Interdisciplinary dance works giving artistic voice to Asian Americans

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (ISGM), Pao Arts Center & Lenora Lee Dance present “MEDITATIONS ON THE POWER OF COMMUNITY

Video still Meditations on the Power of Community, dancer Naoko Brown at Shen Wei: Painting in Motion Exhibition (Hostetter Gallery), Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, December 3, 2020 – June 20, 2021, courtesy Weiying Olivia Huang.

 

ISGM, Pao Arts Center & Lenora Lee Dance present 

Meditations on the Power of Community

 

In response to the  Shen Wei: Painting in Motion  exhibition,  Pao Arts Center  2021 Artist in Residence  Lenora Lee Dance  presents a new commissioned work,  illuminating stories of the Chinatown community against the backdrop of Wei’s large-scale, immersive paintings. Interviews and contemporary dance choreographed by Lee in collaboration with Lenora Lee Dance and Boston-based dancers, provide a meditation on the experiences of Boston’s Chinatown community.  Filmed  by local filmmaker Weiying Olivia Huang. 

 

 

Artistic Direction: Lenora Lee

艺术指导: 李小玉

 

Choreography / 编舞: 

Lenora Lee (李小玉) in collaboration with cast:

 Naoko Brown (原田尚子), IJ Chan (陳加恩),

 Flora Hyoin Kim, and Johnny Huy Nguyen 

 

 

Interviewees / 采访人物:

Pieranna Cavalchini, Peggy Fogelman, 

Paul W. Lee (李宝罗), Lydia M. Lowe (駱理德), 

Rhea Vedro, Cynthia Woo (胡善怡), Cynthia Yee (余麗馨)

 

Sound Mixer / 声音混合: Eric Taylor

Sound Engineering / 声音处理: Joel Wanek 

Costumes / 服装 : Lenora Lee / 李小玉

Chinese Translation / 中文翻译 : 

Weiying Olivia Huang / 黄维英

Music / 音乐 :

Tatsu Aoki, with Kioto Aoki, JoVia Armstrong, Mwata Bowden, Suwan Choi, Coco Elysses, Jamie Kempkers, Paul Kim, Avreeayl Ra, Melody Takata, Edward Wilkerson Jr., Hide Yoshihashi  

Songs / 歌曲: “Conscription”, “Look at Our Time”, “Nobi – the other side”, “Move-meant” (from the first album MIYUMI Project by Southport Records), “An Eye Opener for Angels” and “Dynamite MHB” (from album Raw and Alive Volume II) 

Courtesy of Asian Improv Records / 由亚洲即兴唱片提供

Images / 图像: Shawn Read, Cynthia Woo (胡善怡), Cynthia Yee (余麗馨), and Christine Nguyen courtesy of Asian Community Development Corporation  

Murals / 壁画:

Chinese dragon mural by Enivo (14 Tyler Street)

“Tale of an Ancient Vase” by Bryan Beyung (22 Tyler Street) 

“Chinatown Heritage Mural” by Wen-ti Tsen and Zuo Yuan, (Oxford Street)

The Mayor’s Mural Crew / Boston Youth Clean-up Crew

(Adjacent to the Chinatown Gate)

 

 

More information (Shen Wei | Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Language: English with Chinese Subtitles 

Age: All-ages

 

 

Screenings and panel discussions

Join the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Pao Arts Center, and Lenora Lee Dance  for a free virtual viewing party for Meditations on the Power of Community.

This short film will viewable through the Gardner Museum here starting Thursday, May, 6th with a screening and panel discussion Tuesday, May 11, 3pm PST (6pm EST) 

Meditations on the Power of Community is a short film commissioned by the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, featuring choreography by Pao Arts Center 2021 Artist-in-Residence Lenora Lee Dance and filmed by Weiying Olivia Huang. The film features interviews with members of Boston’s Chinatown community, in response to the Museum’s exhibition Shen Wei: Painting in Motion.

 

Following a screening of the film, join filmmaker Weiying Olivia Huang, Lenora Lee of Lenora Lee Dance, Board President of Asian Community Development Corporation Paul W. Lee,  Cynthia Woo of Pao Arts Center, and moderator Susan Chinsen, Creative Producer/Engagement, Founding Director/Boston Asian American Film Festival, Emerson College Office of the Arts, ArtsEmerson,  for a dialogue about the resilience of local activists, dreams turned into reality through art, advocacy, and the healing embrace of culture. 

