Friday, May 30, 2008

on youtube even more

i've been so busy, my head is about to explode. firstly, i was accepted to the vancouver stomp, which i mentioned earlier. thanks to the city of austin, half of the expenses accrued visiting vancouver will be paid-for.

secondly, i started meeting and working on the artspark festival. when we interviewed, they all told us it would be hectic and crazy, but even then, i think i underestimated! gotta work work work!

thirdly, i'm in a performance art piece next week about the death penalty. i'm still trying to rake together all the details, but it will involve going around austin in a van and conducting various "happenings." yeah. i'll post more as it comes.

and then i've been editing some video y'all. here are two videos that have existed on the internets prior to now, but i've re-uploaded them to youtube. i still have about five more of these babies, so keep on the lookout. if you want, you can subscribe to my channel. it *should* alert you when i upload new stuff.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

on the ball? (knock wood)

1. just was awarded $1500 from the city of austin to attend a workshop (now i just need to get into the workshop!)
2. was invited to be in a performance art piece about the death penalty in texas (for pay!)
3. finished a draft of a book review
4. am revising my story
5. am redesigning my website, will post update here once uploaded

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

on youtube part quatre

this is a video of "dean," a semi-autobiographical tranny boy who thinks about performance and gender.

on youtube part trois

this video is of "norman," the uber-masculine rice rocket boy who i based on my impression of certain asian american college students.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

on disaster

just a note about all the crazy disasters happening in the world. first myanmar, then the tornadoes through the U.S. midwest, then the earthquake in western china.

i posted briefly before about being in japan when the earthquake happened in kobe. i watched the city burn and resolved to organize my high school to send aid. we raised several thousand dollars and sent a dozen volunteers to help rebuild over spring break.

something sinister is happening in the world. i can't help but feel like the earth is taking out her anger on humans for fucking with her for so long. the fucked up thing is, it seems the disasters hit the people who aren't really to blame: poor folks, rural folks, people of color, children, people of the third world.

as first world citizens, it's times like these that it's really important to at least attempt to account for our role in chaos. i don't know how possible it is to be completely accountable. when oe kenzaburo wrote about okinawa and post WWII, he talked about how it was a type of sacrificial lamb. about how japan was trying to use it as a perpetual indulgence, rather than grin and bear a full-on confession in search of absolution.

somewhere between absolution and perpetual indulgence lies charitable donations.

the first and easiest thing we can do as first world citizens is provide capital. and so, in line with kristina wong's post, i am requesting you readers to please donate. kristina follows the l.a. times in donating to unicef. i am following suit. unicef seems most strategically placed to provide for aid in myanmar. but now that there's so many disasters, the red cross and doctors without borders would lend tremendous help, too. funds are tight in my life right now, but i have a home and food and my health. i'm asking you to at least match kristina's donation of $20, as i just did.

bloggers, please re-blog kristina's call for matching donations. as individuals, many of us don't have the funds to give what we would like, but as a collective, we can raise a substantial amount in micro donations. let's do this, y'all!

Monday, May 12, 2008

on training

so. in the many weeks that i was absent from this blog, something happened.

i went to see the rude mechs perform "the method gun." it was a crazy production. but it was stunning. it's the play that won the rudes both a creative capital and a MAP grant. the city of austin produced it in their newly finished long center. it was a crown jewel. it had all the elements: acrobatics, stage crying, scripted improv, swinging lanterns, guns, a monologuing tiger, actors acting "actors" who are acting theatrical methods, and, of course, "a streetcar named desire."

i, of course, saw it a week before my own play went up. i was in that mode where i could see the stage and the performance from a new angle with a different focus and a clear lens. something about seeing the "method gun" and then being a part of a production with an awesome script clarified everything i've been ruminating over for the past year: i want to perform. and i want to perform forever.

of course, this realization didn't come to me so clearly at first. i just saw the show and immediately thought, "i wonder if i could become a company member of the rudes." having rehearsed weekly at the off center on my solo show a few years back made it seem really, well, doable. so i stopped by the off center and talked to folks there. i was looking for madge, the person who directed my solo show. but in the mean time, i talked with other folks. and they gave me vague answers. "if ya hang out a while, we start to get the feeling you wanna be a company member, and then we vote." or "get us drunk, then we'll spill the beans."

