Spotlight

  • Maxine Hong Kingston honored by President Obama

    Posted by AC Team

    Maxine Hong Kingston honored by President Obama
    July 29, 2014 Washington D.C. Author Maxine Hong Kingston was honored today by President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington D.C. She received the National Medal of Arts. Other honorees receving the 2013 National Medal of Arts include singer Linda Ronstadt, documentary filmmaker Albert Maysles, and Hollywood studio CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg.  The National Medal of Arts is...

Featured Articles

  • May 17: Thom Sesma is the keynote speaker for the Library of Congress celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM) at the Mary Pickford Theater

    Posted by: Lia Chang

    Thom Sesma. (Photo by Lia Chang)

    On Thursday, May 17, 2012, actor/director Thom Sesma, who just completed a two and half year run as Scar in Disney’s The Lion King Las Vegas, will speak at the Mary Pickford Theater located on the third floor of the Library of Congress James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. at noon. His talk is part of the Library of Congress celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM) noon events in May, sponsored by the LC Asian American Association.

    Sesma just participated in the all-star Shinsai: Theaters for Japanbenefit at Cooper Union’s Great Hall in NYC, in memory of the tragic events of March 2011 and in tribute to the heroic recovery efforts of the Japanese people.

    In rehearsal at Lincoln Center for Shinsai: Theaters for Japan, a collaborative benefit by New York’s leading theater companies as a gesture of solidarity with theater communities in Japan devastated by the 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami, on March 9, 2012. Photo by Lia Chang

    Photos: In Rehearsal with Director Bartlett Sher and the cast of Shinsai: Theaters for JapanPhotos: Highlights of Shinsai: Theaters for Japan (3pm) with Andre Bishop, Mary Beth Hurt, Jennifer Lim, Angela Lin, Philip Kan Gotanda, Thom Sesma, Sab Shimono, Richard Thomas, Jay O. Sanders, and more Photos: Highlights of Shinsai: Theaters for Japan (8pm) with Oskar Eustis, Patti LuPone, Lisa Emery, Ann Harada, Paolo Montalban, Thom Sesma, Sab Shimono, Henry Stram, Richard Thomas, John Weidman and more

    He is an Asian-American actor, a familiar presence on Broadway and Off-Broadway, in regional theatres, as well as on television. In January 2012, he returned to New York from Las Vegas where he played Scar in Disney’s The Lion King for a two and a half year run at The Mandalay Bay Theatre.

    Thom Sesma (Photo by Lia Chang)

    On Broadway he starred in the Twyla Tharp-Bob Dylan collaboration,The Time They Are A Changin’. Other credits on and off...

  • BD Wong Creates Kickstarter Campaign for his Live Concert Recording of HERRINGBONE, to be performed May 21-22 as a Benefit for Dixon Place

    Posted by: Lia Chang

    For 30 years, BD Wong has been obsessed with the one-man musical Herringbone, which features a book by Tom Cone, music by Skip Kennon and lyrics by Ellen Fitzhugh, and was first produced in New York at Playwright’s Horizons in a memorable 1982 production starring David Rounds.

    BD Wong (photo by Lia Chang)

    Wong has headlined four critically-acclaimed productions of the ambitious musical – in which he enacts, sings and dances at least 11 characters – at the Williamstown Theatre Festival (2007), McCarter Theatre (2008), and La Jolla Playhouse (2010), all directed by Tony Award-winner Roger Rees (Nicholas Nickleby, Peter And The Starcatcher). Wong also starred in another earlier production at the American Musical Theatre Festival in 1994.

    Dixon Place is presenting BD Wong’s tour-de-force performance in this difficult-to-perform musical, which is rarely revived.

    BD Wong in Herringbone. Photo by Lia Chang

    Wong, best known for his Tony Award winning performance in M. Butterfly and his role in the long running hit series “Law & Order: SVU,” will appear in Herringboneto benefit Dixon Place for two performances only: Monday May 21, and Tuesday May 22, at 7:00pm. The production, which will be recorded live for a future CD release, will be Wong’s first appearance in New York of the material, timed with the 30th anniversary of the original New York production. Dixon Place is at 161A Chrystie St. (between Rivington and Delancey). Tickets and more information are available at dixonplace.org and at 212 219-0736.

