The Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) will present a unique outdoor interactive performance program, Saturday, May 2 - AmNews Curtain Raiser


Thursday, April 25, 2024

The Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) will present a unique outdoor interactive performance program, Saturday, May 2

The Museum of Chinese in America

(MOCA) will present a unique outdoor

interactive performance program

Saturday, May 2

“MOCA Performs – Catching Silhouettes: An Oral History Street Performance,” to bring oral histories and personal stories to life in the streets of Chinatown in May to celebrate Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Heritage Month.

Each performance will welcome a total of 20 audience members to have a walk along East Broadway and explore stories from MOCA’s archives through a series of immersive performances that highlight the pivotal role of immigrant waves in shaping Chinatown’s identity and landscape, particularly in the 1980s and 1990s.

This 70-minute performance runs from Thursday to Saturday, May 2nd to May 18th from 7:00 PM ET.

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“Waves of immigrants of Chinese and Asian descent have continuously re-define Chinatown’s identity and landscape,” said Dennis Yueh-Yeh Li, Director of Performance, Storytelling & Community at the Museum of Chinese in America. “We want to offer a way for the audience to learn and reminisce the cultural significance of many great establishments in Chinatown in the past, such as movie theaters like Music Palace and Sun Sing as well as religious associations, while reflecting upon the future of Chinatown.” 

“MOCA Performs – Catching Silhouettes: An Oral History Street Performance” follows the similar structure of MOCA’s sold-out run of “MOCA Performs – Passage: A Walk of Chinatown Stories” in summer 2023. It is a new theatrical work devised by a collective of participating performers. It will highlight stories about the movie theaters and their goers from MOCA’s oral history archive to take a closer look at the role of movie theaters to the community. Followed by the stories of the movie theaters, it will delve into the expansion of Chinatown in the 1990s with the Fujianese migration. Stories about the role of the religious associations and the livelihood of Fujianese immigrants will be told through interactive performances. Performers will also be sharing their and their family’s immigrant experiences. “Catching Silhouettes” is directed by Dennis Yueh-Yeh Li, MOCA’s Director of Performance, Storytelling & Community, and co-directed by Nina Zoie Lam. It features an ensemble of performers of Chinese and Asian descent, including Shan Y. Chuang, Timmy Ong, Jeremy Rafal, Mandarin Wu and Jiemin Yang.  

The Museum of Chinese in America has preserved, presented, and celebrated the 200-year history, heritage, culture, and diverse experiences of American communities of Chinese descent, since its founding in 1980. Through exhibitions, education, public programs, and community partnerships, MOCA aims to engage audiences in an ongoing and historical dialogue, in which people of all backgrounds can see American history through a critical perspective, to reflect on their own experiences, and to make meaningful connections between the past and the present, the global and the local, themselves and others. 

About the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA)  

Founded in 1980, the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) is committed to preserving and showcasing the history, diverse stories, and cultural contributions of the Chinese community in America. Originally established in New York City as the Chinatown History Project, MOCA has since become the largest museum dedicated to the Chinese diasporic experience in the country. In its current space, designed by Maya Lin, MOCA has grown into a leading cultural institution, being named one of “America’s Cultural Treasures” by the Ford Foundation. Through exhibits, education, and programming, MOCA aims to enlighten the public about the Chinese experience in the U.S., fostering cultural awareness and sensitivity across all races and ethnicities. 


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