National Playwriting Competition: East West Players Announces “2042: See Change”

Monday, September 29, 2014

Get Your Competition Ready!

East West Players (EWP), the nation’s premier Asian American theatre organization, announces 2042: See Change, an initiative by East West Players to promote diversity in American theatre. According to census reports, it is estimated that by 2042, for the first time people of color will make up a majority of the United States population. With this shift in demographics, the face of America will look and feel different.

“We want to challenge other theaters to prepare for this change by thinking differently in their artistic programming and their audience development strategy,” says EWP Producing Artistic Director, Tim Dang. “In many areas, the change has already happened. The future is here. 2042: See Change is the perfect launch to initiate and innovate new works for the American theatre that include more opportunities for people of color, women, youth and ideas for the next generation of art making. ”

2042: See Change will have three components which will be unveiled throughout the next six months, kicking off with a national playwriting competition of the same title.

Submissions should be unproduced new works that explore this new reality and represent and reflect the future of the American landscape.

Subject matter may include biracial or multiracial identity; multicultural experiences; international/transnational connections to America; conflict and collaboration between cultures;

American stories with Asian or Asian-American characters in leading roles; or ethnic-specific themes about Asian culture in the United States.

Type of material: Original full-length plays and musicals. If submitting a musical, please enclose a musical sample. No translations or adaptations. All submissions must be professionally unproduced, unpublished, and with no existing attachments for production.

Award: $5000 First Place; $2500 Second Place; $1000 Third Place. The First, Second and Third Place winners will all receive readings by EWP. All winners will be considered for further workshops and/or production; EWP must have the first option to produce.

All three winners of the 2011 playwriting competition, Face of the Future, have gone on to world premiere productions: Eddie Borey’s Christmas In Hanoi and A Nice Indian Boy by Madhuri Shekar were produced at East West Players, and Lauren Yee’s Samsara opens February 2015 at the Victory Gardens Theater in Chicago.

Funding for the playwriting competition is provided by the generous support of the James Irvine Foundation.

Scripts will be judged by a distinguished committee of theatre and industry professionals through a blind evaluation process. Previous judges have included Tony Award-winning playwright David Henry Hwang, playwright Julia Cho, and Carmen Smith (VP Creative Development. Walt Disney Imagineering)

Submissions will be accepted beginning October 1, 2014 to January 5, 2014.

Submissions will be accepted electronically only, on

The submission must include:
· The online entry form

· The script (paginated but without your name on it)

· Two title pages. One with the title of the play, your name, address, phone number and email, and a brief bio (optional). A second title page which lists the title of the play, a 5 sentence or less description of the play, and a list of characters – but does not identify the author.

· A $20.00 entry fee

For more information, please check our website at You may also contact Snehal Desai, Artistic Associate (213) 625-7000 or Please no personal deliveries.

Ramen Massive Attack

Friday, September 26, 2014

If you are in the area and you have the time, I'd definitely check it out.

Eruditic: John Cho On His Career

Friday, September 26, 2014

Definitely loved reading what John Cho had to say including things like:

I have noticed that—for whatever reason—my personality, I think, folds over into what people consider to be a broad definition of American. And I think that I’m very Korean-specific. But that’s just a chance thing. You know, I feel very much like a Korean man that immigrated to the United States. But I think white America would see me as American.
Read it in full down at the CAAM or Xfinity blogs.

Read It: Artists of Color Stand Up Against Discrimination in the Field

Friday, September 26, 2014

From American Theatre:

The straw that broke the camel’s back was Shakespeare.

In 2011 in Washington, D.C., Shakespeare Theatre Company produced a version of Much Ado About Nothing set in Cuba, where the minor characters Hugh Oatcake and George Seacoal were renamed Juan Huevos and Jose Frijoles, after the Spanish words for “eggs” and “beans.” Despite the ostensible locale, only three of the actors in the cast were Latino. “It was derogatory,” asserts D.C.-based playwright-with-an-activist-bent Karen Zacarías. “You’d never write ‘Jonathan Watermelon’! Why does no one realize that this is not acceptable?”

