East West Players Announces 52nd Anniversary Season

East West Players (EWP), the nation’s longest-running professional theatre of color in the country and the largest producing organization of Asian American artistic work, is pleased to announce its 52nd Anniversary Season, The Company We Keep, which takes place from Fall 2017 through Summer 2018 and features co-productions with Rogue Artists EnsembleThe Robey Theatre CompanyJapanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC), and the Los Angeles LGBT Center, including two world premieres, an acclaimed revival, and the Los Angeles premiere of an award-winning Broadway musical.

“For our 52nd Anniversary Season, I thought a lot about the company we keep—the vital artistic and community partnerships that have supported and nurtured East West Players over the past 52 years. To that end, we are offering something no other theater company is doing: an entire season of co-productions. These extraordinary works reflect on and refract a wide range of Asian Pacific Islander experiences as seen through the lens of gender, race, and sexuality. We don’t shrink or hide. Instead, we stand taller, unafraid, and, most importantly, together. Welcome to The Company We Keep,” says EWP Artistic Director Snehal Desai.

EWP’s 52nd season commences with the world premiere of Kaidan Project: Walls Grow Thin, a special event presented in association with Rogue Artists Ensemble—a collective of multi-disciplinary artists that creates Hyper-theater, an innovative hybrid of theater traditions, puppetry, mask work, dance, music, and modern technology—with support from Venturous Theatre Fund of The Tides Foundation, the Jim Henson Foundation, the Japan Foundation, and the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs. Written by Lisa Dring, Rosie Narasaki, and Chelsea Sutton with Rogue Artists Ensemble, and directed by Rogue’s Artistic Director Sean T. Cawelti, Kaidan Project: Walls Grow Thin is a multi-sensory, site-specific experience refracting ancient Japanese ghost stories through a modern, multi-cultural lens, revealing the noise of our histories and the silences that haunt us. Performances run from October 5 – November 5, 2017 and will be staged at a secret Mid-City, six-story warehouse built in 1927, to be revealed after tickets have been purchased. More information at www.rogueartists.org.

EWP and The Robey Theatre Company—which explores, develops, and produces provocative plays written about the Global Black Experience—present the revival of Yohen, written by Philip Kan Gotanda, directed by The Robey’s Producing Artistic Director Ben Guillory, and starring Danny Glover, with support from the S. Mark Taper Foundation. In Japanese pottery, the term “yohen” refers to unpredictable changes that take place in the kiln. James and Sumi Washington are an interracial couple struggling to maintain their 37-year marriage after James retires from the US Army. The dramatic change in routine prompts questions about life, love, and aging, as the couple attempts to repair what’s broken and decide what is worth saving. Performances run from October 26 – November 19, 2017 at the David Henry Hwang Theater at the Union Center for the Arts at 120 Judge John Aiso Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012. More information at www.eastwestplayers.org and www.robeytheatrecompany.com.

EWP and Japanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC)—one of the largest ethnic arts and cultural centers of its kind in the United States and a hub for Japanese and Japanese American arts and culture in Southern California—and by special arrangement with Sing Out, Louise! Productions and ATA, present the Los Angeles premiere of the Broadway musical Allegiance. With music and lyrics by Jay Kuo and a book by Marc Acito, Kuo, and Lorenzo Thione, Allegiance is inspired by the true childhood experiences of TV/film actor and social media icon George Takei (Mr. Sulu on “Star Trek”). Allegiance tells the story of the Kimura family, whose lives are upended when they and 120,000 other Japanese-Americans are forced to leave their homes following the events of Pearl Harbor. An uplifting testament to the power of the human spirit, Allegiance follows the Kimuras as they fight between duty and defiance, custom and change, family bonds and forbidden loves. Performances run from February 21 – April 1, 2018 at JACCC’s Aratani Theatre at 244 South San Pedro Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012. More information at www.eastwestplayers.org and JACCC.org.

