Race, Casting and Representation – A Panel Discussion & Live Podcast


Curated by Peter J. Kuo
Hosted by Peter J. Kuo, Melissa Slaughter, and Alex Chester.
Recorded live for the podcast We’re Not All Ninjas.
Featuring a panel of industry pros, including Annie Henk and Tonilyn Sideco.

Monday, April 30 | 3:30pm | FREE | RSVP
HB Studio, The Speech Room, 3rd Floor, 120 Bank Street

Join us for a panel discussion and live podcast recording about race, casting and representation in the theater, film and TV industry. This will be an intimate roundtable forum, with a Q&A with an invited audience.

Sound Engineering by Alexandra Chludzinska

About the participants:

Peter J. Kuo is a New York-based theater director, producer, and writer focusing on raising the visibility of marginalized communities. He is a co-founder of Artists at Play, a theater collective that produces Los Angeles premieres of works for Asian Americans. For Artists at Play, he directed their inaugural production of Lauren Yee’s CHING CHONG CHINAMAN (Backstage Critic’s Pick), and Michael Golamco’s COWBOY VERSUS SAMURAI; as well as readings of Boni Alvarez’s MARABELLA, Beau Willimon’s THE PARISIAN WOMAN, and Donald Margulies’ DINNER WITH FRIENDS. He has served as a director and assistant director at South Coast Repertory, Geffen Playhouse, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, East West Players, HB Studios, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, and The Play Company. Peter has assisted directed for Pam MacKinnon (THE PARISIAN WOMAN, now headed to Broadway), Jonathan Lynn (CLUE, Writer & Director), and Lee Sunday Evans (The Obie Award-winning production of Christopher Chen’s CAUGHT!), among others. MFA: The New School; BA: UC Irvine

Melissa Slaughter has lived in all four time zones in the contiguous United States. A former actor in Seattle, WA, Melissa now resides in NYC as a content creator. Melissa writes for online blogs Nerdopilesand Hapa Mag. She is the producer of the We’re Not All Ninjas podcast, which she also hosts with fellow Hapa Mag writer, Alex Chester. She loves sushi, crafts, and theatre, but her favorite thing in the world is Doctor Who and yes, she’s over the moon for a female Doctor. You can find her @NotAllNinjasPod.

Alex Chester is a proud member of Broadway Diversity Project. She is a former contributor to HuffPo and currently writes for Onstage Blog and Manhattan Digest. She is the creator of Hapa Mag – an online magazine by Hapas for Everyone, and is the founder/producer of WeSoHapa, a multiracial inclusive theatre company. Alex is also part of the podcast “We’re Not All Ninjas.” Theatre credits include: “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” – Madison Square Garden (NYC), Minnie Fay in “Hello Dolly” directed by Lee Roy Reams at NAAP (Off-Broadway), “Bubble Boy” at 54 Below (NYC/Original Cast Recording), “Brass Heart” – Royal Family Productions (NYC). Her resume of commercial work includes campaigns for companies including UPS, H&M, AT&T and Major League Baseball.  Follow her on Twitter/Insta @AlexFChester @WeSoHapa @TheHapaMag  www.WeSoHapa.com www.HapaMag.com www.AlexChester.com Much love to her Hapa Gang and her Hubby, Matt.

Annie Henk, actress. Regional: Enfrascada (Renaissance Theaterworks, Milwaukee, WI) Adriana Sevahn’s one-woman show Taking Flight and Gladys in the Cook (Stages Repertory Theatre, Houston, TX). NYC: Purple Rep, Red Fern, ReEntry with American Records, Clubbed Thumb, INTAR, Mabou Mines, Nibras, Puerto Rican Traveling Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Resonance Ensemble, Foundry Theater, Working Theater, New Georges, Collaboration Town, and 52nd Street Project. Film/Web: That’s What She SaidWhiteEast WillyBThin AirEntre Nos. Narration: StarboundThe Madonnas of Echo ParkSunstrokeHow the Garcia Girls Lost their Accents, and others.

Tonilyn A. Sideco is a proud booty-shaking genderqueer love warrior. The fourth child of Filipino immigrants, Toni was born and raised in San Francisco’s Sunset District and is now a NYC-based writer, director and creative educator for both stage and film.

Toni holds a BA in Sociology with a minor in Women’s Studies from UCLA and a MFA in Theater & Film from Stony Brook University, Southampton. Toni has 15 years experience in the non-profit sector and public and private school system as a counselor, case manager and creative healing program coordinator and educator working with queer youth and elders and young people of color in the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles and New York. Toni currently teaches Creative Technologies at the New School of Drama.

Utilizing the arts, media and storytelling as a tool for activism and social change, Toni focuses on amplifying the voices and experiences of queer people of color through stage and film with her company ToneOnTop Productions.  Her latest feature-length narrative script sheds light on the often hidden and forgotten Screaming Queens of the Compton’s Cafeteria Riots of 1966’s San Francisco. Toni is a former emcee of TransMarch SF and can often be found sharing their original songs on-stage. He has recently performed in staged readings of new works by transgender artists and recently had their Joe’s Pub NYC singing debut with the Civilians Theater Company. Toni sings with Broadway Barkada, a professional Filipino performance group and collaborates with Broadway Diversity Project & We So Hapa. She is a co-host of First Person, a PBS digital studios series about gender, sexuality and queer community. Visit www.tonilynsideco.com for more info. @ToneOnTop