The dustup following Much Ado’s opening resulted in a dialogue, online and in a town hall hosted by STC. An apology was issued by artistic director Michael Kahn for the theatre’s insensitivity and the characters’ names reverted back to Hugh and George. That might have been the end of this particular discussion about the roles (or lack thereof) that Latino artists play within the American theatre—but this had come after a similar controversy a few weeks before. A production of Stephen Adly Guirgis’s The Motherfucker with the Hat at TheaterWorks in Hartford, Conn., had cast white actors in the lead roles, which were originally written to be Puerto Ricans.

TBT: Baiyu Circa 2012

Thursday, September 25, 2014

A pic from 2012 when I got to meet Baiyu after she had played at the Japantown Peace Plaza and she was kind enough to let me snap a few pics.

From EW With Love + Adoptee Hallyu: First Look At Aka Dan

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Before talking about Dan Matthews’ multipart documentary aka Dan, I need to offer some context. The film, which received a fair amount of press largely due to its Kickstarter, appeared to come out of nowhere for most of the general public. aka Dan, though, is a part of something much larger: what I like to call the Korean adoptee hallyu—the growing wave of Korean culture’s influence and popularity in the rest of the world.

Read it in full.

Scorpion: 14 million Viewers Is Nothing To Shake A Stinger At

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Actress Jadyn Wong


Wednesday Cover: The Fu ft. Anna Toth + She Looks So Perfect

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Dennis Kim's Tree City Legends

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Melding post-hip hop aesthetics, traditional folklore, live music, and parable, Tree City Legends takes place in a mythological urban neighborhood and tells the story of a Korean American family of four young men attending the funeral of their late brother, Junie. Their eulogies ring like psalms, portraying a world familiar to communities of color-both fractured by torment and loss, and united by faith and legend-making.

Thursday, October 9, 8 p.m.
Friday, October 10, 8 p.m.

The Painted Bride
230 Vine Street

Tree City Legends is a National Performance Network (NPN) Creation Fund Project commissioned by Asian Arts Initiative, Hip Hop Theatre Festival, Intersection for the Arts, and YouthSpeaks

Get tix.

In Photos: When Bikini Models, Fines, And VietJet Air Collide (Let The Sexy Freedom Ring!)

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Apparently VietJet Air, who has done this before, is back at it again with promotional campaigns featuring models in skimpy outfits and I'm guessing that the fine is probably worth it for VietJet albeit they won't be considered a family friendly airline anytime soon.

Shameless I say.

Just shameless.

That a company should get fined for sexy promotional ads!

I say bring on the sexy. Let the sexy be free!

Unshackle my people and let their sexy freedom ring!

Almost Here: The 2014 DC APA Film Festival

Monday, September 22, 2014 | FB

OCT - 02

KUMU HINA - Opening Night of 14th Annual DC APA Film Festival
The Burke Theater At the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, District of Columbia
7:00pm in EDT

The Burke Theater At the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, District of Columbia
8:30pm in EDT

OCT - 03

ALL IN WAR IS SO COLD - DC APA Film Shorts Program
The Burke Theater At the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, District of Columbia
7:00pm in EDT

The Burke Theater At the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, District of Columbia
9:00pm in EDT

OCT - 04

RU - DC APA Film Indie Saturday Screening
The Burke Theater At the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, District of Columbia
5:00pm in EDT

ALL IN THE FAMILY - DC APA Film Shorts Program
The Burke Theater At the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, District of Columbia
7:00pm in EDT

A MOMENT OF LOVE - DC APA Film Closing Night Screening
The Burke Theater At the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, District of Columbia
9:00pm in EDT

Yes. This Logo Is Not Approved.

Monday, September 22, 2014

You would have thought that the minds behind KFC, Taco Bell, etc. would have done more research on this one (and it makes me wonder on the food, but I'll give it a shot next time I'm in Dallas), but at least they corrected it as soon as they figured it out.

