New Age, Old Ways: Peter Lin Crosses Artistic Mediums and Cultures through Taiwanese American Jazz

Hey Peter! We last spoke in 2016 about your jazz band, The Lintet. What’s been new with you? My work is always a reflection of my own personal life experiences, and my personal life has been quite a roller coaster to say the least! After finishing my graduate work for jazz studies at Rutgers University, I had the pleasure to work and study with Slide Hampton for about two years, an NEA Jazz Master and my musical hero in terms of the trombone and compositions / arrangements. This experience…

Hello from Taiwan: Q&A with Filmmaker Tiffany Frances

We typically share the contributor bios at the end, but Tiffany Frances has such a dazzling background, we thought we'd open this Q&A with a little bit about her. Tiffany Frances is a Taiwanese American director and writer working in music videos, branded content and narrative film. She was selected for SHOOT Magazine's 2018 New Directors Showcase, where a trailer of her short film, WHAT I WISH YOU SAID, screened at the Directors Guild Theater in New York. Her short film MOVEMENT for…

Interview with Joyce Bergvelt, Lord of Formosa

Editor's Note: When I call for diversity in Taiwanese American literature, or English-language works on Taiwan, I mean books like Lord of Formosa. Taiwan, originally an Austronesian island, is colonized land. The hallmark of great literature about Taiwan, then, is perhaps sensitivity to this fraught crystallization of elements,  the way they arrived together under fire and pressure, and the complex ways they coexist today. Among these waves of colonizers were Dutch settlers, whose little-known…

New on Netflix: A Taiwanese Tale of Two Cities

An Interview with “A Taiwanese Tale of Two Cities” actor Denny Huang When Denny Huang decided to move to Taipei in 2005 as a young adult, he had no idea what he was going to do. As a Taiwanese American born in Houston, he barely spoke Mandarin at the time, and when he started pursuing acting roles, he realized his American-accent would be an issue. To manage, as he was slowly building his film & TV career (with roles in TV dramas like “Bull Fighting” and “Across the Ocean to…

How our bodies domesticate/disaster: An Interview with Kristin Chang, Past Lives, Future Bodies

Reading Kristin Chang’s work revives all the little things we lose: our names for nation. Yeye and his ghosts. Papaya in Taiyu meaning wood/melon. She doesn’t tackle, but instead deftly burrows into bodies of queerness, identity, immigration, and colonialism, a laundry list of tropes Chang has somehow resurrected and dissected in new, astonishing ways. I know it’s selfish and absurd to suggest a book of this artistry might have been conceived just for me, but I swear I once begged the…

An Interview with Emily X.R. Pan, The Astonishing Color of After

Editor's Note: I'm so thrilled to share this interview with Emily X.R. Pan, author of The Astonishing Color of After. In the past decade - really, in my own little lifetime -  I have seen contemporary Asian American literature evolve from brittle myths of otherness to richer montages spanning history, identity, self, and heritage. Pan's The Astonishing Color of After is a pulsing tide of grief and wonder, chronicling half-Taiwanese protagonist Leigh's struggle to understand her mother's…

An Interview with Eva Lou, Madeleine Editions

Editor's Note: Something we consider often is how language informs how we define and experience an ethnic or national identity. We wonder about the merits of raising bilingual, or even trilingual, children, and whether our mother tongues will ever find a place in communities that do not recognize them. Our contributors have discussed loss and mourning of such languages, but also learning and discovery. With language as vehicles in mind, Taiwanese American writer Eva Lou launched Madeleine Editions,…

An Interview with Juliana and Wayne, Co-directors of the Piedmont Chamber Music Festival

Pianist Juliana Han and violinist Wayne Lee are the husband and wife co-directors of the Piedmont Chamber Music Festival in the Bay Area, California. Our editorial director Anna Wu caught up with them to chat about the festival, the Formosa Quartet, and their journeys as musicians. * * * Anna Wu: Hi Juliana and Wayne! Thanks for joining us today. Could you guys tell us a little bit about the Piedmont Chamber Music Festival? What inspired you to start it? Wayne Lee: The Piedmont Chamber…

An Interview with Cynthia Cheng, the Co-Organizer of Family Style Zine: An AAPI Food Anthology

  Our own Andrea “Chuey” Chu, co-editor of TaiwaneseAmerican.org and Chrysanthemum: Voices of the Taiwanese Diaspora, interviews Cynthia Cheng, co-organizer of Family Style Zine and contributor for Chrysanthemum. Family Style Zine: An AAPI Food Anthology is an anthology promoting education on the diverse histories of Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) food. The zine features illustration and writings from 31 AAPI creators sharing the stories behind 20 dishes that shed light on the…

An Interview with Filmmaker Fiona Roan: Reflections on Sisterhood and Belonging

Fiona Feng-I Roan is a Taiwanese American writer and filmmaker based in Los Angeles. TaiwaneseAmerican.org’s Ho Chie Tsai recently caught up with her to talk about her new short film, JIEJIE, which was recently selected as one of three finalists in the HBO Asian Pacific Visionary American short film competition. It will also be distributed nationally through HBO this May, during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. JIEJIE is a portrait of young sisters being raised by a single immigrant…