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Philly Asian Histories

Most of our efforts pertaining to this program involve studying new approaches and developing innovative ways to implement them. We evaluate our success in this field by gathering qualitative and quantitative data, and using that information to measure shifts and changes from our baseline measurements.

Philly Asian Histories featured performances from Shaily Dadiala, Marina Murayama, Daniel Park, Claris Park, Sami Rahman, Siwaraya Rochanahusdin, Muyu Ruba, and Jacinta Yelland.

Directed by Curatorial Team Mieke D, Lindsay Drucker, and Anita Holland.

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Philly Asian Histories: Service

Using real stories collected from API community members, the cast transformed word into movement and sound in this dynamic and interactive 2 part performance series.

A two part pop-up performance that presented real stories of Asian and Asian American individuals, organizations, and communities who call Philadelphia their home.

Part 1 - August 9th and 10th

Living Museum

A team of eight performing artists from varying creative backgrounds devised and cultivated individual performances each featuring a difference moment in our city’s history. The pieces were mounted in Asian Arts Initiative, transforming the facility into a living museum activating the entire building with performance installations featuring music, theatre, dance, visual art, and interactive performance art. Audience members experienced The Living Museum by freely walking the space. Some of the pieces included:

"Saving Chinatown" : An interactive performance installation by Jacinta Yelland that captures the essence of the 1970s ‘Save Chinatown’ movement using memorabilia, favorite foods, and other charged objects from the stories of Chinatown community members.

"100YearsForWhat": A multi-disciplinary performance by Claris Park exploring the parallels and disparities of activism, cultural rewriting, and allyship involved in the First Korean Congress at Plays and Players Theater in Center City Philadelphia in 1919 and today's socio-political movements in 2019.

"My Place is in the Kitchen": A Bharatanatyam dance piece by Shaily Dadiala celebrating the first South Asian woman in the Indian packaged food industry. Accompanied by music, spoken word, text and photo projection, this work highlights the trajectory of Jyoti Natural Foods, established in 1979 in the USA.

Part 2 - August 17th

The Neighborhood Showcase

The performers worked with a team of directors to interweave the pieces from The Living Museum and present a single piece as a part of a Neighborhood Showcase, which also features live performances from Shared Spaces 共享空間 Program participants. Performers from the Shared Spaces 共享空間 Program include: Philadelphia Chinese Opera Society, Muyu Ruba,  Cambodian American Girls Empowering (CAGE), KIDZ Band, and L8NITE.

The performance ended in a community meal where the audience was able to break bread and spend time with the evening’s performers.

Philly Asian Histories: About Us
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