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My Turn

by Dmae Roberts

From The Asian Reporter, V28, #18 (September 17, 2018), page 6.

10 cultural arts events to support

As summer comes to a close and activities begin to move indoors, I thought Iíd assist event-goers with happenings taking place this fall. Below are 10 offerings for cultural-arts seekers to consider exploring.

1) The Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center houses permanent exhibits about the incarceration of Japanese Americans that are worth experiencing. The center also hosts temporary exhibits, including the current one, "Oshu Nippo: Artifacts from Portlandís Japanese Language Newspaper, 1909-1951," which is on view through November 4, 2018. The display highlights the importance of Oshu Nippo, the newspaper that brought news and information to Japanese-American communities who worked on farms and railroads. To learn more, visit <>.

2) The Oregon Historical Society is offering free admission to "Japanese Cultures in Oregon" as part of its Family Day series, which is scheduled for Sunday, September 23 from noon to 4:00pm. Participants are able to enjoy a calligraphy demonstration at 1:00pm by Japanese calligrapher Yoshiyasu Fujii, whose work is featured in "The Playful Brush: Works by the Meito Shodo-Kai Calligraphy Association," an exhibit that is on display through October 28. To learn more, visit <>.

3) The Portland Chinatown Museum has two upcoming events worth noting. On September 27, it is featuring a fundraising performance by violinist-looper, vocalist, and composer Joe Kye playing pieces from his album, Migrants, from 5:30 to 8:00pm. Jenny Chu, a poet and spoken-word artist, opens the event. Admission is $25. To learn more, visit <>.

4) On October 4, "Descendent Threads" is opening at the Portland Chinatown Museum. The new art exhibit celebrates diverse mixed-media works created by Asian-American artists Roberta Wong, Lynn Yarne, and Ellen George. The pieces illuminate and trace the wildly varied paths each artist has chosen to embrace their Old Town/Chinatown/Japantown roots and Asian-American identities. To learn more, visit the museumís website.

5) At the Portland Japanese Garden, members of the community may take part in O-tsukimi, or moonviewing, September 23 through 25 from 7:00 to 9:30pm. O-tsukimi is a fundraising event that begins with a stroll through the lantern-lit garden accompanied by Japanese music. It also includes observing a tea ceremony in the Kashintei Tea House while enjoying a cup of sakť or tea and watching the harvest moon rise above the city. To buy tickets, visit <>. (The September 23 event is already sold out.)

6) For gardening lovers, the 2018 International Conference of the North American Japanese Gardens Association (NAJGA) is being held at the Hilton Portland & Executive Tower in downtown Portland. Workshops and talks for gardeners of all skill levels are featured at the event, which is held September 29 to October 1. To learn more, visit <>.

7) Another cultural arts experience to attend is "INGENIO Milagro 2018: A New Works Project," which takes place September 21 through 23 at Milagro Theatre. The free event includes four staged play readings as well as workshops by Latinx playwrights to develop new work. Tara by Brian OtaŮo is featured on Friday, September 21 at 7:00pm. Saturday, September 22 highlights Casta by Adrienne Dawes (1:00pm) and World Classic by Nelson DŪaz-Marcano (7:00pm). Finally, on Sunday, September 23 at 11:30am, CJ ó A Trilingual Play by Mercedes Floresislas is the focus. To view the full schedule, visit <>.

8) At Portland Center Stage, The Color Purple is being performed through October 28. Adapted from Alice Walkerís Pulitzer Prize-winning bestseller, the Tony Award-winning musical about an African-American family from the early to mid-20th century in the American South includes jazz, ragtime, gospel, and blues music. To learn more, visit <>.

9) At Artists Repertory Theatre, Dominique Morisseauís Skeleton Crew is being staged. It is directed by William (Bill) Earl Ray, who brought Portland a stunning production of August Wilsonís Two Trains Running last spring at PassinArt. Skeleton Crew tells the story of Detroit auto factory workers who live paycheck-to-paycheck and struggle with management while trying to hold onto their jobs. The show features an African-American cast of Portland actors and runs through September 30. To buy tickets, visit <>.

10) Lastly, everyone is welcome to indulge in an Asian-American movie binge. Crazy Rich Asians features an all-star Asian cast including Constance Wu and Michelle Yeoh. The extremely successful comedy is about an Asian-American woman who accompanies her boyfriend to Singapore to meet his rich family. Searching, a mystery starring John Cho as a father who is looking for his missing 16-year- old daughter, has received rave reviews. And if you want to stay in for a Netflix binge, I also recommend To All the Boys Iíve Loved Before, based on Jenny Hanís 2014 novel about a biracial Asian-American girl who navigates the complexities of young love.

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Opinions expressed in this newspaper are those of the
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