 

The program will feature a screening of this short film as well as opportunities for the audience to join the conversation. 

 

Lenora Lee is a 2021 Pao Arts Center Artist in Residence, with additional support from ArtsEmerson.

 

 

 

Meditations on the Power of Community will also be screened in Projecting Connections: Chinese American Experiences, presented by ArtsEmerson and the Boston Asian American Film Festival from May 6- 10.

 

 

About the 5/11/21 Panelists 

 

Lenora Lee is a dancer, choreographer, and artistic director of Lenora Lee Dance. She pushes the envelope of large-scale multimedia dance performance crafted for the proscenium, underwater, or in the air, and at times is site-responsive, immersive and interactive. Lenora’s work integrates contemporary dance, film, music, and research related to immigration, global conflict, and human rights.

photo by Hien Huynh

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paul W. Lee is a retired Partner of Goodwin Procter LLP.  Mr. Lee grew up in the Boston Chinatown and Brookline, Mass.  His Chinese immigrant parents worked in restaurants and garment factories.  After earning a degree in electrical engineering and computer science, he became a lawyer and was a partner at Goodwin Procter specializing in corporate law from 1984-2013. Mr. Lee serves on the boards of The Boston Foundation Board, Conservation Law Foundation, and WGBH, Chair of the Asian Community Fund, and Board President of the Asian Community Development Corporation, which has built over 600 units of housing in Boston Chinatown. In 2019 he received the Sojourner Award from the Chinese Historical Society of New England.

 

 

 

 

Cynthia Woo,  has been the Director of Pao Arts Center, at Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center since Jan 2017. She has fifteen years of experience in the non-profit arts, and arts education sector. She has worked at the Chinese American Museum of Los Angeles, LynnArts, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and Boston Center for the Arts.

 photo by Ashley Yung

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Filmmaker Weiying Olivia Huang 

Weiying Olivia Huang (https://oliviahuang.yolasite.com) is an award winning documentary filmmaker. Her documentary ‘City as Canvas’ won the Best Human Interest Documentary at the World Premiere Film Awards in 2020. The film, funded by a grant from the Cambridge Arts Council, was also nominated for ‘Best New England Film’ at the Massachusetts Independent Film Festival.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moderator:

Susan Chinsen is a Creative Producer at ArtsEmerson. She established the annual Boston Asian American Film Festival in 2008, where she continues as the Festival Director. Previously, she managed the Chinese Historical Society of New England, and was an engagement consultant for the PBS documentary “The Chinese Exclusion Act,” building upon her community work and past experience working at WGBH. She is on the Board of Directors at South Cove Community Health Center, MASS Creative and a Steering Committee member of the API Arts Network. Susan is also an alumna of the American Chinese Art Society’s traditional dance troupe and Tufts University. 

Photo Credit: Sampan/Yiyan Zheng 鄭怡嫣

 

 

 

 

About the Partner:  

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is an art museum in Boston, Massachusetts, which houses significant examples of European, Asian, and American art. Its collection includes paintings, sculpture, tapestries, and decorative arts. It is originally the home of Isabella Stewart Gardner, whose will called for her art collection be permanently exhibited “for the education and enjoyment of the public forever”.

ISGM Community programs created in partnership with Pao Arts Center are made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts and Barr Foundation ArtsAmplified initiative. 

Education and community programs receive support from the Vertex Foundation, the Rowland Foundation, The Lubin Family Foundation, The Beker Foundation, Liberty Mutual Foundation, The Hamilton Company Charitable Foundation, Thomas Anthony Pappas Charitable Foundation, and the Janet Burke Mann Foundation.

The Gardner Museum receives operating support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

 

 

 

 

Pao Arts Center was established in 2017 as a visionary program collaboration between Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center (BCNC) and Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC). Located at 99 Albany Street in downtown Boston, Pao Arts Center is Chinatown’s first arts and cultural center.

Pao Arts Center represents the belief that investing in arts, culture, and creativity are vital to the health and well-being of individuals, families, and vibrant communities. Through its innovative approach, Pao Arts Center empowers creativity, connection, learning, and support.