    Wong has also created a Kickstarter campaign to help fund the live recording of the CD. His goal for funding is $35.000, and to date he has received over $11,000 in pledges. This project will only be funded if at least $35,000 is pledged by Tuesday, May 22, 7:00 pm EDT. Click below to see BD Wong’s very personal message.http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/484701422/bd-wong-live-concert-recording-of-the-musical-herrI documented Wong’s...

  • Hearing Voices Everywhere by Ben Fong-Torres

    Posted by: Ben Fong-Torres

    It’s been a while since I’ve written, but I’ve got excuses. For one thing, I was engrossed in The Voice, the singing competition on NBC, because I’m related to one of the singers who made the Elite 8. For another, I’ve been out in public, at the L.A. Times’ Festival of Books at USC, emceeing a sendoff for the president of San Francisco State University (a couple of my jokes even made the local press), and keynoting an Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Commerce dinner, on the eve of Asian Pacific American Heritage month. B.D. Wong, now being seen on the NBC series, Awake, was a late (and great) addition to the program.

    I also cranked out an article for The Hollywood Reporter about Dick Clark, based on a sometimes contentious Rolling Stone interview I did with him in 1973, followed by a fun run, a couple years later, through Las Vegas. And I conducted some interviews for my Little Feat book, with Jimmy Buffett, John Sebastian and others.

    But forget all that. I had a family tie to The Voice?

    Yep. Lindsey Pavao, the most indie of the final bunch of singers, is, if I got it right, a second cousin of my niece Tina’s husband, Matt Pavao. He told me this over brunch at the Foreign Cinema just as the show was whittling the original 48 contestants (a dozen each for celeb “coaches” Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine, Blake Shelton and Cee-Lo Green) to eight.

    I’d been watching the show (I prefer it over American Idol), and had noted Lindsey’s name, but never thought there might be a family tie. And I liked her soft, unique voice (others sounded like Adele, or an opera singer, or a generic Rob Thomas or R. Kelly type).

    But Lindsey, who was on Christina’s team, didn’t survive “America’s” vote, which determined the final four. She lost to the operatic guy, who lost to the R. Kelly guy, who probably just edged Juliet Simms, a knockout rocker whose fiery version of “Freebird” coulda, shoulda made her “The Voice.” Simms, I learned after...

  • June 23 - Live Online Townhall on APIA Hate Crimes & Bullying 2pm EST/11am PST on Google Hangout*

    Posted by: Suzanne Kai

    APAforProgress.com News Release

     from Curtis Chin, APA for Progress Board President 

    On Saturday June 23, 2012 Asian Pacific Americans for Progress, a national network of progressive Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders and allies (www.apaforprogress.org) is organizing a live online one hour nationwide townhall to discuss hate crimes and bullying. 

    Leading APIA civil rights leaders will be participating in the national online Townhall including Congressmember Judy Chu, OCA Executive Director Tom Hayashi and more. 

    Asian Pacific Americans for Progress is looking for cities to help host viewing parties to be a springboard for groups to also talk about local issues after the one-hour presentation is done. 

    Vincent Chin 30: Standing Up Then and Now

    A nationwide Google Hangout* townhall with leading civil rights leaders from around the country 

    Saturday, June 23, 20122 pm EST/11 am PST/8 am HST

    In 1982, Vincent Chin was the victim of a hate crime murder in Detroit. Thirty years later, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders continue to face discrimination and bullying. In fact, more than half of Asian Americans report being bullied in the high school class room, the highest of any racial group. In light of recent tragedies like the suicide of Pvt. Danny Chen and the continuing effects of 9/11, what can Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders do to stand up against racism and discrimination?

    Please join APAforProgress.org for a one-hour panel discussion with leading voices from the nonprofit, legal and judicial communities as we address these timely issues. Viewing parties have been organized in more than 20 cities and individuals can tweet in questions at #VC30. Contact Asian Pacific Americans for Progress, a national network of progressive Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders and allies (www.apaforprogress.org) to see how you can be involved.

