All Posts By Anjelica Oswald

Jordyn Jones on Her Passion for Both Music and Dance

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Jordyn Jones’ life has been all about dance, and while much of it still is, she’s transitioning to making her own original music. From participating on the Ultimate Dance Competition to scripted performances in the YouTube movie Dance Camp, Jones is taking her career to new heights. For this 16-year-old, life’s a song and a dance.

Cliché: You’ve been dancing since you were 2 years old. How did you first start?
Jordyn Jones: Well, my mom owned two dance studios in Michigan, so it was an easy transition into performing. The very first thing I did was professional baton twirling, and then I moved on to dance.

Do you have a favorite style of dance?
I love any style of dance, but my favorite is hip hop.

What factors do you consider when choosing a song to dance to for your videos?
I have to like the song, and it needs to have the energy to make great dance choreography.

You’re still so young, but what have been some of your favorite memories?
I loved performing in New York in front of almost two thousand people. I also love that I get to perform with all my friends because they’re my backup dancers.

How was it appearing on the Ultimate Dance Competition?
It was really fun. I learned a lot about dance and discipline and made some great friends during the process.

How is it making the switch to original music?
It’s definitely a learning process. All the songs have to become about me, so I need to use more of my own voice in the lyrics. But then I can call a song entirely my own, so that’s super cool.

Do you write your own music? If so, where do you draw inspiration?
Not yet, but I definitely contribute to the songwriting process with phrases and ideas. The inspiration needs to come from my actual life and just things me and my friends talk about.

Was music always tied in with your goals?
Definitely.

What’s your ultimate goal?
My ultimate goal is to tour around the world and maybe start my own fashion line.

What else is next for you?
I’m going to release two more original songs by the summer, and hopefully keep touring for my fans. I’m also in talks with some big music producers, but I can’t share anything just yet, so stay tuned!

Read more Music Interviews on ClicheMag.com

Jordyn Jones on Her Passion for Both Music and Dance: Photographed by Bonnie Nichoalds

Celebrity Books You Must Read

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I love TV and I love reading, so memoirs or books written by some of my favorite celebrities make for the best of both worlds. I’ve devoured Tina Fey’s Bossypants, Amy Poehler’s Yes Please, and both of Mindy Kaling’s books—among others—but I have plenty that are still on my to-read list. Here are four that I want to get through this year. 

Love Life by Rob Lowe
Lowe released his second memoir in 2014, and I’ve been meaning to read it ever since. He’s literally (get it?) one of my favorite actors. Here, he reveals more about his life and family, and I’m just already smitten.

Sick in the Head by Judd Apatow
This is less of a memoir and more of a collection of interviews, but I love it. Funny man and director Judd Apatow compiled interviews with some of the biggest and best names in comedy, so I know this book will make me laugh out loud.

Life by Keith Richards
This book was published six years ago, and I still haven’t gotten around to reading it. However, as a fan of the Rolling Stones, I know Keith Richards has amazing stories to tell. This autobiography is still dominating the bestseller list.

Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari
Aziz Ansari is a comedic genius and this novel mixes his humor with an investigation into how people find love in a modern world. As someone who has been single her whole life and refuses to resort to Internet dating services, I’m interested in what Aziz has to say.

Read more Book Reviews on ClicheMag.com

Celebrity Books You Must Read: Featured image courtesy of Penguin Press

Laura Vandervoort Talks the End of ‘Bitten’

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When we last spoke to Laura Vandervoort back in April of 2014, she had wrapped up the first season of Bitten, a Canadian sci-fi in which she plays a woman rediscovering life as a werewolf. Now, the show is coming to an end after three seasons, and Vandervoort is looking back on her experience and preparing for what’s next.

 

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Dress: COUTURE, MARINA TOYBINA; Necklace: STYLE DELIVERS, Earrings: VINTAGE

Cliché: You have been on Bitten since 2014. How is it approaching the end of this final season?
Laura Vandervoort: It has been a great journey. Some truly lifelong friendships have been made. This show and my character have definitely made me grow in many different ways. It has been both challenging and rewarding.

How has your character, Elena, changed over the seasons?
I think similar to myself, Elena has grown over the three years. In season one, she was uncomfortable with her new surroundings, as was I entering the first season of the show. Friendships were just starting to be made amongst the cast and crew, and we were all learning the ropes of the show. Elena was finding her way. I was discovering what it took to work the hours we were working and be in every scene, but at the same time keeping my sanity.

In season two, we were all definitely more comfortable, as were our characters. Bonds had been made and we felt more comfortable within our character skin. Elena was finally accepting who she was: the lone female wolf. She finally accepted her place within the pack, her new family.

