Dubbed as “the most diverse, colorful and entertaining stage during SF PRIDE”, the Asian & Pacific Islander Stage will be making its 7th year of entertainment, HIV education and commitment. Join us this year at our location on Polk Street and Golden Gate Avenue. We'll be showcasing the best of the best Asian & Pacific Islander talents from all over the country. The rostrum of stars is headed by JENN CUNETA, BENTO and Stephanie Reese and many more! Meet them all at the A&PI Pavilion and get free CDs and giveaways!
Born in the Philippines, Jenn moved to the U.S. at a very young age. Jenn performed in numerous talent contests as a kid. She was set to appear on Star Search until her Dad, concerned about her schoolwork, forbid Jenn from continuing.
Now a beautiful young woman, Jenn is well on her way to reaching the stars. With tracks produced by Andy & The Lamboy, Jenn has had club dance and radio success with 'Spirit of Man' on Jellybean Records, (that also appeared on the 'Get Carter' soundtrack) as well as 'Potion' on Groovilicious Records and 'Now We are Free' on Tommy Boy Records.
In her native Philippines, Jenn released an album on Star Records and her single and video of 'Chip On My Shoulder' from that album can be seen on the Philippine-American TV channel, ABS-CBN.
"Come Rain, Come Shine” represents the first time that Paul McCartney has allowed a song of his ('Silly Love Songs') to be sampled for the dance-pop genre marketplace. Jenn's producers, Andy & the Lamboy, proudly share a co-writing credit with Sir Paul on this track.
Jenn’s talent has moved not only radio and club audiences but also critics as well. She has received accolades including the 2005 XM Nation Radio Award for Dance Artist of the Year. She has also been placed on the Official Ballot for the 2006 Grammy Awards for Record of the Year, Best New Artist, and Best Dance Recording categories.
Bento, like most aspiring bands, began as a side project. Just a guy with an acoustic guitar, who liked to cover his favorite songs. Though cover songs made those around him happy, they were not enough to fuel Scott’s ambition. A sense of urgency, spontaneity, and creativity was missing. So Scott did what seemed most natural. He wrote song after song and recruited a team to help fulfill a vision of making sincere music.
Angelito Mesina was a high school friend who Scott asked to play bass in the band. Drummer Jamie Quon was a childhood friend who played baseball with Scott when they were in grade school. Elvin Reyes, a co-founder of Classified Records and producer of artists such as Jocelyn Enriquez, Pinay, and Julieplug was the final piece of the puzzle. With this lineup, it seemed that this vision and dream was within reach.
After two years of writing and recording Bento’s debut album, “Absent Without Leave" is born.
Armed and ready, comfortable in their sound and its execution, Bento is ready for the world. "Alternative, Modern, Indie"...label them at your peril. These guys write songs, first and foremost. And after all the hype has died down, you'll still be quietly singing along to their sweet melodies. Bento is composed of Alvin, Scott, Ang and Jamie.
Founded in 1997, this quintet has since been making great strides in the mainstream music industry. Performing all over California and the West Coast, Legaci (a.k.a. LGC) has been wowing audiences with their silky voices, powerful harmonies and diverse musical stylistics. Their style of music can best be described as a soulful blend of traditional R&B, with a modern twist of pop and alternative rock. They hope to bring a new flavor of music to the mainstream audience, along with the reminiscent nostalgia of the influences they idolized while growing up.
LGC has not failed to grab the attention of the media. In 1997, they were guest featured on the San Francisco Bay Area’s radio morning show, “ Wild 94.9’s The Doghouse”. In 2001, they began recording their first single, “Make Sweet Love”, releasing their first taste of recorded music to their local following. Immediately, the fans responded and awarded LGC the grand prize winners of 107.9 KDND’s band search, allowing LGC to perform for an upward audience of 10,000, and open for some of today’s hottest industry acts, namely BBmak, 3LW, Dream, and Smashmouth. Because of the response they received from their first single, “Make Sweet Love”, they decided to record a music video of the song, and released it to the public. Soon after, in March of 2002, their first music video, “Make Sweet Love” won first place in VideoMaker Magazine’s contest for the category of “Best Music Video”. They were featured nationally in the April 2002 issue of VideoMaker magazine, where the magazine commented, “Music videos was by far the most popular category in our competition, pouring to us in reckless abandon...Looking and sounding every bit as good as any MTV boy-band, Legaci’s 'Make Sweet Love' knocked us out with its camera work, lighting and editing as well as the ballad’s overall sincerity.” More recently, in September of 2003, Legaci entered CALLATT’s Battle of the Bands competition, and placed as a finalist, rating them among the top 3 out of the total 1800+ bands that applied from all over the nation.
