Saturday, 25 April 2015

Interview with Marisa Allen

Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honor to interview Marisa Allen, a Belgian revue producer, and performer, director, and creator of the award-winning show ballet "The New Sensations". She has been The Designer of the Stars for more than 10 years. Hello Marisa!
Marisa: Hello dear Monika!
Monika: You look fantastic, Marisa. What is the secret of your beauty?
Marisa: I think it is love and happiness… it makes me glow.

Courtesy of Marisa Allen.

Monika: When did you decide that you would like to be a stage artist?
Marisa: I did not decide that at all. It has been in my blood since I was a little girl… I started to perform children's plays at the age of 5.
Monika: Do you remember your first show?
Marisa: Oh yes I do… I was just a little girl… I asked my mother what should I be… lol.
Monika: Could you say a few words more about your best revues and shows?
Marisa: In a few words, that’s impossible. We had the chance, my company and I, to travel around the world. We were really blessed.
We had sponsors who believed in us, so we could create the most wonderful shows. Great theatres and spectacular casinos invited us to perform.
Monika: Are you working on any new project now?
Marisa: I sold all of my Show company, and I work now as a designer of all kinds of stage costumes and for various artists.
I still do perform but as a stand-up comedian. I do play different characters such as The Queen of Belgium, a call-girl, little girl, Marilyn Monroe, etc… It is really fun.

Courtesy of Marisa Allen.

Monika: Being beautiful always produces a lot of girl power and empowerment. Do you often use it?
Marisa: YES !!!!! EVERYDAY !!!! 
Monika: Have you ever thought about film acting?
Marisa: I did many little parts in some small productions in Europe, and some small parts in soap opera series, I played even a lesbian girl... NOT TYPICAL casting… lol
Monika: At the time of your transition, did you have any transgender role models that you could follow?
Marisa: Yes, sure I did, my role model was LOVA MUSTANG or Tacky van Pekin, she was an Italian beauty, singer, movie star, live performer; she started together with the world-famous Amanda Lear. We lived for 10 years together... and then I had to give her back to GOD.
Monika: Are there are any transgender ladies that you admire and respect now?
Marisa: Sure, I worked with Dana International, a great lady, and I do respect all my sisters all over the world, famous or not!

Courtesy of Marisa Allen.

Monika: What was the hardest thing about your coming out?
Marisa: To be honest: NOTHING.
There has been no change since I was already a little girl. At kindergarten, when I was 3 years old, my parents went to tell the headmaster that I was a special little girl. Soon my name was replaced with Fabienne, and later I changed it into Marisa. I love the water, and in Hebrew, it means "Princess of Waters".
Monika: What do you think about the present situation of transgender women in Belgian society?
Marisa: To be honest, I think it is OK. I really do not have a lot of time to go deeper into the matter. But all my close friends are very happy, and the acceptance is wonderful.
A lot depends on yourself, I think. It is very important to behave like a lady and not a cheap floozy. Respect others and you will be respected too.
Monika: The transgender cause is usually manifested together with the other LGBT communities. Being the last letter in this abbreviation, is the transgender community able to promote its own cause within the LGBT group?
Marisa: I am not the kind of girl who feels the need to manifest. I have nothing to manifest, and I am really not selfish or egocentric.

Courtesy of Marisa Allen.

I think it is good that some people deal with it and come up for our rights! It makes the world change and sometimes listen.
I have always been aware that I am very lucky with a lot of things: my family, my friends, my career, and of course my husband; this year we will have been 27 years together... yes, we were just children when we met. 
Monika: What do you think about transgender stories or characters which have been featured in films, newspapers, or books so far?
Marisa: I think it is great, there is one thing that really bothers me a lot. Namely, there are often some nice parts in movies, which could be played by transgender girls. Unfortunately, they are always played by biological women. They never cast a real transgender woman. Lucky for us, these actresses are very good.

Courtesy of Marisa Allen.

Monika: Could you tell me about the importance of love in your life?
Marisa: Yes, it is very important. I think it makes you or breaks you. I am blessed with a wonderful Mom and Dad, a great big brother and his family, and top of the cake: my love of my life, my dear husband. For a few months I have been a proud mother of a little angel from Ghana/ Africa; it feels a little like Madonna.
Monika: Congratulations! Do you like fashion? What kind of outfits do you usually wear? Any special fashion designs, colors, or trends?
Marisa: Yes I do, it is a big part of my life and work. I am always overdressed. I do not like to blend in. I always stand out and this has been the case since I was a little girl. New trends are not really my thing. I prefer to be a trendsetter myself! I like bright colors a lot …whereas dark colors are not really my cup of tea.

Courtesy of Marisa Allen.

Monika: Many transgender ladies write their memoirs. Have you ever thought about writing such a book yourself?
Marisa: Yes, as a matter of fact, I have... but it is going to be a volume of 14 books. So many things happened to me, so many nice encounters, from princes to stars, from mafia guys to millionaires and pour souls… but in the end, we are only people. No matter how rich you are… what nationality you are… WE ARE HUMANS!
Monika: Where do you see yourself within the next 5-7 years?
Marisa: I really hope to be under a palm tree with a cocktail in my hand… No that’s a joke, I will be still busy with my company. I am a slave of my own creations and a workaholic. I love to create and produce… It is in my veins.
Monika: What would you recommend to all transgender girls, thinking about the entertainment career?
Marisa: I was often asked this question. It is not because you are a transgender woman, so you end up in show business. No, of course not. You do or you do not! It is all about liking what you are doing… just follow your dream!!!
Never give up, be a good person and respect yourself and others. 
Monika: Marisa, thank you for the interview!
Marisa: You are very welcome, it was a real pleasure. Geertz from Belgium.

All the photos: Courtesy of Marisa Allen.
© 2015 - Monika Kowalska

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