By the third season, I feel we all knew our characters inside and out and started to really have fun and challenge ourselves, trying new things. Since we were all so comfortable with one another by the third season, I believe we felt we could be more vulnerable within our scenes by working off one another and trusting that bond.

Within the third season, Elena begins to stand up against the pack leader, Jeremy, for many reasons. She has discovered within that she has biological parents and siblings from Russia. This revelation makes everything that she has worked for difficult.

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Top: MOLLY BRACKEN, Shorts: AMERICAN APPAREL, Accessories: RED LIGHT PR, Shoes: BADGLEY MISCHKA

What can fans expect from this final season?
Over the course of the first two seasons, the pack always sticks together fighting an outside war. What makes the season different is that the fight is within the family. Many pack members are butting heads for different reasons and relationships are being torn apart. With the addition of Elena’s biological family, there is a lot of tension between her pack leader and her father. We bring in international pack members, which causes more threat to the core family. You can expect blood, sweat, and tears throughout the season.

What are some of your favorite memories on set?
We would have great memories on set every day. This cast has been a pleasure to work with. There is always laughter and occasionally tears, but we’re always there for one another. It is hard to place a certain memory as my favorite, so I would say my favorite memory is just being there and having the opportunity to be a part of such a great show.

You also played Supergirl on Smallville, so what was it like watching this new iteration?
The version of Supergirl that I played was much different to the version currently on television. I think that is fantastic and I love what they have done with the character. Being a part of the new Supergirl series is an honor, and I think a great nod to the fans of the genre. The fact that I get to play an evil character and look nothing like myself is just the cherry on top! I have never had a character that transforms how I play her from the outside in. How she looks physically determined how I would play her, and let’s face it: playing evil is fun.

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Dress: TAMAR COLLECTION, Belt: B-LOW THE BELT, Earrings: STYLES DELIVERS

What do you think makes superhero shows so appealing to people?
I think people like an escape, and superhero shows allow for that. It is that good versus evil concept that we all love to watch.

Who’s your favorite superhero?
I would have to say the Joker, even though he is not a superhero. [Laughs]

What is next for you?
I am currently still shooting my recurring role on Supergirl as Indigo and auditioning for other projects. I am also executive producer and creator of a TV series for kids about a young girl that is a superhero. I wrote the concept for the show years ago and we have been in the process of getting it off the ground. That is a whole new experience for me.

Read more Entertainment Interviews on ClicheMag.com

“May Cover Star Laura Vandervoort Talks the End of ‘Bitten'” was originally published as “Super Girl” in Cliché Magazine’s April/May 2016 issue

Photographer: Quavondo, MUA: Lysette Castellanos, Stylist: Melissa Lynn, Hair: Gui.  Top: MOLLY BRACKEN, Shorts: AMERICAN APPAREL, Accessories: RED LIGHT PR

Why You Should be Watching ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’

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There are a ton of comic book shows to keep up with, and just me, I keep up with them all. But one show that doesn’t seem to get as much love as it deserves, though it has been changing, is Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

The show struggled to find its footing in the first season and has its ups and downs, but you have to stick with it. Trust me.

This latest season has an established cast that meshes well together. Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson, Ming-Na Wen as Agent May, Chloe Bennet as Daisy, Iain De Caestecker as Fitz, Elizabeth Henstridge as Simmons, and Henry Simmons as Mack, as well as every other cast member, work so well together. And lord knows my heart is hurting after Nick Blood (Lance Hunter) and Adrianne Palicki (Bobbi Morse) left the show. (Only because they are off to another stand-alone Marvel show that of course I’m going to watch.)

While much darker than before, it still has the classic Marvel gags and one liners that help lighten the mood and make for memorable interactions.

The show no longer relies on the established Marvel cinematic universe and instead builds on its own strengths. It leaves it open for crossovers and merges timelines, but it doesn’t need it to survive. This was the grave mistake in the first season. But now, the show proves that it has staying power. It’s been renewed for a fourth season.

The beauty of the show is that you don’t necessarily have to be a comic book fan either. While there are comic elements, everything is explained as the show progresses and doesn’t entirely rely on preconceived comic book stories. There’s action, romance, and laughs — what more do you need?

With the Marvel universe behind it and it’s own self-reliant storyline, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is a show you need to check out.

Read more TV News on ClicheMag.com

Why You Should be Watching ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’: Photograph courtesy of ABC

What We Think of Zayn’s Debut Album “Mind of Mine”

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As a diehard One Direction fan, I took Zayn’s departure incredibly hard to handle last year, and exactly a year after shattering my heart into a million pieces, Zayn released his debut solo album, Mind of Mine.

