BELLA NYC MAGAZINE Interviews Alysia Reiner from Orange is the New Black


“Orange is the New Black, ” is the story of Piper Chapman, a woman in her thirties who is sentenced to fifteen months in prison after being convicted of a decade-old crime of transporting money for her drug-dealing girlfriend.

Alysia Reiner is an award winning actress, producer, mother, humanitarian, and outspoken environmentalist. Her work is prolific as an actress. She’s appeared on screen and stage, has won awards and rave reviews, but you may know her as  the despicable, assistant warden Natalie “Fig” Figueroa on the show.

In 2013, Alysia Reiner and Suz Somersall partnered to create the limited edition celestial inspired pave sapphire locket. The locket bears the sentiments of The Women’s Prison Association’s tagline, “Strengthen Empower Connect,” and is a beautiful, creative representation of WPA’s work with women. The locket continues to raise visibility and funding for WPA’s programs. 
WPA is grateful to receive 100% of the profits from this beautiful collaboration.

We sat down with Alysia for a quick chat, as she prepares for Cocktails for a Cause were Designer KiraKira and her are being honored by WPA for the time they have dedicated to the creation and to increasing awareness of the The WPA Limited Edition Locket.

Learn more about Alysia, her character and this wonderful cause below:

  • BELLA: What do you enjoy most about being on #OINTB?
  • AR: THERE ARE SO MANY THINGS! I love how we are creating awareness and change around the issues of women in prison, diversity, and the challenges faced by the transgender community. I love being part of a new genre of internet TV and breaking molds in so many ways. I love the incredible creative team – as people and artists everyone is so talented, the writers, actors, producers, the DP, set dressing, costumes, I can go on and on about everyone!!


  • BELLA: Is it difficult to separate how your character is perceived to how people see you in real life?
  • AR: People tend to know I am nothing like “Fig.” I do get recognized a lot on the train or the street, but everyone is very kind about it. My daughter did learn the term “bad ass” a little early however when a gushing fan called me that over and over.


  • BELLA: How do you feel your role impacts the portrayal of women on television?
  • AR: On our show, all the characters are so complex, three dimensional, and real. There are no perfect heroes or villains, just real, complicated humans. “Fig” is one of them, and a joy to play for that reason.


  • BELLA: How can Bella readers get involved in your beautiful efforts through WPA?
  • AR: Thank you so much for asking! Well the easiest way is to head over to Kira Kira and buy one of the lockets I co-designed!  Best of all, 100% of the proceeds go to the WPA – yep 100%! You can also buy a ticket to the upcoming benefit for the WPA and if you do, pleeeeease come say Hi to me and tell me you came through this magazine! To purchase a locket, go HERE.
Written By
More from BELLA Magazine

Blissful Spa Day #BestOfNYC

It’s Monday (and I don’t know about you) but it’s back to...
Read More