Monday, May 9, 2011

Laos in the House launches fundraising campaign

The long-awaited Laos in the House: Midwest tour is now on and they have sixty days to try and raise $5,200 to make it across the Midwest, traveling to cities in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, and Ohio and places in between.

After the Lao American Writers Summit in Minneapolis and the successful Legacies of War: Refugee Nation Twin Cities exhibition and theatrical performance, it was clear from many of guests and readers across the US that you wanted to see similar programs in your own cities and states. We know something like this has never been attempted before by Lao writers and visual artists but we think it's important to try.

Catzie of Yellow Rage, Mooks and Bryan Thao Worra are really excited about this tour and they have lots of exciting things to offer sponsors as rewards. But whether you chip in $1 or $5,200 your contributions definitely make a difference.

During their trek across the Midwest they'll be covering at least 1,111 miles sharing Lao American art and literature and more importantly, looking for new artists and community members to share our voices and journey with.

As a community, Lao have been in the US almost 40 years now but we still have less than 40 books by Lao writers in our own words, on our own terms. But now is the time to bring those stories forward and we all hope you'll join us in making this possible!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Saymoukda Vongsay: March 2nd at Boston college

Saymoukda Vongsay is reading March 2, 2011 at Bold Words Loud Tongue VI at Boston College thanks to the Southeast Asian Student Association. 8:00pm - 11:00pm at the Vandy Cabaret Room. You can find directions here:

This year's Bold Words Loud Tongue features performances by two stars, Manny Garcia and Saymoukda Vongsay. In addition, BC student,Eric Lopez, will also be performing, and they also have an OPEN MIC session! This only happens once a year!

Bold Words Loud Tongue was created to celebrate Southeast Asian and Asian identity in the form of expression and through the culture of hip hop. It strives to not only shatter Southeast Asian and Asian sterotypes but also to help members of the greater Boston College community to embrace their own identities and empower themselves. This is their sixth year of organizing this event.

The goal of the Southeast Asian Student Association is to reach out to surrounding and extended community and teach them about the cultures of Southeast Asian countries. They hope to empower our community and preserve the splendid cultures that we represent through educational, cultural, social, and political events throughout the year. They hope to open discussions about the social issues that currently affect our population just as much as engaging our members with entertainment and food. They welcome all who share an interest or intrigue for the Southeast Asian culture.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Family Style Open Mic: 2/18 Dave Bak and SAVING THOMAS.

Family Style is "Bak" this Friday, February 18th! Featuring Dave Bak and the band SAVING THOMAS. Hosted by the ever-eloquent duo YELLOW RAGE. And raising funds and awareness for the ONE LOVE MOVEMENT, supporting local Cambodian community members currently facing deportation. Don't miss it!

1219 Vine Street Philadelphia, PA 19107
Time: 7:30PM Friday, February 18th

Bring a group of 5 or more, and one of you will get in for FREE!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Saymoukda Vongsay Reading at Intermedia Arts! 1/25/11

Beyond the Pure 
Color Theory for the 21st Century: Readings by Writers of Color
Tuesday, January 25, 2011, 7PM at Intermedia Arts
Intermedia Arts | 2822 Lyndale Ave South, Minneapolis, MN, 55408
$5 suggested donation supports the series!
For more information, call (612) 871-4444 or email

Featured Artists:

Saymoukda Vongsay is a queer Lao American poet and playwright who's taken risks, often incorporating surrealism and speculative literature with hip hop and a no holds barred approached to Lao American history. She's a co-founding member of The Unit Collective of Emerging Playwrights of Color, author of No Regrets, Chair of the 2010 National Lao American Writers Summit, inaugural winner of the 2010 Alfred C. Carey Prize in Spoken Word from New York, recipient of a Loft Literary Center scholarship to attend Robert McKee's Story Seminar, advisory board member of the 2010 MPLS Asian Film Festival, and was recently recognized by the Lao Professionals of Illinois for her literary accomplishments. Vongsay continues to work actively to support the work of Lao women writers and artists across the country to celebrate heritage, diversity, and community development. Get to know her at

