth the wait!

Beside YouTube, what do you like to do when

you have free time?

Like I said I love singing! I take voice lessons

and I'm also planning to start taking some guitar

lessons too. I also have a passion for acting! I've

been taking intense acting lessons and participating

in improv workshops. It's so much fun!

What are some of the

challenges you’ve faced

in starting your channel

and growing it to where it

is now?

When my YouTube channel

hit about 10k subscribers

I started getting bullied in

middle school, I was about

11 years old and it was

tough. I learned a lot from it

and I shared my experience

on my channel on a video

that got over 1 million

views, "why I left school".

I encourage kids to believe

in themselves and don't give

up on their dreams.




am most fulfilled when I

take care of myself, eat

good, and feel loved,”

proclaims Brytni Sarpy.

She’s the 31-year-old star in the

making who currently portrays

Elena Dawson on the number one

rated daytime soap opera, The Young

and the Restless. Born in Southern

California, Sarpy attended the University

of California, Santa Barbara,

graduating in 2008 with a Bachelor’s

Degree in Fine Arts. She is what

some may call an “exotic beauty”, a

mix of Creole (French, Italian, and

African American), Native American

(Apache and Cherokee), and

Filipino descent, and she wears that

mix well.

Photo Credit: Raen Badua

“I was a really shy kid,” Sarpy says as she recalls

her childhood. “I think that’s what essentially got

me into the arts, having an opportunity to express

myself, which I really wasn’t able to do outside of


Her parents, Mel and Kim were engaged to be

married. However, they never made it down the

aisle, ending their engagement when Sarpy was just

six years old. As one of three kids at the time (now

one of five), she does not recollect the reason why

the breakup happened, but does remember living

with her mother for a brief period before settling

in with her father permanently, whom she is very

close with.

Sarpy credits theatre for being the catalyst for her

deciding to pursue acting. “I always knew that I

was going to end up doing something in the arts,

but didn’t know it was going to be theatre per se.

I thought I would major in dance. I didn’t go into

theatre until my sophomore year of high school.

My first acting performance was in the Scottish

play, MacBeth, where I played a witch, and that’s

really all it took. I had a lot of fun doing it.”

unaware that Jordan was going to be a

mother to a high school boy (originally

played by TeQuan Richmond). Sarpy was

too young to play the role as she is only

several years older than Richmond. The

role ultimately went to Vinessa Antoine.

In addition, the role of Taylor DuBois

was looking for an actress younger than

Sarpy’s age.

After this, Executive Producer, Frank

Valentini and Casting Director, Mark

Teschner kept her in mind for another

character. That role was Valerie Spencer,

who was brought in to add a little fire

and drama to the marriage of Dante and

Lulu Falconeri, her character’s cousin.

She also had the honor of being a part

of Anthony Geary’s exit storyline as he

departed the role of Luke Spencer.

Not long after the debut of Valerie Spencer,

the character, a biracial woman, mentioned

being racially profiled. Sarpy says

that while she personally never had to

deal with any racial discrimination, both

sides of her family certainly have. So the

concept of racial profiling and discrimination

was not foreign to her at all.

For those that are unaware, the filming

schedule of daytime soap operas, as well

as the amount of dialogue that must be

memorized, is beyond comprehension.

On average, daytime soaps film seven

to eight episodes per week, and 110 to

140 pages of dialogue, way more than

primetime television and film. Despite

this, Sarpy credits soap operas to being

an amazing acting training ground. “It’s

really aggressive and competitive. If you

can excel in the soap world, grasp the

material, and do it in one take, then you

can basically do anything in this world."

The transition from General Hospital to

The Young and the Restless was a really

smooth one Sarpy says. “From the screen

test, I felt really comfortable and relaxed.

I think that came from having a very

Upon graduation from college, Sarpy began

auditioning for professional acting gigs, while still

working other jobs to make ends meet. Aside from

acting, her most favorite positions she ever held is

a tie between bartending and working as a personal

trainer. “The last thing I did as my normal job was

a personal trainer at Equinox. Fitness has always

been a big part of my life and something that I’ve

been interested in, so that was really fun for me.

Before that, I bartended and served for years. I

have a very soft spot for the service industry.”

Photo Credit: Tiziano Lugli

Sarpy mentions the very first professional acting

gig that she booked. The 2010 film You Again that

starred Hollywood heavyweights Kristen Bell,

Jamie Lee Curtis, Sigourney Weaver, and Betty

White. “You cannot go wrong with Jamie Lee

Curtis and Betty White!” she says.

Five years later, Sarpy found herself taking

residence in the fictitious city of Port Charles on

the ABC daytime soap opera General Hospital,

where she portrayed Valerie Spencer, the niece of

legendary character Luke Spencer. She says that

that role was the first acting gig she booked that

“allowed me to not have to work in anything other

than the arts.” She recalls initially auditioning for

two other roles on the soap, Jordan Ashord and

Taylor DuBois, before finally landing the role of

Valerie. “I auditioned for Jordan and, at the time,

the age they were asking for varied - late 20s to

late 30s. They pulled in a lot of people and I ended

up screen testing for it.” She explains that she was

similar environment under my belt. The people there are great. It

always helps when there’s good energy that you’re walking into.”

She mentioned Kristoff St. John, the actor who tragically passed

away earlier this year. He portrayed Neil Winters on The Young and

the Restless for nearly three decades. He passed away a couple of

days before Sarpy screen tested for the role that she currently portrays.

She remembers the mood on the set still being very somber

by the time she started filming.

Sarpy is also set to appear in the next season of The Haves and the

Have Nots, the primetime soap opera created, written, produced,

directed by Tyler Perry for Oprah Winfrey’s channel OWN. Sarpy

says that she’s been on Tyler Perry’s radar for a while now. This

role fit really well and it worked out. As far as the role itself goes,

Sarpy did not reveal too much about the role, not even mentioning

the name of her character. But did say that viewers are going to

be in for a real treat. “It’ll be interesting to see who this character

interacts with. It’s going to be an explosive season for sure.”

Working with Tyler Perry was an amazing experience for Sarpy. “It

was awesome. He’s a Virgo so I understand his work ethic. He’s

tough and knows exactly what he wants. He’s incredibly detailed

about what he wants and really runs the whole show. It’s incredible

to see someone produce, write, and direct literally every scene of

the show and keep it all together. It’s really impressive. I happened

to be shooting around his birthday so he was in a pretty good


May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and Sarpy has been very

open and honest about her struggles with anxiety and depression.

She believes that creating more awareness is the key to erasing

the stigma surrounding mental health in our society. “I think we’re

definitely in the age of awakening in a lot of ways. We are becoming

more aware and sensitive to the things that plague us. I think

mental health days at work are important. I think therapy should be

a bigger part of our healthcare system and our education system.

We’re taking mental health more serious now, but there’s still a lot

of work to be done.”

Sarpy reveals that she’s always been aware that her own personal

mental health was something she ought to be paying more attention

to. “I think I’ve always been aware of how my mind operates, just

being very analytical. I think a lot and overthink and I know where

that can lead a person.” She says that taking steps to address it and

seeing what works for her is still a relatively new process for her.

Within the last four to five years, she has done a lot of self-work.

“I think we all get to a gradual point in our journey where it’s not

about the minutiae; it’s not about what career you want, what school

you want to go to, or how many kids you want. We start worrying

ourselves about the important stuff which is who we are, and why

we function the way we function."

Sarpy’s father is living with Parkinson’s Disease, but she says that

it didn’t stop him from having a good time, partying it up with the

rest of the Daytime community. “I actually just took him to the

Daytime Emmy Awards after party. That was his first outing in quite

some time and he did okay.” She emphasizes the aggressiveness

of Parkinson’s Disease and how it can really deteriorate a person’s

daily life. But through all of the hardships, she and the rest of her

family still find a way to see the glass half full. “It’s a constant

battle. For me personally, I think that was definitely a trigger for

the anxiety that I deal with. As for him, depression is a big part of

Parkinson’s because it essentially is the lack of serotonin and dopamine

which are your happy receptors. I think if I didn’t have such a

strong, positive, caring, and kind person dealing with this disease,

it would have been a little different. My dad is incredibly strong.

He doesn’t feel sorry for himself. He keeps pushing and has great

work ethic and just keeps going. It’s inspiring for me when I’m

complaining about traffic or something stupid, to know that he’s not

complaining. In short, it’s about perspective.”

Because Sarpy is full of positivity and optimism, to say she’s lived

a hard life would not be appropriately representative of who she is.

Instead, we’ll say she’s lived of colorful life of obstacles that she

has destroyed and will continue to overcome whenever they arise.

So what would she tell her 10-year-old self if she had the opportunity?

“I would tell my 10-year-old self to just stop worrying and

have fun. It’s all going to work out.”

“I would love to play a superhero or villain,” says Sarpy when

asked what dream roles she currently has. “I don’t have one in

mind in particular right now, but that’s always been a goal for me.

Eventually I’m going to dive into directing, which is a scary thing

that I’ve been wrapping my head around.”

Whatever she ends up pursuing, there’s no doubt that Brytni Sarpy

will knock it out of the park. At 31, the sky 's the limit for this

beautiful and talented woman. We sincerely thank Brytni for taking

time out of her busy schedule to speak with us, and look forward to

seeing the evolution of her amazing career!



If you would like to stay updated on all things Brytni Sarpy, check

out her Instagram @Brytni, and her Twitter @_Brytni.


Photo Credit: Raen Badua



Photo Credit: Christopher Huang

Hollywood’s representation of Asians has been through

stereotypes for a long time, and that can kill the passion

of an actor. But not Michael Tow, who has overcome

those kinds of roles and has seen the slow growth that

Hollywood has made. His latest role sees him taking on the part of

antagonist in the film Lucky Grandma. When Michael is not busy

acting or working, you can find him spending quality time with his

three daughters. We chatted with him about the experience working

on Lucky Grandma, the inspiration behind starting his production

company and more. BY JUSTIN GRANT

Cliché: How did you first get involved in acting?

Michael Tow: My journey on becoming an actor began when I was a

kid playing the lead in school plays. I loved acting but never thought

of it as a career so I stopped acting after elementary school. But after

I stopped I would still have these actor dreams where I would wake

up in the middle of the night and be sweating because I forgot my

lines. That all changed when I was in my 30s and I decided to pursue

acting again because I wanted to show my three daughters what I

loved doing as a kid.

What was the experience like working on Lucky Grandma?

My experience working on Lucky Grandma was pretty amazing. I am

the main antagonist in the film and being able to work with Tsai Chin,

who is a Hollywood legend and two-time bond girl, was like taking

a master acting class. To me, it was such a joy to have gotten that

experience working on set with her – especially since I worshipped

her as an actress for a long time.

Can you describe your character, Little Handsome?

Little Handsome, and my partner are a low level gang members. We

are the gangsters that are sent out first and they aren’t the smartest

guys on the block. I play the slower, but crazy bad guy with definitely

a few screws loose. We spend the movie trying to hunt down


In addition, it was so much fun doing all the action and stunt scenes

throughout the film.

What was your favorite part of playing him?

My favorite part of playing him was when my partner and I were


threatening ‘Lucky Grandma’

while I was holding a knife

and we wanted to show her

that we mean business and to

intimidate her so she can tell us

where all the money’s at.

What’s the message of the

film and what do you hope

viewers take away when

watching the film?

It's great that the film has a

main character who is not only

elderly but a minority woman

in such a nuanced and demanding

role. Lucky Grandma

goes on this crazy wild ride

and I was extremely honored

to be a part of it.

What was the biggest challenge

or obstacle that you’ve

faced in your acting career

and how did you manage to

overcome it?

The biggest obstacle that I

faced was overcoming stereotypical

roles and not always

playing characters who were

just one note. It wasn't that

long ago that Ken Jeong in

Hangover and Gedde Watanabe

in Sixteen Candles, these

cringey weird uncool male

characters were the only type of

Asian male characters that we

saw on screen. I knew I had to get

Hollywood to see me beyond just

these stereotypes.

What have been some of your

favorite experiences in your


It’s been amazing to get the chance

to work with some great actors

like Jeff Bridges, Dave Franco

& Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio.

Actually, Mastrantonio was one

of my favorite actors growing up

and I remember watching her in

Scarface with Al Pacino as

well as The Color of Money

with Tom Cruise and Paul

Newman. Working with her

on NBC’s Blindspot was an

honor and Mary Elizabeth

actually complimented me

on my acting which made me

turn red!

What was the inspiration

behind starting your

production company, Tow

Arboleda Films?

There was a thing on Bill

O’Reilly on "Watters' World"

on the Fox News Network

and he did a segment in New

York Chinatown where he

made a political joke referencing

Hillary Clinton and

Republican nominee Donald

J. Trump before the presidential

elections, but Jesse used

it in a way to make fun of

Chinatown in a horrendous

way. Jesse was doing horrible

stereotypes of Asian females

in massage parlors and

poked fun at the way Asians

speak. He also showed in the

segment people doing martial

arts but with the wrong

ethnicity. I felt so upset about that particular segment and there was no response so I decided to do something visually

back and I did a parody going against what Jesse did.

What are some things you enjoy doing when you’re not acting or working?

Whenever I do have free time it’s trying to spend more quality time with my family. My three daughters are growing

so fast so I enjoy watching their tennis matches or swim meets. They've done acting as well so sometimes we get to

do acting projects together!

