Owner Lissette (Musician, Singer, Artist, Filmmaker

 
 
 
 

WRITER / DIRECTOR / ACTRESS

LISSETTE NAPOLEONI

 

After graduating from high school in Puerto Rico, Lissette Napoleoni relocated to Columbus, Ohio, where she graduated with honors and earned a Degree in Advertising from the School of Journalism at Ohio State University.  After graduation Napoleoni moved to Michigan, and earned a Master’s Degree in Telecommunication Arts; Video and Film Production, from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, with a full Merit Fellowship.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyPhv7FmgDk (commercial spec- director-1 minute)  Her first job came as a director and videographer of a promotional campaign for Miller Lite/Leo Burnett in Detroit, Michigan. Afterwards she began work video-taping castings for Video Portfolios agency in New York City, which had casting clients such as Elizabeth Arden, Calvin Klein, Paramount Television shows, and television pilots.  While in New York, Napoleoni also became a professional photographer, and specialized in headshots for actors and publicity pictures for musicians; while also participating as a model in several hair and runway shows for Jean Paul Mitchell products.  It was during these years in New York City that she met musician and guitar player Peter Valentino, and after relocating to the East Village, formed the band Neon Venus, (http://www.neonvenus.com official band website), for which she became the lead singer.  After some time, Napoleoni arrived to California where she directed and produced her first rockumentary in 2004 based on the Neon Venus European Band Tour for the Armed troops; and also directed and produced four Neon Venus music videos.  All of these Neon Venus video productions aired on MTV Español, MTV Puerto Rico and VHUno from 2003-2008, as well as online websites and YouTube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykAx5PPKD24 (Beso a Beso, first MTV video) And also, she has more raw, underground rock videos such as this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9s0HeAtJEKE One of the videos was mostly shot underwater in a pool, where Napoleoni got to show her skills as a synchronized swimmer, (from her past training and participation as a teenager in The National Synchronized Swimming Team of Puerto Rico):  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuVzL7pE0Os (VHUno).  Her band Neon Venus rode the wave of the Latin music exploding scene (2000-2010), which included mainstream artists like Paulina Rubio, Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez, and also up and coming alternative acts such as Mana, the Aterciopelados, Calle 13, etc. http://www.mtv.com/artists/neon-venus/ During this time, she also took acting courses with Jeff Conaway (Taxi, Grease) that focused on film scenes.  In 2008, she opened a theater/performance venue in Las Vegas, NV, giving her the opportunity to host shows, while dancing and singing in several Vegas casinos including the Paris, the Palazzo, Sahara, the Excalibur, and several others.  It's there where she became part of her second thriving indie scene, the exciting popping up of venues and artistic life in the Arts Disctrict in Las Vegas.  She performed with dozens of other bands during the key years of the development of the much needed artistic community of LV, near the Strip:   http://www.lasvegasweekly.com/blogs/the-playground/2009/apr/10/become-model-percussionist-or-living-sculpture-neo/http://www.lasvegasweekly.com/news/2009/jun/18/neon-different-kind/ Shortly thereafter, Napoleoni opened a second venue The Neon Venus Art Theater currently established in Hollywood, CA.  Here she has formulated and offered acting classes, voice lessons, photography and film classes, and she has produced and booked 40 to 50  monthly live shows since 2012 (most performances focus on Improv).  In 2012, she started the first Improv Troupe program of the venue, which is currently home to seven long form teams, and one sketch group.  Presently, Napoleoni organizes and manages all events at The Neon Venus Art Theater, with shows varying from Improv, to stand-up, to rock performances, including film meet-ups, and speaking engagements to educate the community in all areas of filmmaking.  Past speakers include producer/story editor Adam Coplan (The Last Samurai, Daddy Day Care, IRobot, Wonder Boys, The Truman Show, The Matrix, Lethal Weapon 4, Conspiracy Theory); producer/director Darin Scott (Menace II Society, To Sleep With Anger, Tales From the Hood, Something Wicked); and sound expert Lou Kleinman (Godzilla, Gladiator, The Bourne Identity) among many others (http://www.meetup.com/Filmmaking-and-Screenings-in-Hollywood/).  She currently manages additional artistic activities at the theater that include meet-up art shows (http://www.meetup.com/The-Hollywood-Painting-Meetup/), which have brought in profit, and beauty to the theater walls.  Some of the work showcased in past art exhibitions, including Napoleoni’s own fine art photography.   She performs at the theater whenever possible with her sketch team, the Sketch-a-phrenics http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jAnazXfZ9Kc  (she plays the old lady in the Stripperman sketch), she acts in webisodes with her team http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cCoa_UURglU, and a video of her team Sketch-a-phrenics with guest teams Barney Five and Thrashtown http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UJ6s8fkI2w .....,and she also acts in other short comedic videos:  (campy Catwoman video):  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCVPrSUOwHs.

