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Musician Marcus Shelby and Visual Artist Flo Oy Wong Collaborate on Gwah Guy: Crossing the Street
Republished From http://www.wrightnow.biz
Musician Marcus Shelby and Visual Artist Flo Oy Wong are collaborating on a performance presented by the Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center, Gwah Guy: Crossing the Street (a part of the Flo Oy Wong's 75th birthday celebration), on June 7th and 8th, 2013 at ODC, 351 Shotwell Street in San Francisco. Tickets and more information are available at www.odcdance.org/theater.php.

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Presents

Gwah Guy: Crossing the Street

A collaboration between Marcus Shelby, Musician,

and Flo Oy Wong, Visual Artist

Dramaturg - Andi Wong

 

June 7th and 8th at ODC in San Francisco

 

 

San Francisco, April 18, 2013 - Musician Marcus Shelby and Visual Artist Flo Oy Wong are collaborating on a performance presented by the Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center, Gwah GuyCrossing the Street (a part of the Flo Oy Wong's 75th birthday celebration), on June 7th and 8th, 2013 at ODC, 351 Shotwell Street in San Francisco. Tickets and more information are available at www.odcdance.org/theater.php or via the ODC Theater OfficeBox Office Hours: Wednesday-Friday 12pm--3pm, Tel (415) 863-9834, Fax (415) 863-9833.

 

In collaboration with Marcus Shelby, Gwah Guy: Crossing the Street will musically explore poignant memories of Edward K. Wong aka Baby Jack, Flo Oy Wong's husband.  Ed Wong lived in Augusta, Georgia at the time of segregation when Chinese Americans were identified as "honorary whites."  The June 7th and 8th performances will also include memories of Flo Oy Wong's childhood in Oakland California's Chinatown near West Oakland, the historical district where many African Americans resided.  Marcus will compose original music inspired by Flo Oy Wong's literary re-imagining of her husband's Southern childhood experiences.

 

Flo Oy Wong's Perspective

Gwah GuyCrossing the Street, the performance title, is derived from Flo Oy Wong's childhood in Oakland Chinatown.  When she was a young girl she accompanied her mother from their Webster Street restaurant to shop at Housewives' Market in the heart of West Oakland, a predominately African American neighborhood.  They walked from the security of Webster Street to 7th and Franklin, the border intersection between Chinatown and West Oakland.  At the corner, Flo Oy Wong would not cross the street.  She had heard rumors at her elementary school that Blacks and Latinos were waiting to beat her up with chains.  Her mother went on to shop at Housewives' Market without Flo.  This was an encounter that Flo has carried her entire life much like the way Baby Jack held his life-long memory of his Southern childhood.  Now, as an elder American artist Flo Oy Wong is "crossing the street" in her artwork to collaborate with members of the African American community she had been taught to fear.

 

Marcus Shelby's Perspective

Marcus Shelby, an award-winning musician and composer, is highly renowned and sought after for his discography, his theatrical and film scoring, and his music for ballet and dance.  His empathy as a human being who understands the impact of social justice for all Americans will propel the writing of original music for Gwah Guy: Crossing the Street.  He uses his music to inspire us as Americans to understand our similarities and to eradicate the fear of our differences.  His talent as a musician will weave all elements of his being together to offer a musical gift inspired by the life of Edward K. Wong, Baby Jack.  Marcus Shelby brings us together as people through the discordant melodies of our lives.

 

About the Performance - Stage at the ODC

Marcus Shelby and his orchestra will perform Gwah Guy: Crossing the Street at ODC, 351 Shotwell Street, San Francisco CA 94110 - www.odcdance.org/theater.php.  They will be playing against a visual backdrop - images of the Augusta, Georgia cotton compress, railroad tracks - created by a design team.  The dramaturg is Andi Wong, artist and Rooftop School computer teacher and volunteer.

 

Contemporary Cross Fertilization:

Gwah Guy: Crossing the Street is a musical event which celebrates Flo Oy Wong's 75th Birthday and is an Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center project. It is an experiment in contemporary cross fertilization of music, art, and performance that will enhance the lives of those who absorb its lesson of humanity - that it is possible for us to share our common ground while eradicating or reducing our differences, that it is appropriate for us to "cross the street."  It will be set within the examination of current Asian/Black relationships in the San Francisco Bay Area.


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