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Celebrate Hmong Brings First of Its Kind Multidisciplinary Art & Media Festival to Fresno

Non-profit Hopes To Shine A Spotlight On Hmong-American Identity Through Art Program

Fresno, CA – October 1, 2019 — Celebrate Hmong aims to encompass and serve as an incubator and a springboard for underserved local Hmong artists and creators.

The Hmong are an underrepresented ethnic group from the mountainous regions of China, Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand. They represent nearly 5% of the population of Fresno. Their migration into the US followed the end of the Vietnam War.

Adjusting to life in a highly industrialized American society has not been easy for the Hmong. Almost 35 percent of Hmong Americans live below the poverty level. Their median household income is one of the lowest of any ethnic or national group in the United States.

Hmong Americans difficulties result from inadequate educational preparation. Having lived in a society based on agriculture and hunting, formal education has not been a part of Hmong traditions. Most adults have very few educational credentials –40% of Hmong adults aged 25 or older possessed less than a high school diploma, and only 14% have completed bachelors degrees. This is notable against the 30% completion rate of all Asian communities combined. Despite these handicaps Hmong born or raised in the United States have shown surprisingly high rates of college attendance.

Celebrate Hmong
This art and media festival is for all Hmong and supporters of Hmong across California. We are seeking creators that may not have found a platform for their art. Celebrate Hmong has created a space to share with the Hmong community and help inspire creativity.

Why are we doing this?
“As a member of the Hmong Community that grew up and entered artistic and creative industries without these resources, I know what it’s like to feel lost and discouraged in our creative aspirations,” said Celebrate Hmong founder Renee Ya. “I am passionate about sharing the war-torn history and the challenges around immigrating that the Hmong community has to share. We are growing and changing, therefore our storytelling through art has evolved.” Renee shares, “This is a one-of-its-kind event and we look forward to making it a good one. For that, we need the Hmong community to come out and represent.”

Celebrate Hmong wants to be a place where artists can gather, share their talents, and realize what they truly have to offer to the world.

Support excellent Hmong artists and young people. Mark your calendars for December 26, 2019 – January 1, 2020 and make sure to visit the Celebrate Hmong exhibit during Hmong New Year.

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For Media Inquiries:

Tiger Byte Studios
Celebrate Hmong
Renee Ya
press@tigerbytestudios.com
(415) 997-9433

ABOUT TIGER BYTE STUDIOS, LLC:
Tiger Byte Studios is a technology and media company established in 2015 with distributed teams operating throughout North America, Asia, and Europe. The company is focused on creating a bridge to connect creators with their communities and has proven it through its innovative, first-party developed live operations platform.

Founded by video game and tech industry veterans, Tiger Byte Studios is driven by its desire to use its employees’ individual expertise to engage and cultivate unique experiences for its customers.

ABOUT CELEBRATE HMONG:
Formerly known as Hmodern Hmong, established in 2015, our initial project was of curating powerful and positive messages of the Hmong American community. Now, as Celebrate Hmong, our focus has broadened to cultivating Hmong creative excellence. We operate with the following values:

    • Internalizing authenticity, integrity, and imagination to cultivate our best selves
    • Driving innovation to create a powerful impact that will continue to generate positive relationships

By creating a cultural ecosystem of discovery, mentorship, and community-sponsored funding for aspiring, emerging, and established creators, our hope is to create a platform that empowers future generations to come.

Celebrate Hmong Art & Media Festival Art Showcase

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WHEN: Thursday, December 26, 2019 through January 1, 2020
TIME: DAILY from 9 AM – 5 PM

LOCATION
Fresno Fairgrounds
Gem & Mineral Building

ADDRESS
1121 S Chance Ave
Fresno, CA 93702

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If you have any questions please contact celebratehmong@tigerbytestudios.com.

ABOUT TIGER BYTE STUDIOS
Tiger Byte Studios is a technology and media company established in 2015 and has distributed teams operating throughout North America, Asia, and Europe. The company is focused on creating a bridge to connect creators with their community and has proven it through its innovative, first-party developed live operations platform.

Founded by video game and tech industry veterans, Tiger Byte Studios is driven by its desire to use its employees’ individual expertise to engage and cultivate unique experiences for its customers.

ABOUT CELEBRATE HMONG
Formerly known as Hmodern Hmong, established in 2015, our initial project was of curating powerful and positive messages of the Hmong American community. Now, as Celebrate Hmong, our focus has broadened to cultivating Hmong creative excellence. We operate with the following values:

– Internalizing authenticity, integrity, and imagination to cultivate our best selves
– Driving innovation to create a powerful impact that will continue to generate positive relationships

By creating a cultural ecosystem of discovery, mentorship, and community-sponsored funding for aspiring, emerging, and established creators, our hope is to create a platform that empowers future generations to come.