     

    Townhall on APIA Hate Crimes & Bullying

    Please join us for a one-hour panel discussion with leading voices from the...

  • Performing Arts Images from the Asian American Pacific Islander Collection on Display at the Library of Congress to Celebrate APA Heritage Month

    Posted by: Lia Chang

    From May 1 through May 31, 2012, “In Rehearsal”, a display of photographs drawn from the Library of Congress’ Asian American Pacific Islander Collection, is on view in the Library of Congress’ Asian Reading Room, located in Room 150 of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First Street S.E., Washington, D.C. The hours of the Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room are 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

    Lia Chang with her Lia Chang Theater Portfolio “In Rehearsal” photographs on view through May 31, 2012, in the Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room, in the Thomas Jefferson Building in Washington D.C, on May 5, 2012.

    Selected scripts from the Performing Arts Playwright Series in the Library of Congress’ AAPI Collection. Photo by Lia Chang

    Sponsored by the Library of Congress’ Asian Division, the display of “In Rehearsal” photographs, drawn from the AAPI Collection’s Lia Chang Theater Portfolio, along with select working scripts from the Playwrights’ Archives including the plays of Rick Shiomi, Velina Hasu Houston, Christine Toy Johnson, Reme Grefalda, Jeanne Sakata, and Lani Montreal, is being held in conjunction with the Library of Congress celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM).

    Selected scripts from the Performing Arts Playwright Series in the Library of Congress’ AAPI Collection. Photo by Lia Chang

    The 54 photographs on display feature the following artists rehearsing for “opening night”: Shinsai: Theaters for Japan, a collaborative benefit by New York’s leading theater companies as a gesture of solidarity with theater communities in Japan devastated by the 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami; Katie Hae Leo’s Four Destinies, produced by Mu Performing Arts in Minneapolis MN; BD Wong and Wayne Barker’s King Matt the First with Wong directing Rosie O’Donnell’s Theater Kids; Cindy Cheung’s SPEAK UP CONNIE a one-person show also directed by BD Wong; David Henry Hwang’s Chinglish at...

  • Business and Heartbreak by Marilyn Tam

    Posted by: Marilyn Tam

     Business and Heartbreak

    By Marilyn Tam

    “Violence is what happens when we don’t know what to do with our heartbreak… learn how to allow your heart to break open to embrace the lessons with compassion, not broken into sharp shards that hurt others as well as yourself”

    -                     Parker J Palmer, author, educator, and founder of the Center for Courage & Renewal. 

    Dr. Palmer directed the above quotation at leadership and democracy, but I think it applies to how you should manage your business and life too. Violence in business and life thankfully does not usually degenerate into physical force, but the above concept is instructive in how we deal with all our challenges. 

    When we have a life or business challenge, do we narrow our focus to how we can get out of the immediate circumstance, or do we expand our vision and strategy to learn how we can improve the results for this and other situations?

    With a challenge is looming in front of us, it is easy to fall back into a reflexive mode. We want to make the problem go away immediately, but a decision made in haste or from anger is less than ideal. The flight or fight instinct is activated and to respond aggressively or retreat without full consideration of the options, often prove to be worse than the initial situation. 

    Many years ago when I was Vice President of Nike Apparel & Accessories, we were faced with a severe shortfall in sales on our launch line of Major League Baseball apparel. The customers stayed away in droves. Several retailers wanted us to take the merchandise back because it was performing much less than planned. My first snap reaction, after the initial shock, was to investigate how we can stop all ongoing production and get out of that business.

    Taking a moment to center myself, I started the process of what I call PAGDE. After the initial pause, I assessed the total situation, not just the feedback from a few extremely vocal people with strong opinions who spoke up...

