CONSORTIUM OF ASIAN AMERICAN THEATERS & ARTISTS (CAATA) STANDS WITH NATIVE HAWAIIANS IN SUPPORT OF THE
“NO ALOHA, NO POKE! PEACEFUL RALLY,” TO TAKE PLACE ON WEDNESDAY, AUG. 15
Production Photo Via ConFest Chicago
The Consortium of Asian American Theaters & Artists (CAATA), the national organizers of ConFest 2018, supports the Hawaiian people’s indigenous language reclamation. CAATA condemns the actions of Aloha Poke Co. and supports the peaceful rally Wednesday, Aug. 15, near the restaurant’s Lincoln Park location at 818 W. Fullerton Ave, from 12:30 - 2:30 p.m.
On the eve of ConFest 2018, board members of the Consortium of Asian American Theaters and Artists (CAATA) were disturbed to hear of the actions of Aloha Poke Co., a Chicago-based business, demanding restaurants across the country “Cease and Desist” using the words “Aloha” and “Poke” in their names on the basis of copyright infringement. CAATA would like to express support for the Hawaiian people and the reclamation of the Hawaiian language. After a 90-year history of ‘olelo Hawai’i being banned from use in schools, CAATA supports the freedom of Native Hawaiians to use their own indigenous language as they see fit, without restriction from outside entities or fear of legal actions.
As Andi Meyer, CAATA board member and artistic director of Tradewind Arts (Kansas City, MO), said, “Speaking as an artist of mixed Native Hawaiian descent, I feel that reclamation of language and artistic self-representation are paramount to our ability to perpetuate the Hawaiian culture after years of forced decline. It seems a perfect confluence of events that these artists are scheduled to be in Chicago at this time, when the overall CAATA conference theme happens to be "Revolutionary Acts!" As a board member, I hope the greater Chicagoland audience will take advantage of this unparalleled opportunity to both support the voices of Native Hawaiian artists, and also to value the many underrepresented voices that exist in their own community.”
This year CAATA is proud to include a stellar roster of Native Hawaiian theatre makers and an entire slate of Native Hawaiian conference offerings.
Participants and Hawaiian-themed events included in this year’s ConFest 2018 include:
OPENING NIGHT SHOWCASE
Hot Asian Everything: REVOLT
Monday, Aug. 13 at 8 p.m.
Victory Gardens Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave.
Presented by CAATA
Directed by Victor Malana Moag
An evening of revolutionary proportions featuring a powerhouse mix of Chicago and national talent — all hosted by the illustrious Emi Macadangdang and Jasmine! Kick off ConFest 2018 in style with a collection of sketch comedy, musical performances and celebrity sightings by some of Asian American theater’s most noted artists. Lineup includes excerpts and performances from:
Moses Goods’ Kinolau
Comedy troupe Stir-Friday Night!
Anu Bhatt’s Hollow/Wave
Shishir Kurup's Merchant on Venice, Rasaka Theatre & Vitalist Theatre
Panelist and performer Moses Goods (pictured above). Goods is also the founder and artistic director of ʻInamona Theatre Company, an organization dedicated to reintroducing the native stories of Hawaiʻi to the community. Goods is one of Hawaiʻi’s most prominent theatre artists. Originally from the island of Maui and now based in Honolulu he has traveled nationally and internationally performing his original work to a wide range of audiences. His body of work ranges from full length plays to theatrical storytelling pieces most of which are strongly rooted in Native Hawaiian culture.
Opening Plenary Speaker Kumu Tammy Haili`ōpua Baker
And conversation with Native Hawaiian Theater Practitioners moderated by Sami L.A. Akuna aka Cocoa Chandelier
Tuesday, Aug. 14 at 9 a.m.
DePaul University - The Theatre School, 2350 North Racine Avenue, Chicago, IL 60614
Opening Keynote Speaker Kumu Tammy Haili`ōpua Baker, whose work centers on the development of an indigenous Hawaiian theater aesthetic and form, Hawaiian language revitalization, and the empowerment of cultural identity through stage performance. Baker is also a playwright and the artistic director of Ka Hālau Hanakeaka, a Hawaiian medium theater troupe. As an associate professor in the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa she oversees both the Hawaiian Theatre and the Playwriting MFA programs. Originally from Kapa‘a, Kaua‘i, Baker now resides with her family in Kahalu‘u, Ko‘olaupoko, O‘ahu.
Cocoa Chandelier (pictured above) is the official artist-in-residence at the Leeward Community College after contributing her talents as a choreographer, costume design and artistic direction after several years of participation in both the Drama and Dance department. Chandelier holds two separate degrees in the Theatre and Dance program from the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. She travels continuously as an advocate and spokesperson for H.I.V/AIDS and has taught Modern Dance at Leeward Community College and the Art of The Drag Performer at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Chandelier plans to graduate with a PhD in Performance Studies and would like to be addressed in the future as Dr. Chandelier.
Panelists include Moses Goods and Christopher K. Morgan.
Moses Goods bio is included in the Hot Asian Everything: REVOLT section above.
A Recipient of an NPN Creation Fund and NEFA National Dance Project Award, Pōhaku premiered in March 2016 at Dance Place and has toured nine other venues in Hawaii, California, New York and Minnesota.
TeAda Productions, Tradewind Arts & aetherplough present
International Drag Bingo
Hosted by Cocoa Chandelier featuring surprise guests from near and far.
Benefiting the Consortium of Asian American Theaters and Artist (CAATA) on going advocacy and convening efforts
Tuesday, Aug. 14 from 9:30 p.m. - 12 a.m.
Fiesta Mexicana, 2423 N. Lincoln Ave.
Cocoa Chandelier’s bio is included in the Opening Plenary Speaker Kumu Tammy Haili`ōpua Baker section above.
Written, directed and performed by Christopher K. Morgan
Wednesday, August 15 at 8 p.m.
Thursday, August 16 at 3:30 p.m.
Victory Gardens Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave.
Pōhaku incorporates traditional Hawaiian chant, hula, contemporary dance, theater and storytelling to explore compelling universal themes in the story of Hawaii’s native people, including land loss and fractured identity. In this solo dance theater piece, Christopher K. Morgan connects his personal family story of outward migration away from Hawai’i to the illegal overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawai’i, the islands’ colonial history and its present day status.
Christopher K. Morgan’s bio is included in Opening Plenary Speaker Kumu Tammy Haili`ōpua Baker section above.