What are you working on next?

I have two films coming out towards the end of the year called Jungleland and Sound of Metal and I’ll be acting

alongside Riz Ahmed in Sound of Metal and Charlie Hunnam in Jungleland. I am also filming a television show called

Defending Jacob with Chris Evans and that show will be streamed on Apple TV. Last but not least, next summer,

I will be in a movie with Ryan Reynolds called Free Guy that will be released on July 3, 2020.



Mary Mouser stumbled on to acting at the

age of five and never looked back. She

currently stars in YouTube Premium's

Cobra Kai, a nostalgic successor to The

Karate Kid. Mary plays Samantha, daughter of the

original Karate Kid himself. Samantha struggles to

find her identity while navigating generational tensions

with her father and attempting to reestablish her relationship

with karate. The second season follows her

trying to find inner peace – but instead she finds a new

rival. Season 2 of Cobra Kai is currently available for

streaming (and binge watching!) on YouTube Premium.


Cliché: When did you first realize you wanted to


Mary Mouser: I happened upon acting, a family

friend suggested we give it a try while visiting them on

vacation when I was 5 years old. I ended up as a photo

double in the movie Signs, and from that moment

forward I begged my parents to let me continue.

Luckily, they let me, and I’ve been in love with it ever


What's the biggest challenge you've faced as an

actor so far?

There have been challenges in so many different ways.

Struggling with difficult characters, or with balancing

a normal life and my career. The most difficult, I

would say, has been the physical challenge of Cobra

Kai. But it has also been the most rewarding.

Tell us about Cobra Kai and your character, Samantha.

Samantha is the daughter of the OG Karate Kid,

Daniel LaRusso. She’s going in to her junior year of

high school. She’s just like any other teen, struggling

to find where she fits in and what she believes in, but

add karate dojo wars into that mix. Sam learned karate

from her dad, and possibly Mr. Miyagi, at a young age,

but took a long break. Now she’s come back to karate

as a means of bringing balance back into her life, but

things don’t exactly go to plan.

Cobra Kai is an extension of The Karate Kid universe, checking in on the original

characters' lives 34 years after the film took place. Were you apprehensive

about carrying on the legacy of such a beloved franchise?

It’s definitely a big pair of shoes to fill, but with the incredible actors from the

original movies to work with, I feel more so inspired and excited by that legacy,

rather than intimidated.

In what ways is Cobra Kai faithful to the film? Conversely, how does it reflect

more modern day themes and challenges?

The characters stay true to who they were and still are, Johnny is pretty clueless

about being politically correct or polite about sensitive topics in today’s world,


that clash of cultures is fun to watch, knowing that it helps educate

both sides of that generational gap. The show also retains the magic

in many aspects of the show, but adds in new aspects with the younger


What's happening in season two? What is Sam up to?

We last saw Samantha performing a bit of karate awesomeness at

the end of season one, which leads into her arc in season two, which

revolves around her coming back to karate as a way to find balance

and peace after the emotional chaos of last season. She’s struggling

again to find where she fits in and who she wants to be, and uses

martial arts as a way to connect to her inner self and figure that out.

Of course, drama ensues, as always. She meets a new girl, Tory, who

is a member of Cobra Kai and they have instant tension, which leads

to an epic showdown throughout the season between the two.

Why do you think there's so much tension between Sam and her

father, Daniel?

I believe it’s typical of any teen to pull away from their parents in

their journey to distinguish themselves as a new individual personality.

That is hard for Daniel, who used to be Sam’s best friend as she

grew up. And it’s hard for Sam too, as she works to navigate friendships

and relationships without her father as her compass. I think

season two, in many ways, helps them come back together through

karate, but where it ends off offers new tensions going forward.

I would say that it’s okay to be confused, we all learn at some point.

I think it’s important to keep in mind that the people you surround

yourself with are a reflection of you. I like to keep people around

me who help me to grow and be a better person, my own compasses

and teachers, even though I have definitely struggled in the past with

balancing what I truly believe in with what everyone around me is

saying is okay.

All 10 episodes of season two were dropped simultaneously on

YouTube Premium. Is it any different working on a show that's

meant to be binge watched immediately as opposed to a show

that's released over a span of several months?

The biggest difference is really once it comes out, that I’ve noticed.

The blow up is crazy fast, I know I binged it that night and didn’t

sleep until 4am, which is how a lot of people watch. Therefore, the

responses I get are more immediate and more passionate even, I

guess. I’ve really loved it so far, it’s so fun to see people watching

and re-watching the show!

Have you learned anything about karate through your time on

the show?

Yes! I knew NOTHING going in, so I’ve learned quite a lot about

martial arts and now I’m totally in love with it all. I even enjoy

working out! That’s something that my teenage self would NOT

have believed!

In the previous season, Sam struggled a lot with figuring out

who her true friends were and getting into trouble because of it.

What advice do you have for kids who might have friends or be

trying to fit in with people who are making the wrong decisions?

Creative & Photography: MK McGehee @mk.mcg

Lighting & Digital: Alexander Fenyves @fenivision

Styling: McCall O’Brien @styledxmccall

Hair: Matt Fugate @forwardartists @mattshair

Makeup: Jessie Maranda @jessiemaranda

Location: Concrete Studios @concretestudiosla



Los Angeles native Ian

Verdun is making a

splash in Hollywood,

starring in Freeform’s

SciFi thriller Siren as Xander

McClure, a deep sea fisherman on

a quest to uncover the lost secrets

of Bristol Cove, a coastal town

known for its legend of once being

home to mermaids. When the

arrival of a mysterious girl proves

this folklore all too true, the battle

between man and sea takes a very

vicious turn as these predatory

beings return to reclaim their right

to the ocean. Ian stars alongside

Alex Roe, Eline Powell, Fola

Evans-Akingbola and Rena Owen.

Oddly enough, Ian was out on the

open ocean when he received the

news he’ll be staring in the series,

which is perfectly fitting considering

Ian’s character Xander is a

small town, salt-of-the earth, deep

sea fisherman. After witnessing

something unexplainable in the

open ocean, Xander finds himself

embroiled in the bizarre events

surrounding a mysterious woman

who comes to town, ultimately

putting him on a dangerous path as

he hunts for the truth.

Ian knew he wanted to be an actor

from a young age. His mother

was an art major, so being raised

around comic books and art he had

a passion for the arts early on. It

was then Ian knew he wanted to

become an actor and quickly dove

Photo credit: Ryan West


into stories of high school theater and playing the

emperors assistant in Mulan. He joked about it not

being the role he wanted, but completely fell in love

with acting right then and there.

This passion for acting took Ian to CAL Arts and

eventually London where, after graduating from

the British American Drama Academy in 2007, Ian

found himself walking into a challenging time in the

industry for two prominent reasons. “The Writers’

strike happened the year I graduated,” he said. “It was

before the diversity conversations had really taken

place. People would look at me with just confusion.

Not all black people come rewired as thug. The black

experience is very multi-faceted”

Despite initial struggles, he landed various guest star

roles on TV series such as Lost, Greys Anatomy, and

Hustling. To fill time between the audition process, he

started writing and producing his own projects which

helped him develop a positive mentality to keep busy

instead of waiting for the phone to ring.

“I can’t wait for these opportunities. I need to diversify

and see how I can create stories that I really want

to be in. Having something on your own where you

can nurture your creative soul. Feed your soul. Create

what makes you happy as an artist and the other stuff

will come.”

All of those years work have seemingly paid off as the

2018 premiere of the mermaid drama drew Freeform’s

strongest ratings in years for a drama series launch,

setting records in total viewers (1.54 million).

Be sure to check out the first season of Siren currently

available on Freeform and the first half of season 2

aired earlier this year. For more exciting updates and

witty captions follow Ian on instagram @ianverdun





Veronika Slowikowska is

the newest addition to FX’s

What We Do In The Shadows

playing the role of Shanice,

Jenna’s college roomate. Based on the

2014 film by the same name, What We

Do In The Shadows is a mockumentary

following the lives of four vampire roommates

in the modern age. Slowikowska is

also a part of an improv group that forces

you to think outside of the box in the

moment. She is going above and beyond

in the world of entertainment on and off


Cliché: You originally got into acting

because of theatre courses to overcome

your shyness, how does acting help

people come out of their shell?

Veronika Slowikowska: I think for me

it was pretending to be someone else

and finding my own voice through that.

Playing pretend until I gained the confidence

from the characters I was playing.

What were some of the prevailing

issues in Degrassi: Next Class

that were important to teach its


Degrassi covered a lot of important,

relevant issues. Anything from

bullying, to sexuality to racism. I

think Degrassi does a great job of

bringing light to issues big or small.

How different is the television

version of What We Do In The

Shadows compared to the original

film version?

Completely new cast and storyline,

but with the same original humour

and feel.

The show breaks the fourth wall

of television, what does breaking

the fourth wall bring to the

viewing experience that makes it


It makes the audience a character.

It gives the audience a secret, like

they're in on something. I think

that's why Jim from The Office is

such a liked character because he's

like your best friend from work or

school who would give you that sort

of look and you know exactly what

they're thinking. The talking heads

interview style gives you an exclusive

look on what the characters

actually feeling. I think all around

it makes shows more grounded and


Why do you believe that a mockumentary

show like What We Do

In The Shadows is important to


Well the movie is one of the greatest

comedy films of all time. So

why not continue with making a

killer show? No pun intended.

What was it like being on set with

actors like Kayvan Novak (Four

Lions) and Matt Berry (The IT


Very cool! I'm a big Matt Berry fan

so that was super cool.

Do you believe that the age of

vampire film and television

should come back? Why?

Sure! Vampires are just like you

and I.

You are currently a part of Bad

Dog Theatre’s Featured Players,

why is important to have a

theatre company that specializes

in improv and unscripted


It's a whole art form in itself. With

improv you get to create any world

and any character that exists in that

moment and for that moment only.

Anything goes! It's an impressive

art form that's so creative and collaborative,

I think everyone should

do improv.

Why is improv an important skill

to have as an actor?

It makes you a team player. Gets

you out of your head and makes

you an amazing listener.

Photo Credit: Connory Ballantyne

The mini web series A Boy’s

Memoir is about three students

who go above and beyond to put

on a performance, what attracted

you to be in this project?

I grew up in a smaller town in Northern

Ontario, so when we created

the series it was so personal to our

experience growing up, it felt like

it had to be done. I also work with

some of my best friends on the

project. We can't wait to see where

it goes.



Sarah Abbott. Write that name down somewhere,

remember it. At just 13 years of age, Abbott is

taking on the world and is showing no signs of

slowing down. Hailing from Whtiby, Canada,

Abbott has been a performer since the time she could

form words and stand on her own two feet without

holding onto the coffee table. Her family had the distinct

honor of witnessing Abbott as she performed songs, dance

routines, storytelling, and acting. Since starting her acting

career, she’s had the opportunity to be a part of telling

the iconic and tragic story of Marilyn Monoe, playing

young Marilyn in the Lifetime Miniseries The Secret

Life of Marilyn Monroe. She’s also been directed by the

legendary Jodie Foster on Black Mirror and will soon

be acting alongside heartthrob Ian Somerhalder in the

upcoming Netflix series, V-Wars. So much in such a short

amount of time. We can only imagine what’s to come!

We chatted with this firecracker about life as a young

performer, her career thus far, her activism for animal

rights, making her friends jealous, and so much more!


Cliché: Hi Sarah. First off, I want to thank you for

taking time out of your day to answer these questions

for the next issue of our magazine! I want to start out

by congratulating on all of your success in your career

so far!

Sarah Abbot: Thank you very much. Thanks for asking

to interview me for you magazine, it looks amazing.

I understand that as soon as you can walk and talk,

you started performing for your family at home by

putting on shows singing, dancing, storytelling, acting

and playing instruments? Tell me more about that.

What are your earliest memories of those times?

I guess the earliest memory I have of doing this is at

Christmas time. I would find a Christmas song and memorize

it and ask the family to come sit down and I would

sing my song. Also to be clear, this was done AFTER we

opened the presents, not before. I couldn’t wait to see

what Santa brought me!

Your first big break came when you were cast as

young Marilyn Monroe in the Lifetime Miniseries,

The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe. Tell me about that


That was super exciting. It was my first time with lots of

lines. I think my parents were more excited than me to be


How familiar were you of Marilyn Monroe and her

impact on the world when you booked the role? Did

playing her leave a lasting impression of her with you?

I wasn’t too familiar with her. My mom and dad brought

me up to speed on her amazing but tragic career in Hollywood.

There is a 50’s style restaurant by our house, so it has lots of

pictures of her in it. I was really proud that I got the role and

actually told the waitress I was going to play her in a movie. That

was neat. As for a lasting impression, it was just so sad to see such

a beautiful person inside and out have her dream come true and it

ends so bad for her.

Since then, you appeared in a number of television film productions

such as Lavender, Slasher and Heroes Reborn. What

can you tell me about those experiences and what did you learn

about yourself as an actress when you took on those roles?

Each role has its own challenges because they are all so different

and a little more intense. I’m learning as I go. I have never had

any acting lessons but what I’m doing seems to be working. I've

worked with a lot of amazing actors and directors who have taught

me so much.

