Traci Akemi Kato-Kiriyama is the creator and producer of Tuesday Night Café. She is a writer, performing artist, educator and grassroots organizer who is passionate about self-determined spaces, organizing through the honest communication of issues+art, and connecting folks with each other and the reality that we are all bridges… that we are connected and beholden to each other in this amazing city and across the globe… that people are each other’s greatest resource.
Traci continues to travel with her new book of poetry, “signaling” and as an arts educator in local schools and colleges with her workshops. She looks forward to starting an anti-war&pro-peace oral history/writing/website project with veterans and resisters, organizers, writers and filmmakers.
She and musician Sue Jin are recipients of a grant through TNP from Japanese American Community Services (JACS) to offer free writing workshops to 3 organizations/groups around LA this year.
A variety-freak at her artistic core, Traci continues to explore creation, collaboration and expression through her loves of theatre, performance art, character, voice, and wacky music.
Keep your ear and heart out for Supper Club; The Madeleines; Edge Of The World; PULL; Oymun productions; GOW – Generations Of War; The Kid’s Table; The Undeniables; AUTO FREAK…
Johneric is an Organizer, Teacher, Culinary Innovator, and Performance Artist of humble origins but extraordinary output. A product of the world famous community of Downtown Los Angeles, Echo Park/Historic Filipinotown, his commitment to merging the form and function of art to convey the emotional and often time ignored stories of the people is his life’s work. The current resident host of the critically acclaimed Tuesday Night Café, a multi-disiplicinary showcase in the heart of Downtown’s Little Tokyo, he even takes hosting as an art form and responsibility to ensure each artists is introduced and welcomed to the stage so that their respective stories can be shared with the masses.
Johneric has contributed his melodic hooks to recording artists such as Bambu and the Native Guns and has taken his distinct style and immersed it with the Cueva brothers to create a musical aesthetic that truly represents the Southern California sound-waves for the 21st century.
He likes ninjas, transformers, long walks on a sunset lit beach, and dunking on little kids till they bow their heads down in shame. In a survey he took on Facebook his gangster name would be Mr. Puppy Eyes and he’s 90% Nerd and 75% Neanderthal. If you picked him to be your World of Warcraft Battle Ground Defender his Tauren Warrior would fight naked while dancing. For the Horde!
Ant started playing guitar at age 15, and was heavily influenced by blues and rock. His music career started with his first band, a 3 piece rock band called Blackjack!, which he played lead guitar in for 7 years. Blackjack! released 2 full length CD’s, and shared stages with acts such as Slick Shoes and Dogwood. During that time he also started another band called The Slaves, a 7 piece ska/rock band. Ant played bass with The Slaves for 5 years, who also released 2 full length CD’s, and opened for acts such as RxBandits, Five Iron Frenzy, Lets Go Bowling, and toured the west coast with UK ska legends Bad Manners.
Ant is currently a sound engineer, running sound for many community based organizations such as Tuesday Night Cafe and Projekt Newspeak, and also runs large cultural festivals such as Artwallah and FPAC. He is also a recording engineer, and does demos and preproduction recordings for local artists in his home studio.
In 2003 Ant used his musical background to help him learn how to DJ. He spins hip hop, old school, reggae, 80′s, disco, funk, and everything inbetween. Ant spins for various community events in LA, as well as nightclubs, private parties, and weddings.
Mike hails from Oxnard by way of Historic Filipino-town. He is that guy you see at everything but probably have never even met. A member of the crew for the past five years, and a fan for even longer than that, Mike is the Cafe’s jack-of-all-trades. From performing on the open mic to managing it, from photographing the shows to streaming it live online for the whole world to watch, and from wrapping cables to doing DJ sets, Mike has literally done it all. Any spare time he has left he spends doing community organizing, IT consulting, getting people elected to congress, and being a disturbingly relaxed and occasionally employed recent grad student.
Narinda has been traipsing around Los Angeles since 2007, writing with The Undeniables, drinking copious amounts of coffee, and immersing herself in all the wild and wonderful things LA has to offer.
Mary Rose Go
Mary Rose, born in Monterey Park, grown in Honolulu, and cultivated in the Asian American Studies Department in Claremont, is a flavorful singer bursting with passions for jazz, mariachi, opera, poetry, and liberation. She writes with the Undeniables, volunteers at Tuesday Night Cafe, sings at open mics, and takes the wait for a table for two at Il Fornaio Pasadena.