@paoartscenter, #paoartscenter, www.paoartscenter.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2021 Sacramento Dance Sampler – in Memory of Jory Horn

 

April 10, 16 & 18

This 10th Anniversary Season is dedicated to the memory of Jory Horn (1991-2019). Jory may have left too soon but his abundance of creativity and dedication to the art of dance continues to inspire us all. Fifty percent of the ticket price will help establish the Jory Horn Memorial Scholarship for aspiring dancers at Sacramento State.

The mission of the Sacramento Dance Sampler is to foster community growth by providing a platform to showcase the works of emerging and established professional dance artists and to expose audiences to the growing dance culture in our region. Founded by Lorelei Bayne in Sacramento in 2011, this annual event is modeled after New York City’s, Symphony Space Dance Sampler. The goal this year is to bring together acclaimed professional area dance companies for a virtual celebration of dance!

Sacramento Dance Sampler is scheduled to showcase April 10th, 16th and 18th (Showtimes TBD) as part of the Sacramento State, College of Arts and Letters, Festival of the Arts (FOTA) week-long celebration April 5th-11th, 2021.

 

One “ticket” purchased gives access for all 3 Dance Sampler programs, available to view through the end of April.

Purchase Dance Sampler virtual ticket here

 

 

Jory Horn Scholarship Fund

We, at Sacramento State University, would like to continue Jory’s joy of helping those in need.  With the Dance & Theatre Department at Sacramento State University, we would like to set up a one-time scholarship or an endowed scholarship for aspiring dancers. The endowed scholarship will provide funding on an annual basis.

$2,500 -> Minimum for Scholarship

$10,000 -> Minimum for Endowed Scholarship

Please click here to view the scholarship fund

 

 

Our Statement as Lenora Lee Dance

photo by Robbie Sweeny

 

Dearest Friends, Colleagues, Community, and Beyond,

We, at Lenora Lee Dance, believe that hate, racism, discrimination, injustice, silence, and apathy have no place in society. We, as artists, activists, community builders, creatives, and forward thinkers, are part of the tapestry of the over 21 million Asian Americans who live here in the United States.

With a history dating back some 200 years, Asians / Asian Americans have played an integral part of building the United States of America, through agriculture, farming, fishing, manufacturing, working on the front lines of the health field in hospitals and nursing homes, and as business owners, scholars, educators, artists, community leaders, lawyers, entrepreneurs, etc.

We, as many other underrepresented communities, have felt the brunt of injustice and discrimination consistently from the beginning, particularly with the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act with other racist policies enacted around the same time, in hopes to prevent the immigration, naturalization, and inclusion of Asians in America.

Our contributions and experiences have been minimized and omitted from the American history books. The model minority has been used to invisibilize the struggles of our communities, while also undermining the fight for justice in other communities of color. At the same time, we are treated as perpetual foreigners and in times of crisis, time and time again, our communities have been conveniently used as scapegoats.

The levels of disregard Asian Americans have continually endured over the decades, has come back again into public attention, because of the racist and xenophobic rhetoric running rampant during this COVID-19 pandemic and fueling the rise in hate crimes of harassment, violence, and murder against our communities.

We stand united in voice, community, solidarity, and action with our sisters, brothers, and siblings, fighting in support of justice, equal rights, and safety for ALL Asian Americans. We will not be silent while our mothers, fathers, grandparents, children, neighbors, and community members across the country are under attack. And we will say the names of those who were killed in Atlanta, all of their names:

 

 

Daoyou Feng

Hyun Jung Grant

Suncha Kim 

Paul Andre Michels

Soon Chung Park

Xiaojie Tan

Yong Ae Yue

Delaina Ashley Yaun

 

We, as a nation of all people must move forward embracing our country’s diversity, knowing there is broader power and vision to collaborate across communities to support one another in healing from our traumas and that our fight for justice is not mutually exclusive to justice for other communities, but part of the whole.

Let’s celebrate our partnerships, and work together with the experiences of our many communities and generations.

Resources
Reporting & Community Safety
 
 
 
Support API led organizations 
 
 
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Legal Services
 
 
Direct support to Atlanta shooting victims through AAAJ Atlanta chapter:
 
 
Social Media Links:
 
 

dual upcoming events with artistic director Lenora Lee!

