J CHEN PROJECT proudly presents the world premiere of AAPI HEROES: MYTHS AND LEGENDS, directed and choreographed by Jessica Chen, running March 30 – 31, 2023 at the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA), located at 215 Centre Street in New York City.

J CHEN PROJECT presents an immersive evening of dance that reimagines the past, present, and future through an Asian American cultural lens. Take a journey through the spaces of the Museum of Chinese in America and explore different worlds filled with AAPI stories of strength, resilience, and resistance in the face of ongoing challenges and discrimination. AAPI HEROES aims to educate, raise awareness, and inspire audiences to stand in solidarity and take action to address and combat these issues while also honoring the rich fruits of AAPI history.

The evening will include new works inspired by two iconic Asian American figures who have significantly impacted American culture and society: Bruce Lee and Anna May Wong. The performances will pay tribute to the enduring influence of Bruce Lee’s martial arts and philosophy, and the trailblazing career of Anna May Wong, the first Chinese American Hollywood movie star.

J CHEN PROJECT’s Artistic Director Jessica Chen states, “Rooted in my own ancestral history, I use dance as a vehicle to challenge audiences to examine the systemic ways society marginalizes the AAPI community and to make a direct impact on it. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the invisibility and lack of representation of the AAPI community in mainstream media and society. I see the body as a political vessel and use dance to spark conversation within the community and generate action that disrupts and dismantles hierarchy, and hopefully, ignite societal change.”

Dancers include Carl Ponce Cubero, Sumire Ishige, Maya Lam, Chieh Hsiung, Fang-Ting Yeh, Tsubasa Nishioka, Cameron Surh and Fiona Tsang. Featuring actor Joy Chen.

The production team includes Jennifer Fok (Lighting Design), PaprTape (Composer & Sound Design), Lui Konno, Erica Johnston and Keiko Voltaire (Costume Design), Beau Banks (Production Stage Manager) and Neysha Merced (Artistic Assistant).

Performances take place on Thursday, March 30 and Friday, March 31 at 6:30pm and 8:30pm. Running time is one hour. Tickets are $35. Patron tickets are $70, which includes a tax-deductible donation to JCP’s Patron Ticket Program and provides a complimentary ticket for an underprivileged child to come to see the performance. Purchase at https://jchenproject.ticketleap.com/aapi-heroes-myths-and-legends.

J CHEN PROJECT (JCP) is a 501c3 nonprofit contemporary dance company based in New York City. Their mission is to create dance works that deconstruct identity, cultural diversity, and belonging, and to promote radical, equitable access to the arts. As a female POC-led organization, JCP aims to create more opportunities for marginalized communities to participate in the arts and expand their capacity for imagination through artistic expression. They use their dance works, community-centered projects, and educational outreach to inspire change, use culture to build connections, and create a lasting impact on our communities. For info visit http://www.jchenproject.com.

Check out J CHEN PROJECT’s sizzle reel at https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Flpg3dtQpwS5zkSpHF5wfEKrgMOLKTiI/view?usp=share_link.

Jessica Chen (she/her) is an American dancer, choreographer and founder of J CHEN PROJECT. She uses her art as a vehicle for storytelling and social impact. A survivor of a near-fatal car accident, Chen uses movement to heal and understand the human experience. Her work has been presented at NYFW at MoMA, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center and the World Expo-USA Pavilion in Shanghai. As a 2021 GALLIM Moving Women Artist-in-Residence, 2021 DLNY Choreographer, and 2021-2022 Artist-in-Residence at MOCA, she continues to inspire and create opportunities for marginalized communities through the arts. In 2023 Jessica will choreograph Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella for Geva Theater, and assistant direct the new play, The Messenger, commissioned by Palm Beach Dramaworks.

AAPI HEROES: MYTHS AND LEGENDS is funded by the Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (CACF) through the NYS AAPI Community Fund and sponsored by the Museum of Chinese in America. JCP Programs are made possible with funds from NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, New York State Council on the Arts, Amerivision Inc, and Dance/NYC Dance Advancement Fund.