AmNY -Chatting with ‘OITNB’s’ Laura Gomez


Laura Gómez plays Litchfield Penitentiary inmate Blanca Flores. (Credit: Getty Images / Ilya S. Savenok)

Laura Gómez plays Litchfield Penitentiary inmate Blanca Flores. (Credit: Getty Images / Ilya S. Savenok)


By Kelly Killoren Bensimon July 24, 2014

‘Orange Is the New Black” has drawn raves for its diversity and complex female characters, many of which have broken out thanks to their challenging roles.

One such actress is Laura Gómez. The current New Yorker, who was raised in the Dominican Republic, plays the seemingly crazy Litchfield Penitentiary inmate Blanca Flores. But that isn’t the only notable role on her resume.
The actress is a member of the Repertorio Español, where she has participated in critically acclaimed plays, including “Doña Flor Y Sus Dos Maridos” and “La Casa de los Espiritus.”

Gómez has also been the face for brands such as CoverGirl and Suave and has provided her voice for the Spanish audiobooks for “How the García Girls Lost Their Accents” and “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.” She’s also worked in film, writing, directing and producing the short films “Hallelujah” and “To Kill a Roach.”

We sat down with Gómez at Morandi in the West Village, where she clues us into what it’s like to play Flores and what she loves about New York.

Q: Where are you from?
A: I’m from the Dominican Republic.

Q: Why did you come to New York?
A: I came here in 2001 to train as an actor.

Q: Who did you study acting with?
A: I studied the Meisner Technique with Robert Patterson.

Q: What made you connect with that technique?
A: I connected with the moment to moment of not overacting and just responding. I look for that in my own life, just trying to be present.

Q: You play a crazy person on TV. How does that make you feel?
A: It’s been liberating to use my tools in acting. In makeup, they laugh because they have to make you un-pretty. I even get a unibrow. It’s always a challenge as an actor, and I love the character work.

Q: How has “Orange Is the New Black” changed your life?
A: The show has such had a huge impact. Now when I go to auditions and meet casting directors, they know who I am. Viewers are loving the show and its diversity.

Q: You were invited to the Jeff Koons and H&M collaboration launch. What did you think of it?
A: I loved it. I just went to the Jeff Koons exhibit at the Whitney. Before I went, I was sitting in a dentist chair getting a root canal, and decided I was definitely going.

Q: You aren’t just an actor.
A: I have also written and directed two short films — “To Kill a Roach” and “Hallelujah.” I took a course at NYU’s film school. Now my films are getting into festivals and have even won awards.

Q: What’s your personal style?
A: I’m eclectic. I can go in so many directions: funky, sexy and sometimes conservative.

Q: What from your Dominican roots gave you a solid foundation?
A: I am very family-oriented and respectful of my elders. This business can be a bubble. My upbringing grounds me in humility and pride.

Q: Where are your favorite restaurants?
A: I love Gramercy Tavern, Morandi and the Asian restaurant Decibel.

Q: What do you love about New York?
A: I honestly love Central Park. It’s quiet and I love to write there.


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Posted on August 1, 2014 by , under HOME, KKB Blog

KKB Chats with Aerin Lauder

Kelly talks to Aerin Lauder

Kelly talks to Aerin Lauder

Posted on November 2, 2013 by , under HOME

AmNY – Having a ‘Ball’ with Teen Pop sensation Austin Mahone


Kelly Killoren Bensimon goes backstage to chat about Kanye and music with Austin Mahone:

Holiday season fever is already here, and with that comes many a teenager’s favorite event: the Z100 Jingle Ball on Dec. 13.

And this year’s lineup is filled with stars, including Miley Cyrus, Robin Thicke, Pitbull, Enrique Iglesias, Fall Out Boy, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Selena Gomez. This season’s breakout star, Austin Mahone, will also be performing.

The official charity partner for Z100’s Jingle Ball 2013 is the Ryan Seacrest Foundation, which is dedicated to inspiring today’s youth through entertainment and education-focused initiatives. The nonprofit will receive $1 from each ticket sold.

In 2011, Mahone became a YouTube sensation and even opened for Taylor Swift’s “RED” tour.

Mahone — who was feeling ill and hospitalized Thursday according to his rep — spoke to me at the lineup announcement last week at Aeropostale in Times Square, Mahone dished with me while my youngest daughter and her best friend sat by in awe of the 17-year-old star.

Q: What’s your favorite song on your album?
A: “What About Love.”

Q: What’s the necklace you are wearing?
A: Lil Wayne Trukfit diamond necklace.

Q: Who’s your favorite designer?
A: I have a Louis Vuitton backpack and a Gucci belt, but I think Kanye [West] should be a designer.

Q: What are you going to be for Halloween?
A: I’m going to dress up in all black and jump out of a tree and scare kids.

Q: What’s your favorite thing about New York?
A: I love the pizza and Times Square.

Q: What do you wear to perform?
A: I wear jeans, T-shirt and Kanye Easy Ones [beige].

Q: Who’s the coolest person you have met?
A: President Obama.

Q Who would you rather be?
A Mila Kunis and follow myself on Twitter.

Q: Who’s your favorite Z100 DJ?
A: JJ and Elvis [Duran].

Q: What instruments do you play?
A: Drums, guitar, ukulele and piano.

Q: Any advice?
A: Have fun and live with no regrets.

Posted on October 22, 2013 by , under HOME

Filming From The Top


So, this is what it looks like. Lights, camera, and lots of action. Filming for  tv is so much fun especially when you get to talk about what you love. For this  show, ( to be mentioned soon) I was able to show how to decorate with what you  love, and how to make something inexpensive look priceless. My talking points: be a hoarder (collect what you love), change your apt/ house regularly, add paint, wallpaper, a new mirror to inspire yourself, and decorate with what you love. Show off your fav books and items, and NEVER be afraid to be proud of where you have been and what you’ve learned.

Stay tuned!

Posted on September 22, 2011 by , under HOME


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