Women’s History Panel – Shawl Anderson program

As part of Women’s History Month, please join us for a vibrant discussion with three longtime site-based artists in the SF Bay Area

 

Date And Time

Mon, March 29, 2021

12:00 PM – 1:15 PM PDT

eventbrite link: here

About this Event

During the past year, many professionals and students alike have begun to explore site-specific work both inside buildings and outdoors. Our sense of space, place, access, and venue continue to shift in terms of both artmaking and experiencing dance. Please join us for a conversation with three longtime choreographers passionate about site-based work: Nina Haft, Joanna Haigood, and Lenora Lee. We will talk about their work and inspirations, where they see site-based work in the field right now, and artmaking in the months ahead.

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Nina Otis Haft is Artistic Director of Nina Haft & Company, a Bay Area-based contemporary dance ensemble known for gender and cultural commentary and site-specific performance. Nina has been profiled in Dance Magazine and received support from Djerassi Resident Artist Program, Hambidge Center, Shawl-Anderson Dance Center, Margaret Jenkins’ Dance Company (CHIME), Conney Project on Jewish Arts, California Arts Council, among other arts foundations. NHCo is known for Dance in Unexpected Places, performing in dockyards, synagogues, bars, parking lots, regional parks, cemeteries and other liminal spaces. Her work has been presented in Boston, LA, Madison, NYC, Portland, San Diego, Novosibirsk, Amman, Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Ramallah. ninahaftandcompany.com

Since 1980 Joanna Haigood has been creating work that uses natural, architectural and cultural environments as points of departure for movement exploration and narrative. Her stages have included grain terminals, a clock tower, the pope’s palace, military forts, and a mile of urban neighborhood streets in the South Bronx. Her work has been commissioned by many arts institutions, including Dancing in the Streets, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Walker Arts Center, the Exploratorium Museum, the National Black Arts Festival, and Festival d’Avignon. She has also been honored with the Guggenheim Fellowship, the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, the United States Artist Fellowship, and a New York Bessie Award. Haigood is also a recipient of the esteemed Doris Duke Artist Award. Joanna has had the privilege to mentor many extraordinary young artists internationally at the National École des Arts du Cirque in France, the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in England, Spelman College, the Institute for Diversity in the Arts at Stanford University, the San Francisco Circus Center and at Zaccho Studio. http://www.zaccho.org/

Lenora Lee is a dancer, choreographer, and artistic director of Lenora Lee Dance. She has been pushing the envelope of large-scale, site-responsive, immersive, and multimedia dance performance that connects various styles of movement and music to culture, history, and human rights issues, inspired by individual stories as well as community strength. Lenora’s work integrates contemporary dance, film, music, text, and research, and has gained increasing attention for its sustained pursuit of issues related to immigration, global conflict, incarceration, and its impacts, particularly on women and families. It has grown to encompass the creation, presentation, and screening of films, museum and gallery installations, civic engagement, and educational programming. Lenora is a 2019 United States Artists Fellow, and recipient of the 2021 New England Foundation for the Arts National Dance Project Production Grant. http://www.lenoraleedance.com

eventbrite link: here

 

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KSW  “We Won’t Move: A Living Archive” Podcast 

KSW  “We Won’t Move: A Living Archive” Podcast Update

Lenora Lee podcast with Kearny Street Workshop set to be released on April 13!

For website TBD click here

About the Podcast:

“We Won’t Move: A Living Archive” is a new podcast series by Kazumi Chin, Dara Del Rosario, and Michelle Lin about APA artists of the past, present, and future, whose stories shape the movements and dreams of San Francisco. Each episode is guided by research and oral histories, featuring intimate conversations with local artists about their art, activism, and the issues that motivate their work. 

“We Won’t Move” was once the rallying cry of an intergenerational group of protestors fighting to protect the elders of the International Hotel, the first home of Kearny Street Workshop. With this in the podcast title, we commit ourselves to uplifting stories of radical Asian American art history, organizing, and dreaming. “We Won’t Move: A Living Archive” is a project of both remembering our roots and building toward a liberatory future.

Where do we remain firmly rooted in across generations, in our spaces, histories, and hearts? What will we refuse to move from?

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Pao Arts Center & Lenora Lee Dance present “MEDITATIONS ON THE POWER OF COMMUNITY”

Video still Meditations on the Power of Community, dancer Naoko Brown at Shen Wei: Painting in Motion Exhibition (Hostetter Gallery), Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, December 3, 2020 – June 20, 2021, courtesy Weiying Olivia Huang.

