May 27: Quiet Before: Unearthing Anti-Asian Violence Series- Culture Panel Featuring David Henry Hwang, Herb Tam, Lu Zhang, Ken Leung,Trisha Lagaso Goldberg, Ursula Liang, Yng Ru Chen, and Athena Robles 

In honor of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in May 2021, Quiet Before: Unearthing Anti-Asian Violence is a six-part series of virtual programming dedicated to examining Anti-Asian violence from its many complex angles.

On Thursday, May 27 at 6PM EST the CULTURE panel will be moderated by Athena Robles, Artist, Double A Projects, and feature David Henry Hwang, Playwright, M. Butterfly, Chinglish, Yellow Face, Herb Tam and Lu Zhang, Artists and Co-hosts of VSV Loop, Actor Ken Leung (Industry), Trisha Lagaso Goldberg, Filmmaker Ursula Liang- Filmmaker (Down a Dark Stairwell), and Yng Ru Chen, Founder and Gallerist, Praise Shadow Art Gallery.

Among other key social justice moments in the past few years, but especially post George Floyd’s murder, we find ourselves in a place that race, ethnicity and justice are playing a central part in culture. What are examples of work created from the complex space of grief? What is the role of social media imagery? What role do the arts, entertainment and literature play in movement building?

Watch below:

The series is presented by Womankind, the 1882 FoundationEaton Workshop, the Honolulu Theatre for Youth and the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.


Quiet Before combines curated conversations with live panels around comprehensive topics including: History, Today, The Future, Policy, Culture, and Education. As a coalition-based effort, Quiet Before seeks to share the nuanced and divergent narratives of Asian Pacific Islanders in America to chart new paths for connection so that our voices become the bridges within our diaspora.

By creating this platform, Quiet Before gives voice to our elders, creates awareness for broader audiences, reaffirms solidarity with our allies, determines new actions inspired by youth and essentially takes ownership of the telling of our own stories.

With over 50 speakers hailing from far-flung backgrounds, across industries, identities and generations, we are pleased to present the following conversations.

Producer Nancy Bulalacao said, “We hope in this challenging time that the API community and its allies can draw strength and resolve from our gathered stories.”

Panelists include: Alena Victor, Andy Hsiao, Anne Keala Kelly, Carmelyn Malalis, Christian Shaughnessy, Curtis Chin, David Henry Hwang, Deepa Iyer,Diane Fujino, Ed Tepporn, Edwin Ramoran, Felicia Lowe, Franklin Odo, Herb Tam and Lu Zhang, Hua Hsu, Jack Tchen, Jamiee Swift, Janelle Wong, Jessica Ng, Julie Ae Kim, Kalayaan Mendoza, Kealoha Fox, Ken Chen, Ken Leung, Kevin Nadal, Khara Jabola-Carolus, Lolan Sevilla, Luis Francia, Mae Ngai, May Ying Chen, Nancy Yap, Parkin Lee, Pat Eng, Rohan Zhou Lee, Ron Kim, Ryan Wong, Sasha Wijeyeratne, Suki Terada Ports, Taiyo Na, Ted Gong, Vanessa Leung, Vijay Prashad, Vina Orden, Ursula Liang, Yuh-Line Niou, and Yng Ru Chen.

History & Context: Streamed May 4. Watch the talk below.
May 4th – Historians paint the vibrant picture: Asian/Pacific American history is American history. On the agenda: key moments told by the individuals who write, teach and live these stories.

The panel was moderated by Ryan Wong and feature the voices of Franklin OdoJack TchenKevin NadalMae NgaiMay Ying ChenPat EngTed Gong, and Vijay Prashad.

May 6th – In this discussion of context, speakers outline the history of violence in the Asian/Pacific American community, highlighting key moments and policies that set the stage for violence in its complex forms within Asian communities.