Read more down at Culture Map and The Huff.

List: The New York Times + Shonda Rhimes

Monday, September 22, 2014

Here are some quick links to good posts on that craptacular piece of a news article down at the NYT.

Think People Don't Spray Paint Racist Shit On People's Cars Anymore? Think Again.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Ki Hong Lee And The Maze Runner Go # 1 At The Box Office

Monday, September 22, 2014

I haven't seen the film yet, so I can't say much about the character, but nice to see Ki Hong Lee who we've seen in some Wong Fu productions make it to a movie that opened up #1 at the box office this weekend.

Here's a snippet from a recent interview @ NPR:

GOODWYN: How open is Hollywood to having an Asian-American play the hero?

LEE: I consider Minho a hero. We're still making babysits, and hopefully this is my contribution to progress.

GOODWYN: What kinds of other things would you like to do as an actor?

LEE: I remember talking with a friend. He asked me a question. He said what's your end game? What's your goal with this? And I said to him, you know, I want to win the Academy Award one day. And he said, OK. I was like, how about you? He goes, I just want to be a working actor. I want to get paid to do what I love. And immediately I regretted my answer because his answer was so much better than mine because for me, back then, I was thinking about the end result. I was thinking about the awards, and I was thinking about the money and all these things. But for me now, it's like, if I'm working on any project that I care about, you know, and if they pay me to do something that I love, that is the best job that one can ask for.

Cover It: Arden Cho And Please Don't Say You Love Me

Monday, September 22, 2014

Literary: Kevin Minh Allen + My Proud Sacrifice + Konerak Sinthasomphone + The Karate Kid 2 + The Satanic Bible

Monday, September 22, 2014

Title: My Proud Sacrifice
Author: Kevin Minh Allen
Pick it up @

Here's my Q and A with Kevin Minh Allen on his just released first collection of poetry.

1. In describing your book you say that "much of what informs this collection are my connections and disconnections to, and mutations and transformations of my multiple identities growing up as a mixed race Vietnamese adoptee in the United States". Can you talk more about the title of your collection, why you chose it, and its relation to the above?

The title of the book comes from the last line of my poem “There Is An Outside”. Growing up, I had this innate feeling that I was on the outside of some kind of family/peer/community/nation-proscribed center, due to the many socially-constructed identities I had to juggle. I felt so much on the periphery of the acceptable or the desirable because not only did I generally prefer my own company to anyone else’s, but I also became clued into what mainstream culture thought of “my kind” and how it perniciously tried to put me in my place. As my reading and studies of the Vietnam/American War have progressed, I understand that many of my interests, which are naturally tied to my personality and interactions with the world, make me an outlier from the start. So, to get to the core meaning of the book title, I’ve sacrificed many attempts at being more agreeable or more affable in establishing myself in a social group and, as a consequence, have arrived at a newer definition of pride in myself, in who I truly am.

2. Why was it important for you to take on the subject matter in "The Konerak Vignette"?

Konerak Sinthasomphone and his family were forced to leave their home in Laos and eventually were sponsored to emigrate to Milwaukee, WI, in 1980. With respect to his tragic death, Konerak actually managed to escape from Dahmer’s apartment after being assaulted there. However, after two neighborhood girls saw him walking down the street, naked and bloody, they pleaded with one of the girl’s mothers to call the police. The police arrived and tried talking to Konerak. However, because he was in shock and injured, Konerak couldn’t answer the policemen’s questions, so they assumed that he didn’t know English. Soon after, Dahmer came down the street to fetch Konerak and lied to the police that he was his lover and that they were just having a quarrel. The police believed Dahmer’s story and allowed him to take Konerak back to his apartment, where he eventually killed him. The mother who called the police, who happened to be black, protested the policemen’s decision but was told to mind her own business.
Konerak’s murder brought in stark relief for me issues of racial prejudice, refugee status, assimilation, ways in which the police interact with (or don’t get involved with) Asian Americans, and who in this country is regularly given the benefit of the doubt due to their perceived race and ethnicity, which hinges on who is allowed, or not allowed, to have agency in this society. In a quite odd and grotesque way, when I was writing this piece, I imagined myself walking in Konerak’s footsteps based upon my own self-perception and misperceptions I had encountered while living in this country.