EWP’s 52nd season closes with the world premiere of As We Babble On, presented in partnership with the Los Angeles LGBT Center and with support from the S. Mark Taper Foundation. Written by Nathan Ramos, winner of EWP’s “2042: See Change” playwriting contest, As We Babble On explores the pursuit of success, its costs, and conquering the Swedish BIGBOX. Benji, a first-generation Asian American, struggles in New York City to find his voice as his writing career stalls. As the professional paths of his best friend Sheila and his half-sister Laura begin to blossom, he begins to unravel. As We Babble On explores what lengths we are willing to go to realize our dreams, whether morality is tied to upward mobility, and whether boxed wine and soda is an appropriate sangria recipe after the age of 24. Performances run from May 31 – June 24, 2018 at the David Henry Hwang Theater at the Union Center for the Arts at 120 Judge John Aiso Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012. More information at www.eastwestplayers.org and www.lalgbtcenter.org.

Single ticket sales will be announced at a later date. Season subscription options will be forthcoming in June 2017. For additional information about the 52nd season, please visit www.eastwestplayers.org or call (213) 625-7000. Dates, details, and ticket prices are subject to change.

As the nation’s premier Asian American theatre organization, East West Players produces artistic work and educational programs that foster dialogue exploring Asian Pacific Islander (API) experiences. Founded in 1965, at a time when APIs faced limited or no opportunities to see their experiences reflected outside of stereotypical and demeaning caricatures in the American landscape, EWP not only ensures that API stories are told, but works to increase access, inclusion, and representation in the economy.

For more information about East West Players, please visit www.eastwestplayers.org.

‘America ReFramed’ Honors #APAHM with New Documentary Films on WORLD Channel

This May, for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM), WORLD Channel’s award-winning series, AMERICA REFRAMED partners with the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM), and Pacific Islanders in Communication (PIC) to celebrate the voices of Asian Pacific Americans with a selection of original and compelling documentary films that spotlight the identity and diverse stories of this community. On the Wednesday immediately following the TV premiere, films will be available online for FREE viewing across the U.S. via www.americareframed.org for 3 months.

May 9 * GOOD LUCK SOUP
For 29-year-old filmmaker Matthew Hashiguchi, growing up half-Japanese American in an Irish-Catholic neighborhood in Cleveland, Ohio, was a difficult experience. His inability to blend in with the predominantly White population of his surroundings translated into his own personal struggles with race, and in America ReFramed: Good Luck Soup audiences join Matthew on a journey to discover how Japanese heritage influenced the lives of his Japanese American family members; before, during and after World War II.

May 16 * UNBROKEN GLASS
When he was six-years-old, Dinesh Sabu’s parents died. Raised by his siblings, he had little idea who his parents were or where he came from. Now as an adult with a burning curiosity, Dinesh sets out on a journey across the United States and India to piece together their story. Uncovering a silenced family history of mental illness, Dinesh confronts the legacy of having a schizophrenic mother who died by suicide, the reality of growing up an orphaned immigrant, and the trauma of these events in America ReFramed: Unbroken Glass.

May 23 * BREATHIN’ – THE EDDY ZHENG STORY
Arrested at 16 and tried as an adult for kidnapping and robbery, Eddy Zheng served over 20 years in California prisons and jails. America ReFramed: Breathin’ – The Eddy Zheng Story paints an intimate portrait of Eddy-the prisoner, the immigrant, the son, the activist-on his journey to freedom, rehabilitation and redemption.

Audiences are invited to learn more about this community through the #MyAPALife social conversation on WORLD Channel’s Facebook and Twitter, in partnership with American Documentary, PBS, Center for Asian American Media (CAAM), and Pacific Islanders in Communications (PIC). WORLD and American Documentary will be hosting a live digital conversation between Asian Pacific American filmmakers from America ReFramed in May.

About AMERICA REFRAMED

AMERICA REFRAMED is a co-production of the WORLD Channel and American Documentary, Inc.

