Tag Archives: JP Viernes

Color Blind Casting Poses No Obstacle To Filipino-American Dancing As British Billy Elliot

Initially, it’s impossible to ignore that 15-year-old actor J.P. Viernes leaping and soaring through the musical Billy Elliot is not a typical youngster in a downtrodden unsophisticated mining village in northeast England in the 1980s. John Peter Viernes, with a broad grin and flashing eyes, is inescapably a Filipino-American with caramel-colored skin and half-moon eyes. But by all accounts, his infectious charisma, joyous dancing and sheer acting skills successfully banish most audience members’ resistance to the color-blind casting within a few minutes.

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