3. In "Diversionary" you work with form more so than in your other poems. From a technical standpoint, why did you make the decision for this one in particular?

This poem has clear erotic, sexual overtones, so I think I was trying to slow the reader’s tempo a bit by not using the standard left-justified structure. It was supposed to be more playful and coquettish, I think.

4. As the writing has been a work in progress for over 10 years, did you go back and edit any of the pieces written earlier for final completion? Were you surprised at any of the writing or tone when you looked back on them?

Many of the poems were ones I had been working on for years, and I actually thought they were finished, that they couldn’t speak beyond what they had already spoken. But, I kept on tinkering with them because I found that they simply lacked a genuine voice or an epiphany that they were resonating, but which I couldn’t put down on paper at the time, probably because my subconscious was not prepared yet to connect with the conscious part of my mind.

It was really only after I left these poems alone for a few years and moved on with my life that they started calling back to me and speaking to me. When I read the poems again, with a more mature and seasoned point of view, I felt I was on to something and only then could I revise them and feel that they were worthy enough to be collected under one book.

5. Now that you've completed your first book, do you have any advice for other writers who are in the process of working on theirs?

Think deeply about what you’re trying to say to yourself with your writing. Blurt it out on the page, then cultivate it and then see if it flourishes. Breathe the world in and then let it out. Find that place where you feel you can write the most free and stay inside it for as long as necessary. That place may not always be the same one; in fact, it will change over time and could multiply into several places. But, remember, you will always remain at the center of your writing.


1. If you could transport any Asian American from back in time to current day who would it be (and we'll go on the assumption that they'd be okay with this)?

Lam Duong. He was the subject of the documentary “Enforcing The Silence” by Tony Nguyen. I got to watch the documentary in full at the San Francisco Global Vietnamese Film Festival in April 2013. Lam was the founder of the first youth center for Vietnamese refugees in the late 70s in San Francisco. He was murdered in 1981. The police were never able to solve his murder, but much speculation pointed to members of an underground anticommunist Vietnamese group. The subject of ideological and generational tension within refugee groups from Southeast Asia, specifically Vietnam, has fascinated me for a long time. I think this is because even though I was technically a political refugee, I experienced a very different and unique upbringing in which I was assimilated into and shepherded by a White family and White community, and I wanted to know “how the other side” lived, so to speak.

2. Give the name of one movie you would like to see destroyed. With fire. Because you hate it. And no one can tell you different.

Karate Kid II. I picked this one because it just serves to remind me of how white-washed I was as a kid, and then as an adolescent, to deny and avoid who I truly was in my most formative years.

3. What book is on your reading list that you've been meaning to get to but just haven't started?

The Satanic Bible. At first, when I read a little bit of it as a teenager, it was purely out of shock value and its very taboo nature, especially since I was raised in the Catholic faith. But, in my 20s, when I picked it up again and read with more curiosity, I found that there was a logic to the ethos being espoused and that it was quite unique in its sensibility. Now, I’d like to open the book again and read it to the end with a more quizzical and escapist mentality. I think this is the way I’m approaching many standard religious texts and epics nowadays; in the end, they are colorful and reverent stories about human origins, human graces and human foibles that still reverberate in our psyches and in our cultures to this day.

Funny Or Die: Black Teen Public Relations

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

*Right click on the video and choose full screen.

How Dare You Alpha Delta Pi Sorority Besmirch The Good Name That Is Taco Tuesday

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

That above picture from the national review dear people has nothing to do with the goodness that is Taco Tuesdays - hard shell, soft shell, cilantro, onions, hot sauces, a smorgasbord for the family and a constant to look forward to - sure, sometimes it happens to be Taco Wednesday, but I blame that on work and the trials of living a daily life as a human and because I can't always wait for White Castle Wednesday...