You also appeared in the fourth season of Black Mirror. Your

episode, in particular, was directed by the legendary Jodie Foster.

How did it feel to have someone like Jodie Foster directing

you? Did she give you any advice as an actress that you still

hold onto to this day?

To be directed by her was exciting. She started out as a kid like me

and has had such an amazing career. I could only dream to be as

good as her. The advice she gave was a saying she said. “Let’s just

keep it real”. It was so simple. She was this Hollywood legend but

she was just a regular person. After that it was so easy to just talk

and be with her.

Coming up, you will be seen in the highly anticipated new

vampire Netflix Series, V-Wars, where you star alongside Ian

Somerhalder. What can you tell us about the show and your

character specifically?

The show is about what happens to civilization when a disease

infects a large part of the population and turns them into Vampires.

Now the two side battle each other for control. I can’t really say

too much about my character without giving anything away. So

you will just have to watch the show to find out. I don’t want to be

a spoiler!

Why should fans check it out?

Ian Somerhalder and Vampires. I don’t think I need to say anymore!

Photo Credit: Lilly K.

competitive dance for about seven years now.

Do you see yourself starting a professional singing career, like recording

an album and going on tours perhaps?

When I was younger I just wanted to sing all the time but now I would

love to get into being a Fashion Model. I always show my dad my

Runway strut and asking him what he thinks. He just rolls his eyes!

Speaking of Ian Somerhalder, I know you were very young

when The Vampire Diaries first aired on television. Now that

you are older, have you gotten the chance to binge-watch it as a

way to prepare for the role and for working alongside Ian?

I loved The Vampire Diaries. I’ve watched every episode. When I

told all my friends at school I was going to act with him, they were

so jealous. The first scene I was in with him , I was so nervous. I

guess I was a little starstruck.

I understand that outside of acting, you enjoy writing stories,

art, music, dance, and skiing. What kinds of stories do you

enjoy writing?

I have a lot of things on the go outside of acting. I would have to

say the biggest one that inspires me the most is dancing. I just love

showing my emotions and getting into the song. I’ve been doing

You’re also a very strong and passionate advocate for animal

rights. When and how did your activism begin? Was there a specific

moment in time where you felt strongly to be a voice for animals?

Our family has always had pets. I’ve been surrounded by them my

whole life by them. We have two cats and two dogs. When one of my

dogs passed away, my parents decided to go to a rescue organization

which gets dogs that are abandoned and put in to High Kill shelters. I

never knew anything like this even existed. When my parents explained

this to me, I was horrified. From then on, when anyone talks about

getting a Puppy or Kitten I tell them about all these beautiful animals

waiting to be saved and placed in a forever home.


To stay up to date on all things Sarah Abbott, be sure to follow her on

Instagram @Sarah_Abbott_.


After growing up wanting to work on cartoons, Adam McArthur has made that dream come true, becoming a

voice actor, and landing a role voicing one of the lead characters in the Disney Channel/Disney XD animated

series Star vs. the Forces of Evil, which just concluded its fourth season. When he’s not busy acting or working,

you can find him doing martial arts or exercising. We chatted with the charming actor Adam McArthur about his

voice-over tips that he learned through his career, the process for recording his lines for Star vs. the Forces of Evil and his

upcoming projects. BY JUSTIN GRANT

Cliché: How did you first get involved with

voice acting? What have been some of the

voice-over tips that you learned through

your career? What is your secret to success

as a voice-over actor?

Adam McArthur: I started acting at an early

age and always wanted to do cartoons. When

I was 16 years old, my parents put me in an

acting class in San Francisco that was owned

by Judy Berlin. She had a wealth of voice

acting knowledge and ultimately helped me

land my first job.

The biggest tip I can give anyone looking to

get better is to do improv. It’s a great way to

loosen up, get comfortable, and learn to play.

It’s also a great way to explore new characters

and have fun.

I don’t know if there’s a secret other than

having confidence, being patient, and staying

in LA long enough for it to happen. I think

perseverance is the most underrated quality of

an artist.

What’s the experience been like working on

Star vs. the Forces of Evil?

The experience working on Star vs. the Forces

of Evil has been incredible. Everyone from

the casting department to the crew, to the

executive, to my castmates, to the fans, have

all made the last five and a half years and 77

episodes an amazing journey for me. It’s been

such a blast laughing and creating this amazing

story with so many talented people. I’m beyond

lucky to have been a small part of it.

Photographer: Ryan West

Grooming: Laura Arango

Can you describe your character,

Marco Diaz? How has your character

evolved from season 1 to season 4?

Marco is the ultimate best friend. He’s

loyal, down for an adventure, and always

has your back. He started the series more

as the “safe kid.” He liked to follow the

rules and took it upon himself to make

sure Star was taken care of. On his journey

to season 4, we’ve seen him grow

up, make mistakes, and grow into an

adventurous, butt-kicking, and fun little

guy. We’ve even seen episodes where we

get glimpses at what he’ll be like when

he’s 30.

say most of my favorite experiences are fan

involved, but I did love getting to work with

Eden Sher, Rider Strong, and Esmé Bianco.

What are some things you enjoy doing

when you’re not acting or working?

I enjoy martial arts and exercising. Whether

it’s a judo class, stunt class, or a high intensity

interval training (HIIT) class, I enjoy

getting out and moving. I’m also a bubble

tea aficionado. I love trying new boba places.

What are you working on next?

I’m excited about the new independently

produced animated series that I’m working

on called Salem: The Series. You can find

some shorts online for it already. The cast is

incredible, the creator is very talented, and I

can’t wait for more people to learn about it.

Why should people watch Star vs. the

Forces of Evil? What is it about Stars

vs. the Forces of Evil that has made it

last four seasons?

There’s something in it for everybody!

There’s dimension hopping, monsters,

dragons, adventure, comedy and heart

all wrapped up in one amazing storyline.

Speaking of, it’s not just for kids! Star

has a through line plot and the story is

amazing. Everyone should definitely

watch! I think the fans love for the characters

and seeing them on their journey

has made it last so long. People truly care

about Marco and Star and they want to

see more!

What's the process like for recording

your lines for the show? How do you

prepare yourself? Do you usually

record with others in the cast or alone?

A typical recording session for Star is

between one to two and a half hours

per episode. For about 95 percent of the

season, all of the actors recorded solo.

The sessions are so much fun. It mostly

consists of me in a booth being directed

by two or three people and us laughing

the entire time. I always say, there’s never

a bad day in the office.

What have been some of your favorite

experiences in your career so far?

Many of my favorite experiences have

come from San Diego Comic Con.

Whether it’s doing panels for shows or

organizing unofficial fan meet-ups at a

local boba shop, SDCC always makes

me incredibly happy. I think it’s fair to


Jordyn Curet has quite the impressive resume for a 10-year-old. Performing since the age of two, the actress and

model is already at the heart of the industry. She is one of the hosts of DreamworksTV's popular series Life Hacks

for Kids, has walked multiple Fashion Weeks, and has a new Netflix film coming out. She also recently joined

SAG/AFTRA. In spite of her busy life, Jordyn is still your typical kid who enjoys hanging out with her friends

and her dog. Helping others is incredibly important to Jordyn and her nonprofit foundation, Jordyn's Joy, focuses on

bringing hope and happiness to underprivileged kids through small acts of kindness. When she grows up, she hopes to

be a business owner and a fashion designer in addition to continuing her acting career. BY ERIN TATUM

Cliché: What is your earliest memory of performing?

Jordyn Curet: My earliest memory was singing and dancing at the age of 3 years old for my babysitters. I used to

watch Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music daily and would recite the songs to them. Give me a stage, and the show


Photo: Olesja Mueller

Make Up Artist: Lisa Truong

prior, so when I got the audition for Life Hacks

for Kids, I was beyond excited. I have been

watching Life Hacks for Kids since I was six

years old and was a huge fan of Sunny. She

inspired me to create things and I was beyond

honored when the hosting offer was presented.

It truly has been a fantastic experience. Each

episode allows me to try new things as well as

the freedom to bring some of my personality to

the set, it's the perfect project to be a part of.

Have you learned about any new cool or

helpful life hacks from doing the show?

One hack that I felt was really cool was the

'Hacky Cotton Candy' segment. Super fun hack

and it tasted so yummy too. It's on the 'Sugar

Hacks' episode!

You just joined SAG/AFTRA and you're

only 10! How do you balance working with

being a kid?

I find being a SAG/AFTRA actress is similar

to being in club sports, dance/cheer competition

teams, science club or others that many

kids my age are involved in. My passion just

happens to be acting/performing and keeping

balance with other activities is something that I

keep in mind and find time to hang out with my

friends and family, travel and learn new things.

Tell us about your new films coming out!

I am very excited for the release of my

first Netflix film. It was directed by Noah

Baumbach and featured Scarlett Johansson,

Adam Driver and several other incredible

actors and actresses. I had the opportunity to

play a supporting role, Molly, and was truly

inspired by the entire cast and crew. Be sure

to watch for the 'Untitled Noah Baumbach'

film coming soon!

You've walked at Fashion Week a few

times. What was that experience like?

Which do you like better – performing or


Yes, I truly love the experience of bringing a

designers vision to life on the Runway. From

NY, LA and Miami, each experience was

truly magical. I do enjoy both, but I would

say the opportunity to perform would be my


On set DreamWorksTV/ Life Hacks for Kids

How did you first hear about Life Hacks

for Kids? Were you excited to get involved

with the program?

I had auditioned for DreamworksTV a year

What do you like to do for fun?

I really love playing tennis with my dad, going

to the mall with my friends, and taking my

puppy to the park.

You also have a nonprofit foundation,

Jordyn's Joy, which helps underprivileged

children. Why is giving back to the community

and helping those less fortunate so

important to you?

I feel it is very important to do what we can to

impact others. I especially wish to help those

less fortunate and bringing a smile to a friend's

face, giving someone a sense of hope and to

just pass a hug...these are acts of kindness we

can all do to make a difference in someone's


If you weren't an actress, what other career

would you like to have?

I would be a fashion designer. Fashion, designing,

creating and having my own business

are aspirations I have as well. Stay tuned....I

hope to continue being an actress and a future

designer. 75


Tucker Meek is making a name for himself

as he stars as Devon in this year’s

comedy, Little. Little has a star-studded

cast, which includes the youngest executive

producer in Hollywood, Marsai Martin, who

Tucker think is pretty cool! Tucker even works with

a non-profit organization that he works with called

Learning Ally, dedicated to making audiobooks

for kids with visual impairments and dyslexia. If

he’s not filming movies/shows or helping with

Learning Ally, you can find him simply hanging

out with friends. He spoke with Cliché Magazine

about working with Learning Ally, why his dad

is his biggest inspiration, and working on Little.


Photo credit: Brandon Showers

Cliché: When did you know you wanted to

get involved with acting?

Tucker Meek: I’ve been quoting commercials

and movies for as long as I can

remember. When I was in Kindergarten, a

family friend asked if my brother and I would

like to be in a commercial. I was fascinated

by the filming process and every moment of

my time on set. As soon as we got in the car, I

asked to go back the next day. So, my parents

registered me for an acting class. I feel pretty

lucky because I got to start auditioning and

working at seven when I met my agents. So, I

guess I knew I wanted to be an actor before I

really understood what that even meant.

What has been your favorite part about

being an actor?

I love creating characters and thinking

through their backstories. If the script doesn’t

explain one, I make it up. I think that helps

give characters a reason to relate to one another.

I also really like working with actors my

age - you end up wrapping a project with a lot

of new friends. Oh, and also maybe crafty…

I love snacks!

How was your experience working on Little

with Issa Rae, Regina Hall, and Marsai


It was awesome working with actors who are

masters of comedy. They were funny even

when the cameras weren’t rolling. It was also

exciting to be a part of such a historical film.

Marsai is the youngest Executive Producer in

Hollywood. That’s pretty cool!

What would you say is the message of


The overall message is: Don’t be a bully!

Whether you are an adult or a child, bullying

isn’t an effective strategy. You can always

accomplish more by just being nice, ya know!

I also think the movie teaches that you have

to be brave, take risks and support your


What do you think people should take

away from the film?

The movie is funny, but I really hope people

learn that it’s important to believe in yourself.

Little reminds you that you don’t have to

change who you are to be great!

What has been your most memorable

moment working with Learning Alley?

Why is it important for kids to read?

Learning Ally is a nonprofit organization

dedicated to making audiobooks for kids

with visual impairments and Dyslexia. I think

my most memorable moment was when I

received an email from one of the kids that

listened to me narrate Wonder by R.J. Palacio.

Finding out that he loved the book and how

grateful he was to be able to listen to the

same book his friends were reading, meant

the world to me. Reading has always been

one of my favorite things to do. I tend to get

lost in stories and lose track of time. I also

believe books increase your vocabulary and

help you see things from other perspectives.

Who is your biggest inspiration and what

is your dream role?

My biggest inspiration is my Dad because he

is nice to everyone he meets. He is also super

funny and has always taught me the value

of hard work. As an actor I look up to Will

Ferrell. I think it’s awesome that he can laugh

at himself and his comedic timing is amazing.

My dream role would be to play his son.

Can fans expect to see you in more projects

this year?

Absolutely! Be sure to check out Schooled

on ABC. I am also in the animated Netflix

movie, Klaus. It will be out this holiday

season. I have a couple other projects in the

works, too, so stay tuned!