I, naturally, have some thoughts on this.

First, let’s talk about the design. Normally, this wouldn’t matter, but I have a lot of feelings. Why the fake tattoos on baby Zayn? It looks weird. Also, let’s talk about how awful the font design is. I don’t want to see the letters switching between upper and lowercase in the song title. It looks like an angsty teen (who also struggles desperately to spell) typed it up. It’s not a cool look, Zayn. And super frustrating to look at.

Now to reviewing the actual album. It’s good. I like it. It’s a racy, sexual, adult Zayn singing about sex and romance and more sex. He doesn’t hide the fact that he is an adult and can do what he wants and sing about what he wants. And I get it, but that’s also sort of what I have a problem with. It’s just that the entire album is basically all the same. It sort of feels like he’s trying too hard to show that he’s grown up.

His songs are often tinged with a hint of ‘80s and ‘90s R&B and finished off with electronic beats. It’s a style that fits him well. Many of the songs also show of his glorious falsetto, and I’m incredibly thankful for that. And many are slow jams that you can sway too, again, all about sex.

Like Kanye, he seems to have an unnecessary “Intermission,” but you do you, Zayn. At least the acoustic guitar part in that song is good.

“Pillowtalk” will forever be my favorite song off of the album. I could listen to him say “reckless” all day. I also really enjoy “Like I Would.” Another really great song is “Fool For You.” It’s one of the slower, more romantic songs, but it shows off his voice well. Kalani’s duet with Zayn on “Wrong” makes that song one of my favorites, as well.

Overall, the album is ultimately pretty grand. It’s just the common sex thing gets kind of old after a while when the theme and the beats tend to be indistinguishable and just meld together.

Read more Music Reviews on ClicheMag.com

What We Think of Zayn’s Debut Album “Mind of Mine”: Photograph courtesy of RCA Records

Brenna Whitaker Talks Jazz and Being Different

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From a theater job at 11 years old to moving to New York City at 17, Brenna Whitaker has been working hard to pursue her musical dreams. When she was in her early 20s, she moved back home to Missouri to lead jazz bands, and then made the move to Los Angeles to pursue her music career. Now, in the past year, the jazz singer has made waves, releasing her debut, self-titled album and appearing on Disney’s We Love Disney. She’s only continuing to make moves this year.

Cliché: How did you first get into jazz?
Brenna Whitaker: I grew up in Kansas City, which has a nice music scene, and my parents exposed me to a lot of live music at a young age. When I was a teenager, I really got into singers like Nancy Wilson, Peggy Lee, Etta James, and Dinah Washington. I did a lot of theater as a kid and my dad would drive me. We would listen to a really cool radio station on NPR called “Fish Fry Friday.”

What about it was so appealing to you?
I love characters, or “Hams,” rather. I like people and musicians who have a sense of humor and could tell stories in a clever way through singing or playing an instrument. I like making my own interpretation of songs and stories through timeless music.    

Who are some of your inspirations?
I have a lot of things that inspire me. Most have to do with the senses. When I hear an upright piano and upright bass and brushes on a drum, I feel like I’m most at peace creatively and spiritually. My dogs, Louie and Pearl, my family, eating appetizers, and working with children are probably my biggest inspirations of late. I’m heavily inspired by making emotional music that could possibly help someone.

What was your first professional theater job?
My first professional theater job was at Missouri Repertory Theater in a production of A Christmas Carol, and I was a “caroling girl.” I was a really strong alto and could pick up harmonies really quick. I love harmonies.

What was moving to NYC at 17 like?
It was crazy moving to New York City at 17. I was young enough to not really be scared at all. It’s a magical city, and I’m lucky I could be there while you could afford it as a young artist.    

How was the journey to getting your debut album made?
The journey to getting my debut album made was a pretty much the closest to the “old fashioned” way as you could do these days. I had been gigging and creating my own residencies for years, and I really believe it was time for me.    

How was it appearing on Disney’s new album?
To be on the Disney album was one of the highlights of my life. I’m a huge fan of Walt Disney and the Muppets have inspired me on a big level. The song “It’s Not That Easy Being Green” is an anthem for so many good causes, and it’s an honor to be asked to sing it for so many charities and nonprofits to promote being different.

What made you pick that song?
It was totally by chance that I was recording it on my album at the same time the We Love Disney album was being made by Verve Records. I had been asked to sing the song years ago for a eco-friendly sustainable energy forum party in New York City and the song stuck. It’s basically my anthem and I really wanted to be on my debut album somehow.

