Mia Park developed the theme of Let Me Tell You: Stories of Asian American Authenticity, an evening to share personal stories of healing, mourning and remembering in response to Anti-Asian sentiment in today’s Chicago. Dr. Ada Cheng was commissioned to teach the craft of storytelling, free of charge, to Asian American and Asian Pacific Island Desi Chicagoans who wanted to share and perform their personal narratives at this event. The performers, Shelu Bhandari, Hannah Ii-Epstein, Minky Kim, Thavary Krouch, Peter Ruger, Giau Minh Truong and also Dr. Ada Cheng, represent mixed race, adopted, immigrant, and American born individuals from the diaspora with a variety of ages, gender identifications and abilities. The performances are directed by Daniella Wheelock. Park said, “It’s common in Asian cultures to suppress asking for help to force a harmonious society. The challenges of living in Chicago are not unique to this group, but the recent spike in anti-Asian violence is exclusively disturbing. Learning to share individual experiences can make the storyteller whole along with their community.” This project is partially supported by a Neighborhood Access Program Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events to support the cultural vitality of the Uptown neighborhood.

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May 28, 2022

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