No. The above is nothing even close to the tasty morsels and family bonding time of beef and other meat goodness wrapped inside a corn tortilla, and no - your eyes do not deceive you.

It really is another White Girl doing the Culture Is A Costume dance sponsored by the sorority of Alpha Delta Pi (at the California State University Fullerton) before they got busted for being White Girls Without A Clue.

If only it were a movie...

EEOC Headlines: Judge Approves $2.4 Million EEOC Settlement with Four Hawaii Farms for over 500 Thai Farmworkers

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

From the EEOC:

U.S. District Judge Leslie E. Kobayashi in Hawaii has approved settlements between the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and four Hawaii farms totaling $2.4 million for about 500 Thai farmworker victims of national origin discrimination and retaliation, the EEOC announced today. The settlement encompasses monetary relief, options for jobs and benefits, housing, other reimbursements of expenses, and sweeping injunctive relief remedies. The four farms are Mac Farms of Hawaii, LLC [nka MF Nut Co., LLC]; Kauai Coffee Company, Inc., [nka McBryde Resources, Inc.]; Kelena Farms, Inc. and Captain Cook Coffee Company, Ltd.

The EEOC initially filed suit in U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii in April 2011 against farm labor contractor Global Horizons and six farms in Hawaii on behalf of the Thai farmworkers. (EEOC v. Global Horizons, Inc. d/b/a Global Horizons Manpower, Inc., Captain Cook Coffee Co., Ltd., Del Monte Fresh Produce (Hawaii), Inc., Kauai Coffee Company, Inc., Kelena Farms, Inc., Mac Farms of Hawaii, LLC, Maui Pineapple Co., et al, Case No. CV-11-00257-LEK- RLP). One of the farms, Del Monte Fresh Produce, already settled for $1.2 million in November 2013.

In March 2014, Judge Kobayashi ruled that Beverly Hills, Calif.-based Global Horizons was liable for the pattern or practice of harassing, discriminating against and retaliating against hundreds of Thai farmworkers in the U.S. based on their national origin and race, in violation of federal anti-discrimination laws. The EEOC named the farms in Hawaii as defendants, asserting that they were joint employers with the labor contractor, and liable due to the acts committed by Global Horizons. Global Horizons and Maui Pineapple Company remain as the only defendants left in the case, although default judgments were entered by the court.

"We worked and lived under terrible conditions, treated like animals in a cage," said Phirom Krinsoongnoen, one of the victimized Thai farmworkers. "We were housed in an overcrowded place with a few rooms but many workers, and threatened almost daily. I am grateful that the EEOC is here to help people like me.

MYXTV: Supermodelme: Femme Fatale Season 4 Premieres September 23 at 8/7c

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

“Supermodelme: Femme Fatale,” newest season of the reality modeling show will premiere on September 23 at 8/7 Central.

The reality show features a grueling competition in which 12 aspiring models of Asian heritage are paired against one another to launch a career in the fashion industry. Filmed in Hong Kong, this season of “Supermodelme: Femme Fatale” pushes models to their limits with difficult tasks and unique fashion and beauty collaborations.

This season’s judges are Kim Robinson, one of the world’s most sought after stylists; Lisa Selesner, international supermodel; Dominic Lau, host of E! News Asia; and Ase Wang, model and actress.

Kina Grannis - ELEMENTS (Full Album Stream)

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Get "Dear River" on iTunes
Tour dates:

CAAM 2014 Documentary Fund Awards

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

And funds go to...