Besides acting, what is something that you

like to do in your spare time?

When I’m not acting or in school, I’m usually

hanging out with my friends, playing video

games or attending Youth Group at my

church. Sometimes I can be found running

around in an inflatable dino suit. Basically,

I just try to have fun & not take myself too

seriously. I also really love creating character

voices and special effect vocalizations for




In 2015, Tasya Teles went from living life in Toronto to becoming a fearless warrior set in a post-apocalyptic

world on The 100. The 100 is one of The CW’s most talked about hits, thanks to its ever growing fan base

and a boost from Netflix. The 100 was even recently renewed for a seventh season a week before season

six aired. The show has been on the air since 2014 and has gone into its current sixth season promising a

big return. Tasya Teles plays the warrior and royal guard, Echo, who has become one of the show’s protagonists

known for her unfaltering loyalty to her tribe and King Roan.

If you’ve been under a rock and haven’t seen the show yet, Teles described the show as “Lost meets Lord of The

Flies.” It’s difficult to even find someone who hasn’t watched The 100. Due to its popularity, details about every

season are so confidential that Teles jokes about being terrified that she might accidentally leak spoilers in interviews.

An important component of The 100 is the many strong women that are the center of the story. The variety of

female characters and their complex stories is something fans, critics, and even Teles herself has found empowering.

The series has shown itself to being committed to showcasing women as multifaceted beings who find

strength in their own ways.

“What I found interesting

about the show is the many

different ways in which they

explore female leadership and

the different ways it manifests

into each of the female

characters. They each have

their own leadership style,

their own demons, and ghosts

that they fight with and their

own limitations,” she said

proudly. This varied examples

of women’s strength shown

on screen have meant a lot to

diehard fans, but also to Teles

herself, who said, “Exhibiting

that is amazing. Working

off each other as we come

together on the show is really


After joining the series in its

second season, Teles told me

she had no clue Echo would

grow into a series regular.

In fact, she was so sure her

character would meet an

early demise. “That was such

a surprise,” she laughed. “I

actually wrote Jason [Rothenberg]

this long letter after season

six because it still baffles

me. I so was convinced that

I was going to die every

time I turned the page [in the

scripts]. I was just shocked! I

screamed and stood there in

total shock. When my agents

called about joining them as

a season regular, I was like,

‘What? No! I’m supposed to

be dead!’ It was so joyful and

such a surprise.” Soon after

becoming a series regular,

Echo would become a fan favorite.

In the five seasons that

we have gotten to know Echo

and witness her tremendous

growth, it’s hard to imagine

the show without her.

As season six kicks into

gear, Teles is excited for

fans to get a more nuanced

look at Echo’s background.

“One thing I love that [the

writers] are doing is they are

peeking into her backstory to

understand where she comes

from because Echo is one of

the characters that we don’t

really know much about.”

Fans of the show aren’t the

only ones who will be excited

to finally get some answers

to questions that have been

swirling about Echo’s backstory.

The continued mystery

about Echo’s past previously

led Teles to come up with her

own answers while playing

her, “I originally had my own

story for her and I was never

sure if I was making [acting]

choices that were in alignment

with how the writers saw her

or with what her actual backstory


Obviously, with many details

about this season under wraps,

Teles struggled to hint where

this season is taking Echo

but described her evolution

in this season as courageous

and showcasing more of

her selflessness. She hopes

the biggest take away from

the audience this season is

more understanding of Echo.

“There are some personalities

in Echo’s past that the fans

will be excited to see,” she

said. “There are some familiar

faces [that show up] that will

help explain where she comes

from and why she is the way

she is. I hope the audience

likes it and that provides an

opportunity to connect with

her a little more.”

Connecting with Echo has

never been an issue for

Teles. When asked in what

way they connect, she said

she identifies with Echo’s

own emotional struggles.

“As I was working on her, I

found that it was mirroring

things in my own life. Echo

has gone through so much

since we first met her. She’s

experienced a lot. In her time,

she’s lived through a lot of

different worlds and gone

through the pressure cooker

a lot and that's something

I’ve gone through myself.”

Most of all, Teles said she

can identify with the idea of

PHOTOGRAPHER: Gilles Toucas @GillesToucas

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growing and changing while

trying to forgive yourself for

past mistakes.

She also offers advice to

others who are going through

similar struggles. “The idea

of forgiveness, growing,

changing and being misunderstood

is something a lot of us

can identify with. You have

to forgive yourself before

you can go through a growth

spurt of change. You have

to look at the things you’ve

done to others, to yourself and

to the people you love and

care about and say, ‘This is

what I did and this is who I

am and I'm not perfect. I am

trying to grow and I am trying

to change and I'm doing my


In previous interviews, Teles

has described the set of the

hit show as “the Olympics

of show business” due to its

fast-paced and often grueling

shoots. Filming consists of

long hours and frequent harsh

weather conditions. With

the fast-paced schedule and

the dark theme of the show,

one might wonder how the

actors maintain their strong

performances while dealing

with difficult time constraints.

Teles’ professionalism and

dedication are apparent when 79

she describes how she survives in that environment. “It is

really chaotic,” she said, recalling an insane day on set. “I

remember we had to film this really crazy fight scene. It was

really cold that day and everyone was freezing. It was five

in the morning at that point and I was sitting there for three

hours. I was falling asleep and all the sudden they were like

‘Ok! They need you!’ I was like ‘What? Okay!’ and I just ran

out there!”

The reason why she refers to the set as “the Olympics of show

business” is how much they accomplish in one day. Each day

is filled with stunt choreography and emotional scenes that

are done back to back. Teles said she’s gotten accustomed to it

over time and it has made her a better actress. “One thing that

I’ve learned is that in those few moments you’re given to get

ready, you need to stop and ask questions so that you’re clear

on what scene you’re getting and what’s required in that take.

Because things move so quickly! When I first started acting,

I would just do something and hoped that it worked out. Now

I’ve learned to take 30 seconds or an extra minute to be clear

about what trying to execute. With the more experience you

get, you start to learn exactly what you need to give your best


Landing a hit show like The 100, especially as a series regular,

is no small accomplishment. It’s even more surprising when

realizing Teles’ road to Hollywood is not your average come

up story. Teles originally went to university in Toronto and

studied commerce before jumping head first into the world

of acting. The leap of faith she’s made into acting came from

her own fearless ambition. She described her love of acting as

something that’s always been there, but she just needed to take

the leap.

After taking a theatre course in college, she decided she had

to pursue her passion. “It was something that was nagging at

me my entire life. After I took that class I couldn’t ignore it

anymore.” Making the jump into acting was not a safe choice,

especially as a college student so close to completing her

degree. Teles recalls her mom sounding apprehensive when

she called to tell her decision, but she couldn’t shake the feeling

she got when walked out of that theatre class. “I walked

out of that class and into the sunshine and it felt like the best

day of my life! I was like, ‘It’s sunny and the birds are chirping

and I love acting!’” she said. “It was like my whole world was

in color.”

Of course, she still had some fears about getting into acting

— she remembers being worried she was starting too late in

life — but Teles had a dream and a timeframe for achieving

it. This is something she says everyone should have no matter

their goal. “People should give themselves a time frame and

say ‘this is my goal and this is the amount of time I have’ and

see what the universe says back to you. I believe any dream


is worth exploring but it has to be a

thoughtful process.” Teles also stressed

learning from people around you and

finding good mentors and teachers. She

warned that the people around you can

make or break your success.

The devoted fan base of The 100 has

grown with every season. The fans not

only tune in to watch every episode,

but they line up at conventions all

around the world to connect with the

cast in real life. For Teles, she said the

passionate fan base adds an important

layer to her job as an actress. “It’s so

much more profound than just playing

a character and telling the story. It’s

incredible to connect with everybody

and hear how the stories and the characters

affect them and what they take

from it.”

Fans of the show not only tweet about

and watch every episode obsessively

but they contribute to many good

causes on behalf of the cast. For

example, The Unslaved, an organization

started by Tasya Teles and a friend

of hers six years ago, works to bring

awareness to human trafficking. The

epidemic of human trafficking was

brought to Teles’ attention when her

mom handed her the book Half The

Sky, which detailed all the ways women

around the world struggle. Teles was

always interested in feminism and that

book changed the way she viewed the

world. “That was 10 years ago, once

I read the book I said to myself I have to be

a part of this movement.” The work that the

organization does has shifted over the years

when Teles realized her platform comes with

fans eager to also participate in work to benefit

a good cause.

“When we go to these conventions, we’re

connecting with people. There’s a lot of growth

and positivity there,” she said, noting the

countless fan projects over the years that were

done out of love for her. “I thought to myself,

‘What happens when the show ends? How do

we keep the longevity of these human interactions

and connections to do good in the world

and support one another?’ My answer to that

was doing something like The Unslaved!”

The organization will collaborate with fans and

supporters to design bracelets to be purchased

to raise money to fight against human trafficking.

“Every year we are going to release a

bracelet that the fans and I design together. The

design that wins will be connected to a person’s

story of how human trafficking affects their

country or city. It’s for people to learn about

how human trafficking exists everywhere,

even in their own backyard,” she said. “I think

through the collective awareness in just talking

about the issue there will be a change that is


Tasya Teles has a strong presence on screen, a

passion to fight for causes off-screen, and even

ambitions to work behind the camera. As her

star continues to rise, it’s clear the brave leap

she made to become an actress has paid off.

“Acting is everything I anticipated but it’s way

more work than I imagined. I am a one-person

business and there is always work to be done,”

she said. Her IMDb page currently has her

listed as part of three upcoming projects this


“There is always work to be done. It’s a lot of

hard work and it's something you can never

stop working at. I look at it as a sport, you’re

always training and developing different parts

of your craft to continue to be the best person

you can be.”



New episodes of The 100 premiere every

Tuesday at 9/8c on The CW. If you’d like to

stay updated on Tasya Teles, follow her on

Instagram and Twitter @tasyateles or visit her



Photo Credit: Brian To

While battling a serious health

condition, Spencer Trinwith

felt becoming an actor was

something of a pipe dream.

Nevertheless, he stayed true to his craft and

never gave up on his dreams. After landing

some guest roles on TV, he will next be seen

in the film Wonder Woman 1984, set to be

released on June 5, 2020. When he’s not

busy acting or working, you can find him

playing guitar. We chatted with Trinwith

about his experience working on Wonder

Woman 1984, how he felt overcoming

degenerative disc disease made him stronger

mentally as well as physically, and his upcoming


Cliché: What inspired you to get involved

with acting?

Spencer Trinwith: First of all, when I was

young I was surrounded by parents and

siblings who were in the theatre world. As

for me, it was only a matter of time before I

would put my hat in the theater world – and

once I did I didn’t necessarily realize that

this was something that I was going to be

doing for the rest of my life.

What was the experience like working on

Wonder Woman 1984?

My experience working with Director Patty

Jenkins was just a real honor and getting

to work with Gal Gadot was amazing. Not

only is Gal acting in the film but I think she

is also one of the executive producers of the

film. I really admire how much work it is

to make this film because I honestly don’t

know how you sleep at that point. Sometimes

when you are filming your role you are

up until 4 a.m. and then you have an 8 a.m.

shoot the next day. The whole thing kind of

set the fire under me even more.

What have been some of your favorite

experiences in your career?

Even just getting to write down something in

a tiny black box theatre there is always something

kind of magical about the medium

because there was something that was so

awe-inspiring being in Wonder Woman 1984.

It was also pretty amazing how effective

theater in a tiny space can be and I always

go back to a play that I did in Washington

D.C. called Suicide, Incorporated. The play

was an obscure, dark comedy, and addressed

a lot of issues on suicide. We would always

have these talkbacks at the end of the per-


formances and it was amazing how brave the

audience members were by opening up to us

and sharing their stories or experiences.

What was the best advice that you’ve

received about the acting industry and

who was it from?

The best advice that I received was from

my father. He told me, “You just got to stay

on the bus.” I mean, let’s face it, there is so

much rejection in this industry, and after a

while, somebody is probably thinking, “Is

this for me?” or “Is this not for me?” The

more perseverance you have and you keep

doing your thing then you’re going to find

those roles.

When looking back on the years that you

were battling Degenerative Disc Disease,

how did you feel overcoming that challenge

made you stronger mentally as well

as physically?

I mean, it is equally mentally as it is physically,

and that whole experience really

showed me how intertwined those two things

really are. It’s weird for me because I’m back

in Washington, D.C. where I’ve been going

through a lot of these issues and dealing with

a disability. It’s so strange to be walking

down these same streets that I once struggled

to walk down or sometimes couldn’t walk

down. I think because I was so young that I

can’t necessarily put in fault on any of the

positions that I saw.

You have been involved in a number

of charity events and foundations and

you believe that there needs to be more

funding towards congenital orthopedics.

Can you describe your overall relationship

with some of the foundations that you’ve

worked with in the past?

I learned when I was very young that you

don’t have anything if you don’t have your

health. I saw firsthand what that could

look like. I feel very fortunate that I got an

opportunity to have a healthy life and that

spurred me on to want to give back. Project

Angel Food is a charity that I volunteered for

and it has prepared 6,000 yokes annually for

people who are afflicted by serious ailments.

