Why? Because of Nancy Kwan. She is beautiful in those 1950s films. And there was no one else to look up to as an Asian American child obsessed with film. I even hoped she was Filipino, so that I could claim her. The narrative I created in my mind was that Nancy was Chinese-Filipnio because she just had to be. She could dance. I thought she could sing (See Flower Drum Song for that story). She was super talented. She was everything I wanted to grow up to be.
As a child I latched onto seeing Asian Americans and especially Filipnos on screen. Do you know how many times I've seen Operation Petticoat? Pops would get so excited hearing tagalog on screen! I honestly thought Anthony Quinn was Filipino when he played Andres Bonifacio in Back to Bataan. Why not? There were other Filipinos around him in that film. Sure they were a foot shorter than him, but I didn't care. It worked for my young impressionable oblivious nerd girl mind.
These days seeing Filipnios on screen is easily accessible with TFC and GMA to most cable and satellite subscribers. The TV at Strawberry Farm Boy's parents house is always on TFC. Most of the time the shows are telenovelas or variety shows. It's all quite normal now. However seeing Filipinos and Filipino Americans in music videos still gives me that charge I felt from seeing Nancy Kwan on screen. The excitement of seeing someone who could be me on tv doing something mainstream.
That's what Flipping the Music Video is about to me. These artists are using the music video medium to showcase their talent. These videos tell our stories and that's more than my oblivious nerd girl self ever got as a child. Seeing all these music videos in one place is going to be epic. College oblivious would be so proud.
PS - I still heart Nancy Kwan. She'll forever be one of my heroes.
Flipping The Music Video
Thursday, February 13th
Echo Park Film Center
1200 N. Alvarado St. (@ Sunset Blvd.), Los Angeles, CA 90026
Music Videos, panelists, live performances
$5 suggested donation
Proceeds to benefit The Harmony Project & Sessions LosAngeles