 

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (ISGM), Pao Arts Center & Lenora Lee Dance present “MEDITATIONS ON THE POWER OF COMMUNITY”

Screening and panel discussion

Tuesday, May 11, 2021, 6 – 7 pm

Join us for dialogue around the resilience of local activists, dreams turned into reality through art, advocacy, and the healing embrace of culture. Panelists for this live virtual program celebrating the release of the commissioned short film Meditations on the Power of Community  include Lenora Lee, Artistic Director, Lenora Lee Dance, Paul W. Lee, Board President, Asian Community Development Corporation, and Cynthia Woo, Director, Pao Arts Center. The panel will be moderated by Susan Chinsen, Creative Producer/Engagement, Founding Director/Boston Asian American Film Festival, Emerson College Office of the Arts, ArtsEmerson. The program will feature a screening of this short film as well as opportunities for the audience to join the conversation. 

In response to the Shen Wei: Painting in Motion exhibition, Pao Arts Center  2021 Artist in Residence Lenora Lee Dance presents a newly commissioned work, Meditations on the Power of Community, illuminating stories of the Chinatown community against the backdrop of Wei’s large-scale, immersive paintings. Interviews and contemporary dance choreographed by Lee in collaboration with Lenora Lee Dance and Boston-based dancers, provide a meditation on the experiences of Boston’s Chinatown community. Filmed by local filmmaker Weiying Olivia Huang.

Meditations on the Power of Community will also be screened in Projecting Connections: Chinese American Experiences, presented by ArtsEmerson and the Boston Asian American Film Festival

 

Weiying Olivia Huang is an award winning documentary filmmaker. Her documentary ‘City as Canvas’ won the Best Human Interest Documentary at the World Premiere Film Awards in 2020. The film, funded by a grant from the Cambridge Arts Council, was also nominated for ‘Best New England Film’ at the Massachusetts Independent Film Festival.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ISGM Community programs created in partnership with the Pao Arts Center are made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts and Barr Foundation ArtsAmplified initiative. 

Education and community programs receive support from the Vertex Foundation, Rowland Foundation, the Liberty Mutual Foundation, and Janet Burke Mann Foundation. 

The Museum receives operating support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pao Arts Center was established in 2017 as a visionary program collaboration between Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center (BCNC) and Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC). Located at 99 Albany Street in downtown Boston, Pao Arts Center is Chinatown’s first arts and cultural center. 

Pao Arts Center mission is to celebrate and strengthen the Asian Pacific Islander (API) community of Chinatown and Greater Boston through access to culturally relevant art, education, and creative programs. Pao Arts Center functions in service of BCNC’s and BHCC’s goals to support the social well-being, economic success, and education of their constituents.

Pao Arts Center represents the belief that investing in arts, culture, and creativity are vital to the health and well-being of individuals, families, and vibrant communities. Through its innovative approach, Pao Arts Center empowers creativity, connection, learning, and support.

 

 

 

 

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Video still Meditations on the Power of Community, dancer I.J. Brown at Shen Wei: Painting in Motion Exhibition (Hostetter Gallery), Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, December 3, 2020 – June 20, 2021, courtesy Weiying Olivia Huang.

Behind the scenes interviews during the creative on the process.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SHEN WEI
VIRTUAL EXHIBITION TOUR AND EVENTSVideo still Meditations on the Power of Community, dancer Flora Hyoin Kim at Shen Wei: Painting in Motion Exhibition (Hostetter Gallery), Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, December 3, 2020 – June 20, 2021, courtesy Weiying Olivia Huang.
*Shen Wei: Painting in Motion Exhibition (Hostetter Gallery)
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston
December 3, 2020 – June 20, 2021
 

Lenora Lee is a 2021 Pao Arts Center Artist in Residence, with additional support from ArtsEmerson.

ISGM Community programs created in partnership with Pao Arts Center are made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts and Barr Foundation ArtsAmplified initiative.

Education and community programs receive support from the Vertex Foundation, the Rowland Foundation, The Lubin Family Foundation, The Beker Foundation, Liberty Mutual Foundation, The Hamilton Company Charitable Foundation, Thomas Anthony Pappas Charitable Foundation, and the Janet Burke Mann Foundation.

The Gardner Museum receives operating support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.