Photo of Angela


Featured in The Sunday Star-Ledger

May 14, 2008

I AM SO NEW JERSEY! Read ALL about it!

It’s dandelion season in Irvington.

A tenacious green plant may emerge from a crack in the concrete in a backyard, the same concrete in which brother and sister left their footprints two decades ago.
Given a bare minimum of water and sunlight, it may triumphantly flower — only to discover society calls it a weed.
Yep, even as a teenager, Angela Kariotis knew a good metaphor when she saw one.
The nose-in-a-book girl who grew up on Union Avenue now writes searing one-woman “spoken word” plays that chronicle her gritty urban upbringing as a first generation Greek-American.
The result is not quite “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn,” for her work is too provocative, too funny.
Nor is it “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” for it is too raw, too poor.
Instead, a Hollywood agent might pitch it as “My Skinny Little Greek Dandelion Grows in Irvington.”
Or, as Kariotis promises her audiences, it’s “the 411 on 07111,” Irvington’s ZIP code.
Her first play, “Reminiscence of the Ghetto & other things that raized me,” is a hip-hop chronicle of her search for identity in the hometown to which she remains fiercely loyal.- Kathleen O’Brien, THE STAR-LEDGER

The Star-Ledger is the largest newspaper in New Jersey and the 11th largest in the United States. On Sunday, perhaps the biggest paper-reading day of the week, The Star-Ledger runs a feature story titled I AM NEW JERSEY. This section profiles an interesting New Jersey native. There is something unique about their story. The reporter who contacted me is Kathy O’Brien. Not only was her writing wonderful, her interviewing was so subtle. The interview was not really an interview, and the piece was not necessarily about my work. It was about me and my life. It was about all those things and people that have provided content. It felt awkward talking about myself. I don’t like doing it. I didn’t realize that feature section was actually about the person. Anyhow, more than about me, what really makes me proud was sharing the spotlight with one of my biggest inspirations, my very small family with very big personalities and all the places we stopped along the way, how it all went down, and how we came up. It’s as much about my brother and my mother as it is about me. It’s also about my husband and my daughter too. It’s about this cast of characters and their character. The Star-Ledger also posts their stories on an online blog. So if you didn’t check the black and white, you can get the story following this link.