AMERICA REFRAMED curates a diverse selection of films highlighting innovative and artistic approaches to storytelling from emerging and veteran filmmakers alike. Viewers will be immersed in personal stories from the streets of towns big and small to the exurbs and country roads that span the spectrum of American life. The documentaries invite audiences to reflect on topics as varied as culture, healthcare, politics, gun violence, religion and more.

An award-winning documentary series, AMERICA REFRAMED is the recipient of a Christopher, a GRACIE, and several Telly and Cine Golden Eagle Awards, as well as nominations for an EMMY, Independent Documentary Association, and Imagen Award.

AMERICA REFRAMED Series Credits
Executive Producers: Justine Nagan, Chris Hastings, Chris White
Series Producer: Carmen L. Vicencio

Discrimination Against LGBT People Could Cost Indonesia Almost $12B USD a Year

Discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Indonesians in workplaces, schools, and social opportunities is pervasive and will limit their ability to fully contribute to the Indonesian economy. A new study shows that the cost of discrimination to the Indonesian economy could range from nearly 900 million to 12 billion US dollars.

In LGBT Exclusion in Indonesia and Its Economic Effects, researchers M.V. Lee Badgett, Amira Hasenbush, and Winston Ekaprasetia Luhur examine the evidence that discrimination occurs against LGBT people, and the study shows how that treatment can hold back economic growth in Indonesia.

Key findings from the report include:

  • Waria (an Indonesian term for transgender women and effeminate men) face many barriers because they violate cultural rules about gender. Waria are often unable to get work, stay in school, or open a bank account because the gender listed on their identification cards does not match their gender presentation.
  • LGBT people and those perceived as LGBT report high levels of harassment in school, which may reduce educational attainment and reduce economic productivity later in life.
  • In some regions, LGBT people rely heavily on work in the informal employment sector, particularly sex work and jobs in salons.
  • Studies of LGBT Indonesians show that most have experienced violence, resulting in increased economic burdens.
  • Stress associated with prejudice produces higher rates of depression and suicide, impairing economic productivity.

M.V. Lee Badgett, an economist who has conducted similar studies in other parts of the world, notes, “To reach their full economic potential, LGBT people need to develop their human capital, or their abilities, skills, and knowledge. This report shows that LGBT Indonesians are often held back from reaching that point, which prevents them from contributing fully to the economy.”

Badgett compares the Indonesian economy to that of India where similar research has been completed. “The data in Indonesia is somewhat limited,” Badgett said. “If we draw on research from India, we would estimate that the loss resulting from LGBT exclusion in Indonesia would be from 0.1 percent to 1.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), or $862 million to $12 billion.” The report shows that public attitudes in Indonesia are far less accepting of homosexuality than attitudes in India, so this estimate of Indonesia’s estimated financial loss is considered conservative.

The findings of LGBT Exclusion in Indonesia and Its Economic Effects rely on an extensive review of peer-reviewed literature as well as documentation from governments, intergovernmental organizations, and non-government organizations.

The Williams Institute, a think tank on sexual orientation and gender identity law and public policy, is dedicated to conducting rigorous, independent research with real-world relevance.

John Cho and Leslie Mann to host the Academy’s Sci-Tech Awards

Actors John Cho (pictured) and Leslie Mann will host the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation on Saturday, February 11, at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills.
Actors John Cho (pictured) and Leslie Mann will host the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation on Saturday, February 11, at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills.

Actors John Cho and Leslie Mann will host the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation on Saturday, February 11, at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills. They will present 18 awards to 34 individual recipients, as well as five organizations, during the evening.

“We’re so excited to have John and Leslie join us as hosts for this year’s Scientific and Technical Awards,” said Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs. “It’s one of our favorite, and most talked about, events each Oscar® season, and John and Leslie’s humor and refreshing take on the honorees will be a perfect addition to a night where we celebrate our colleagues’ groundbreaking scientific and technical achievements.”

Cho most recently starred in the summer blockbuster “Star Trek Beyond.” His other credits include “Grandma,” “Star Trek Into Darkness,” “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle” and “American Pie.” He also appeared in the 1999 Best Picture Oscar winner “American Beauty.”