Stephani Maari Booker, originally from Michigan and currently living in Minneapolis, is an editor of the African American newspaper Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder and holds an MFA from Hamline University of St. Paul, MN. Her creative work has been published most recently in the online journals Blithe House Quarterly and Pittsburgh Flash Fiction Gazette, the collection 60 Seconds to Shine: 221 One-minute Monologues For Women (Monologue Audition Series, Volume 2) edited by John Capecci and Irene Ziegler Aston (Smith & Kraus Inc., 2006), and the anthology Longing, Lust, and Love: Black Lesbian Stories edited by Shonia L. Brown (Nghosi Books, 2007). Visit Stephani's website for more information about her work:

Madame MiMi discovered the Art of Spoken Word through the African oral tradition, where proverbial talk is a high quality. In African societies, she finds her deepest roots in the Lunda tribe. Madame Mimi first started writing her poems in French as a teenager than later in English. Her father inspired her to play the guitar and she was influenced by artists such as Tracy Chapman, Billy Holiday, Zap Mama, Les Nubians. Growing up in France she admired Jacques Brel and Edith Piaffe as well. Madame Mimi marked her performance debut in the mid-nineties. She imposed herself as an avant-garde multi-talented artist in Land of the Lakes. Hip-Hop came to her life in the mid-80s; she was residing in Sarcelles, France then. This new vibe had a great influence on her and many young Africans living in the H.L.M's (urban projects of Parisian suburbs) who were looking to express their fight for identity. In Minneapolis, she co-founded a spoken word venue called DA Initiation (1998-2003) with MC TruthMaze, a platform that would give artistic exposure to artists of color. Madame Mimi is multilingual and her voice and melodies are unique to most. She takes pleasure into playing with words and sounds in her own particular way and makes no apologies for defining linguistic through music in her terms.

Lori Young- Williams' writing focuses on family/family relationships. She is currently completing a MLS degree at the University of Minnesota focusing on the migration of Black families from the South to the North, in particular the migration her father's family made from South Carolina to Philadelphia. 1992, she earned a bachelor's degree in Human Relationships with an emphasis of family relationships. She comes from a working class family that believes in laughter, crying, and praying when times are good, or when times are bad. Lori has been published in Interrace magazine, the Turtle River Press, the National Library of Poetry, Quill Books, Dust & Fire and other anthologies. Also, she has self- published two chapbooks. She has read in various bookstores, coffee shops, and spoken word events in the Twin Cities, including several collaborative readings with Sherry Quan Lee, Chinese Black White Women Got the Beat. Lori was a participant for the Givens Black Writers Retreat, 2008 with mentors Sonja Sanchez and Carolyn Holbrook. Lori has taught a writing workshop in early spring 2009 called Women of Color: Writing our Stories. She has also taught two other workshops, with Sherry Quan Lee. One about women writing their stories at the University of MN October 2009 and the other for a poetry group in Mankato October 2010. Lori is in the process of editing her final project for her masters and will have a reading at Intermedia Arts on March 26th, 2011.

Robert Farid Karimi is an interdisciplinary playwright/poet/multimedia humorist, & storycook from the SF Bay Area. A Creative Capital recipient, a National Poetry Slam Champion, a Def Poetry Jam poet, and creator of the critically acclaimed works: Self (the remix), Farid Mercury and the live comedy cooking experience: The Cooking Show con Karimi y Comrades, his performances have fed audiences across the Americas in theatres, grocery stores, backyards, and off Broadway. A UCLA graduate, he has received awards from the NEA, Verve Grant, MSAB, MAP, and others. In 2009, he represented the city of Los Angeles at la Feria del Libro Internacional in Guadalajara, Mexico. In 2010-2011 he will be artist in residence at Intermedia developing his new project Diabetes of Democracy, a Cooking Show focusing on type 2 diabetes in communities of color and beyond.