Currently the band is finishing up their long awaited premiere album, and plans to release it under Kamikaze Records with high hopes for the immediate future.
Singer, writer, producer, director and actress – Stephanie Reese was named Artist and Entertainer of the Year by the 2nd Annual Asian Pacific Trade Show in Las Vegas, Nevada for her accomplishments in Arts and Entertainment and rightly so, for she has accomplished a lot.
Stephanie began singing and acting at an early age in her hometown in Seattle, Washington. After many local productions, she went on to study opera performance at Indiana University and then Musical Theater at Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music.
Stephanie made a decision to leave school early to perform when she received the role of “Kim” in Miss Saigon for the German production. She thus began her extensive European career, including the title role of “Kim” in Miss Saigon in Stuttgart, Germany; the Disney World Premiere of The Hunchback of Notre Dame in Berlin directed by James Lapine, performing “Esmeralda”; and the King and I at the historical London Palladium Theater in the West End performing “Princess Tuptim” with Jason Scott Lee as “King” and Elaine Powers as “Anna.” Other European endeavors include lead vocals in the band, “The Hunchies,” two original cast recordings (The Hunchback of Notre Dame and the King and I) as well as numerous AIDS benefits and volunteering for various children’s organizations.
Stephanie now lives in Los Angeles, California where she writes and plays music, produces her own shows, concerts and productions. In LA, Stephanie was most recently seen in the Fountain Theatre’s production of Master Class in the role of Sophie. She was also seen in Master Class at the Long Beach Playhouse in the role of Sharon. In both productions she received rave reviews.
Stephanie strongly believes in bringing the arts to children through interactive performance and classes. She has taught acting at the Rise n’ Shine Camp – a camp for children affected by AIDS. She has also directed and taught children in Northern California in three different productions of Annie.
Stephanie Reese has just recently released a second album entitled, “The Voice”. “The Voice,” showcases Stephanie’s versatile sound ranging from Opera, pop, Broadway, Spiritual and Cultural music. Stephanie sings in seven different languages and enjoys learning music around the world.
Before gracing the A&PI Stage on Sunday, June 25, 2006 for the SF Pride Celebration, Stephanie will be performing her autobiographical off-Broadway show “The Journey” at the historical Herbst Theatre on Saturday, the 24th.
CLARK BOLIVAR JR & THE LADIES OF MOANI KE `ALA O KA MAILELAULI`I AND THE MEN OF KA IHO MAKAWALU A KA UA KIPU`UPU`U
"Hula is an art that only comes alive in those who truly wish to learn the essence of Hawaiian culture. Students must learn to live the hula, until it becomes an art that directs your heart toward aloha spirit, an art that you become."
Born in San Mateo, California, Clark Jr. first began to appreciate and love hula from his lovely mother, Babs Kananimalamalama Bolivar, who directed "Babs Polynesian Band" with her father Albert Pabilona, in Hilo, Hawai`i.
Clark Jr. studied under Hula Halau 'O Ku`uleinani, led by Kumu Hula Esther Ku`uleinani Correa, from mid-summer of 1982 through spring of 1992 in San Mateo, California. As an Alaka`i, or leader, of her Halau, he trained her advanced Wahine (women) and advanced Kane (men) classes for several prestigious hula competitions and festivals including Ia `Oe E Ka La in San Jose/Hayward, Ka La O Ho`okuku in Las Vegas, and the Merrie Monarch in Hilo, Hawai`i. Through his training and choreography, the Wahine class earned the prestigious 1st place honors in the kahiko (ancient) division in 1984, 1986, and 1991 and 1st place honors in the Kane division in 1985 at the Ia `Oe E Ka La Hula Festival which takes place presently in Pleasanton, California.