How did you go about choosing your songs to cover on your album?
We really took our time figuring out how to go about choosing songs for the album. I had ideas about what was working at my live shows and what messages I think the world might need in a song. A lot of the songs are about my struggles in Hollywood and “finding the light” at the end of the tunnel. We also had to think of how I might fit into the music industry in 2016 and still remain true to myself. It took a while to really figure out, but I think and hope people can hear messages that give them a positive feeling about life.

How was your tour?
My touring is just starting with this album, and it’s fantastic. I’m really excited to go experience other cultures with this album and see how people respond. Germany has been wonderful to me, and I’m excited for Japan this spring. The tour bus life suits me.

What’s next for you in the new year?
2016 is off to a great start, and I choose to remain positive about the music industry and what I have to offer young singers and people who appreciate emotional singing. I’m writing a lot and have a lot of ideas for my second album, and theater and cinema seem to be calling me of late. I’m gonna be touring a lot this year and basically I’m the luckiest duck in the pond.

Read more Music Interviews on ClicheMag.com

Brenna Whitaker Talks Jazz and Being Different: Photographs courtesy of Verve Records

From ‘Nashville’ to Horror Films, Scout Taylor-Compton Tells All

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Scout Taylor-Compton has a passion for music and a love affair with the horror genre, and with her career, she gets to immerse her life in both. The 26-year-old actress recently joined ABC’s Nashville and said that both the set and the city have inspired her to create her own music, some to be released later this year. She’s also appearing in two horror films this year. Though some people might be spooked, growing up with a mortician for a father gives her a unique outlook on those creepy films. This year brings music and monsters for the young artist, so keep up with her to see what’s next.

Cliché: How was it joining Nashville? Were you familiar with the show before?
Scout Taylor-Compton: I was actually a fan of the show before. I’m a big country lover, so when I heard about the show, I was definitely intrigued by it and watched it and fell in love with the music and the characters. I remember watching the first season and wanting the opportunity to be on the show, so it’s really cool that now I can say that I am on it.

How was it working with the cast?
It was really overwhelming. It’s a really big set. There’s a lot of people and crew members, and they film with multiple cameras. It was really a shocking experience to come into, but everyone was welcoming. It was so easy to get used to, but the first day, I was a ball of nerves.

Do you have a memory that sticks out from set?
I’m a girl that has a lot of guy friends, and me and Chris [Carmack] went to a Nashville festival that was out there, and that was a lot of fun. We saw Willie Nelson. My boyfriend performed the morning of the festival, and we saw a bunch of bands, so that was a lot of fun. We always have these games on set. It was a new place with new guy friends, so it was very comfortable.

What can fans expect when the show comes back?
I know that Nashville writers want Erin to be this character that you don’t really know what she’s about yet. She’s not gone. She’s still there, but she beats her own drum and goes with the flow, and I think they wanted to show that. I’m sure it drives Gunnar [Scott] up the wall.

Do you have a favorite song on the show?
It was really catchy, the one Gunnar was singing to me in the hotel room. It was so cute. I had it stuck in my head for weeks. Any song that Layla sings, I fall in love with, too. I’m obsessed with her and her voice.

Do you have a favorite country musician?
I do. I am a big Tim McGraw fan. I also love Garth Brooks, Carrie Underwood, and The Dixie Chicks. I’m a huge country girl. That’s why I love going to Nashville. There’s so much music everywhere. You turn a corner and it’s like you’re in a new world.

You’re currently working on an album?
I’m not necessarily working on an album, but I’m just trying to find my sound and get my music out there. It’s a very vulnerable spot for me because I’ve been in acting for so long. Playing different characters, being in front of the camera, and reading lines is easy for me, but writing my own songs about the way I feel, my past, and my future is really hard. I’ve been learning that and writing a lot and working with my boyfriend to find my sound. I just did a cover of The Lumineers and slowed it down. One of my goals is to get my stuff out there and explore this passion of mine that I’ve had for a long time. Nashville inspired me to pull it out.

Were you into music as a kid?
My parents tried to get me into it when I was younger, but it was different for me then. My voice is more about my writing and a therapy to me. It took me a lot longer to realize that all of it is okay to come out and show it and be proud of it. Being around the cast members and hearing the music and going to different places has been an eye-opening experience and helped me bloom.

Do you have other projects you’re working on this year?
Yes. I just got back from New York after finishing a project. I have a movie coming out next year called Ghost House and another called Feral. As of right now, it’s Nashville and music.

Can you tell me more about those?
Feral is in the horror genre and Ghost House is a film I did in Thailand about a couple that takes a trip and they are haunted by this creature type thing. It got accepted into SXSW, so I’m excited to attend. It was beautifully shot. We went to some amazing places in Thailand. It’s also in the horror genre.

