A Canon of Our Own: Q&A with Michelle Kuo, Author of Reading with Patrick

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="1050"] Author Michelle Kuo with her parents[/caption]I profess that I have been a bit of a book snob lately. I am reading 50 books in my 10 weeks of summer; 20 of which should have a focus on social justice, and 15 of which should be by or about Asian Americans. The more these categories overlap, the greedier I become. I have been desperately craving something for me, something that helps me navigate everything this world has become with the body I have.…

Taiwanese Music and the World: Interview with FireEX

By Darice Dan Chang Reprinted by permission of author and Ketagalan MediaOne of the challenges of writing about musicians from another country is that you have to feel each other out a little, figure out how much you know, or don’t know, about each other.For example, they don’t understand that you haven’t experienced them, that you can’t just Google.tw their names and have lived every nook and cranny their 10+ year career through the power of the internet. They don’t know that…

Representation in the Asian American Community: A Roundtable Discussion

There are some pretty cool and accomplished individuals in our Taiwanese American network. During our recent interview with the first Asian American Miss Louisiana, Justine Ker, TaiwaneseAmerican.org's Ho Chie Tsai posed a question to the friends gathered: "In the work you do or the role you hold, what does REPRESENTATION in the ASIAN AMERICAN community mean to you?"In this informal and completely impromptu discussion, Justine Ker (Miss Louisiana 2016 and medical student), Crystal Lee (Miss…

An Interview with Justine Ker: A Taiwanese American Journey to Miss Louisiana

I recently sat down for a chat with Justine Ker, who was crowned Miss Louisiana in 2016 and placed in the top 15 during the 2017 Miss America Pageant. She also represents the first Taiwanese or Asian American to represent Louisiana on the national stage, a worthy accomplishment within our Taiwanese American community.Soon after she won her title, Justine and I had previously discussed trying to coordinate a sit-down interview, but our schedules didn't coincide. A few months later, however,…

More than a Chef with a Ramen Wave: Tracy Chang of PAGU

As a food explorer living in Boston, I follow the food blog Tiny Urban Kitchen by Taiwanese American Jen Che. This is where I first heard about the restaurant PAGU and its Taiwanese American chef/owner Tracy Chang, a talented culinary entrepreneur who sports a unique hairstyle (aka the "ramen wave").PAGU serves Japanese tapas, a reflection of Tracy’s culinary training at O Ya (one of Boston’s top sushi restaurants) and Restaurante Martin Berasategui (three-star Michelin restaurant…

Sweet Success: Q&A with Stephanie Chen of “The Great American Baking Show”

Stephanie Chen brought black sesame macarons, curry puffs and a pineapple bread Santa to the third iteration of “The Great American Baking Show” this year – dazzling celebrity pastry chef Johnny Iuzzini and British cookbook author Mary Berry with her bold flavors and knack for decoration. Even though the freelance advertising executive only started seriously baking about five years ago, Chen made it all the way to the finale and nearly took home the title. She shared her experiences on the…

Your New Classic Slow Jam: Music by Jerry Jean

Jerry Jean is an NYC-based Taiwanese American songwriter, producer, and musician who has been creating some beautiful compositions and music videos on YouTube for several years. I was drawn to his most recent video for his soul-inspiring original song, Do We Reach Home, featuring a captivating dance performance by Chloe Noelle Crade. Directed by José Andrés Cardona, the video showcases Jerry's solid vocal talent, authenticity, and aspirational spirit. In all of his works, his emotion-driven…

Q&A with Dmae Roberts, Author of The Letting Go Trilogies

Dmae Roberts is the author of The Letting Go Trilogies: Stories of A Mixed-Race Family. TaiwaneseAmerican.org's editorial director Anna Wu chatted briefly with Dmae about the powerful, beautifully vulnerable memoirs.* * *Anna Wu: Hi Dmae. Thank you so much for taking the time to speak with us. Could you tell us a little bit about the process of writing these memoirs? How did you come to structure the book as a series of trilogies?Dmae Roberts: Through the decades, I've written…

Through the Glass Ceiling: A Contemporary Ballet Collaboration

As the founder of TaiwaneseAmerican.org, I often meet really talented people in our community doing awesome work in their respective fields and industries. When my friend, ballerina and choreographer Ivy Chow, contacted me one day asking if I knew any composers of Taiwanese heritage that might collaborate with her on a new performance project about "breaking glass ceilings," I immediately thought of another friend, composer George Shaw, known for his many compositions and scores for popular YouTube…

The Hsu-Nami Storm Back Again with New Album

The Hsu-Nami, a progressive rock band that features an electric erhu as its melodic focus, was founded by Taiwanese American Jack Hsu. Based in NYC, this band combines the sounds of traditional Chinese folk music with a strong rock component of heavy guitar riffs, melodic bass guitar lines and punctuating drum beats. TaiwaneseAmerican.org has featured Hsu-Nami previously, and since then, they've done some very interesting things including having one of their songs featured in the 2008 Beijing Summer…