Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Spotlight On...Diana Oh

Name: Diana Oh

Hometown: L.A., CA

Education: Smith College, National Theatre Institute, MFA from NYU Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program,

Favorite Credits: Creator and Performer of {my lingerie play}: 10 Underground Performance Installations in my lingerie staged in an effort to provide a saner, safer, more respectful world for women to live in, being awarded the inaugural Van Lier Fellowship in Acting through the Asian American Arts Alliance, being named one of Refinery 29's Top 14 LGBTQ Influencers, New Line Cinema's How to be Single with Dakota Johnson, Playing Hye Yun Park's sister in Hey Yun, Christopher Gabriel Nunez's The Surgeon and Her Daughters, Mariah MacCarthy's Foreplay Play and Magic Trick

Why theater?: Because it's full sensory overload. Because we use our brains differently in the theatre. Because we are there to be entertained and to also be engaged.

Tell us about {my lingerie play}: {my lingerie play} is ten Underground Performance Installations in my lingerie staged in an effort to provide a saner, safer, more respectful world for women to live in. The first installation is a public street installation that was staged in Times Square. {my lingerie play} Installation 9/10: THE FINAL INSTALLATION is the culmination of the project that is an 80 minute concert-play proving the tenacity to communicate by whatever means necessary. {my lingerie play} Installation 9/10: THE FINAL INSTALLATION features my original lingerie collection and my original songwriting and takes you on a journey that proves to you why and how feminism and lingerie go hand in hand. {my lingerie play} has been featured on People.com, Upworthy, Marie Claire Netherlands among many other publications. And I'll soon be doing an interview on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange about it! {my lingerie play} has taken on its own form and I effing love it. It's now become a cultural hub for me and the one space I preserve to express my authenticity.

What inspired you to write {my lingerie play}: {my lingerie play}: Installation 9/10: THE FINAL INSTALLATION. I wanted to present a woman on stage in her lingerie feeling very real, very human, very vulnerable emotions. I wanted to sing soulful personal songs in my lingerie to present the dichotomy. I want to change the language with which we speak about the sexual woman. I wanted to write a show about my lingerie collection for these reasons. But I performed in the street because I knew the message was also something for the masses to see and hear.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: Musicians. They don't even have to be amazing musicians, as long as they are presenting authenticity and doing it fearlessly, then I'm hooked. Honest acting speaks to me. When I go to theatre, I watch the actors' eyes. If I can see them listening then I'm hooked. Anyone who is in line with their higher purpose does it for me. As long as the acting is good, I can pretty much watch anything. Oh except for things with all white casts. I won't watch anything with all white casts anymore. OH MY GOD but wait, or anything freaky--I love watching full throttle freaky shit (i.e., really really really good burlesque)

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: Kathleen Hanna or Patti Smith. Patti Smith helped me make a lot of important career decisions. I have an aversion to systems that try to control or define you and so does Patti Smith and I appreciate that about her and when I find myself needing to make some hard decisions I ask myself, what would Patti Smith do?

What show have you recommended to your friends?: August Osage County because the acting was sooooooo good but that was before I stopped watching plays with all white casts. Passing Strange because that was a show that really re-invented the wheel.

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: My mom would play me. And if she turned down the offer, then we'd double it and if she still said no, then I'd play me and call it "The Things We Become". (Fyi, I'm replying to these questions while tipping over an entire bag of Skinny Pop Popcorn into my mouth right now. This is what I've become.)

If you could go back in time and see any play or musical you missed, what would it be?: My friend Colin Summers when he was a Neo-Futurist and I missed all his shows and I'm forever sad. Roberta Colindrez in Fun Home.

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Amazon Prime.

If you weren’t working in theater, you would be _____?: Performing in the streets with a bucket out saying please don't make me work in an office.

What’s up next?: {my lingerie play}: THE FINAL INSTALLATION at Joe's Pub on Thursday, July 14 at 7PM. Tix here: http://publictheater.org/en/tickets/calendar/playdetailscollection/joes-pub/2016/m/my-lingerie-play/?SiteTheme=JoesPub

For more on {my lingerie play}, visit www.mylingerieplay.com

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