Which I see you’re a fan of.
My dad is mortician and a coroner, so I grew up in that whole field. I’m a fan of a lot of things, but that I definitely grew up with. Being born into it is a way of life, so it’s been a normal thing. It’s never been crazy or spooky.

Do you have a favorite horror film?
I’m a big fan of the Freddy Krueger franchise. That’s just a crazy franchise. I’ve always been afraid of him.

Read more Entertainment Interviews on ClicheMag.com.

From ‘Nashville’ to Horror Films, Scout Taylor-Compton Tells All: Photographed by Dylan Lujano

Charlie Carrick Talks Season 3 of ‘Reign’

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Charlie Carrick is a history fan, something that’s drawn him to period dramas such as The Borgias and currently Reign, as the nobel Robert Dudley, a friend and suitor to Queen Elizabeth. Hailing from England, Carrick was familiar with the history, but said he loves to read up on the real-life character he portrays and the time period. Catch the third season of Reign airing on The CW now.

Cliché: How did you first get into acting?
Charlie Carrick: Well, when I was around 12 or 13, I started getting into school plays, and also around the same time, I started watching movies more seriously, seeking out things that I would like that people recommended to me other than just what was on at the multiplex. I started to think about acting then.

How was it jumping into Reign for its third season?
It helps that everybody—the whole cast and crew—are super nice. Everybody looks out for each other and are very welcome to new people that are joining. There has been a big shift in the show’s direction to have a lot of the show set in England and an English court now, so it was a big adjustment for everybody. It felt like a new start within a show, so it didn’t feel like I was just flopping in to somebody else’s thing.

How did you prepare to play a real-life character?
It’s the second time that I’ve played a real-life character, but he’s a well-chronicled historical character of his time. There is a lot of contemporary writing from the time and paintings of him and analysis about what his role in court was. There is a lot of material to read. I had a fairly short time before I started, so that’s an ongoing thing. Every now and then, I’ll seek out something on him. It was also important for me to read up on Elizabethan life, what day-to-day life was like for people then and how that informs the show.

What are the things you drew from your research on the character and the time?
I’d done something in a similar time period before. I did the show called The Borgias. It was about 50 years before this and in Italy rather than England, so it was very different in terms of clothes and societal things. But I studied English history at school, and I kind of remembered from that. I tried to look for stuff that I knew would work into the storyline of the show, and so when you read about Robert Dudley, you realize that he was a very accomplished man. He achieved a lot in his life and had diverse interests. The big paradox in his life was that part of his life came up against the fact that he was subject to the whims of a woman, which in his time, he was in almost a unique situation. I focused on how that would be for him.

What drew you to the character?
When I auditioned for the part, I had two scenes to read, and one of them was with Queen Elizabeth, and one of them was with his wife. It was an interesting proposition right away to see how he behaved differently with two women. He was between the two and had these decisions that he had to make. Immediately there was already rich drama in that.

What can fans expect in this second half of the season?
Well, I think the development of his relationships will be seen more. Something has to give in those situations. I have to choose or find a way to make things work. The circumstances are going to change in one way or another.

You went into this period of history before, so what is your favorite part of a period drama?
I think you get a lot of freebies that help you as an actor when you’re doing a period, especially if the production has realized it well with the costumes, the sets, the props. A lot of the work of building the world is already done and then your imagination can focus on making the character a real person. It’s interesting that the world is so different; society was arranged so differently in that time, but the people are the same. People’s feelings and wants and desires are all the same, you just have to find different ways to navigate the period they’re in.

Is there a show you’re currently binge-watching or keeping up with that you would love to guest on or join?
My favorite TV show is a Sundance show called Rectify, which I think is just the best show. It’s beautifully shot and well-acted and directed, but it has a very small, closed cast. I don’t know if there’s a way into that for me. I’m also watching Deadwood, mostly while on set. I would love to do a Western.

What do you have coming up this year?
We’re going to finish this season of Reign. I’ve got a couple of movies that I did over the last couple of years that are wrapping up their festival runs. One of them just had a Hollywood screening and should be coming to TVs soon. And then another film I did called The Devout. Hopefully that comes out soon. So I have those to look forward to. I’m going to do some traveling over the next couple of months. My girlfriend is doing a residency in Iceland, so I’m hoping I can go visit her for a couple of weeks.

Read more Entertainment Interviews on ClicheMag.com.