I was down there on Thanksgiving and it was

awesome to be there. The atmosphere inside

was incredibly positive and it was such an

honor to be a part of it.

What are some things you enjoy doing

when you’re not acting or working?

When I’m not acting or working, I am

playing guitar as soon as I get that day when

I don’t have a place to run off to. I will

sit in my place and wail on the guitar and

hopefully not bother my neighbors too much.

I also stay away from video games.

What are you working on next?

I have a number of films in post-production

right now like Wonder Woman 1984 which

comes out in 2020. I also have a film called

Really Love with Kofi Siriboe and that

should be coming out this year. Last but not

least, I’m looking forward to an awesome

thriller called Eye Without a Face and that

will also be coming out this year.

I am also writing and working on my own

project which is a political comedy called

The King of K Street and we will be filming

that over the summer.

What is your number one goal in 2019?

I always have these creative ideas in my

head and I’m taking the what-ifs and then

I’m actually acting on them. I hope that I

can continue to do that because there are

awesome things that are coming.



Cliché: For the audience out there that isn’t too

familiar, who is Nikki Leigh?

Nikki Leigh: Oh gosh, who is Nikki Leigh? I ask

myself that everyday! haha. Well, I am a California

born Actress and Model. Although I knew that my life would

somehow have entertainment be a part of it, I had no idea that

I would have this life. I am so blessed. I grew up in Orange

County, California and was very serious about school. Education

is so important to me. Therefore I studied a lot and achieved high

grades. Out of college I started modeling and kind of fell into

acting. I started with a cameo in the movie Snake and Mongoose

and from there I was hooked. I have had many appearances on

TV shows such as Two and a Half Men and even more lead

roles in feature films. I have a movie out right now on Netflix,

Amazon, iTunes, etc. that is called Silencer. Silencer is an action

film and I am super excited about that because action calls to me.

I love working out and being physical so this was super fun to be

apart of.

You graduated with B.A. in sociology from Cal State and

also graduated Cum Laude as a member of the “Golden Key

Honor” society. Was sociology something you always wanted

to do or did it just kind of fall in your lap?

I had many majors in college because I just couldn’t decide

what I wanted to focus on. I just wanted to keep learning,

but I couldn’t stay in school forever. I felt I needed to choose

something and Sociology was a subject I always enjoyed. I love

people. I want to understand them. And I had no idea how helpful

my Sociology and Psychology background would help in acting.

That was the real blessing. Everything happens for a reason.


My first literal commercial was

actually in Thailand. I was flown over

there to shoot 3 different commercials

for a beer company called Leo. That

was one of the best experiences of

my life! Police escorts, fancy dinners,

amazing locations to shoot, and even a

great big party. I was one of the hosts

of this party and it just so happened

to be on my birthday! I couldn’t have

wished for anything better! Everyone

was so sweet. They presented me with

flowers and a cake on stage. I lost it.

Tears of gratitude just kept flowing.

You went on to host an hour long show

on Sirius XM, can you tell us a bit about

that experience, and who are some of your

favorite interviews you have done?

I love hosting. When I was able to have a

daily hour long radio show on Sirius XM I

truly felt fulfilled. This allowed me to get to

know so many accomplished people within

the entertainment industry. Being able to

really have meaningful and driven conversations

fed my love for people. I interviewed so

many up and comers, established musicians

and comedians, as well as some real veterans

of the game. Looking back on it now one of

my favorite interviews had to be Michael

B. Jordan. It is just so satisfying seeing the

success he has accomplished now and having

been able to really get to know him before he

blew up. Congrats Michael!

After a little while you went into modeling,

what was your first big commercial as a

We discovered a fun fact, that you

had to learn Turkish for a movie

you acted, can you tell us what movie

that was and how the experience

of learning Turkish was as well?

I always say that life will serve you

what you want through an experience

you could have never even imagined.

And that experience of learning

Turkish for a movie was exactly that.

I remember at the beginning of that

year I said that I wanted to learn a language

and I wanted to shoot a movie

on location. And this is what manifested

from that! First of all, I have

to give a little background story. I got

this self tape audition on a Thursday

night and was asked to tape 3 scenes

and have it in by noon on Friday (the

next day). Then had a skype interview

on Sunday with the director. By Monday

at 2pm I got a call saying I got the

part and I was on a plane to Turkey

by 9pm that night! It was so sudden.

When I got there I met up with people

from the movie and was told that I had

to learn Turkish because Ay Lav Yu

Tuu was a Turkish film. I was shocked

because no one told me I had to learn

anything, I auditioned in English!

Thank god I had a wonderful language

coach, Cag, but I only had 1 week

before we started shooting and she

was only paid to be around for a week

and a half! Oh and did I mention I was

the lead?! I have no idea what they

were thinking, not having her with me

the whole time but she was awesome!

I had to start with the basics of

learning the alphabet and how to read

Turkish because I was going to be on


my own after this intense crash course.

But through it all I found a love for language

and the movie was a success! I

got to fly back for the premiere and we

did a press tour. Dreams do come true!

What is next for Nikki Leigh in 2019

and on?

I started 2019 with my Calendar for

sale. I always have such a great time

making these calendars. This year is

based on natural in nature. The setting

is in Lake Havasu, Arizona with some

of the most gorgeous and vivacious

sunsets I had ever seen. The reason for

this setting is because I was there filming

a movie. The movie is called Hot

Water and is either out the end of this

year or early next. I am super excited

for this movie because it is about the

competitive Jet Ski world! Which is

bigger than I could have ever imagined.

Hot Water is a sports action film

with a lot of heart. People are really

going to enjoy this one. We have some

great stars a part of it including Trevor

Donovan from 90210, Max Adler from

Glee! To top it off, it was great to be

apart of a film that brought out my

athleticism. I am all about action!

Where can people reach Nikki on Social


I would love to hear from people via social

media. You can find me on Instagram through

my only account (@missnikkileigh). Or you

can find me on Facebook under Nikki Leigh or

Twitter (@nikkileighxo). All of these profiles

are verified with a blue checkmark. So please

make sure that you find the verified account. A

lot of fake ones out there. But you can also find

me on my website

Always look for updates of what I have coming

out and what I am up to.

Photo credit: Marin Hamataj

In May, however, I have a movie called

Roads, Trees and Honeybees coming

out and I couldn’t be more excited for

this heart warming movie! It is written

and directed by Stephanie McBain,

who I really enjoyed working with. She

really knew what she wanted from this

film and that is always a real blessing

when filming a movie. The stars of the

movie include Chris Mulkey who you

might recognize from the Oscar and

Golden Globe winning film Whiplash,

Mark Krenik who will be in this summer’s

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

featuring Leonardo DiCaprio and

Margot Robbie.

Other than those things I have been

visiting the Veterans Home of California

this year and I think that has been

one of my biggest highlights. I feel we

can not do enough for these Veterans

and I love going to hang out with them.

I have some really amazing and hilarious

memories of these Vets that I will

always hold dear to my heart.



Sharon Blynn likes to call herself an ‘actorvist’ and the title

fits her to a T. Blynn started acting later in life after being

diagnosed with ovarian cancer at 28 and successfully

beating it. She created the foundation Bald is Beautiful

to empower women. To Blynn, acting has given her a new outlet

to change the view society has of beauty on and off screen. Of

course, she is also a phenomenal actor.

“I didn’t crave the stage, I wasn’t the kid who was constantly

putting on a show for people, or the class clown; I was quite the

opposite, actually. Very introverted, shy – still am – but it’s more

internal shyness in a strange way,” she said.

Before going into acting, Blynn was on a completely different

career path. After college, she went into the music business. Her

first job was at Verve Records in the marketing department. She

worked her way up the ladder to being a marketing manager, learning,

as she says, “from soup to nuts” how the industry works. But

after long hours and years in the business, she needed a change.

“I decided that the commerce side of the ‘art vs. commerce’

dichotomy was winning too much, so I left my job — without a

real plan for what I would do next!”

Later that Fall, Blynn learned that she had ovarian cancer. The

diagnosis changed her life and would become one of the strong

motivators as she pursued a new calling.

Since then, Blynn has taken the acting world by storm. She has

appeared in hit shows such as Shameless, The Detour, and many

more. With her role in Captain Marvel, Blynn had a real opportunity

to geek out. It was the best of two worlds seeing as she is

a huge Marvel fan. She was very excited to be a part of the first

female lead Marvel Cinematic Universe film and the first to have

a female director.

In the film, Blynn plays the character Soren, a skrull and wife of

Talos (Ben Mendelsohn). The character, despite not having a hefty

role, has an important message.

“Soren’s story and her courage and strength represent the power

of love and community to help people survive and move through

trauma. She represents hope, especially in the face of the stark

reality of the unknown, and the importance of allowing that hope

to carry us through, even when everything around us might

seem very grim. I actually drew from my own experience

facing late stage ovarian cancer and the incredibly bleak

odds of survival (just 30%) for this role”.

Through acting, Blynn has drawn strength and inspiration

to create the foundation Bald Is Beautiful. Their motto is

“Always smile from the inside out!” and it’s a mantra every

woman should live by no matter what they may be going

through in life.

“My movement and message is inspired by ovarian cancer

and wanting to empower women to feel beautiful and

whole while our bodies are experiencing these challenging

and traumatic changes.”

Going through ovarian cancer has shown Blynn aspects of

herself she never knew about. She never expected to fall in


love with being bald. She describes her long luscious hair as having

been her trademark jazz chic look. For many of us, our hair becomes

a safety net to hide behind and a societal idea of what beauty is.

Blynn hopes to break that stigma of beauty through her foundation

whether it is through on screen representation or in the real world.

Women, whether going through a serious illness, going through

different stages of life, or even those struggling with what is deemed

‘beautiful’, should feel comfortable in their skin.

“Being bald can be normalized in the sense that we don’t feel obligated

to conform to someone else’s idea of beauty and can instead

choose how we want to present ourselves in the mirror and out in the

world, and that doesn’t require hair of a particular length, style, color,

and so on.”

Unfortunately, being bald carries a certain stigma. For as long as

many of us can remember, baldness has been associated with individuals

battling various forms and stages of cancer. The same can be

said for women who are diagnosed with alo-pecia areata, a medical

condition that causes hair loss. When it comes to television and film,

baldness always meant looking sickly, frail, and having no strength.

Before becoming an actress, Blynn saw this as an issue that needed to

be addressed.

Photographer: Birdie Thompson

Makeup: Allison Noelle

“I never saw myself on TV or in movies or magazines when I was

going through surgeries and chemo. I was young and everything I

saw on screen was old, sickly, and covering up. It all made me feel

worse about what was happening. And it didn’t reflect how I was

moving through it all. So, my thinking was/is the more we can see

images of a joyful and empowered bald gal, whether or not she is

going through cancer or just prefers to have short or no hair, the

more women can release the burden of having to conform to these

arbitrary and rather narrow – although expanding in recent years –

standards of beauty and femininity.”

Blynn, a self-proclaimed ‘actorvist’, has always been engaged in

world events and believed in speaking out against injustices even

before going into acting. She explained, “Not all actors are activists

and that's okay.” After going through cancer and subsequently

going bald, she volunteered to be a part of a meeting where she

and others spoke about their feelings and experience with cancer

to a group of actors who had to portray a similar look and role. A

lightbulb went off in Blynn’s head and she saw a new purpose and

passion combining her activism with acting.

“I blazed my own trail having no prior experience with acting or

modeling and how to begin to build a career in those fields. I was

fueled by a visceral and urgent sense of purpose, and I couldn’t



Hassie Harrison's career is on fire in more ways than

one. The actress plays Lucy in truTV's immensely

popular comedy, Tacoma FD. Lucy holds her own as

the first female firefighter, keeping the guys in check.

The show is packed with hilarity, both in the show itself and

among the cast off set. No prank or premise is too ludicrous (a

marijuana dispensary catching fire is only the tip of the iceberg).

Hassie hopes that Lucy will soon evolve into the hero she's destined

to be. In the meantime, she thoroughly enjoys her costars and

staying fit. Down the road, she has her sights set on the fantasy

genre, much to her inner geek's delight. BY ERIN TATUM

Cliché: What inspired you originally to take the plunge and

make the move to LA?

Hassie Harrison: I think I always had a curiosity and fascination

with acting, ever since I was a little girl. And I remember one day

watching Cate Blanchett in Elizabeth and being so moved by her

performance. I think I just liked the idea that you could experience

such a full life by becoming these different characters. I

mean, why live one life when you can live thousands?

How did you first hear about Tacoma FD?

Like most things, it came as an audition. I was already very

familiar with the Broken Lizard guys and loved their work. So I

figured if I was gonna get this role I was going to have to go all

out and really rob the bank, so to speak. And that’s what I did.

Brought my A game.

Tell us about your character, Lucy.

Well, she’s the first female firefighter at the station and the

daughter of the Chief. She brings this fun, feminine element into

a very masculine environment and challenges a lot of gender stereotypes.

Lucy is super smart and highly capable and I think the

audience will really enjoy watching her razz the guys and keep

them on front street.


The show deals with a lot of humorously

unglamorous aspects of working in a fire

department. What's been the funniest

scene to shoot so far?

I think in the season finale, one of the last

scenes was my favorite to shoot so far. All I

can really say is it has something to do with

a marijuana dispensary catching on fire. So

you can just imagine all the shenanigans that


You've mentioned that your costars often

poke fun at you on set. Have you learned

how to dish it out as well as take it?

