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Told through the bold perspective of a vivacious drag queen named Tanvi, Naturally Tan follows Tanya Thomas' desperation to fit in as a minority in Singapore and her search for acceptance in America.
Fueled by assimilation pains, Tanya delves into the heart of colorism that plagues the Asian diaspora, the complexities of racial identity, and the consequences of damaging beauty standards.
Will Tanya hide behind her insecurities forever or will she embody her worth as a woman of color, mother, and artist?
Naturally Tan is a one-woman seriocomic play written and performed by Tanya Thomas, with direction and development by Jessica Lynn Johnson.
Naturally Tan is a captivating theatrical exploration of colorism, damaging beauty standards and identity representation in the Asian diaspora. Experience a powerful amalgamation of seriocomic elements, music, dance, and compelling visuals through 35 multicultural characters as Tanya guides the audience through her transcendent cross cultural path to self-worth. Naturally Tan adds a distinct voice to the full range and diversity of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) stories.
"I hope that audiences not only find themselves thrilled by the entertaining nature of the show,” said Tanya Thomas, “but recognize the dichotomous reality that our differences can be both a source of pain and strength.”
but also very
funny and entertaining,
"Naturally Tan is
that takes us on a journey through a world none of us are familiar with."
"Naturally Tan is a
through the narration of her friend Tanvi,
a rather wonderful Singapore drag queen...
I loved “Naturally Tan,” and I hope you get the chance to see it for yourself."
"Her story is
in her solo show... keeping the audience enchanted from start to finish in this tour-de-force performance. This girl is a star!"
TOTALLY AND ASTOUNDINGLY BRILLIANT
"Tanya Thomas is
Tanya Thomas is a very polished actress equally well versed at comedy and drama and an excellent storyteller. She seamlessly performed over 35 characters and reminded me of an exotic Sandra Bullock."
one woman show.
"Naturally Tan is a
Playwright, Performer, Producer
Director and Developer
PAMELA NAJERA MICHAEL
Tanya Thomas is an award winning solo artist, playwright, producer, actress and voiceover artist who started off her career hosting Top 40 radio shows in Singapore, jazz shows on KJAZZ 88.1FM in Long Beach, CA, and hosting 3 podcasts for Apple. Her one woman play, Naturally Tan, debuted as an official selection of Solofest 2021 at Whitefire Theatre in Los Angeles, where it also won a Best of Fest Award. At the Hollywood Fringe, the show received critical acclaim and won Pick Of The Fringe and the Best of Broadwater encore award. Tanya hopes her journey and play helps you step into your own light, celebrate your uniqueness, and helps deepen our understanding of what is to be human.
Jessica Lynn Johnson is a published playwright, recipient of Best National Solo Artist Award, Advisory Board Member of the LA Women’s Theatre Festival, and Founder & CEO of Soaring Solo LLC. Jessica has aided in the development of over 100 solo shows! As a performer, Jessica has “edu-tained” international audiences touring her own one person shows ZE and Oblivious to Everyone for over 15 years. Jessica’s projects have taken home awards such as Top Of Fringe, HFF Encore Producer Awards, Larry Cornwall Award For Musical Excellence & several other accolades! Jessica is so honored to be working on this wonderful solo show, Naturally Tan!
Jo Situ Allen (also known as Dirty Eraser) is a California artist known for her dreamy works in ink and watercolor. She is sought out for her refined, playful, sensitive and thoughtful artwork that reflects her experience as a Chinese American immigrant, naturalist, intersectional feminist, designer and mother of two.
Jo is also the author and illustrator of The Accidental Naturalist – a series of books celebrating California’s native flora and fauna.
Cameron Jordan Photography is known for playful and ethereal images that are simultaneously raw and dreamlike. She is dedicated to making positive changes in the world through her craft and does editorial and lifestyle imagery. She has had work featured in Rolling Stone, Vogue, and Conde Nast. Clients include Disney, Tile, Apple, Vonage, Sol Angeles, Bel Kazan, Imagine Dragons, Kucoon, Matches Fashion, and many more. She is so pleased to collaborate with Tanya to create the image for Naturally Tan.
Vijayalakshmi is a world-renowned Indian classical dancer, an acclaimed exponent of Mohiniyattam, the graceful classical dance form from South India. Daughter and disciple of Bharati Shivaji, Vijayalakshmi takes Mohiniyattam to higher levels by expanding traditional boundaries. She is also a choreographer, actress, speaker, feminist, writer & singer. A recipient of several prestigious awards, including from the Sangeet Natak Academy, she has performed at some of the most prestigious venues around the globe. She is the Artistic-Director of the Centre For Mohiniyattam, New Delhi & the Founder-Director of The Mohiniyattam Institute, Los Angeles.