Charlie Carrick Talks Season 3 of ‘Reign’: Photographed by Lane Dorsey

Five Superhero Films We Can’t Wait to See

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Almost 30 superhero films have been announced for release over the next five years, and this is my nerd dream come true. Between Marvel (my favorite) and DC (catching up), there isn’t a dearth of stories to tell on both the small screen (most of the shows that I adore) and the big. This year has seven superhero films set for release, with the first hitting theaters February 12. Here are five superhero films we can’t wait to see.

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20th Century Fox

Deadpool (February 12)
This is the R-rated superhero film I’ve been waiting for. Ryan Reynolds is redeeming himself after the awful Green Lantern by playing this foul-mouthed, violent, wickedly dark-humored mercenary hellbent on revenge. Reynolds played the same character in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, but we’ve never seen him like this before.

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Disney

Captain America: Civil War (May 6)
Be still, my broken heart. This movie pits my two favorite superheros (Captain America and Iron Man) against each other, and I can’t handle this pressure. And each has his own superhero team with more of my favorites, so I’m honestly broken. Also exciting? We’ll get our first look at Black Panther and the new Spider-Man (still wish it was Andrew Garfield) in the movie.

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20th Century Fox

X-Men: Apocalypse (May 27)
The X-Men are back for the third film in the prequel trilogy, and this time, the film includes (love of my life) Oscar Isaac as the extremely powerful first mutant, Apocalypse, come to, well, destroy the world. Bringing back favorite cast members like Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, and James McAvoy reprising their roles, the film also introduces younger versions of mutants like Storm.

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Warner Bros.

Suicide Squad (August 5)
Villains as heroes—this is pretty much the premise of the Suicide Squad. The team consists of high-profile villains like the Joker, Harley Quinn, and Deadshot, and the story goes that these villains have been caught by the government and are being used to do their bidding. Micro-bomb implants prevent them from going off the rails, because they will be killed. I’m excited to see Jared Leto’s take on the Joker, as well as the rest of the brilliant cast.

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Marvel

Doctor Strange (November 4)
I didn’t know much about Doctor Strange before this movie was announced, but I’m excited to see this magical superhero come to life. With a cast that consists of Rachel McAdams, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mads Mikkelsen, and Chiwetel Ejiofor, I have a feeling it’ll be great.

And here’s a shout out to the two that didn’t make the list, though I know I’ll be seeing them both anyway: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (March 25) and Gambit (October 7).

Read more Entertainment posts on ClicheMag.com

Two Story Road Interview + Giveaway

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Two Story Road is made up of husband and wife duo Brandon and Jamelle Fraley. Each with an established solo music career, they’ve merged their sounds together and released their first EP at the end of last year. 2016 is gearing up to be their year. Read on for an exclusive interview with the duo, and enter for a chance to win an autographed copy of their EP!


Cliché: You both started individually in music, so what made you decide to start touring as a duo? Was it before or after marriage?
Brandon and Jamelle Fraley: Ever since we started dating, we thought our voices just blended together really well. Even though the idea of singing together was always intriguing, we had so many great touring opportunities that kept the duo idea on the back burner. After too many years apart in separate bands, we were very motivated to get back to what we always wanted to do and stand on stage together.

How was the process for recording your first EP?
It was more fun than you could possibly imagine. Working with Mark Bright, recording at Starstruck, and having A-level musicians play on our EP was about as magical of a process as you could ask for. We honestly can’t wait to do it again.

How did it feel releasing it in December?
It was the perfect way to end such an exciting year. Debuting at #13 on iTunes and receiving such a positive response was pretty much the best Christmas present ever!

Where’d you draw inspiration for the EP?
We really took our time and made sure we had not only a great collection of songs to choose from, but also six tracks that could really showcase the different sides of us, and show what kind of artists we want to be.

Do you have a favorite song to perform together?
Arson” is really fun to sing together. We feel like actors playing a role and telling a story. It’s always fun to put yourself in someone else’s shoes and really present the audience with a story.

What does this year have in store for you?
Now having official music out on iTunes, we’re looking at 2016 as a year of any and all possibilities. We are most excited about getting in front of audiences and performing our songs as much as possible.

Who would you guys love to collaborate with?
Tori Kelly is making some pretty outstanding music. She’s such an amazing vocalist, too. There’s no doubt—we’re on a long list of people who would welcome the chance to work with her.

Anything else that you’d like to add?
Yes! Something that we feel like we don’t get to talk about enough is our fans. They excite us. None of this would be happening if it weren’t for their incredible support. There are many treasured people that have been with us from the start, and it makes all of this so much more fun knowing that we’re on this journey with them!

Cliché Magazine is teaming up with Two Story Road for a giveaway you won’t want to miss! Enter to win an autographed copy of Two Story Road’s EP.