Mann can currently be seen starring alongside Robert De Niro in Taylor Hackford’s “The Comedian.” Her feature film credits include “How to Be Single,” “The Other Woman,” “This Is 40” and “Knocked Up,” as well as the animated features “Rio 2” and the Oscar-nominated “ParaNorman.”

Portions of the Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation will be included in the Oscar telecast.

The 89th Oscars® will be held on Sunday, February 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live on the ABC Television Network at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT. The Oscars also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is a global community of more than 7,000 of the most accomplished artists, filmmakers and executives working in film. In addition to celebrating and recognizing excellence in filmmaking through the Oscars, the Academy supports a wide range of initiatives to promote the art and science of the movies, including public programming, educational outreach and the upcoming Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, which is under construction in Los Angeles.

Disneyland Resort Expands 2017 Lunar New Year Celebration to 17 Days, through Feb. 5

Lunar New Year Celebration Presents New ‘Hurry Home’ Presentation, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese Food and Entertainment, plus Disney Magic at Disney California Adventure Park

LUNAR NEW YEAR ENTERTAINMENT Ð Guests will celebrate and experience Asian culture with colorful live performances from various performing groups. This year's Lunar New Year celebration at Disney California Adventure Park is expanded for 17 days from Friday, Jan. 20 through Sunday Feb. 5, 2017, and pays tribute to the Year of the Rooster. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)
LUNAR NEW YEAR ENTERTAINMENT Ð Guests will celebrate and experience Asian culture with colorful live performances from various performing groups. This year’s Lunar New Year celebration at Disney California Adventure Park is expanded for 17 days from Friday, Jan. 20 through Sunday Feb. 5, 2017, and pays tribute to the Year of the Rooster. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)

Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Mulan and Mushu will join guests for a bigger-than-ever Lunar New Year celebration at Disney California Adventure Park, from Friday, Jan. 20, through Sunday, Feb. 5, 2017. This joyous celebration for the Year of the Rooster expands to 17 days, with colorful live performances, fun-filled activities, beautiful decor, Disney characters in their Lunar New Year costumes, and special food and merchandise offerings.

Guests at the Lunar New Year celebration will discover new Disney magic as they experience Chinese and Vietnamese cultures through a variety of live performances, including Chinese acrobats and authentic musicians. Each night prior to “World of Color,” a new feature called “Hurry Home – Lunar New Year Celebration” will tell the tale of a journey home for Lunar New Year. The six-minute feature is presented in sequences, utilizing projected animation along with the lighting, special effects and powerful fountains of “World of Color.”

As “Hurry Home” unfolds, guests follow along on the journey of a Little Lantern returning home for the annual celebration of good luck and fortune. Little Lantern encounters three “dream sequences,” featuring appearances by Mulan and the dragon Mushu. “Hurry Home” employs two contrasting animation styles, with fully rendered CG animation and sequences inspired by traditional Chinese paper cut-out style animation. The story is scored with music created for the opening ceremony of Shanghai Disney Resort by Academy Award- winning composer Tan Dun (“Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”).

LUNAR NEW YEAR CELEBRATION Ð Guests will celebrate Lunar New Year with the new, six-minute feature called ÒHurry Home Ð Lunar New Year CelebrationÓ presented before ÒWorld of ColorÓ at Disney California Adventure Park. The heartwarming nighttime water show follows the journey of a Little Lantern returning home for the annual celebration, and features appearances by Mulan and Mushu. This year's Lunar New Year festivities are expanded for 17 days from Friday, Jan. 20 through Sunday Feb. 5, 2017, and pays tribute to the Year of the Rooster. (Richard Harbaugh/Disneyland)
LUNAR NEW YEAR CELEBRATION Ð Guests will celebrate Lunar New Year with the new, six-minute feature called ÒHurry Home Ð Lunar New Year CelebrationÓ presented before ÒWorld of ColorÓ at Disney California Adventure Park. The heartwarming nighttime water show follows the journey of a Little Lantern returning home for the annual celebration, and features appearances by Mulan and Mushu. This year’s Lunar New Year festivities are expanded for 17 days from Friday, Jan. 20 through Sunday Feb. 5, 2017, and pays tribute to the Year of the Rooster. (Richard Harbaugh/Disneyland)