Quincy is a jack-of-all-trades artist and an amateur personal chef-in-training. He graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 2008 as a student of Theatre Arts and Asian-American Studies, finishing with a BA in History. An on-and-off viewer of the Tuesday Night Cafe during his internships with East West Players in 2006 and Cornerstone Theater Company in 2007, Quincy joined the staff of the Tuesday Night Project in 2009.
Though currently pursuing a career in non-profit development and communications, Quincy is a singer, actor, and theatre artist, most recently directing a production of Wakako Yamauchi’s 12-1-A with UC Santa Cruz’s Rainbow Theater in 2007, and coordinating Isang Himig Multicultural A Cappella from 2007-2008. He intends to return to acting and music in the near future. Until then, he will continue to hone his craft, cook and eat delicious food, adventure in L.A., and treasure working with one of the finest artistic communities and organizations he’s ever encountered.
Alison De La Cruz
Alison is a multi-disciplinary theatre artist and community-based cultural organizer. Her theater work has been presented throughout the country including: the Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre, the Northwest Asian American Theatre, and the Yerba Buena Center for the Performing Arts. She is a theatre educator for Shakespeare Festival/LA’s Play on! and Will Power to Youth programs and East West Players’ PEAC Program. Alison is also the writer, narrator and Associate Producer for the Visual Communications documentary “Grassroots Rising: Asian Immigrant Workers in Los Angeles” which premiered at the LA API Film Fest in 2005 and has been presented at the Smithsonian Institution’s Natural History Museum. De La Cruz is currently the Administrative Director for About…Productions in Pasadena, CA.
Once a TNP stalker, Yulree now happily spends her time with the TNP family whenever she is not at her day job.
She can also be called a nomadic wanderer, chameleon, shower singer, stove-top & oven experimenter, humanitarian, wanna-be flute beatboxer, behind the scenes organizer, and a candy junkie.
She hopes to one day rid her fear of stage fright and perform something. Anything.
Lisa is a trainer, teacher, community researcher, organizer, partner, sister and daughter. She has been involved with numerous Asian and Pacific Islander, community health and women’s organizations throughout the country and Pacific, meeting amazing movers and shakers along the way. She was born and raised in Los Angeles and has lived in San Diego, San Francisco and Guam.
Sue Jin is a soulful singer/songwriter from Los Angeles who has performed on both television and radio.As an educator, she fuses her love for music with her advocacy of women, children in the communities she serves. It is her goal to not only broaden the lens of Asian American talent as portrayed in mainstream media, but to represent positive alternatives to the female images thatcurrently serve as models in society.
Dustin is a graphic designer who likes to get under-the-hood and learn how things work. A designer for print, he has always been intrigued by the internet and has been dabbling in HTML for a while starting off with notepad and a web browser. Lately, he has been getting into web scripting becoming familiar with PHP, MySQL, and Flash. He chooses to hand-code his sites feeling that this gives him a better understanding of how things work which, in turn, allows him more control over the final product. It also allows him to keep things as coder-friendly as possible with proper formatting and some notes. Taking over someonelse’s code is never fun, but good formatting and notes always helps the process and saves a bunch of headaches.
He is also an avid photographer and can be seen walking around with his camera bag wherever he may roam. At Tuesday Night Cafés, you may see him walking around with his camera taking pictures of you taking pictures. He finds a photographing people taking photographs of people a bit ironic and it amuses him so.
Yumi is a Los Angeles artist who helps with the graphic design work of the Tuesday Night Project publicity fliers and wants to increase the presence of visual artists to the Tuesday Night Cafe space. Come out to a Tuesday Night Cafe event and you might see her working on a live painting or selling some comic zines. When she is not volunteering with the Tuesday Night Project or working on new drawings, she is probably drinking hot tea or enjoying cheap Indian food in Gardena.
Belinda is a handmade artist operating from her home studio in the outskirts of Los Angeles. When she is not stitching up quirky designs and punny phrases (bybelinda.etsy.com), she volunteers with Tuesday Night Project, and is an afterschool program instructor at an elementary school. She enjoys working with kids because no day is ever boring, and she is passionate about developing creative minds at an early age, recognizing that art is a powerful tool for expression and healing. Her favorite things include things of miniature (small versions of normal sized things), repurposing, safety pins, and “boba with no boba.”