Oh, I came in hot. I’ve been dishing it out

since day one.

Why do you think audiences respond

so well to hilarious or absurd situations

happening in traditionally serious settings?

Do you think part of it has to do with the

fact that we generally wouldn't associate

an intense place like a fire department

with comedy?

Yeah, sure. I feel like the truth is, most

firefighters are pretty jovial, fun-loving

people. My experience has shown me that

when these people aren’t fighting fires,

they are usually trying to have a laugh and

enjoy life. And pranks are a big part of

that too. So yeah, I think it actually feels

pretty realistic and people usually enjoy

looking at the comedic sides of life so that

all plays to our benefit.

What would you like to see Lucy do in

future episodes?

I am excited to explore her personal life

and her relationship with her dad more

(selfishly because I just love shooting

scenes with Kevin Heffernan). I’d also

love to see her get promoted and do some

heroic ass shit!

You've also explored your creative side

through starring in music videos. Would

you like to participate in similar creative

projects down the road?

Of course! I'm a total music enthusiast

and felt really lucky to be in Hayley

Kiyoko’s music videos. We’ve been close

friends ever since. But yes, I imagine I'll

always be drawn to that sort of creative

collaboration. I mean, most of the time I

dance around the house and drive around

listening to music I pretend that I'm in a

music video anyways so...haha!

You're very invested in health and

fitness. Why does fitness constitute such

a fundamental part of your life?

Because fitness is cool, friends. And

yeah, I think there’s a direct correlation to

well-being and happiness. Gotta do your


Is there a certain type of role that you

would love to play that you haven't

gotten a chance to play yet?

I am deeply in love with places like

Middle Earth, Asgard, and Westeros. I

have always been drawn to fantasy and

science fiction. Other worlds. Places and

characters that are foreign and exotic. So

one of those roles would really appease

my inner geek.

Photo: Hudson Taylor

Hair: Ryan Richman

Styling: Nicolas Bru

Makeup: Katelin Gan



Cliché: From a former well

known NBA player to now a

well known Cannabis owner.

Can you tell us how and why

you made the transition?

Al Harrington: How I made the transition

was the way cannabis helped my grandmother,

it inspired me to start reading more

into the benefits of cannabis. The way I was

raised, I was always told and believed that

cannabis was a getaway drug and it was

pretty much the worst drug you can get on,

that and crack are the same sickness all the

time. When I saw it help my grandmother

overcome her sickness issue, and she felt

like she was cutting from having to suffer

the rest of her life, it changed me, it made

me start educating myself to the point

where I realized I want to be a voice. I want

to tell my grandmother’s story to the world

to let people know that they have been lied

to for a very long time about cannabis in

general, being that it’s classified the way it

is, and I just want to help people. It made

me want to transition because the one

thing with my basketball career, I was very

Photo Credit: Marin Hamataj

passionate with everything that I did, I was

always raised to have sharp focus. I was

able to take what I learned in basketball and

do this in the cannabis industry and I am

having just as much fun.

For the people that aren’t aware of

where the name Viola came from, can

you please elaborate a bit on how the

name came about?

The name came about from my grandmother.

Viola is my grandmother, and you

know she gained the benefits of cannabis


like to turn into business ventures?

I like to snowboard. When I get done

with this business at some point and

start making bigger investments in real

estate, I want to invest into a mountain,

so that we can ski and snowboard.

Most of my hobbies revolve around

real estate and franchises. That’s the

kind of thing that would interest me

the most, just pretty much entrepreneurship.

for glaucoma. She tried it, and

an hour and a half later I went to

check on her, she was downstairs

in the room, crying, reading the

bible, and she told me that pretty

much it was the first time she was

able to do that in over 3 years. So

that is what inspired us to take

this journey and we just wanted to

honor the person that pretty much

opened our eyes to the significance

of cannabinoids

Former NBA Commissioner

David Stern waged a war against

Cannabis for a particular time,

but in the end, how did you

manage to convince him that

cannabis has its good perks and

health benefits?

I was able to change David Stern’s

mind just through educating him to

some of the things he already knew

and what athletes go through on

a daily basis. We all are recommended

prescription drugs, and

opioids, and different things just to

go out there and just have to cope

and live the professional lifestyle

and continue at a high level all the

time. Just telling him that there

was benefits in cannabis that can

actually do those things and it’s all

natural so it’s hard to get addicted

and it won’t have that many side

effects. Once I explained to him

that a lot of athletes use liquor for

anxiety and different things like that. What

if they use cannabis instead, and just not go

through what we go through when we drink.

There is no way an athlete can be able to

compete after he spent all night drinking just to

be able to unwind. Compare that to an athlete

that was exposed to cannabis and adds some

CBD and being able to sleep like a baby, and

he agreed that you would be a better athlete on

the floor.

Being that you have an entrepreneurial

mind, what are some hobbies that you would

What is some advice you can give to

other athletes that are on the verge

of becoming entrepreneurs?

I would tell them just read, learn as

much as you can on the industry that

you are going in, take your time.

When you first start making small

investments, best thing is that if it went

away in the middle of the night, you

would not lose any sleep. Until you are

actually running a business and know

the point that you can start making

bigger bets.

Finally the golden modern question,

where can people find you on social


People can find me on social media at

@alharrington3, and you can find my


Photo credit: Marin Hamataj, Samuel Lippke, Megan Abrigo


Cliché: Growing Up in Sioux City, Iowa, what

were some of your early passions before creating

a love for baseball?

Kyle Thousand: Spending time with family and

friends has always been important to me. My family still

lives in Iowa, and it will always be home. I’m often on the

road for work, but I do manage to get back home a few times

a year. Baseball has been a passion of mine for as long as I

can remember. I played it growing up in Sioux City and then

at the University of Iowa where I earned my undergraduate

degree. Playing at Iowa allowed for my family to see a lot of

my games. Having my support system close by throughout

my baseball playing days meant a lot.

Who are some of your favorite Players in Baseball

growing up?

My favorite player growing up was Ken Griffey Jr. I really

enjoyed how he played the game – his sweet swing, his

defensive prowess and his instillation of style into the game.

I tried to emulate everything he did as a player, including his

backwards hat style off the field. I even named my childhood

dog - a black Labrador Retriever - “Junior”.

How major was the transition from legal attorney to

being a Sports Agent for Roc Nation Sports?

Any career change requires a transitional period, but I had

an advantage because I worked on the Sports and Enter-


tainment side of business when

I was an attorney. Some of the

clients I worked with included the

Chicago White Sox and Chicago

Bulls ownership groups, so I had

experience working within the

sports industry. I enjoyed my time

working in the legal field, but

becoming a sports agent has been

one of the most fulfilling decisions

I’ve ever made in my life.

As Roc Nation’s first Managing

Director of Baseball, what are

some of your favorite moments

you’ve experienced?

I¹m lucky to have come into an

agency that has provided some

incredible experiences and

moments, but a few stand out.

Most recently, being at the game

when CC Sabathia recorded his

3,000th career strikeout. It was

an incredible moment being there

with his wife Amber, their four

kids, CC¹s mother and many other

family members and friends. What

an accomplishment - to be just

the 17th pitcher in major league

history to reach 3,000 strikeouts.

No doubt CC will well deservedly

be elected into the Hall of Fame.

Being a part of CC¹s final season

this year has been and is going to

be very bittersweet, as well. Another

would have to be Robinson

Cano hitting a home run during

his first at-bat with the New York

Mets, and his return to New York

as a whole. It¹s also special to be

a part of the moment when guys

get their first major league call-up.

The latest of our young players to

be called up is Mike Shawaryn, a

pitcher with the Boston Red Sox,

who just got the call at the end of

May. This industry is non-stop

and can be taxing, but it also provides a

lot of great memories and moments.

What is in store next for Kyle Thousand?

Roc Nation Sports already has a dynamic

group of athletes that we’re proud to

represent, but my main goal is to build

our baseball division to be the best in the

game. In just a few short years, we’ve

done so much – from multiple record

setting contracts for Robinson Cano and

Yoenis Cespedes to CC Sabathia’s strong

career finish with the Yankees to signing

some of the best young players in the

game. We’ve got an unbelievable team

over here, and I’m excited to continue the

momentum we have going for us right

now. 95



Photo Credit: Mark Gumbs

Cliché: What were some

of the early passions

you had that lead to

being a tattoo artist?

Kat Tat: Growing up I would have

never imagined becoming a tattoo

artist. I have always been very

artistic. It’s something I inherited

from my mother, she used to draw

pictures of my brothers and I and

they would turn out amazing. I

always took art classes for my “easy

A” and when I got a little older and

familiar with tattooing I knew it was

something I wanted to try out.

How did the experience of being

on Black Ink Crew: Chicago come

about and what was that experience


The producers of the original Black

Ink Crew were looking to do a

spinoff and heard about our shop in

Chicago “9Mag”. They contacted us

and came into town and filmed us in

our own element for one weekend.

About 8 months later we got a

phone call that we had gotten a

green light and would have our own

TV show. It was a great experience

for me because I had worked really

hard to become a great tattoo artist

and I was ready to show the world

my talent.

You recently opened your tattoo

parlor in Beverly Hills, why did

you name it Enigma?

The meaning behind the name is

actually a really long story, but to

sum it up, it’s based on the song

“Principles of Lust” by the band

Enigma, it's one of me and my

mother's favorite songs and we

decided on it together.

To honor the late great Nipsey

Hussle, you paid homage by offering

tattoos in Enigma, in return

you gave the proceeds to Nipsey’s

favorite charities, what was that

experience like for you?

It was an amazing experience to

honor Nipsey’s legacy and give

back to his community. The amount

of people that came out to support

was so amazing.

And finally, the question of

questions in the social media age,

where can people reach out to you

in the social media platforms?

You can reach out to me on Instagram,

Twitter, and Facebook at @


Photo Credit: Marin Hamataj




Photographer: ROSE WANG


You could say acting runs in

Parker McKenna Posey's blood.

"My mom was an aspiring actress

and just like any little girl I wanted to be just

like my mom."

At 23, the actress is already a 17-

year industry veteran, initially melting hearts

as cherubic Kady Kyle on My Wife and Kids.

Growing up on set, Posey recalls having a

surprisingly traditional childhood.

"Being a child actor didn’t really

seem like a job to be honest. It was more of a

family dynamic being on set every day. I did

miss being in regular school to a degree as I

didn’t always have to go to school, but I had an

on-set teacher that I loved. So, I definitely had a

sense of school and work."

The experience left her well-equipped

to deal with the challenges of navigating

the profession later in life.

"Being raised in the entertainment

industry I feel like I’ve seen a lot, I’ve heard a

lot, and I’ve gone through a lot. So as an adult

I’m not as fazed by most BS that comes with

the industry. I definitely have thick skin!"

Posey always intended to evolve her

profession beyond childhood novelty. After

taking a brief hiatus to complete her education,

there was never a doubt in her mind which path

she would take.

"I have always wanted to pursue

acting for as long as I can remember. After My

Wife and Kids, I did take a break from acting to

finish school. I always had the love to act so

once I became 18 it was never a question of if,

but when."

Her next big break came in the

form of a sleek and glamorous drama, Games

People Play. Posey plays Laila, a struggling

actress determined to flaunt her sex appeal on

social media to gain a competitive edge in the

industry. Needless to say, the role is certainly

a dramatic departure from Posey's previous


"Well firstly Laila is grown, so

that within itself is definitely a change for me

coming from a child actress character. When

I first read the script for Games People Play

I felt that the character Laila was relatable

to my generation with social media being so

prominent in everyone's lives today."

Posey is glad to shed light on the less

than illustrious side of trying to make it as an


"I can really relate to her struggle.

I’m happy to portray the reality of a struggling

actress. It’s not always glitz, glam, and

everything nice. So I’m happy to represent the

sometimes-harsh reality."

She even confessed that some of her

professional failures provided strong fuel for

understanding Laila's perspective.

"As an actress you have to be able

to pull from experiences to bring life to the

character you’re playing."

Laila's insatiable hunger for validation

on social media reflects the reality of so

many young women in today's increasingly

image-obsessed digital landscape.

"There are so many people showing

so much on social media. It gives other young

women the impression that it's ok to do that

for the 'likes' and attention," Posey muses.

"It’s very sad but extremely true! But the fact

remains that you don’t need to do that, just be

yourself. Not conforming to what anyone else

thinks is always the best way to go!"

Ironically, she herself boasts a

colossal Instagram presence with over 1 million

followers – but she's careful to keep her social

media notoriety in perspective, choosing

instead to view it simply as a fun snapshot of

her personal life.

"Honestly, I like to live in the real

world. I don’t use social media as my say all,

be all. I try to always surround myself with

positive and supportive people who keep me

motivated to stay true to myself and keep going.

Comments and likes don’t pay my bills, so I try

not to give that too much of my attention. I just

use it as a fun way for people who follow me to

get a glimpse of my life."