  • #NailedIt: Vietnamese & The Nail Industry by Adele Pham/Producer I. Adele Ray
  • Giap’s Last Day at the Ironing Board Factory by Tony Nguyen/Producer Steven Okazaki
  • The Last Season by Sara Dosa/Producer Josh Penn
  • Like a Rolling Stone: The Life & Times of Ben Fong-Torres by Suzanne Joe Kai
  • Rightfooted by Nick Spark/Producer Mona Lisa Yuchengco
  • Tashi’s Turbine by Amitabh Joshi/Co-producers Erik Spink and Nabin Uprety
  • Last Days in Vietnam produced by Rory Kennedy for American Experience
  • Tough Love by Stephanie Wang-Breal/Producer Carrie Weprin and Co-Producer Ursula Liang
  • Tyrus Wong: Brushstrokes in Hollywood by Pamela Tom/Producers Gwen Wynne and Tamara Khalaf/Co-producer Linda Barry
Get more information on each of the documentaries at the CAAM website.

Vietnamese Film + Flapping in the Middle of Nowhere + 29th Venice International Films’ Critics Week

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

FLAPPING IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE 18+ Trailer | Festival 2014 from TIFF on Vimeo.

Last week saw the film Đập Cánh Giữa Không Trung aka Flapping in the Middle of Nowhere - win an award at the 29th Venice International Films’ Critics Week by the FEDEORA jury for Best Film.

A Quick Letter To The White Guy Who Tried To Get Away With Stealing My Cart At Menards

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Dear White Guy Who Tried To Steal My Cart,

First, I don't necessarily blame you for wanting to be lazy because by nature sometimes people are lazy, and coming from someone who is really lazy, I understand laziness. Sure, not everyone indulges their laziness by trying to run off with someone else's cart while there are actually items in the cart, while the person is standing just a few feet away from it looking at another isle, but again, I understand the mentality of being lazy, as well as the mentality of that laziness manifesting itself into rudeness, entitlement, and just being a general stick in the mud. But while I understand the mentality of it all - it doesn't mean I'm going to allow it either.

See, out of the corner of my eye I noticed someone (that would be you) breathing heavily around my cart filled with all of the items that I had to get for my DIY project - and while in some ways I knew what you were thinking - I didn't actually think you would take my cart.

But I didn't say anything while you were secretly lusting after it because you didn't do anything at that point and there's no crime against lusting after something.

But then you touched it.

You went from leering and semi-pervy to all out kidnapper and cart molester crazy.

Sure, I was wrapped up in the mesmerizing array of all things rain gutter extension so I didn't notice it right at that second, but deep down, viscerally, I knew.

I could feel the bad touch

It was like it was happening in slow-mo (and I could also hear the cart whisking away).

Sure, you probably just figured the dumbass/meek Asian guy wouldn't know what was going on and even if he did what was he gonna do about, but I guess that didn't quite work out for you did it?

No. No it did not.

As I quickly made a left back out to the main isle I saw you trying to slither away making a dart into another section of the store.

But there was no hiding that day (and just for the record I bet you didn't think I could run that fast in flip flops huh?).

I didn't beat you down though or scream at the top of my lungs "FUCKING THIEF MOTHERFUCKER!" when I got to you. I simply put my hand on the cart and said sternly "Hey man - that's my cart." to which you said "Oh...yeah...these must be your items.." - not really looking me in the eye (because I'm sure it was a little embarrassing seeing as how there were sales people and other customers around at that time when I snagged you like we were on To Catch A Predator).

And then I noticed why you were so lazy.

You had put a 50 lb. bag of cement mix in the cart. You didn't want to actually go to the front of the store to get a cart to put the cement mix in, and seeing how you lumbered getting that bag out of the cart, I can see that you wouldn't have been able to bring that up to the checkout in your condition (I guess being a larger White Guy doesn't mean you can lift 50 lbs for an extended amount of time especially when you expend so much energy on being a Class A Dick) - so again, I understand you wanting to be lazy.

But next time, if I were you, I'd probably just get over the feeling of wanting to be lazy and entitled - and instead of stealing someone else's cart - just be respectful and get your own because if I was in a different mood you might have gotten a flip flop to the head.

Or possibly up your ass.

Hug and kisses and btw, frosting your tips really isn't a good look for you,

#applelive Crashes Like A Mofo. Biggest story is the woman translating to Chinese. She's now a star.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

David So + Asian Women Are Submissive

Wednesday, September 03, 2014