Five (5) lucky winners will receive the following:
– One autographed copy of the EP, Two Story Road
Prize courtesy of Two Story Road 

How to Enter:
– Fill out the form below for entry to the giveaway, then follow us on Twitter!
– Earn extra entries by doing things like following us on Pinterest and tweeting about the giveaway**
**You may tweet once daily to earn extra entries

Selection:
The winner will be chosen at random using Rafflecopter.com and will be contacted within 48 hours after the giveaway has ended. The winner will be given 72 hours to claim his or her prize before he or she must forfeit it to another winner.

Giveaway open to U.S. addresses only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Read more Music Interviews and Giveaways on ClicheMag.com

Two Story Road Interview + Giveaway: Photographed by Joseph Llanes

Alyson Stoner Talks Dancing, Singing, and that Missy Elliot Tribute

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Alyson Stoner was 8 when she first appeared on TV in Disney Channel’s infomercial-like segment Mike’s Super Short Show. That little girl that introduced movies to us is now 22 years old.

She has grown up in front of our very eyes over the past 15 years, and that has to be a nerve-wracking process. But as she’s gotten older, her works have transformed. She’s still making moves, popping up on TV, and making her own music, but it’s all to the beat of her own drum. She’s not a girl anymore; she’s a woman ready take on the world.

Stoner’s passion for music extends to her adoration for dance. Growing up in Toledo, Ohio, she studied ballet, tap dance, and jazz. She’s been dancing since the age of 3, so the music was always there.

Alyson Stoner

Bustier: Zara

“I carried a Fisher-Price microphone around my home and performed on our fireplace and coffee tables,” she said. “I started songwriting at age 8, and later landed a few roles in musicals and music groups, which inspired me to pursue it as a solo artist.”

Those roles consisted of spots in films such as Alice Upside Down and Disney’s Camp Rock franchise.

She also released an independent solo album in 2011. Since then, she’s released a few singles, including “Pretty Girls” last year, but 2016 is the start of a new musical journey for Stoner. She’s taking a departure from her older music, one that’s in tune with her growth and self-confidence.

“To be blunt, I’ve been a pawn on many chessboards. I do not regret or resent any of my early entertainment experience—that’s my launch pad and the first chapters of my story—but I am ready to take the driver’s seat of my artistic journey and share a piece of myself—my fingerprint, my heartbeat—with fans,” she said. “I’m ready to be vulnerable about my humanity in hopes that it connects to and inspires others.”

“The journey through life is so wildly complex and individualized, yet so interconnected and simple,” she added. “I want to explore and represent these experiences, all the colors, events, emotions, and questions.”

Her next single, “Woman,” will hit iTunes February 19, along with the music video. With an EP in the works set to release in late 2016, Stoner says she has plenty of other songs to release as well. She also might be heading out on tour in China soon, and she’s hoping to hit the stage.

Alyson Stoner

Jacket: Ty-lr, Sequins bottoms: Adrien’s Closet 

Her new music, she said, is “a representation of vitality.”

“There’s strength, vigor, passion, and authenticity in the lyrics and melodies,” she said. “We use universal rhythms and international grooves in the production. It’s spontaneous and powerful, and it moves each listener differently.”

The movement is important to music; in fact, the two go hand-in-hand.

“I learned about music through movement, actually. What a gift,” she said. “As I create in the studio, I stand up and dance to see how my body responds to sounds and rhythms.”

Stoner has been sharing her music on her YouTube channel for years, and she collaborated with other YouTube stars for covers of her favorite songs. Her favorites? Her collaboration with Leroy Sanchez of Meghan Trainor’s “Like I’m Gonna Lose You” and the one-take rendition of Selena Gomez’s “Same Old Love” with Kurt Schneider and Sam Tsui.

Alyson Stoner

Bustier: Zara, Skirt: Wild Fox, Shoes: Via Spiga

Last year, Stoner went viral with a tribute dance video she made for Missy Elliot. Some of Stoner’s earliest roles were appearing as a dancer in music videos, most notably Missy Elliott’s “Work It,” “Gossip Folks,” and “I’m Really Hot.” The video has received more than 15 million views since.

“I was returning home from a film premiere when I received 400 messages asking why I wasn’t at the Super Bowl with Missy Elliott,” she said. “The following day, media outlets were asking me to comment about her performance. I wanted to show honor and gratitude in a fun way, so I got my friends together and within three days, choreographed, filmed, edited, and released the tribute for the world. Who knew all this would happen?”

But music and dance aren’t her only loves. Stoner has been acting since 2001, and it’s something she wants to continue doing. “It’s definitely both-and, not either-or,” she said about both acting and music.

