United States of Asian America Festival Features Comedy, Theater, Music and More

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Irene Tu (Travis Jensen)

May is Asian and Pacific American Heritage Month, and San Francisco's Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center is celebrating with its 22nd annual United States of Asian America Festival, two months of interdisciplinary programming spread over 19 events by 25 artists of diverse cultures and identities.

This year's featured performer is comedian Irene Tu, whose storytelling and stand-up show Rest in Peace Irene parses through family relationships and death through humor. That event takes place May 17 and 18 at Bindlestiff Studios. Rest in Peace Irene is a fitting centerpiece for the festival's 2019 theme, "Collective // Memory," which bears witness to tragic losses and honors the Bay Area's API artist community.

Dinner becomes an interactive storytelling project about culture and heritage at June 9's Rooted Recipes Project event at Hummingbird Farm. Nancy Wang's Shadows and Secrets attempts to solve a 95-year-old mystery through multimedia theater on May 26 at Southside Theater. And the Queer as F-ck III sketch comedy show takes on queer dating May 30–June 8 at Bindestiff Studios.

Other highlights include poet Jason Bayani's reading and book release on May 3 at the Bindery; a Friscopinx spoken-word poetry and hip-hop cypher on May 24 Acción Latina’s Juan R. Fuentes Gallery; and Resilience Archives' LGBTQ storytelling showcase on May 31 at the California Institute of Integral Studies.

The full schedule of programming for United States of Asian America can be found here.