Asian Improv aRts and Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center presents:
A Special Concert Celebrating the
Shared Birthday of Yuri Kochiyama and Malcolm X
“The Pledge for Black/Asian Allegiance”
by pianist/composer Jon Jang
Saturday, May 19, 2018, 8:00 pm
in the Buddhist Church of San Francisco (Hondo)
A special work combining original music and poetry made possible by grants from the San Francisco Arts Commission and the Zellerbach Family Foundation.
Asian Improv aRts, which has a long history of presenting works expressing Asian American experiences and perspectives in San Francisco Japantown among other communities, will present Jon Jang's new work that pays tribute to the friendship between Yuri Kochiyama and Malcolm X, both iconic social justice activists who share the same birthday of May 19. The title of the work, The Pledge for Black/Asian Allegiance, affirms the solidarity that Yuri and Malcolm held between Asian and African American communities. A close friend of Malcolm's, Yuri was present at Malcolm's death in 1965, captured in a photo in Life Magazine. She continued on with her long career in social activism eventually settling in the Bay Area. She passed away at 93 in 2014.
The performance will feature Jon’s ensemble, the Jangtet with African American theater artist Dr. Amanda Kemp. The Jangtet features bassist Gary Brown, drummer Deszon Claiborne, saxophonist Hitomi Oba and trombonist Nick DePinna, along with Jon Jang.