Lunar New Year, traditionally celebrated within Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese cultures, commemorates the moment when both the sun and the moon begin their journey for another year. Highlights of the Lunar New Year celebration at Disney California Adventure include:

  • Three locations within the Lunar New Year Marketplace offering foods inspired by the cultures of China (Pork Soup Dumplings, Turnip Cakes with Spicy Sausage), Korea (Kimchi Fried Rice, Steamed Vegetable Dumpling) and Vietnam (Sticky Rice Cake with Pork, Sugar Cane Shrimp Skewer)
  • Additional Lunar New Year menu items at Paradise Garden Grill, including Vegetable Japchae, Kalbi Beef Short Ribs with Steamed Rice, Whole Crispy Tilapia with Citrus Chile Vinaigrette, Beef Pho Noodle Soup, Mango Pudding and Cassava Coconut Cake.
  • Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Chip ‘n Dale, Mulan and Mushu, dressed in their Lunar New Year attire, will welcome guests to a beautiful photo location with a Lunar New Year-themed setting and Happy Lunar New Year banners in English, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese.
  • Live performances by an array of authentic performers, including Chinese concert musician Jie Ma performing on the traditional pipa string instrument, and Vietnamese concert guitarist, composer and teacher Dat Nguyen.
  • The Acrobats of China perform an exciting mix of traditional and classic Chinese dance with human performance art including riveting feats of strength, grace and balance. This award-winning troupe showcases a cultural art form that has been thrilling audiences for more than 2,500 years.
  • “Mulan’s Lunar New Year Procession” – Mulan and her dragon friend Mushu welcome the Year of the Rooster with a colorful and exciting procession of beautiful Chinese umbrella dancers and other delightful performers who arrive to music from Disney’s beloved animated film “Mulan.”
  • Lucky Wishing Wall, where guests may add their own wishes for a wonderful future
    Lunar New Year décor, including beautiful ornamental lanterns and banners wishing guests a Happy Lunar New Year in English, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese
    Lunar New Year commemorative merchandise, including a specially designed t-shirt, pin, decorative trinket box and traditional red envelopes for gift-giving.

For a limited time only, Disneyland Resort guests may celebrate the tradition, sights, sounds and tastes of Lunar New Year with a touch of Disney magic, only at Disney California Adventure. Guests may check for daily entertainment schedules as they become available, at www.Disneyland.com/LunarNewYear

The Disneyland Resort features two spectacular theme parks – Disneyland (the original Disney theme park) and Disney California Adventure Park – plus three hotels and the Downtown Disney District, comprising unique dining, entertainment and shopping experiences. The Resort’s hotels are the luxurious, 948-room Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, which also features 50 two-bedroom equivalent Disney Vacation Club units; the magical, 973-room Disneyland Hotel – both AAA Four Diamond properties – and the 481-room Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel with its “day-at-the-beach” theme. For information on attractions and vacations at the Disneyland Resort, visit Disneyland.com, call (866) 43-DISNEY or contact local travel agents. Located in Anaheim, Calif., the Disneyland Resort opened July 17, 1955. Open daily, year- round.

“What Role Can We Play in Fighting Hate Online?” L.A. Event from the ADL Asian Jewish Initiative and NextGen Community

Robert Kang
Robert Kang
The community is invited to a discussion on “What role can we play in fighting hate online?” sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League’s Asian Jewish Initiative and NextGen Community on Wednesday, February 15, at Google, 340 Main St. in Venice, at 7 p.m. There will be a NextGen-hosted happy hour following the program.

