• Hey, It's That Voice! #17: Jennifer Paz

    Hello! Welcome back to that weekly article you know and love (at least, I hope know and love), "Hey, It's That Voice!" Today, we finally talk about that fan favorite gem that I'm sure most of you have been waiting for! Let's look at the voice behind the aquatic gem, Lapis Lazuli!

    Lapis is quite the character. First caught in the middle of a gem war she wanted no part of. Cracked. Imprisoned in a mirror. Wanting to go home, only to find it has changed drastically. Forced fused with Jasper. And now sharing a barn with a gem that once only saw her as an informant. She has had quite an eventful existence. It can be understood why folks latch on to her character. But who is the voice behind this hydrokinetic gem? Why, what would be Jennifer Paz!

    Lapis deserves to smile. She has such a cute smile.

    Jennifer Paz was born on April 24, 1974 in Manila, Philippines. Born the youngest of four children, Paz and her family moved from the Philippines to Seattle, Washington when she was five. After her freshman year at the University of Washington in Seattle, Paz made her first debut on the stage by playing the alternate for Kim on 1st National Miss Saigon US Tour. Quickly, she would join more stage productions, including Les Misérables (including joining the 10th anniversary cast for Les Misérables: The Dream Cast in Concert), The Fantasticks as Luisa (at the Singapore Repertory Theatre), Flower Drum Song as Mei-Li, the 2003 Los Angeles production of Songs for a New World (where she also served as co-producer), The Last Five Years as Cathy, Jesus Christ Superstar as Mary Magdalene, and the title role of Cinderella.

    Jennifer Paz (Cinderella), with Suzanne Bouchard (Stepmother), Sarah Rudinoff (Grace), Nick Garrison (Joy). P hoto credit: Chris Bennion of Seattle Gay News, 2011

    That was only a fraction of Paz's theater experience. However, what should be noted is her multiple award nominations and wins for work. She is a three-time LA Stage Alliance Ovation Award nominee, winning in 2008 for her role in Miss Saigon. Other honors Paz has earned include the following: Carbonell Award (winner), Helen Hayes Award (nominee), San Diego Critics Circle (nominee), and 2011 Independent Reviewers of New England (nominee for best lead actress).

    While Paz's stage acting is absolutely stellar, but what about on the big and small screens? Believe it or not, she has not done much in regards to television and film. She has lent her voice to some English versions of Jet Li films, including The Legend II and The Defender (originally titled The Bodyguard from Beijing). Paz also had cameos in two nineties comedies; Girl and Can't Hardly Wait. She has also appeared on a few television series, including a guest appearance on Touched By An Angel and has appeared on the Nickelodeon cartoons The Angry Beavers and As Told By Ginger.

    And finally, Jennifer Paz is a wonderful singer. In fact, she has an album 'Awakening', released in 2006. Below is a sample of Paz's musical talent, in which Jennifer sings a duet with Kendra Kassebaum, "Impossible", where they reprise their roles from Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella as Cinderella and the Fairy Godmother respectively.

    In more recent news, Paz has been participating in a new musical Mama Bares along with the voice of Pearl, Deedee Magno Hall. In fact, we made a post about it a while back.
    Jennifer Paz is engaged to Anthony Fedorov, the fourth place finalist for the fourth season of American Idol. Together, they make music under the name Auraganix. Together, they have a son. For more information about Jennifer Paz can be found on her website, which you can visit by clicking here.
    And that will do it for this edition of "Hey, It's That Voice!" Join me next week as we look at the voice of an angry slice of pie.