The panel was moderated by Verso Books Editor-at-Large Andy Hsiao and featured Curtis Chin, Writer and Founder of Asian American Writers’ Workshop, Diane Fujino, Scholar and Activist, Asian American Studies-UC-Santa Barbara, Ed Tepporn,-Executive Director, Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation, Felicia Lowe, Documentary Filmmaker, Chinese Couplets, Carved in Silence, Chinatown, Luis Francia, Author, History of the Philippines: from Indios Bravos, Suki Terada Ports, Community Activist, co-founding member of APICHA,  Erika L. Moritsugu, Deputy Assistant to the President and Asian American & Pacific Islander Senior Liaison, and Amrith Kaur, Legal Director, Sikh Coalition.

Today, our current state streamed on May 11. In this exploration, we look at the spectrum of factors that contribute to the current state of Asian/Pacific Americans and where we stand with our allies.

The panel was moderated by Hua Hsu, Writer and Journalist, The New Yorker and featured Alena Victor, Chief Program Officer, Womankind, Carmelyn Malalis, Chair and Commissioner of the New York City Commission on Human Rights, Deepa Iyer, Activist, Lawyer and Author, We Too Sing America: South Asian, Arab, Muslim and Sikh Immigrants Shape Our Multiracial Future, Kalayaan Mendoza, Director of US Programs, Nonviolent Peace Force Khara Jabola-Carolus, Executive Director, Hawai`i State Commission on the Status of Women, Lolan Sevilla, Cultural worker and organizer; Former Board Member CAAAV, Sasha Wijeyeratne, Executive Director, CAAAV Organizing Asian Communities, and Vanessa Leung, Co-Executive Director, Coalition for Asian American Children and Families.

The Future streamed on May 13. This section is dedicated to the hopefulness of young leaders. How next generation activists think about intersectionality is nuanced and a progression from how elders worked in solidarity.  How can we learn from the younger generation, who are in this moment working across race, gender, sexuality, and class?

The panel was moderated by Curator and Activist Edwin Ramoran, and featured Anne Keala Kelly, Journalist and Filmmaker, NoHo Hewa Christian Shaughnessy, Community Organizer, SBX Youth and Family Services, Jamiee Swift, Executive Director and Founder, Black Women Radicals, Janelle Wong, Professor, Asian American Studies, University of Maryland; Former Senior Researcher, AAPI Data,  Jessica Ng, Muay Thai fighter, Designer, and Founder of South Paw Stitches, Julie Ae Kim, Co Founder Asian American Feminist Collective, Rohan Zhou Lee, Founder, Blasian March, and Vina Orden, Writer and Immigrants’ and Human Right’s Activist.

Policy: aired on May 20. We will explore questions around the importance of creating a pipeline of Asian American leaders and building platforms for visibility and connection. We will ask about the impact of getting involved in the political process, coalescing resources (money and constituents) to move the needle forward, as well as the intersection of politics and community investment, intergenerationally.

The panel was moderated by CAUSE USA Executive Director Nancy Yap and featured Amos Buhai, Managing Partner, Deep Elm, David Chiu, California State Assembly Member 17th District, Kealoha Fox, Treasurer, the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum and Obama Foundation Rising Young Leader, Michael Skolnik, Founding Partner, The Soze Agency, Parkin Lee, Board President, Asian American Advancing Justice, Ron Kim,New York State Assembly Member District 40, and Yuh-Line Niou, New York Assembly Member District 65.

Culture: Thursday, May 27 at 6PM ESTAmong other key social justice moments in the past few years, but especially post George Floyd’s murder, we find ourselves in a place that race, ethnicity and justice are playing a central part in culture. What are examples of work created from the complex space of grief? What is the role of social media imagery? What role do the arts, entertainment and literature play in movement building?

Education: TBA – Forthcoming, June 2021 Our school age children are our future and best hope for lasting change. In this section we will take lessons learned from the previous conversation and distill them into a pre taped presentation appropriate for ages 5-24. We will coordinate town halls aimed not only at specific age ranges but across independent and NYC schools. The program will share key historical moments, the importance of being an upstander and what it means to be an ally. What does being an upstander actually look like in supporting vulnerable communities?

Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers,  musicians and corporations. Lia has appeared in the filmsWolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman. She stars in and served as Executive Producer for the short independent films Hide and Seek, Balancing Act, Rom-Com Gone Wrong, Belongingness and When the World was Young. 

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2020 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at .

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