They say lighting doesn't strike twice, but it hit three times, when Lissette's community of actors became part of a third very exciting growing indie movement, the booming Improv scene in Los Angeles: http://www.laweekly.com/2013-07-04/stage/improv-clubhouse-crashbar-tnt/

Her life in the middle of thriving artistic communities has influenced her personal artistic projects and  in the position of director and producer, Napoleoni is currently in the development stage of producing an indie film based on an original screenplay she wrote entitled ZEROES (http://www.zeroesfilm.com ).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQKTxpv_-QU (Lissette's five minute directing reel)

 

Lissette became sole owner of the venue in August 2013, after an amicable split (and divorce) from business partner Peter Valentino,.

 
 
 
NEON VENUS BIO
 
Neon Venus is an original mix of alternative, rock and Latin grooves, with a punk edge.   The band features high energy performances with lots of onstage movement.  Lead singer Lissette dances to their tunes creating a fun and different performance experience. 
 
In 2005, MTV Español aired Neon Venus' self-directed rockumentary based on their tour of Europe, which included cities in Spain, Italy, Turkey, Egypt and the Sinai.  Four Neon Venus music videos (Beso a Beso, Step Into My Island, and Volveremos, Irresistible) have aired on MTV Español, VHUno (Latin VH1- USA) and/or MTV Puerto Rico, from 2003-2008. A DVD released in 2011 includes all those videos, plus any other video produced all the way till 2011.
 
Neon Venus has released three CDs: "Irresistible" (2006) a bilingual double CD, with one disc containing songs mostly in English, and the other with songs mostly in Spanish, and two previous CDs, "Slip Into Rhythm/Cae En El Ritmo" (2002) and "The Birth of Neon Venus" (1999).
 
Neon Venus members are: Lissette Napoleoni,Puerto Rican born and raised lead singer; Peter Valentino, lead guitarist;and Jr Oberlander in bass.
 
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The live videos in their 2011 DVD include shows at the band's two venues, the Neon Venus Art Theatre in Hollywood and the one in Las Vegas, which they shared with other bands to create a scene. This DVD includes performances from October 2010 to the summer of 2011, including Jay Oberlander in drums and Sean Logan as DJ/loopist. 
 
Neon Venus are rock entrepreneurs and underground survivors.  The Las Vegas Weekly says: "At the Neon Venus, art is life and life is a party." Both venues are an outlet for Neon Venus' music and shows, and for the artistic expression of fellow artists.  Through their space, classes and partnerships with established artists, Valentino and Napoleoni are trying to create a fertile performance-and art based scene." 
 
Lisa Walz, a Las Vegas booker for the Gold Mine Tavern says:
 
"The pleasure of having Neon Venus perform was all mine. The show was rocking. Thank you for the show. Once the outdoor stage is built for the Gold Mine, I would love to have you back for a show. I would love to help spread the word about your incredible band."
 
Many tracks from their records have received college and internet airplay in the US, as well as on commercial stations and shows like Rodney on the Rock, on KROQ 106.7 FM in Los Angeles.
 
So far, Neon Venus' original songs have been on many compilations including one to benefit tsunami victims and many compilations for top Latin rock magazine "Boom!".
 
You can read Neon Venus updates on their Facebook page (add /Neon Venus), videos can be seen on YouTube/neonvenusmusic. 
One of their latest videos is a piece with friends in Las Vegas: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1C-p93bOD08.