Speakers include Brittan Heller, ADL’s first Director of Technology and Society, and Robert Kang, Cyber Security Counsel and lecturer.

The ADL Asian Jewish Initiative is a partnership with Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles, Japanese American National Museum, Korean American Coalition, Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics, and Search to Involve Pilipino Americans.

The ADL NextGen community introduces ADL’s mission, policies and initiatives to new, youthful audiences and emerging community leaders.

Admission is free but pre-registration is required at:
this form or email [email protected]. Call 310-446-4232 with questions.

The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is one of the nation’s premier human relations and civil rights agencies and is dedicated to combating anti-Semitism and all forms of bigotry, defending democratic ideals, and protecting civil rights for all.

‘Fresh Off the Boat’ Returns for Season 3

Fresh Off the Boat Season 3 Premiere. Tuesday, October 11, 2016. 9:00 on ABC.
Fresh Off the Boat Season 3 Premiere. Tuesday, October 11, 2016. 9:00 on ABC.

The Huang family returns to Tuesday nights beginning October 11 at 9:00 with Fresh Off the Boat’s season 3 premiere, “Coming From America.”  The show picks up where season 2 left off (in “Bring the Pain“), with Louis feuding with his brother Gene, and Grandma following Gene back to Taiwan to make sure he’s okay.

Louis flies the entire family to Taiwan in an effort to make things right with Gene (Ken Jeong). Upon meeting Gene’s beautiful fiancé, Margaret, and seeing the wonderful life he has built for himself, Louis questions whether his life in Orlando is just as great as it could be in Taiwan. Meanwhile, Jessica takes Eddie, Emery, and Evan to her favorite childhood locales, including Dihua Street and Shilin Night Market.

September is Suicide Prevention Month; “Together Not Alone” PSA #IFEELALIVE

#IFEELALIVE is a national awareness campaign launched on the Love and Discovery blog in support of Suicide Prevention Month in September.

Suicide was the 8th leading cause of death for Asian-Americans, whereas it was the 11th leading cause of death for all racial groups combined.

This video is aimed at educating and helping Asian American Pacific Islanders with mental health issues.

The following people contributed to this PSA:
Megan Lee, Jason Chu, Elizabeth Sung James Kyson, Sean Michael Afable, Raymond Ma, Grace Su, Only Won, Lina So, Larissa Lam, Emily Wu Truong, Kanika Lal.

Statistics cited in the video are derived from data from American Psychological Association and American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

8a-2016-09-togethernotalone

Elaine Quijano of CBS News to moderate vice presidential debate

2016-09-02-8A0ElaineQuijanoExcerpted from CBS News:

CBSN anchor and CBS News correspondent Elaine Quijano has been named the moderator of the 2016 vice presidential debate, the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates announced today. Quijano will be the first anchor of a digital network to moderate a national debate in a general election campaign.

The debate will be held Tuesday, October 4, at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. It will be the only debate between the two vice presidential nominees, Democratic Senator Tim Kaine and Republican Governor Mike Pence. The 90-minute debate will be presented live, without commercial interruption, at 9:00 p.m. ET on the CBS Television Network and CBSN.

“It’s an honor to be chosen to help bring the issues of this critical election to the public,” said Quijano.

“Elaine connects today’s digital audiences with this historic 2016 campaign​,” said CBS News President David Rhodes. “Her perspective, dedication to political reporting, and important role on CBS News’s live-streaming platform make her an ideal choice to lead the only vice presidential debate this fall.”

Quijano leads political coverage on CBSN, the CBS News 24-hour digital streaming network, and has anchored CBSN coverage of primary, debate and political convention nights throughout the 2016 presidential campaign. Quijano anchors weekdays on CBSN as well as the Sunday edition of CBS Weekend News. Additionally, her reporting is regularly featured on “CBS This Morning” and the “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley.”

The vice presidential debate will cover a broad range of topics to help voters learn more about the candidates and their positions on the issues. The commission organizing the debates said the time will be divided into nine segments with about 10 minutes of discussion on each topic, and noted that the moderator alone will determine the questions to be asked.

