SAN FRANCISCO — First Voice will present the second annual “Story Circle of the Japanese Diaspora: Ikiru (To Live)” on Saturday, Aug. 20, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. online.
The Story Circle is a gathering and celebration of life, a place where people can connect to one another, find solace and continue.
Created and conceived by America’s first nationally recognized Asian American storyteller, Brenda Wong Aoki, and Asian American jazz pioneer composer Mark Izu, the purpose of the Story Circle is to bring together the lost tribe of people of Japanese descent who were forced to scatter during the incarceration, embrace its mixed-race children and the Shin-Issei community in order to heal, comfort, and strengthen through the power of personal story.
“Sharing our stories helps us to understand our history, its impact on our lives and lights the way to make future together,” Aoki said.
During the first hour of Story Circle, presenting artists will share personal offerings they have created specifically for this occasion. Following this, participants will have the opportunity to engage in facilitated small-group discussions, a place to share their own stories and any burning issue that may be on their hearts.
This year’ Story Circle features host Eryn Kimura (Hapa Gosei filmmaker and multimedia artist, San Francisco), Taiji Miyagawa (Sansei jazz musician and Little Tokyo Mentorship Program, Los Angeles), Mas Koga (Shin-Issei musician/composer, New York), Rob Buscher (Hapa Sansei, film and cultural curator, Asian American Film Festival, Shofusu Japanese House & Garden, Philadelphia), Noe Tanigawa (Sansei visual artist and former director of art & culture, Hawaii Public Radio, Honolulu), Dii Lewis (singer, ryuteki musician, and composer, San Francisco), devorah major (third poet laureate of San Francisco), a Shinto blessing by Masato Kawahatsu Sensei of Konko Church, and a digital collage designed by Andi Wong.
Facilitators are from all over the U.S., Hawaii, Canada, Japan, Lesotho, and Brazil.