In May of 1992, Clark Jr. founded The Ladies of Moani ke `ala o ka mailelauli`i and The Men of Ka iho makawalu a ka ua Kipu`upu`u in San Carlos and Sunnyvale, California. This well respected, award winning halau, continues to participate in many community functions, competitions and festivals throughout the state of California, Washington, and Hawai`i.
Our main goal is to share and especially to love, not just our culture, dance and language, but all of our many other hula brothers and sisters that exist within the walls of other Halau and organizations that are willing to accept aloha. Our Halau is made up of many ethnic backgrounds, shapes, colors, and sizes, and no one is turned away because they do not "look" the part or "fit the mold" of a hula student or a hula dancer. All races are encouraged and accepted.
Halau Philosophy: Akahai — Kindness, to be expressed with a feeling tenderness, Lokahi — Unity, to be expressed with a feeling of harmony, `Olu`olu — Agreeable, to be expressed with a feeling of Pleasantness, Ha`aha`a — Humilty, to be expressed with a feeling of modesty, Ahonui — Patience, to be expressed with a feeling of perserverance = ALOHA
Freeplay is a hip hop dance group with Chinese, Korean and Filipino dancers whose members boast over forty years of dance experience including gigs ranging from the San Francisco Ballet to hip hop fitness instructors at Crunch, Golds and 24 Hour Fitness. Established in the summer of 2000, Freeplay since then has grown to a dynamic group of diverse and multi-talented members. The group boasts a measure of notoriety in Bay Area circles, having performed at numerous hip-hop dance shows and other Bay Area venues including Trannyshack, the Faux Drag Queen Pageant, Club Q, and Gay Day at Great America.
Freeplay regularly donates benefit performances, raising money for organizations such as Dance Mission, the Jon Sims Center for the Arts, Mercy High School Performing Arts Program, the Boys and Girls Club of San Francisco, and the Nevada Theater Company. HYPERLINK www.freeplaydance.com
Funkanometry San Francisco Dance Company is a community-based, diverse group of individuals tied together by their love for dance expression. Funkanometry San Francisco was established in October 2002 as the sister company to the original Funkanometry Dance Company, hailing from Southern California. Founded by dancers and directors Kyle Wai Lin and Emerson Aquino, "FUNKS SF" was established in response to a desire for more professional hip-hop dance companies in Northern California.
In its early stage, the group was a mix of invite-only dancers who had no idea what was to become of the group, blindly trusting the directors with direction and choreography. Hailing from all over the Bay Area, Funks SF has emerged as a team that mixes various dance styles and backgrounds together.
Promoting a positive image, FUNKS SF has set out to redefine the art form through consistency and a unique style of funk and hip-hop that sets them far apart from others. They share their talent and passion through performances and company classes, giving other dancers an opportunity to learn from and dance with some of the Bay Area's best. Funkanometry SF prides itself on being a company in which all members contribute to its production and success, creating leaders of every member. Funkanometry SF's dedication to dance and to teach others help create a unique energy that shines on stage and off, providing them with the charisma that they have become known so well for in their short time together.
Funkanometry SF has come a long way from its humble beginnings and will prove to go even further in the coming years.
For more information on Funkanometry San Francisco Dance Company, please visit www.funkanometrysf.com
DowneFX Dance Company's mission is to provide continuous education of urban performance arts as a tool to promote empowerment, creativity and social awareness for downe, gay, bisexual, lesbian communities of color. DowneFX has recently been established as a non-profit 501(c)(3) community-based grassroots organization in March 2005!
In 2001, DowneFX began with five original core members to promote community awareness of gay men's health issues in San Francisco. Today, DowneFX has become one of the premier queer performance arts organization in California with chapters in Los Angeles and the Bay Area. For more visit www.downefx.org.
CULTURE SHOCK FAMILY(Future, Mini)
Culture Shock was started in 1993 by Angie Bunch, a professional dancer, international presenter and Nike Fitness Athlete. Starting the concept as a way of teaching herself how to dance hip-hop, Angie gathered together a professional performing troupe of dancers, and by the end of the year, Culture Shock San Diego was born. In the next few years Culture Shock would expand to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas and New York. With each addition of a troupe, the Mission Statement's concept evolved into a non-profit, youth outreach and community service program that is fueled purely by volunteerism.
