The Hapa Japan team

Hapa Japan 2013, a festival celebrating mixed-race and mixed-roots Japanese people and culture, will be presented this week in Los Angeles by the Hapa Japan Database Project and the USC Center for Japanese Religions and Culture.

Tuesday, April 2

Bovard Auditorium, USC

“Mixing It Up: [Identity and Music] Innovation,” a USC Visions and Voices Event, 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. (SOLD OUT)

Crossing boundaries, taking risks, making music, and redefining identity –“Mixing It Up” showcases a broad range of diverse talent from mixed-race artists in an exciting evening concert. Musical performances from popular YouTube artist and USC alum Kina Grannis, Japanese Canadian singer-songwriter Justin Nozuka, and Gow (from the Japan-based group Genez) will be integrated with interactive conversation with USC’s Duncan Williams about their cultural roots and mixed identity, experimentation with innovative technology and music making outlets, and the risks and challenges they have faced in building their careers in inventive ways.

Wednesday, April 3

Japan Foundation Los Angeles, 5700 Wilshire Blvd.

A double feature co-sponsored by The Japan Foundation Los Angeles: “Found in Translation” (2005) and “The Power of Two” (2011). A post-screening discussion with “Found in Translation” director Masahiko Fox and the subjects of “The Power of Two,” Anabel “Ana” Mariko Stenzel and Isabel “Isa” Stenzel Byrnes. (SOLD OUT but names can be added to wait list)

Thursday, April 4

East West Players, 120 Judge John Aiso St.

2 to 5:30 p.m. — Book Fair featuring Asian American Literary Review, Kaya Press, Loving Day, Mixed Marrow, Multiracial Americans of Southern California, and various Hapa Japanese authors.

4 to 5:30 p.m. — Literary Panel co-sponsored by Asian American Literary Review and Kaya Press, featuring Ruth Ozeki, author of “A Tale for the Time Being,” winner of the Kiriyama Prize for “My Year of Meats,” winner of the American Book Award for “All Over Creation”; Sesshu Foster, author of “City Terrace Field Manual,” winner of the Believer Book Award for “Atomik Aztex,” winner of the American Book Award for “World Ball Notebook”; Velina Hasu Houston, USC Professor of theater, playwright of “Tea,” “Asa ga Kimashita,” “Calling Aphrodite,” “Messy Utopia,” “Calligraphy” and “The DNA Trail,” editor of “The Politics of Life” and “But Still, Like Air, I’ll Rise”; Carlos Yushimito del Valle, author of “El Mago,” “Las Islas,” “Madureira sabe,” “Equis. X,” and “Lecciones para un niño que llega tarde,” selected by Granta as one of 22 best Spanish-language writers under 35.

8 to 9:30 p.m. — Comedy Night with performances by KT Tatara, Anna Suzuki, Samantha Chanse and Dan Nainan. (Names can be added to wait list)

Friday, April 5

Board Room, Davidson Conference Center, USC

Scholarly Conference Part 1, co-sponsored by The Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminars at USC and Kyoto University. (Names can be added to wait list)

9 to 9:15 a.m. — Welcome remarks by Duncan Williams of USC, conference governor.

9:15 to 10:30 a.m. — Session 1: “The Multiplicity of Identities.” “From Hapa to Haafu: Reconstructing Mixed-Race Japanese Migrant Identities in Japan” by Jane H. Yamashiro (USC); “Shima Haafu, Tokyo Haafu, American Half” by Akemi Johnson (writer); respondent: Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu (Stanford University).

10:45 a.m. to 12 p.m. — Session 2: “Youth and Mixed-Race in Contemporary Japan.” “Negotiating the Meanings of Being ‘Haafu’: The Case of Japanese-Pakistani Mixed Children” by Masako Kudo (Kyoto Women’s University); “Mixed-ethnic ‘Haafu’ Teens in Japan: Deconstructing Social Positions as ‘Marked’ and ‘Foreign’” by Laurel Kamada (Tohoku University); respondent: Jane H. Yamashiro (USC).

1:15 to 2 p.m. — Session 3: “From Kansai to New England: A Multiracial Man’s Journey.” “Using Mixed-Race Oral History to Understand the Post-World War II Period” by Lily Anne Yumi Welty (UCLA); interview of Karl Lippincott.

2:30 to 4:15 p.m. — Session 4: “A Roundtable Discussion of Community-Based Organizations: History and Prospects.” Athena Asklipiadis (Mixed Marrow), Natalie Mfaume (The Hafu Project), Ed Sumoto (Mixed Roots Japan), Ken Tanabe (Loving Day); respondent: George Kich (Founder, I-Pride).

4:15 to 7:30 p.m. — Closing discussion

Japanese American National Museum, 100 N. Central Ave.

7:30 p.m. — L.A. premiere of the documentary “Hafu: The Mixed-Race Experience in Japan” (2013), co-sponsored by The Japan Foundation Los Angeles. Post-screening discussion with directors Lara Perez Takagi and Megumi Nishikura. (SOLD OUT but names can be added to wait list)

Saturday, April 6

Board Room, Davidson Conference Center, USC

Scholarly Conference Part 2, co-sponsored by The Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminars at USC and Kyoto University (Names can be added to wait list)

9 to 10:15 a.m. — Session 5: “Japanese Brazilian Mixed-Race Realities.” “Lost in Japan: Representations of Japanese Brazilian Children” by Zelideth María Rivas (Marshall University); “Mestiça and/or Haafu: Japanese Brazilian Women and Their Mixed-Race Bodies Questioned in Brazil and Japan” by Tamaki Watarai (Aichi Prefectural University); discussant: Lily Anne Yumi Welty (UCLA).

10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. — Session 6: Film Screenings. Trailer for “Mixed Match” (director, Jeff Chiba Stearns; associate producer, Athena Asklipiadis); “Neither Here Nor There” (director, Ema Ryan Yamazaki). Screenings followed by discussion with the filmmakers.

1:15 to 2:30 p.m. — Session 7: “Hapa Japanese Visual Arts: A Roundtable Discussion on Art and Identity.” “Creative Identities: Transformative Hapa Japanese Artists” by Yasuko Takezawa (Kyoto University); featured artist presentations by Laura Kina and Shizu Salamando.

2:45 to 4:15 p.m. — Session 8: “Reading Race: Representations of Mixed-Race Japanese.” “Hapa Covers: Japanese Enka and Its Mixed-Race African American Star” by Christine Yano (University of Hawaii); “America’s Forgotten Children: Representations of American-Japanese Mixed-Race Children in Post-WWII Japan” by Sayuri Arai (University of Illinois); “Manga or Marvel?: Multiracial Japanese/American Visual Narrative in Indy Comics” by LeiLani Nishime (University of Washington); discussant: Cynthia Nakashima (co-editor of “The Sum of Our Parts”).

4:15 to 4:30 p.m. — Closing discussion

Japanese American National Museum, 100 N. Central Ave.

7:30 to 9 p.m. — Opening reception for the “Visible and Invisible: A Hapa Japanese American History” exhibition, a collaboration between the Hapa Japan Database Project, USC Center for Japanese Religions and Culture, and JANM, featuring a performance by singer/songwriter Meiko. Co-curators: Cynthia Nakashima, Lily Anne Yumi Welty, Duncan Williams. Remarks by Greg Kimura (CEO/president, JANM) and Duncan Williams (USC); emcee: Emily Folick (2012 Nisei Week Queen).

To register, visit For more information, email

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