Archive for May, 2011
Akuf-f-functure? Yes, you said it right. It’s acupuncture that got a little funky. What separates founder Samuel Wang’s high-fashion-street-wear clothing line is that it brings the cool back into Chinese culture, educating its wearers with a new culturally significant theme each season. Wang, born and raised in Taiwan, aims to share a piece of his culture with America. And they don’t just stop there—the Akufuncture entity also serves as a vehicle to showcase talented Chinese American artists—including our very own Olivia Thai, Dawen, and Andrew Fung—in their various concerts and fashion shows. But Akufuncture isn’t just all diligence. OA walked into 85C Café to find an easy-going, smooth-talking jokester and his nicer, less sarcastic counterpart, Marketing Director Virginia Lin. The light, friendly atmosphere immediately gave away the amount of fun and joy they have in their work. After all, Wang, an engineer-turned-fashionista, can now justify shopping as market research.
Eliot Chang | “You’re going to suck anyway [when you first start off as a comedian], so just start somewhere.”
I walk into The Improv, treading on the same ground as the great Eddie Murphy, Jay Leno, Chris Rock, Ellen DeGeneres, Adam Sandler, and now, Eliot Chang. You know you’re in a comedy club when you’re greeted with, “Another Asian? Alright Eliot, you’ve reached your quota. This is the last one I’m letting in.” And so the night begins—we bond by candlelight about Eliot’s least favorite color and relationship status. Then he catches on to OA’s alterior motive: our “Fun Facts” are clearly just a cover-up for a secret desire to blind date all of our interviewees. But in all seriousness, Eliot exudes a rare confidence, a calm mystery, topped off with a suave wardrobe, and is not afraid to improvise and speak his mind. It’s little wonder how his natural comedic prowess landed him the #2 spot on Comedy Central’s Stand Up Showdown 2011 for his Comedy Central Presents half hour special. And he wins the #1 spot for OA’s best piece of advice: You’re going to suck anyway [when you first start off as a comedian], so just start somewhere.
Go see an artist live, and expect to hear them perform, then you clap. Go see Jane live, and don’t expect a performance. Instead, you’ll feel like you’ve known Jane since you were in diapers, and the two of you are hanging out in her room as she shares stories and music. The level of comfort you feel in Jane’s presence and her ability to connect with an audience is astounding. Born and raised in Hong Kong, surviving the culture shock of moving to the U.S. at age 12, and starting her solo career in 2004, Jane boasts a Best Recording Nomination for the 2008 San Diego Music Awards and was a featured artist on YouTube on 2009. This 2008 Kollaboration winner has not rested a day, and for good reason—she successfully raised $11,600 from fans for her third album, Goodnight Company, showcasing another round of chills-inducing beauty and, of course, quirkiness. But what’s more, we witness Jane’s personal growth. Join OA as Jane shares never-before-told stories of her eventful life, the reason for a 10-year silence between her and her father, and in her own words, how she has grown into “a joyful and life-loving person.” Well said, Jane.