Some of her roles over the years include Step Up, where she played Channing Tatum’s younger sister, and the Cheaper by the Dozen films. She also voiced the character Isabella in Disney’s Phineas and Ferb, as well as had a recurring role in The Suite Life with Zack and Cody.

Alyson Stoner

Dress: Adrien Rabago Design, Shoes: Sam Edelman 

This year, she’s playing the lead opposite Jordan Ray Fox in the dark-comedy action film Mr. Invincible.

“I play Tallulah Marie, the craziest and probably most lovable character I’ve ever played,” she said.

She also might have a feature in the works, but that all depends on her busy schedule. Even though she acts, Stoner said she doesn’t even watch television, and she watches very few films.

“But I saw The Big Short and loved how informative it was!” she added.

She’s all about documentaries though—and recommends Artifact—and finds Stanley Tucci to be a transformative genius.

At the end of the day, even though she loves her work, she said it’s important to find the balance between work and rest.

“I am realistically training, creating, and managing my projects and striving toward the next goals—with gladness—around the clock,” she said. “It’s important for me to stay balanced, and I usually do that through reading in the morning, speaking with mentors, and hanging with a small group of friends.”

Read the Feb/Mar 2016 Issue and see more exclusive photos at ClicheDigitalMag.com

Read more Music interviews on ClicheMag.com

Alyson Stoner Talks Dancing, Singing, and that Missy Elliot Tribute: Photographed by John Hong, Styled by Adrien Rabago, Makeup by Anton Khachaturian for Exclusive Artists Management using MAC Cosmetics, Hair by Paul Desmarre for Exclusive Artists Management using Oribe Hair Care. Dress: Adrien’s Closet Vintage, Shoes: Zara

Ashley Monroe Interview + Giveaway

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After three solo albums, Ashley Monroe has landed her first two Grammy nominations, and excitement doesn’t even cover it. We chatted with her about what she’s looking forward to about the ceremony, working with Blake Shelton, and what’s next. Read on for our exclusive interview with her, and a chance to win an autographed copy of her album, The Blade!


Cliché: What were you doing when you found out about your first Grammy nominations?
Ashley Monroe: I had just opened my eyes and grabbed my phone and saw I had all these texts. At first, I panicked, thinking something was wrong, but once my eyes woke up enough to focus, I saw it was, indeed, great news.

What went through your head? Were you shocked, surprised, excited?
I was super, super excited and proud that The Blade made the cut. It’s always been a dream of mine to be nominated for a Grammy. What are the odds?

The Blade is your third solo album. How would you say your music has transformed over the years?
I think it’s grown up with me. I’ve always written from a really honest place and have always had to feel what I was writing or singing to feel it was good enough. That’s still a rule for me. I’ve obviously grown vocally and musically in the 10 years since Satisfied, yet I haven’t gone too far away from it.

What’s your favorite song to perform from the album?
That’s a hard one. Music is all about setting a mood. When I’m hyper and excited, it’s “Winning Streak.” When I’m Debbie Downer, it’s “If The Devil Don’t Want Me.”

One of the noms is for a duet you did with Blake Shelton. How was that collab experience?
It was truly great and so easy because he has been one of my closest friends for years. We have sang around many campfires, living rooms, and a little karaoke, too, now that I think about it. It was neat to get to do it on the big stages.

If you could collab with anyone, who would you choose?
Tom Petty, and always, Dolly.

Are you attending the ceremony? If so, what are you most excited about?
I am! My first time! I’m excited to just watch it and look around me at all the pretty outfits.

Anything else you’d like our readers to be on the lookout for in 2016?
I’m still planning, but just know I’ll always be making music.

Cliché Magazine is teaming up with Ashley Monroe for a giveaway you won’t want to miss! Enter to win an autographed copy of Ashley Monroe’s album, The Blade!

Five (5) lucky winners will receive the following:
– One autographed copy of The Blade
Prizing c/o Ashley Monroe

How to Enter:
– Fill out the form below for entry to the giveaway, then follow us on Twitter!
– Earn extra entries by doing things like following us on Pinterest and tweeting about the giveaway**
**You may tweet once daily to earn extra entries

Selection:
The winner will be chosen at random using Rafflecopter.com and will be contacted within 48 hours after the giveaway has ended. The winner will be given 72 hours to claim his or her prize before he or she must forfeit it to another winner.

Giveaway open to U.S. addresses only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Read more Music Interviews and Giveaways on ClicheMag.com

Ashley Monroe Interview + Giveaway: Photographed by Joseph Llanes