Story of Us: Power Through Performance

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WHEN: Sunday, December 29, 2019

TIME: 2 – 5 PM

LOCATION: The Fresno Fairgrounds – Gem & Mineral Building

ADDRESS:
1121 S Chance Ave
Fresno, CA 93702

FREE TO THE PUBLIC with admission to Hmong Cultural New Year Celebration

The purpose of the Performing Art Program is to raise awareness, inspire, educate and entertain audience members.

Awareness: Spreading awareness of performing artists in the Hmong community and different ways of artistic expressions.

Inspire: To inspire up and coming artists or people of all ages interested in pursuing different aspects of performing arts such as acting, singing, improv, theatre, etc.

Educate: To educate the community about careers and hobbies related to performing arts.

Entertain: To entertain people of all ages allowing them to experience performances that they may not have seen before.

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AGENDA
EVENT DETAILS

Subject to change.

2 PM – 2:15 PM: Check-in
2:15 – 2:20 PM: Welcome and introductions
2:20 – 4:30 PM: Performances
4:30 PM: Closing remarks + Meet & Greet

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FEATURED ARTISTS
ANNOUNCEMENTS COMING SOON

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We’re looking for event sponsors! Email us at sponsorships@tigerbytestudios.com and mention the Film Showcase and your contribution.

Volunteer opportunities available here: http://bit.ly/CH2019volunteer

If you have any questions please contact celebratehmong@tigerbytestudios.com.

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MASTER OF CEREMONY (MC)
RENEE YA

RENEE YA is Hmong American and grew up in Fresno, CA. Secretary of Science Fiction & Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA). With over 14 years of experience in the technology and video game industry in the San Francisco Bay Area. Co-founder of Tiger Byte Studios, a full-service technology company actualizing products and games from ideation all the way through to development, live operations, and marketing. A Product Manager by trade and mother to the next feisty generation of women warriors. Follow her on Twitter at @renee_cya or visit http://reneeya.com

How Do I Begin? Our Voices, Our Stories: Hmong American Narratives

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WHEN: Monday, December 30, 2019

TIME: 12:00 – 4 PM

LOCATION: Backroom At The Revue

ADDRESS:

620 E Olive Ave

Fresno, CA 93728

FREE TO THE PUBLIC

Join members from the community coming together to highlight poetry from Hmong writers and poets.

“How Do I Begin?” is the title of a poem by Soul Vang from his collection To Live Here (2014, Imaginary Friend Press).

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AGENDA

EVENT DETAILS

Subject to change.

12:30 PM – 1:00 PM: Check-in & Food

1:00 – 3:30 PM: Performances

3:30 – 3:45 PM: Raffle drawing & closing remarks

3:45 PM: Meet & Greet and Networking in The Revue Cafe

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FEATURED ARTISTS

ANNOUNCEMENTS COMING SOON

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COMMUNITY PARTNERS

Hmong American Ink & Stories

We create space for community for writers at any stage, aiming to reaffirm, encourage, and professionalize Hmong writers and other marginalized voices, particularly to empower Asian Pacific voices.

Your voice has value, your writing has value.

Visit them at https://haisfresno.wordpress.com/

Nick Meigs Goosehead Insurance offers freedom of choice in insurance products to fit your budget and needs.

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We’re looking for event sponsors! Email us at sponsorships@tigerbytestudios.com and mention the Film Showcase and your contribution.

If you have any questions please contact celebratehmong@tigerbytestudios.com.

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MASTER OF CEREMONY (MC)

RENEE YA

RENEE YA is Hmong American and grew up in Fresno, CA. Secretary of Science Fiction & Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA). With over 14 years of experience in the technology and video game industry in the San Francisco Bay Area. Co-founder of Tiger Byte Studios, a full-service technology company actualizing products and games from ideation all the way through to development, live operations, and marketing. A Product Manager by trade and mother to the next feisty generation of women warriors. Follow her on Twitter at @renee_cya or visit http://reneeya.com

Through the Lens: A Close Up With Hmong American Filmmakers

To showcase and promote aspiring and established Hmong filmmakers framing the Hmong American experience through their art.

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WHEN: Saturday, December 28, 2019

TIME: 4:30 PM – 9 PM

LOCATION: CMAC

ADDRESS:

1555 Van Ness Ave. Suite #201

Fresno, CA 93721

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AGENDA

4:30 PM – 5:00 PM: Check-in & Food

5:00 PM – 5:30 PM: Introductions

5:30 – 6:45 PM: Film Showcase

6:45 – 7:00 PM: Intermission

7:00 – 7:30 PM: Panel Q&A

7:30 – 7:45 PM: Raffle drawing & closing remarks

7:45 – 9:00 PM: Meet & Greet and Networking

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FEATURED ARTISTS

ANNOUNCEMENTS COMING SOON

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TICKET INFORMATION

$12 per ticket/early bird, $15 per ticket at the door

Free for students (student ID required).