In addition to the vice presidential debate, there are three presidential debates​​​ scheduled this fall between Donald Trump​ and Hillary Clinton​. The first, to be held September 26 at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York, will be moderated by NBC News’ Lester Holt. The second, on October 9, will be moderated by CNN’s Anderson Cooper and ABC News’ Martha Raddatz at Washington University in St. Louis; this debate will be a town-hall meeting style format that will also feature questions from the audience. The third debate, on October 19 at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, will be moderated by “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace.

Photo credit: CBS News

15th Cycle of Visual Communications’ Armed With a Camera (AWC) is Accepting Applications

Visual Communications is now accepting applications for its prestigious Armed With a Camera Fellowship!

In its 15th cycle, the Armed With a Camera (AWC) fellowship has helped over 120 emerging filmmakers to launch careers and give voice to their Asian Pacific American heritage and communities. This program offers six months of training, funding, mentorship, facilities and equipment and an elite world premiere venue – the 2017 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival!

The AWC Fellowship will award up to ten fellows a cash stipend to complete a four to five-minute digital video. In addition, Fellows will attend an all-expenses paid animated filmmaking workshop to LAIKA Entertainment (KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS, CORALINE, CORPSE BRIDE, PARANORMAN) in Portland, OR.

AWC provides the springboard for emerging media makers for their career. Many alumni have gone on to produce feature films, documentaries and other media. Past fellows include Daniel Hsia (SHANGHAI CALLING), Eugene-Lee Yang (BUZZFEED MOTION PICTURES), Kristina Wong (WONG STREET JOURNAL), Evan Jackson Leong (LINSANITY), AYA TANIMURA (music videos), ERNESTO FORONDA (BETTER LUCK TOMORROW) and Erin Li (KEPLER X-47).

Apply today. Eligible applicants must be of Asian Pacific descent and residents of Southern California. If accepted, Fellows must be able to attend mandatory meetings and workshops in Los Angeles. Women, Native Hawaiians & Pacific Islanders, South Asian, and Southeast Asian filmmakers (particularly animators) are highly encouraged to apply to the AWC Fellowship.

You can find the application information here: vconline.org/awc. The AWC Fellowship application closes on October 7, 2016.

East West Players Announces Snehal Desai As Its New Artistic Director

8A-2016-07-01-EWP-SnehalDesaiEast West Players (EWP), the nation’s longest-running professional theatre of color in the country and the largest producing organization of Asian American artistic work for the stage, announces Snehal Desai, as the organization’s fourth Artistic Director, following an extensive nationwide executive search conducted by the Arts Consulting Group. Outgoing Producing Artistic Director Tim Dang will work in an advisory capacity during a transitional period with Desai who assumes his new role starting July 1.

“We are excited that Snehal will be EWP’s next artistic leader,” said Board Co-Chair Daniel Mayeda. “He has a national reputation in the theatre world as a fierce proponent of diversity, multi-culturalism and new Asian American artistic work.” Board Co-Chair Randy Tamura added, “We believe Snehal has the communication and managerial skills, artistic creativity, and dynamic vision for the future of Asian American theatre that make him the ideal candidate to lead the organization into its next fifty years.”

“Since I met Snehal in 2011, aside from his artistic gifts and his producing skills, I recognized a charm and diplomacy in his leadership that will advance East West Players and the next generation of artists through the remarkable sea change that is happening in American theatre,” remarks Tim Dang, East West Players outgoing Artistic Director. “Snehal’s extensive involvement in his career developing over two hundred new plays, the vast majority by artists of color, has allowed him to hone an artistic style and voice that is focused on diversity, inclusion, community building, and social justice. I look forward to his and EWP’s growth and stature in the coming years.”