And she doesn't sweat other people's


"At the end of the day we are all

human. With that being said, I hope that people

aren’t judging me for my every move. I try to

live my life by no one’s standards other than my

own! That’s probably something that I’ll have

to battle throughout my career. Based off my

Instagram people think I’m probably walking

around all glammed up 24/7 and every second

of the day, but that’s just not my reality at all. I

just like to be lowkey and live my best life!" 101

Honestly, I like to live in the real world. I don’t

use social media as my say all, be all. I try to

always surround myself with positive and

supportive people who keep me motivated to

stay true to myself and keep going.

In fact, Posey laments society's

correlation of self-worth to their social media


"I think people care too much about

'likes' and 'followers'. It’s sad that people care

more about that than the important issues going

on in the world. The reality is that none of

anyone’s likes are going to matter at the end of

the day when people are out here in the world

facing real life problems."

Regardless, she remains optimistic

that social media can be a force for good.

"I do believe social media is a great

platform to build your following, showcase the

things you care about, and bring to light the

issues that matter most to you. It’s great if it’s

used it to make a difference in the world."

Laila unapologetically embraces her

sexuality and has no qualms about using it to

advance herself professionally, something that

Posey is keenly aware might not endear her to

the audience right out of the gate.

"I think people are quick to judge

women in general. Women will constantly be

fighting this double standard. When guys do

the same exact promiscuous behavior they are

perceived as being the man, but when women

do it they are quickly referenced as a ho. I don’t

necessarily agree with some of Laila’s ways

like many of you don’t, but as the season goes

along you will get a chance to see why she

makes some of the decisions that she makes.

It’s always best to not be so quick to judge a

book by its cover and realize that we are flawed

in our own ways."

In spite of the scrutiny, Posey felt

no hesitation about playing such an intensely

sensual character.

"I’m very comfortable in my own

skin. It was just a new fun experience that I not

only went through, but helped to bring Laila

more to life."

Her flawless execution of the

role has led some to assume that she's also a

seductress in real life, but Posey insists that that

perception couldn't be further from the truth.

"It’s funny because a lot of people

think that I’m naturally sexy or that I’ve got this

sex appeal. but in reality, I actually view myself

as a big dork. I am an actress at the end of the

day, so I’m able to channel sexuality into Laila.

Of course, it’s awkward being basically naked

in front of a room full of people. This is my job

and I’m able to use my confidence in myself to

help me with my performance."

She recognizes the familiar former

child actor albatross of attempting to reinvent

your image with more mature themes, but

refuses to allow it to slow down her career


"I think a lot of people view me as

a sex symbol and the other half of people still

view me as the little girl from My Wife and

Kids. It’s a blessing and a curse, as I’m forever

grateful for the opportunity I got from the show

as a little girl, but I hope with my current and

future roles people accept me as a full adult


Posey hopes the future is bright for

both her and her fictional counterpart. With

regard to Laila, "I hope she gets some friends

and a nice solid team around her," Posey

laughs. Ultimately, she wants Laila to be seen

as a flawed but human character.

"I hope that people realize that this is

a young woman that is trying to make it in this

crazy town, but in reality, she’s just like you and


For herself, Posey still has plenty of

things to cross off her professional bucket list.

"I would love to work with Leonardo

DiCaprio, Halle Berry, of course, my girl Kerry

Washington, and the great Denzel Washington

just to name a few."

And she has her sights set on much

more than just acting: "I see myself working

on more film projects, even producing my

own. I’ve been writing a few things myself, so

it would be good to see that come to fruition.

I would love to get in the studio and record

some music! I also see my clothing line taking

off and spreading more globally. I would like

to continue to evolve my line of swimwear,

making it the best line for women all shapes

and sizes, making them feel confident and


If Laila is any indication, the latter

should be no problem at all.





Photographer: ISAAC STERLING




“Love comes at all

times in your life. It comes in all shapes and

all sizes,” says Baby Ariel.

Maybe you’ve heard of Baby Ariel or maybe

you haven’t. But one thing is certain: at just

18 years old, she’s making moves to ensure

her legacy in the entertainment world is

solidified. Time Magazine recognized her

as one of the most influential people on the

internet. She also made the Forbes’ 2017 list

of top entertainment influencers. The list of

accolades goes on and rightfully so. Born

and raised in Pembroke Pines, Florida, the

singer, actress, and author says that, aside

from having a relatively normal upbringing,

performing and creative expression was

around her since the beginning.

“I think I did have a pretty normal upbringing.

My family is super artistic, so I grew

up in a world where everything was music or

movies or acting. I would go to dance class

or singing class or piano class.” She says

that she stopped going to public school in the

9th grade. However, her family and home

life was nothing out of the ordinary.

In May 2015, Ariel began contributing to the

social network, which is known

today as TikTok. This is arguably where

her career exploded. She gained a huge

following, and as of 2019, has well over 29

million followers. In fact, she is on the top

10 list of the most followed accounts on the

app. She says that she had no idea she would

get this kind of attention from posting these

videos but that she’s very much grateful.

“I started with zero intention of getting

famous or getting a following. I really just

did it for fun. It was over the summer and

my house was actually flooded so we moved

into my grandparents house. The only thing

my brother and I had were our phones. We

downloaded and started making

these lip syncing music videos with hand

motions and facial expressions, and people

just really liked them and gravitated towards

them and I started getting a following.” She

says that because people were enjoying her

videos, she decided to continue making them

in hopes of entertaining people and bringing

them happiness.

Gaining a huge following on the internet

virtually goes hand in hand with attracting

online hate from internet trolls. Because of

this, Ariel started her anti-bullying campaign

called #ArielMovement, something she has

a lot of pride in and takes very seriously.

“When I started social media, a lot of kids

started to say mean things to me at school

and online, and I didn’t understand it because

I was just doing what I love to do. But

instead of ignoring it, I wanted to address it.

I made a video online talking about all of the

hate, why it’s not necessary, and why people

shouldn’t do it. After the video, I got tons

of DM’s and comments from my followers

talking about their stories and what they’ve

been through in regards to bullying and

cyberbullying. From there, I wanted to create

the campaign to give them a platform where

they can all talk to each other, support each

other, and lift each other up.”

Music has always been a passion of Ariel’s

ever since she enrolled in singing and piano

lessons as a little girl. From the following

she gained on, it almost came

naturally that she would begin her music

career, releasing a number of singles such

as “8 Letters”, “Gucci on My Mind”, and

“Perf”. She says that she prides herself on

creating music that people can relate to. “I

want to give to people who follow me fun

music that they can listen to when they’re in

their house, for when they’re sad or happy.

I want to give them songs that they can find

themselves in and they can listen and say:

‘she understands what I’m going through” or

‘I’ve felt that emotion before.’ When I create

music, it all comes from my heart and from

real experiences. I only hope that when they

listen to my music, they can feel the same

and find themselves in my music.”

Talking specifically about the song “8

Letters”, which is inspired by the band Why

Don’t We, and the song of the same name,

she wanted to create her own version that

speaks about what “I Love You” means to

her. She says that it’s difficult to express

what those three simple, yet huge words

represent for her. “It’s about really deeply

caring for someone, caring for their soul and

the good and bad and everything.”

She says that while love can represent all of


I want to give to people who follow me fun music that

they can listen to when they’re in their house, for when

they’re sad or happy. I want to give them songs that

they can find themselves in and they can listen and say:

‘she understands what I’m going through’ or

‘I’ve felt that emotion before.’

the happy moments, it’s also about loving

someone even with their flaws. It’s about

overcoming the hardships and tough times

that every loving relationship endures.

While Ariel is not personally in the

music video for “8 Letters”, she instead

highlights different people who hold up

signs that say what love means to them.

She says that creating the video in this

particular way allowed her to show love in

its many forms.

In her book “Dreaming Out Loud”, Ariel

speaks about your journey thus far by providing

personal anecdotes. She talks about

the process for deciding what to share with

the world, allowing people in and letting

them know they are not alone. “When I go

on social media, a lot of the times I try to

hide when I’m super sad or emotional. I

don’t want to put that on people 24/7. I’ve

been through a lot. So, in my book, I really

wanted to share some of my harder stories

and certain things that I wouldn’t normally

share on social media, and give people a

book they can take anywhere with them at

all times and flip to a certain chapter and

say ‘Okay, she understands what I’m going

through’ or ‘she’s been through what I’ve

been through.’”

In January of this year, Ariel starred in

Nickelodeon’s Bixler High Private Eye

alongside Jace Norman. She portrayed

Kenzie, a school reporter who helps Xander

(Norman) find his missing dad. She

speaks about the role and how she sees

herself in Kenzie. “Kenzie reminds me of

me a ton. She’s a super passionate, driven

girl with tons of heart who cares about her

friends and family more than anything. No

matter what I do, I try to put my heart and

soul into everything. I can relate to her in

that way. Even though we’re very different

people on the outside, on the inside, I think

feel a lot of the same feelings.”

It’s no secret that being famous can get

to be overwhelming for a lot of people,

especially young stars. Ariel has been able

to avoid the scandal and drama that comes

with such fame. She credits her ability to

remain grounded and humble to her family

and by surrounding herself with people

who genuinely care about her. “It’s really

easy to get caught up in everything. But

luckily, the people who are around me are

the best people on the planet and are there

for me 24/7. They’re caring and loving and


What makes Baby Ariel fulfilled? It’s

simple: “When I’m doing what I love

while making other people happy.”

She’s doing it all. She’s has her music,

acting, writing, all of these awards, accolades,

and recognition. Not to mention,

she’s and anti-bullying activist. So what’s

next for Baby Ariel? What does she see

herself doing going forward? “Everything

that I’m doing right now I adore and love

so much. But I only hope to continue and

move further in those areas, like with

acting for example. I love to act and I hope

I can direct or produce or write my own

movie one day. I also want to continue

singing and do a full album. I only want to

dive deeper into those worlds and see what

happens. She wants people to be on the

lookout for more music coming out in the

near future.

Ariel is currently filming Zombies 2 for the

Disney Channel, where she is portraying

the role of Wynter. To stay up to date on all

things Baby Ariel, follow her on Instagram

and Twitter @BabyAriel. 113


Cliché: You Co-Host a show with

!llmind called BlapChat. What

is the primary focus of the show

and where can people reading this

check it out?

Atlas the Plug: BlapChat is a weekly podcast

focused on the production side of music

creation. I’m fortunate enough to be part of a

panel including some incredible music creators

like !llmind, Glam, and Perfection. Each week

we dig into the side of the music industry not

everyone gets to see. My counterparts offer

their experience and insight from the creative

aspect, whereas I feel I offer more of a business

and networking perspective. As my name would

suggest, I’m all about the networking and creating

of relationships. We’ve had plenty of guests

throughout our near 100 episodes. They’ve

ranged from names you know, to names you

should know, and to names you will know. It’s

just an open forum that would appeal to all

music producers, from novice to expert. We

even offer an interactive segment called “Blap

or Crap” where we listen to beats submitted by

listeners and offer constructive critique. You can

find BlapChat on YouTube, SoundCloud, iTunes

or most other podcast sources.

Photo credit: Marin Hamataj

For the up and coming music producers

out there, what is some advice you can

give as far as placements and getting

your music out there?

The first thing you have to realize is that

the music game has changed. Producers

out there now are looking to get noticed so

they can get placements with the big artists.

The problem is the market is saturated

and let’s be honest, you have about the

same shot at hitting the lottery. Those big

name artists have already developed their

relationships. My advice to that producer

sitting at home, hungry and hustling, is

to be your own A&R. Go out and find

that artist, that diamond in the rough that

nobody knows. Find someone who’s

creative energy matches your own and

create together. Make the music you love,

and put that out there. You’re going to miss

more than you hit, but along the way you

will learn and hone your craft. Also, don’t

forget to diversify. As you build your brand

you can create other revenue streams by

selling drum kits, or sample kits, there’s

TV licensing, DJing, or even creating your

own event. Just make sure that no matter

what you do, you’re networking. Your biggest

success will come from the relationships

you foster.

What is True Masters and how can

people get involved?

True Masters is a three way tournament

style competition for Producers, Rappers,

and Dancers celebrating all aspects of the

Hip Hop culture. Now we’ve all seen the

basic beat battle, Rap Battle, and Dance

Battle formats. True Masters is anything

but that. To start off, teams are selected

at random. A team consists of a producer,

dancer, and rapper. The producer has

prepared a 3 minute track. The first minute

is the producers time to shine as we’re

focused on what they created. In the second

minute, the dancer has their opportunity to

impress dancing to that same track. Finally, our rapper is up and ready

to do their thing. When two teams have competed, it’s up to the crowd

to determine who advances. At the end of the night, one producer, one

rapper, and one dancer are crowned True Masters of their craft. The

show has continued to gain traction and has now become a monthly

residency at Drom in Manhattan. If anyone is interested in competing,

they can submit their entries either by reaching out on social media @

TrueMastersShow or email

You hold a studio sessions across the country with this event called

Respect The Engineer, Can you elaborate on that?

Respect The Engineer is another amazing networking workshop for

recording engineers and producers alike who want to learn more about

tracking and mixing. I’ve teamed up with Anthony Cruz “Turn Me

Up Cruz”, engineer to Meek Mill among others, to start a nationwide

series of interactive workshops. It’s great to see how involved Cruz

gets and inspired me to help curate the workshop for him. Attendees

have an opportunity to play some of their music and get feedback

on vocal chains, plug ins, as well as tips and tricks. Our first RTE

workshop was a huge success. It was held in Miami at DJ Khaled’s

WeTheBest Studio. In L.A. we were blessed with some wisdom from

Jay Z’s engineer, the legendary Young Guru. Puma, Slate Digital, and

Sound Toys were nice enough to supply some of the attendees with

gear and other products, so shout out to them. We also hit up NY, ATL,

and Philadelphia. See other cities and dates at

Where can people find you on social media?