Free for CMAC members. Donations accepted.

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SPONSORS

COMMUNITY MEDIA ACCESS COLLABORATIVE (CMAC)

CMAC is dedicated to empowering voices in our community through media. We offer the tools and training you need to create and distribute high-quality video content that is of interest to local audiences.

Our Community Media Center is located in Fresno Met building in downtown Fresno. This modern facility features a spacious 1,000 sqft production studio, private editing suites, meeting rooms, classroom space, and a computer lab, along with a variety of portable production gear. It also houses our automated broadcast center, which delivers programming to CMAC TV channels on Comcast, AT&T U-verse, and the Internet.

Visit https://cmac.tv

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We’re looking for event sponsors! Email us at sponsorships@tigerbytestudios.com and mention the Film Showcase and your contribution.

If you have any questions please contact celebratehmong@tigerbytestudios.com.

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Eugene Vang

Please join me in announcing our first performing artist Eugene Vang! Do you know what colorguard is? If not, let Eugene show you at our Story of Us: Power Through Performance event.

In his own words:
I am a Hmong colorguard performer! I have been a colorguard performer for 5 years now. I started when I was in 7th grade in middle school. I had 2 years of colorguard in middle school and 2 years of colorguard in high school. Coming to UCSD for college, I joined Vox Artium Independent Winterguard. In April of 2019, I competed at the WGI World Championships in Dayton, Ohio. My team and I made finals and achieving 7th Place out about 40 groups in the world. I am proud to be a World Championship Finalist. I continue to purse my passion in colorguard by rehearsing, spinning, and dancing. I make up choreography to music that really touches me and I record myself and share my video and photos onto Instagram and sometimes Facebook. I have a colorguard social media account to share my love for this sport and activity. I really love being able to express myself and many more emotions while performing! I find it very powerful and overall amazing. I love colorguard.

And make sure to connect with him via Facebook at Eugene Vang and Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/eugeneev_ & https://www.instagram.com/guardgene

Kasernyia Thao

Have you ever wanted to hear from your favorite Hmong writers? If so, you gotta make sure you come through for Kaser Thao during our How Do I Begin? Our Voices, Our Stories – Hmong American Narratives.

Kasernyia Thao is a young Hmong American Woman who finds serenity in creative outlets. Growing up, she struggled with her Hmong and American identities which ultimately led her to cling on to her American identity more than her Hmong identity. Over the years, she recaptured her passion and love for the Hmong culture. Her work embodies her experiences through the journey of self realization about her identity. In the future, she plans on sharing more of her work in hopes of inspiring other young Hmong Americans to embrace the beautiful Hmong language and culture that they were blessed to have.

Connect with Kasernyia Thao via Facebook or Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kasernyia

Adam Lee

With just a little over a month left, we’ll be starting to unveil the artists that will be showcased during Celebrate Hmong Art & Media Festival Art Showcase event!

Let’s kick it off with our MURALIST Adam Lee! Catch him painting LIVE at the Fresno fairgrounds in the Gem & Mineral Building starting December 26.

Bio:
Adam loved watching cartoons and anime as a kid, that didn’t change much over the years. He started to pursue art more seriously at 17 and went to school in Minneapolis for Media Arts & Animation. By 23, he changed course from animation to Visual Development. Moving from Minnesota to San Francisco, learning everything he could about character design, environment design, lighting & color, and key-frame Illustration. He is currently working with a studio developing illustrations and concepts for their new card based mobile game. And working on his own personal IP: Exiled.

Connect with Adam on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/ihuaj/

Ger Moua

Have you had a chance to see “The Soul Hunters” yet? Well, Hmong filmmaker Ger Moua will be joining us via video conference during our panel at our film showcase: Through the Lens: A Close Up With Hmong American Filmmakers.

Grab your tickets while you can and get to know other Hmong filmmakers and their process. Network and mingle.

Artist bio:
Ger Moua is a Hmong American artist and filmmaker in St. Paul, Minnesota. He graduated from the Minneapolis College of Art & Design with a BFA in Filmmaking. Ger took interest in cinematography during college and was involved in filming and producing short films, feature-lengths, music videos, events and commercial videos for local Hmong artists and businesses. He produced his first short film, Love After Death (2015) which received some recognition and later was hired as a cinematographer for the movie, On Love Online (2017) with local celebrity singer, Yasmi. Having knowledge and experience in filmmaking, Ger later produced a short film, The Soul Hunters (2018), and won Best Cinematography award at the “Qhia Dab Neeg Film Festival”. Ger is dedicated to inspire many audience by producing quality films and share his culture and artistic visions with the community.