Originally from Toronto, Canada, Serina is a Creative Director and Designer from an artistic family that spans three generations of sign-painters. She found her way to LA after living in Miami, Buenos Aires, Barcelona and Ibiza. With a focus on human-centered design, Serina’s passion, curiosity and authenticity shine through everything she creates. A background in entertainment, lifestyle, brand advertising and experiential, from start-ups through to Fortune 500 companies. Clients include AT&T, Google, Salesforce, T-Mobile, Samsung, The Honest Company, Zumba, World Animal Protection, and more. From ideas to fruition, Serina is an all around creative solution finder with heart.
Pamela Najera Michael immigrated from the Philippines to the United States in 1979. Pamela was formerly a full time medical assistant and switched professions at 35. She danced professionally with a background in jazz, ballet, and hip-hop for over 15 years. Pamela has found true satisfaction in being of service to her fellow solo-artists in designing a ‘uniquely-you’ choreography, fit for any level of dance. Pamela also wrote, produced, and performed in her own one-woman-show called, Too Old Too Asian Too Short.
Tori Constantine (Known on the internet as BodieToli) is a high school student from San Diego who does digital art as a pastime as well as a hobby. She mainly focuses on cartoons and more digital works of art which can be seen throughout her Twitter and Instagram.
Aside from a long career as an actor, Kenny Johnston is a videographer and editor. Having founded MediaDelux Video Services, Kenny works with many solo artists creating video shorts, green screen effects and performance videos.
Byron Glickfeld is a video editor and sometime acting partner with Tanya (using his screen name of B.G. Grey). Some of his editing work can be seen on YouTube and Vimeo.
Eileen Rosete is the founder of feminist wellness brand, Our Sacred Women, whose mission is to restore women to a place of reverence through specialty gifts, events, and campaigns that help women feel seen, valued, and honored. She is currently writing her first book, Our Womb Loss – a compassionate guide to grieving and postpartum healing after pregnancy and infant loss, which will be published by Sounds True in Fall 2022.
Sameer Gupta is known as one of the few percussionists simultaneously representing the traditions of American jazz on drumset, and Indian classical music on tabla. Today he lives in Brooklyn, NYC and is actively involved in performing, curating, producing and teaching through various institutions including the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, Manhattan School of Music, and Carnegie Hall’s Global Encounters. From bebop to avant-garde jazz, and European classical percussion to North Indian classical tabla. Gupta continues to compose and perform music from a true multi-cultural perspective that now bridges several continents.
Gerry Gibbs is a Grammy nominated Drummer, Producer, Band Leader, Composer & Arranger. Gibbs has released 14 albums as a leader. His first, back in 1996, Gerry Gibbs Sextet – The Thrasher featured saxophonist Ravi Coltrane with Quincy Jones as Executive Producer. More recently Gibbs released Gerry Gibbs & The Thrasher Dream Trio, We’re Back and Live In Studio which featured Jazz luminaries Ron Carter & Kenny Barron. Gibbs created the Thrasher People Band with the release of the double CD Weather or Not. Gerry just released his latest album, Songs From My Father, featuring the music of his father, Terry Gibbs.
Bobby Wilkerson is a rare and genuine talent. As his musical journey progressed, Bobby found time in his busy schedule to give back to kids in the Pacoima area. Bobby’s vocal and drumming skills afforded him the opportunity to perform and tour with artists such as Charlie Wilson, The Gap Band, Teena Marie, The Temptations and many more. Currently he is the musical director for the renowned funk group Slave, The Delfonics Revue, and the drummer for the R&B group Side-Effect. He arranged, composed and produced his acclaimed debut album entitled The B Project. Bobby Wilkerson is a producer extraordinaire and after folks check out The B Project, they’ll know why Bobby “had to put it down this way to keep originality in the game”.
Mena Melath is a young singer from Kasaragod in Kerala, India. Mena brings virtuosity and allure to her eponymous debut, Omanathinkal Kidavo – the celebrated lullaby of Irayimman Thampi, through her sublime voice. The song is featured in Naturally Tan.
Her latest Malayalam song ‘Unni En Kannile’ is available on Spotify.
Nikhita Thorpe is a singer-songwriter and voice actor whose first gig was voicing
a movie trailer for Brahms: The Boy 2. Listen out for a snippet of a song she wrote when she was 4 years old in Naturally Tan.