  • Mabuhay Inc. Culture School students discover books by Filipino authors in the Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room

    Posted by: Lia Chang

    Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room in the Thomas Jefferson Building in Washington D.C. Photo by Lia Chang

    On the first Saturday in May, I was in the Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room, located in Room 150 of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First Street S.E. in Washington, D.C., to photograph the Performing Arts Images from the Asian American Pacific Islander Collection, on display through May 31, 2012.

    Selected scripts from the Performing Arts Playwright Series in the Library of Congress’ AAPI Collection. Photo by Lia Chang

    Sponsored by the Library of Congress’ Asian Division, the display of 54 of my “In Rehearsal” photographs, drawn from the AAPI Collection’s Lia Chang Theater Portfolio, along with select working scripts from the Playwrights’ Archives including the plays of Rick Shiomi, Velina Hasu Houston, Christine Toy Johnson, Reme Grefalda, Jeanne Sakata, and Lani Montreal, is being held in conjunction with the Library of Congress celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM).

    Members of the Mabuhay Inc. Culture School in the Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room in the Thomas Jefferson Building in Washington D.C. on May 5, 2012. Photo by Lia Chang

    I was delighted to meet up with 10 children, their parents and chaperones from the Mabuhay Inc. Culture School, who had driven in from College Park, Maryland, for their second field trip in the Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room.

    Members of the Mabuhay Inc. Culture School in the Library of Congress’ Asian Division Reading Room in the Thomas Jefferson Building in Washington D.C. on May 5, 2012. Photo by Lia Chang

    More than 20 years ago, Mencie Y. Hairston and a group of parents established Mabuhay Inc. Culture School, a terrific weekend cultural and educational enrichment program where Filipino-American children ages 4 – 16, learn the common bonds of history, geography and culture between the United...

  • May 20, 21: Epic Theatre Presents Jeanne Sakata’s Hold These Truths, starring Joel de la Fuente at 47th Street Theatre

    Posted by: Lia Chang

    The NYC Epic Theatre Ensemble is presenting Jeanne Sakata’s solo playHold These Truths (formerly known as Dawn’s Light: The Journey of Gordon Hirabayashi), directed by Lisa Rothe and starring Joel de la Fuente, in a free and prototype production at the 47th Street Theatre, 304 W. 47th St. between 8th and 9th Ave in New York on May 20 and 21 at 8pm.

    Inspired by a true story, Dawn’s Light takes placed in Seattle during World War II, where University of Washington student Gordon Hirabayashi is agonizing over U.S. government orders to forcibly remove and mass incarcerate all people of Japanese ancestry on the West Coast. As he fights to reconcile his country’s betrayal with his passionate belief in the U.S. Constitution, Gordon journeys toward a greater understanding of America’s triumphs — and a confrontation with its failures.

    The production is free and open to the public, and begins at 8pm. Clickhere to RSVP. http://epictheatreensemble.org/holdthesetruths

    Remembering Civil Rights Leader Gordon Hirabayashi,1918- 2012President Obama Names Asian American Civil Rights Hero Gordon Hirabayashi Recipient of Presidential Medal of Freedom 

    Jeanne Sakata (Photo by Lia Chang)

    Jeanne Sakata made her playwriting debut in recent years with her solo show Hold These Truths (formerly Dawn’s Light: The Journey of Gordon Hirabayashi). The play had its world premiere in 2007 at East West Players, co-presented by the Japanese American National Museum, UCLA Department of Asian American Studies, and the UCLA Asian American Studies Center, and was subsequently chosen by the Epic Theatre Ensemble and the Lark Play Development Center for their first joint presentation, as well as by the New York Theatre Workshop to be showcased at their 2009 Dartmouth Residency. Most recently, the play was performed at Chicago’s Pritzker Pavilion with Silk Road Rising/Millennium Park as part of the Park’s 2011 IN THE WORKS New Plays Series. It was also presented in the Epic...

  • David Henry Hwang, BD Wong, Francis Jue, Jennifer Lim, Brian d’Arcy James, Oskar Eustis, and Leigh Silverman at WNYC’s The Greene Space

    Posted by: Lia Chang

    On Monday, May 7, 2012 at WNYC’s The Greene Space in New York, Tony award-winning Playwright David Henry Hwang celebrated the release of his newly published play from TCG Books, Chinglish, which received its Broadway premiere in Fall 2011 and was named “Best American Play of 2011” by TIME magazine, and by Bloomberg Radio, NY1 and WNYC as one of the Top 10 Broadway shows of the year.