“I am deeply humbled and thrilled to be East West Players’ next Artistic Director,” said Desai. “EWP has proven time and time again that it is a leader in the American theatrical landscape and that the status quo is not enough. We must keep working to provide artists of color the opportunities and visibility they deserve. Under Tim’s extraordinary 23 year tenure, EWP has consistently demonstrated this with the rich and diverse range of work it has produced. I am grateful for his guidance and example.” Snehal continued, “I am also honored to have been welcomed into the East West Players community these past few years. I look forward to working with the Los Angeles community, the national theater community, board, artists, staff, and patrons to lead this seminal theater company from its golden anniversary into its next golden era.”

As Artistic Director of East West Players, Desai will be charged with providing the artistic vision and strategic, financial and operational direction of one of the most prominent theaters of color in the country. Desai will assume artistic responsibilities immediately and select the 2017-2018 Season.

Desai is currently East West Players’ Associate Artistic Director. His EWP directorial works include the world premiere productions of “A Nice Indian Boy,” and the “U.S. v. Bhagat Singh Thind,” as well as last year’s critically acclaimed production of “The Who’s Tommy.” He has directed plays at venues from The Old Globe in San Diego to Boom Arts in Portland, Oregon to the Old Vic in London, and worked at more than a dozen theaters in New York City. Desai has also produced the annual EWP Visionary Awards gala; oversaw play submissions as Literary Manager; administered the David Henry Hwang Writers Institute; administered the 2042: See Change National Playwriting Competition and the New Asian American Musicals initiative; managed artistic partnerships with local and regional theatres (including Pasadena Playhouse, La Jolla Playhouse, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and A Noise Within); and served as EWP representative on the Asian Pacific American Media Coalition. Among various positions he has held, Desai served as Resident Director of Theater Emory; participated in the Lincoln Center Directors Lab; and was a literary fellow with London’s Royal Shakespeare Company.

A Soros Fellow and the recipient of a Tanne Award, Desai was in the Inaugural Class of Theater Communications Group’s (TCG) “Spark” Leadership Program, was featured in American Theatre magazine’s “20 Theater Workers You Should Know”, and was the Inaugural Recipient of the Drama League’s Classical Directing Fellowship. He was recently featured in the Stage Directors and Choreographers (SDC) Journal and is a member of SDC. Snehal received his B.A. in Theater Studies and Political Science at Emory University and a M.F.A. in Directing from the Yale School of Drama.

ABOUT EAST WEST PLAYERS
Mission Statement: As the nation’s premier Asian American theatre organization, East West Players produces artistic works and educational programs that foster dialogue exploring Asian Pacific experiences.

Established in 1965, East West Players (EWP) has been hailed as the nation’s leading Asian American theater troupe for award-winning productions that blend Eastern and Western movement, costumes, language, and music. EWP has premiered more than 100 plays and musicals about the Asian Pacific American experience and has held more than 1,000 readings and workshops. EWP’s emphasis is on building bridges between East and West, and one measure of our success is an audience of 56% Asians and a remarkable 44% non-Asian attendance. East West Players was founded by nine Asian-American artists (Mako, Rae Creevey, Beulah Quo, Soon-Tek Oh, James Hong, Pat Li, June Kim, Guy Lee, and Yet Lock) seeking opportunities to take on roles beyond the stereotypical parts they were being offered in Hollywood. EWP continues to provide unique opportunities for Asian-American artists and is committed to advocating for more diverse representations of the Asian-American experience on TV and across all media.

In 1998, EWP Artistic Director Tim Dang led the company’s move from a 99-seat Equity Waiver “black box” theatre into a new 240-seat venue at an Actors Equity Association contract level. EWP’s mainstage is the David Henry Hwang Theater, housed within the historic Union Center for the Arts in downtown Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo district, where it serves more than 10,000 people each year. www.EastWestPlayers.org

Zuckerberg Family Wishing Happy Lunar New Year in Chinese

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yo9bArhBGSU

The Zuckerberg family wishes everyone Happy Lunary New Year in Chinese. Let’s see if little Max gets to go to a bilingual Chinese-English school and upstage mom and dad with mad Chinese language skills in the future.

mark