In San Francisco, troupe members donated time to starting a free dance and performing group concept known as Future Shock. These troupes made up of young people from 8-17 years old, are our direct link to the community. By offering free dance instruction, a safe place in which to learn and play and a performing outlet, they found that the youth were more receptive to our drud healthy lifestyle message.
This is the 7th year Culture Shock will be performing at the A&PI Stage. www.cultureshockdance.org
DANNY NGUYEN DANCERS
DNDM is a multicultural performance troupe of dancers and musicians who present contemporary, traditional, and non-traditional dance styles from different countries for audiences of all ages. The troupe embraces ballet, modern, jazz, ballroom, and theatrical styles to tell stories or describe social issues in the United States and Vietnam.
Their two primary activities are performance and educational programs that present dance and music as interdisciplinary art forms bringing drama, music, dance and storytelling together to make a unique whole. DNDM is a gateway arts experience for those who are new to dance. We are primarily committed to serving communities with little or no access to the arts. We perform for communities, after school, and private concerts. We also develop education programs for children and teens in public schools.
Heiwa means Peace in Japanese. At first, we called ourselves the Obachan Group or Grandma group because we are all grandmas and our average age is 65+....and Molly Kitajima who is 80 years young. This is our uniqueness since Taiko players are normally younger. Historically, only men played taiko, but since Taiko was introduced in the US, women dominate the groups. It is a vigorous exercise and the drums are exciting and dynamic. We love playing and it keeps us going. When we play, we become woman warriors!
Our group plays for many community groups, festivals, parades and private parties. We are all close friends and enjoy being together, I hope our passion in playing taiko extends to the audience - we enjoy sharing the art of taiko.
United Territories of Polynesian Islanders Alliance (UTOPIA) was formed to provide support to the Polynesian Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender community consisting of members from Samoa, Tonga, Hawaii, Tahiti and Fiji. UTOPIA hopes to strengthen its alliance by recruiting members from all of Polynesia. UTOPIA’s aim is to promote unity, strength, and support using their rich and diverse cultures to build relationships within as well as outside the Polynesian community.
LADIES OF PASSION
Passion is not a cheap thrill, or an easy fix like sex or drugs. It's not even the intense ups and downs of an early romance. Passion means attempting to express and realize our heart's goals through the everyday practices of our lives. Passion is the combination of love, hope, and compassion we bring to our thoughts and actions. It is the cornerstone of a meaningful life. It can sustain and nurture us in both the most rewarding and the most difficult of times. When we realize the power of passion, we realize that happiness alone is not our goal. Our goal is to live the fullest life possible, to harness our potential, and use it to enrich the world.
We stand together as Sisters, Brothers friends and families of the islands. We are unique and loving individuals who love who we are and what we believe to okay for us. We love, share, educate and empower our community through music and dance. We allow our hearts to become one and our soul to accept the things we cannot change. Ladies of Passion, we are.
Tita Aida has been the staple host of the A&PI Stage since 2000. She also coordinated the production of the A&PI Stage. As a emcee, she always make it a point to be very welcoming and enticing to the audience that streams through the stage during the day. Aside from the being the diva at the A&PI Stage, she also keps herself busy as part of the San Francisco based world class restaurant, asia SF, in which she part of an elite cadre of gender illusionists. Tita also keeps in touch with the LGBT communities by hosting Club T, Every Thursdays at the world famous ‘N Touch in San Francisco. She combines entertainment and education with a flare for wit and comedy. She honors the rich history of ‘n Touch Club and A&PI Wellness Center collaboration for educating and prevention of HIV/AIDS in the A&Pi communities. You can check her out at www.titaaida.com
Fresh from the Asian Comedy Showcase where it was standing room only, Jennifer is well known for her numerous appearances and interviews onTV, radio, and print media as the Asian Poster Bride for Marriage Equality. Already making a name for herself in the comedy circuit, she is a highly sought after talent for comedy showcases and emcee for various Corporate and Non-Profit organizations.
Born in Taiwan, Jennifer grew up in a small town in Ohio where she learned English by watching the Brady Bunch re-runs.
From Standup Comedian to being the Asian Poster Bride, keeping things in perspective is all about being in the moment. She hopes to share her comedic insights by laughing at how silly the way things are in real life.
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