    David Henry Hwang at WNYC’s The Greene Space in New York on May 7, 2012, courtesy New York Public Radio. © 2012 Lia Chang

    The critically acclaimed Chinglish is set for the silver screen, and a tour which kicks off in the Fall at Berkeley Rep. Fast and Furioushelmer Justin Lin (Better Luck Tomorrow, Finishing the Game), recently acquired the film rights toChinglish and is set to begin shooting in 2013, with a screenplay by Hwang.Filmmaker Justin Lin Acquires Film Rights to David Henry Hwang’s Critically Acclaimed Broadway Comedy Chinglish

    WNYC’s The Greene Space in New York on May 7, 2012, courtesy New York Public Radio. © 2012 Lia Chang

    The play has been nominated for 3 Drama Desk Awards including – Outstanding Play for Hwang, Outstanding Actress in a Play for Jennifer Lim and Outstanding Set Design for David Korins. Chinglish opened at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago in the summer of 2011, winning two Jeff Awards – for Hwang (New Work-Play) and scenic designer David Korins (Scenic Design-Large), before moving to Broadway.

    Brian d’Arcy James, Leigh Silverman, David Henry Hwang, Oskar Eustis, BD Wong, Jennifer Lim and Francis Jue at WNYC’s The Greene Space in New York on May 7, 2012, courtesy New York Public Radio. © 2012 Lia Chang

    This Fall, Hwang succeeds Athol Fugard as Signature Theatre’s Residency One playwright for the 2012-2013 season at the company’s new home, The Pershing Square Signature Center (480 West 42nd Street between Dyer and 10th Avenues). Residency One is Signature’s core one-year playwright-in-residence program that...

  • SHANGHAI CALLING Premieres at the 2012 Newport Beach Film Festival

    Posted by: Suzanne Kai

    May 2, 2012

    Newport Beach, California

    Tomorrow marks the world premiere of SHANGHAI CALLING directed by Daniel Hsia, and produced by Janet Yang ("The Year of the Fish," "The Weight of Water" and "The Joy Luck Club."  

    The film makes its premiere as the closing night event of the Newport Beach Film Festival which attracts more than 30,000 attendees annually.

    Shanghai Calling stars Daniel Henney, best known for his roles in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, the South Korean romantic comedy My Lovely Sam Soon, and starred alongside international pop star RAIN in the series The Fugitive: Plan B.

    Henney stars in SHANGHAI CALLING as Sam, a promising young New York attorney selected to open his firm's new satellite office in Shanghai, despite the fact that he speaks no Chinese and knows nothing about Chinese culture. 

    Zhu Zhu plays Fang Fang in SHANGHAI CALLING, Sam's attractive and street-smart legal assistant, who uses her impeccable wardrobe and stunning appearance to conceal the truth about her background.  An actress, singer, model and music video host on MTV China, she co-stars in Quentin Tarantino and RZA's upcoming martial arts film The Man with the Iron Fist, alongside Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu. 

    Eliza Coupe plays Amanda, a relocation specialist who speaks fluent Chinese and is an expert on local customs and culture. Coupe is an actress from Scrubs, Flight of the Conchords, Community and Happy Endings. 

    Geng Le is an acclaimed actor from such critically lauded Chinese films as Spring Subway, Resless, Beijing rocks, Desires of the Heart, andmany television series. Geng Le plays "Awesome Wang," an investigative journalist with an uncanny ability to dig up hard-to-find facts no matter what the circumstances. 

    Source: Official website ShanghaiCalling.com

    The film's synopsis:

    The film is a romantic comedy about modern-day American immigrants in an unfamily land. When an ambitious New York attorney is sent to Shanghai on assignment, he immediately stumbles into...

Featured Media

You need Flash player 8+ and JavaScript enabled to view this video.

In the news