A new work by Jay Hirabayashi and Barbara Bourget created in commemoration of the hundred-year anniversary of the Anti-Asian Riots that rocked Vancouver’s Chinese and Japanese communities.
On September 7, 1907, a mob of 5,000 white Canadians-fresh from an Anti-Asian march protesting the ‘yellow menace’ sweeping Vancouver-ransacked Chinatown and, with a battle cry of ‘Down with the Japs,’ turned their paranoid rage on what was then Little Tokyo. The Japanese residents, forewarned that an attack was imminent, met the white rioters head on with bottles, clubs, and ferocity. Unnerved by the fire, strength and passion with which the Japanese-Canadians defended themselves, the white rioters retreated.
In 1907, Kokoro Dance captures the formidable struggle and resistance of the residents of Little Tokyo and references the intolerance and fear of the unfamiliar that resonates through history.
August 4 @ 5:30 PM. Oppenheimer Park. Part of the Powell Street Festival, Vancouver’s annual celebration of Japanese-Canadian arts, culture, and heritage. For more information, visit http://powellsteetfestival.com. Performed by Barbara Bourget, Carolyn Chan, Salomé Diaz, Jay Hirabayashi, Holly Holt, and Kristine Richmond.