People can reach me on social media at @AtlasThePlug on all platforms.





While she’s been a part of a few bands, there was

always something missing there for ALAENA.

She always joined after they’d been founded, so

they were never really her thing, and didn’t give

her the platform to truly express herself musically. But now, as

she ventures out as a solo artist, she’s giving fan a deep look

into the real ALAENA. This is especially evident on her single,

“Paranoid”. It didn’t take long for fans to happily embrace her

openness and, in turn, open up themselves about how much

they could relate to the real ALAENA. BY MICHAEL BOY-


Cliché: What inspired you to get involved with music?

ALAENA: I always have loved music and singing since I was

a little kid, but none of my family members were musically

talented whatsoever. I taught myself a bunch of songs on piano

and guitar by ear, then decided to take some lessons when I

was like...10. From there I kind of just had the bug and I really

wanted it to make something out of this. I loved how it made

me feel. Although my family wasn’t musical, my dad was a

great role model for me because he always preached about

being a hard worker and when you want something you have

to work hard for it, which inspired me to go after my music

dreams while my mom was my biggest cheerleader, making me

feel comfortable about the decisions I was making at a young

age instead of pushing me away from them. I joined a band at

15, was touring by 17 and moved to LA and started on my solo

music a few years after that.

How did you come to the decision to embark on a solo

career? Is there anything you miss about being in a band?

All the bands I had been in previously (The Breathing Process,

Abigail Williams, and Winds of Plague) were all bands that I

had joined. None of them were something that I had created,

that I had grown to watch succeed myself. I felt like I had a lot

to say and a mind filled with ideas created from everything I

have gone through in my life. I really wanted to accomplish that

goal. I have always loved pop and alternative music, I grew up

on so much of it, but it wasn’t until I heard that Britney Spears

album where she started introducing parts of dubstep in her

songs where I was like “OMG I want to

create in this world.” I felt like a whole

new lane opened up back then and I was

ready to drive full speed on it. I worked

with a producer and made more of EDM

sounding songs, got signed way before

I was ready, never released any of the

music and was dropped two years later.

I then met a producer who really helped

develop me as an artist which kick-started

ALAENA, broke off and started producing

myself - and I finally feel like I’m

actually back on that road to accomplishing

that goal again.

What is your creative process for writing

and recording?

My favorite and my best

songs come from when

I wake up in the middle

of the night and dreamed

of a song I was singing

live but it wasn’t a song

I had already made. I’ll

wake up, grab my phone

and sing the melody into

the voice memos and

then go back to sleep,

but that is rare. Usually,

when something substantial

happens in my life I

take to my note pad and

start writing my feelings,

which in turn... leads to

nothing. But I’ll later sit at

my piano and start writing

chords and a melody and

subconsciously that writing

comes to mind and I

create a whole new song

from what I had already

written about. Then I’ll

start to produce out a

track. It seems backward

but it kind of works for


What was the inspiration

behind “Paranoid”?

"Paranoid" is like a

confessional. I’m kind

of telling everyone about what has been going on

with me in the dark places in my head. I struggle

with intrusive thoughts and images that are not

real, but obsessive, which have

made every day a real battle to

even just go outside. I really

hid it from everyone, including

my family, until this song came

out so it’s definitely been lifechanging,

to say the least.

What kind of response have

you seen to the song? What

do you hope fans can take

away from it?

I really wanted fans to be able

to know the real me, and how

I felt, in hopes that it would

help some of them with their

mental struggles. The response

has been amazing. I honestly

did not think that other people

struggled with the same exact

thing until the song came out

and I was receiving messages

from fans talking about their

experiences. The love and care

are so amazing. It has given

me a sense of accomplishment

because if I feel what I

intended to make others feel,

then there has got to be some

people on the other end happy

to know they are not alone.

What are you working on


I am about to release my next

single!! New music every 5-6

weeks! GET READY!

I miss touring. I miss playing live to amazing

people every night. It’s my passion.

I promise an ALAENA tour is coming one

way or another!

How would you describe your sound?

I love saying I am the unknown love child

of Britney Spears and Marilyn Manson.

Mom and Dad ILY.



From Olympic Cycling to gearing up youthful,

heartwarming songs, Gavin Haley has

had a very unique path to where he is today.

All of it has amounted to who he is today as

a person, as well as musically. BY ERICK SAN-


Cliché: How would you describe yourself as an


Gavin Haley: I think I’m something that makes

things feel good. That space is created through music

in headphones or at shows sharing energy. I feel like

the music takes you somewhere nice.

Where did you grow up? Has that had any

influence on you musically?

I have a lot that’s influenced my music. I’ve moved

quite a bit the last few years but I mainly grew up in

the Midwest. Louisville, KY. Cycling took my friends

and I around the world, so even if I didn’t have

proper music development during those years, I still

found myself having so much to write about over the

years because of those experiences. I feel like every

life experience gives you something to say!

I read somewhere that you were really into

cycling. How did come about?

That was just what I did. From like age 2-3, I was on

a bike. At least from what I remember haha.

Even while cycling, did you always know that you

wanted to make music, or is it something that

came after?

I knew that I liked the way music made me feel. But

I didn’t foreshadow this to happen, it just sort of

happened naturally!

Are there any similarities in how you approach music compared

to cycling?

I’d say so, yes. I’m always optimistic for myself & I’ll work

hard. I think that’s the main thing. I just believe things will

work out for me so they do. Other than that, it’s a different


Did a specific situation inspire your latest single, “96”?

Specific situations happening around me my whole life.

It seems like a recurring theme in your music deals with

relationships and managing that. How has that played a

role when it comes to you making music?

I write about my feelings in current or possible situations. I

write about everything, my music is an open book. I want the

listener to take away what they feel.


Do you ever have trouble deciding exactly

what you want to share about those


I normally flow quite well but some can be

different than others.

Who are some of your biggest influences,

cycling or musically?

Muhammad Ali was my hero growing up.

I didn’t box but I learned how to believe in

myself. Musically, there are too many to

name right now, but a few are Frank Ocean,

Ed Sheeran, and soooo many more! I feel

like you can get inspiration from everything

the kids are dropping. It’s like this big shift

all the sudden!





Cliché: How did the passion for

cameras begin with you?

Ben Hagarty: I was always into

skateboarding and snowboarding

as a kid, once we got our hands on one of the

cameras from school, we started filming everything.

I wasn’t really focused on editing yet,

it was more about documenting what we were

doing. It got really addicting.

What was your first camera you ever bought,

and what is your favorite one?

I had several DV cameras, like the sony handycams

with a fisheye, when I was younger. As

I got into college I was able to use their gear,

but they still were capturing on tape and I knew

the digital era was coming. The 5D and 7D had

come out, so the first true camera that I ever

purchased was the Canon 7D in 2011 with a kit

lens. I was blown away by the video ability.

What was your first major gig as a creative


Once I moved to Los Angeles, I was able to hop

on several projects as a shooter and an editor.

My first time ever truly directing my own project

was for EA Sports Madden NFL 17 doing a

campaign with rapper Lil Dicky and NFL stars

Rob Gronkowski, Antonio Brown, and Von

Miller. The videos were hilarious and def the

most intense first directing job I could have ever

chosen for myself, haha.

Where does Black With No Cream come


While I was touring with Schoolboy Q and

working with other major artists like Chris

Brown, Mary J. Blige, and Kendrick Lamar…

I started to notice an outpour of questions from

other creators. They were asking about how I

got my start, what gear I was using, advice on

their work, etc. etc. etc… I decided to

start a private group on Facebook called

Black With No Cream to become the

home for creators of all kinds. The goal

was to build a space that could help

creators find a home, educate others, get

motivated, and find work. We currently

have 5,000+ members based all over the

world and the activity in the community

is insane. My goal is to build the biggest

educational platform for creators that


How was it working on OTR II?

It was insane. Beyonce and Jay-Z are

the greatest of all time. That tour was

massive. We toured the world, played

in stadiums that sometimes filled up to

over 100K people a night…. I was able

to be fully creative and work with the

most insane talent in the world. It was


You also have a Podcast on Spotify,

can you tell us a bit about the Podcast?

My podcast is also on iTunes and

YouTube and every other platform you

can listen to a podcast on ;) but yes, the

Black With No Cream Podcast is an

extension of the private group I had mentioned

earlier. I wanted to start recording

the conversations that I have every day

with leaders in the industry so I could

package that and give it back to the creative

community. I hear so many powerful

stories of success… It only makes sense

giving that to the world.

Photo Credit: Marin Hamataj

You graduated from Northern Iowa University, with a degree in

communications, then moved to LA to pursue a career in Creative

Directing, can you tell us a bit about that whole transition?

I was trying my hardest to be as creative as possible in my hometown

(Cedar Falls, Iowa). I had graduated college with that degree and was

focusing on making music, videography, and photography all at the same

time. I knew I needed to relocate to Los Angeles in-order to “make it”.

I eventually worked really hard to save up some money and make the

move. It wasn’t easy. I spent almost 15 months sleeping on blow up mattresses

on the floor and couches until I was able to get paid enough that I

could afford my own studio apartment in LA… I said yes until I was able

to say no… Super key.

What is some advice you can give up and coming creative, especially

the ones from small towns trying to make in the big cities?

Don’t stop learning. We are continuing to learn every single day and will

continue to learn in this industry as it is always changing. Nothing comes

easy. Focus on the long game and if you really really really want to take

your shit to the next level… then you need to join BWNC and listen to

every episode of the podcast. It will change your mindset 100%.

Where can people find you on social media?

@benrealvsworld on IG & Twitter. @blackwithnocream on instagram. if you want to join our creative community. You






Sage Charmaine may have been

singing her whole life, but when it

came time to start her music career,

she wasn’t ready to lock herself into

just one genre. After going through a few

phases and trying out different things, she

came to her current sound, which blends

R&B, pop, and alternative elements. It’s

what listeners can expect to hear on her

latest EP Don’t Leave Me. But don’t expect

that to mean she’ll stop experimenting and

evolving her sound any time soon. BY


Cliché: How did you first get involved

with music?

Sage Charmaine: I first got involved in

music when I was 4, singing at my grandpa's

church. After I got the hang of performing, I

knew it was something I wanted to do for the

rest of my life.

What made you want to pursue it as a


As I got older, I kept singing and performing

as a hobby and never seemed to shut up. I

started playing piano more and writing songs

at age 7 and I think that’s when I really started

to feel like this is something I’d wanna

do for the long haul. I started learning more

instruments and perfecting my songwriting

and voice before finally making the big ass

jump from TX to CA to fully start pursuing

my music career.

How did you develop your sound?

It took a lot of trial and error. Since I started

my music career super early on in my life,

I was going through lots of phases and I

experimented with this in my music for sure.

At first, I thought I wanted to be an alt-emo

girl like Paramore, but as time went on that

phase slowly withered away. Then I thought

Photo Credit: Cameron Jordan

I wanted to do something like Grouplove,

but that only lasted a few months. When I

was about 13, I started experimenting more

with R&B and pop and these past few years

I’ve been blending these genres with more

alternative elements, which led me to the

sound I have today. However, I’d definitely

say I'm still experimental with my sound -

most recently, I’ve been playing around with

indie and lofi.

What’s your creative process like?

My creative process varies, but typically I’ll

go into a session with some jotted down ideas

and channeling how I’ve been

feeling emotionally the past few

days. Whatever producer I’m

working with on that day will

either pull up either a completely

blank track or one that just has

the “bones” so far, if you will.

Then we’ll just start vibing and

I’ll start writing and organizing

the song accordingly.

What can people expect from

Don’t Leave Me?

People can expect a whole array

of emotions and feelings for sure.

The whole EP is kind of like the

different effects that “love” can

have on an individual, who in

this case is me, so I hope you

guys enjoy tapping into my crazy

ass thoughts and expression.

What was the experience like

going out on tour last summer?

Are there any plans for another


Last summer, the tour was super

fun! I brought my best friend

with me so we both got to meet

and hang out with lots of cool

new people, as well as hear some

stories about other teenagers in

the industry. We went all over the

US so we saw a lot for sure, and

I also got to sing in front of so

many cool audiences in so many

different cities. This summer,

I definitely have some tours in

mind, but nothing is completely

solidified yet. (stay tuner tho hoe)

What kind of response have

you seen from fans? What do

you hope people take away

from your music?

I’ve seen a great response from

my fans! They're super involved

with anything I put out which

I’m super grateful for, and they're

also super supportive and always

make sure to give me their feedback.


I hope that people ultimately can

relate to my songs and feel what I

feel through my lyrics and voice,

and I also hope that listeners find

joy in my music at the same time,

while not being able to get it out

of their heads lolol.

What are you working on next?

At the moment, I’m working on

a new project with my producer

Nick, which is gonna be more

experimental with hip hop LoFi.

So far I’ve made one song, but

I’m really excited to finish it up

and get it out there - I’m hoping

to have it done by the Fall! (;


126 www.cliche-


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