finally, i tracked down madge and we met over coffee. i asked her. and suddenly things got pretty awkward. because madge knows my limitations. madge knows the demands of local theater and the rude mechanicals. and madge doesn't bullshit. which is why i loved her as a director and why i knew she would be the one to talk to. we talked about what the process would entail. logistics. and finally she said, point blank: "well, how serious are you about this?" i hemmed and hawed for a second. and then i said, "i don't think i can help it, madge. i want to some capacity... for... ever." she smiled. and then frowned. "i just wanted to know whether or not you were, you know, dabbling." that madge is astute. so i said, "i think i'm addicted." and she said, "yeah. sorry. it's an affliction." and then she said, "well, kt. if that's how you feel about it. i think you need more training." and then she proceeded to tell me all the different ways the company members had been trained. where i would wanna go, etc. it's because of that conversation that i applied for this week-long intensive in vancouver.


it's a tough word. i've undergone a lot of training. i've been trained as a musician since i was five. i was trained as an academic in grad school. i was trained to be an administrator at UT.

but i still can't shake that feeling. that i'm a dilettante. and i suppose i am. and i enjoy my broad knowledge. but when madge told me i needed more training, i though i would feel discouraged. but quite the opposite. i felt inspired. i felt like i could actually undergo much discomfort to train as a performer.

and i like that i don't have to go back to school, necessarily, to train. there are many intensives offered throughout the year all over the world.

this weekend, wonderful partner and i went to a birthday party for the child of a former colleague of mine. the crowd were mostly older than me, mostly with children. all of whom were professors or other professionals. before, i could just blend in, say "i'm a lecturer at UT." and that was the end of it. but this time, I felt challenged. they would say, "so what do you do?" and i would almost apologetically say, "i'm an artist." to which they would reply, "what kind of art?" and i would say, "oh. (sigh) many things." in the past, i would go on some long, convoluted thing about multi-disciplinary stuff, etc. etc. but this was the first time i came out decisively and explained, "my main focus is performance and writing. i'm working on a solo show for myself and i was recently in a play."

it's a big step. to focus. people still don't get it, unless they are artists themselves or are really into art. but i'm slowly amassing things to show for my past year.

and something keeps telling me that there's another thing, just around the corner. you know those little clicks you hear, just before a bell tower chimes the hour? i feel like i'm hearing those clicks. and the chime is only a little bit away.

i'm excited. and this time, i think the excitement actually eclipses the fear.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

on, damn, y'all, i been working!

what i done did:
1. submitted a CORE grant application with the city of austin for "una corda" (last week)
2. submitted an auxiliary grant application with the city of austin for attending the "vancouver stomp" (monday)
3. submitted the application for "vancouver stomp" (today)
4. shot a cooking video *in japanese* for demand video (who post to expertvillage)
5. was invited/solicited by eileen tabios to include this blog post and this review in tabios's next book manuscript--and accepted! (today)
6. applied for six job jobs at UT (over the past ten days)
7. worked at alma for six hours, finishing apps for the lmcc residency and the out on the edge fest (today)

many more things to do (like send off the shit i finished), but for now, i'm just gonna go ahead and pat myself on the back.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

on kt

(photo credit: michael sullivan)
just some updates from kt. as the image above shows, the play, "why koreans don't hug" went off without a hitch. in fact, one night, we damn near knocked it outta the little lab theater. this is the photo of me playing a 65-year-old (male) korean reverend kissing on a 19-year-old girl. but seriously, it was an awesome production. my fellow actors were great. and the script was brilliant! ima actor y'all!

in other related news, the theater collective i'm in was accepted to this year's artspark festival. my theater collective (which was formed to apply for this festival) consists of myself, ana-maurine lara, cheryl coward, and florinda bryant. wheee!!!!!!!! i'm super psyched. oh, and the collective name? stamp lab: a theatre group

hee hee hee.