On Friday, June 7, and Saturday, June 8, at 8:00 p.m., jazz musician and composer Marcus Shelby and visual artist Flo Oy Wong are presenting the collaborative piece, Gwah Gai: Crossing the Street, developed with API Cultural Center of San Francisco. The title is derived from Wong’s childhood in Oakland’s Chinatown, where she grew up near the border between the Chinese American and African American communities and was afraid to cross the street with her mother to the Housewives Market because of rumors she had heard at school that Blacks and Latinos were waiting to beat her up. In this collaboration she is “crossing the street” to collaborate with African American artists. Shelby was inspired initially by another childhood story about Chinese and African American race relations–Flo Oy Wong’s children’s book Baby Jack Rice, which tells the story of young Edward K. Wong (husband of Flo Oy Wong), who was a close friend to African American boys during segregation in the American South. Performances of Gwah Gai are at ODC Theater in San Francisco, and tickets are available through the ODC Website.
Marcus Shelby, Flo Oy Wong and API Cultural Center present “Gwah Gai: Crossing the Street”
by Frances Phillips | Jun 6, 2013 | News