PCNY Member Experience Spring 2020



David Henry Hwang: Breaking Through the Bamboo Ceiling in Film and Theater

Randi Epstein

Michael Signer

Peter Yawitz

WEDNESDAY, MAY 6, 6:30PM WINE RECEPTION, 7:00PM DISCUSSION History was made at the Academy Awards in February when Parasit e, a Korean film, became the first foreign language film to ever win for best picture.Yet, while also winning three other awards for best director, best international feature film, and best original screenplay, no actors of Asian descent, including those from Parasite , were nominated for their acting. While comprising 6% of the nation’s population, Asians represent only 1% of all leading roles in Hollywood. Numbers do not fare much better in the theater, where Asians represent just 4% of all roles.When Asians are seen in film or theater, it is also oftentimes as the “model minority;”Thessaly La Force, Features Editor of The NewYork Times Style Magazine , observed that Asians are portrayed as “The worker bees but not the inventor. Comical helpmeets but never the alpha. Filial sons and daughters who have abandoned emotional fulfillment in order to satisfy our parents.These stereotypes are, not incidentally, the absolute inverse of the types and tropes celebrated in American cinema: the rebel, the bad boy, the iconoclast, the prankster.” Such depictions have had a profound effect on the way Asians are viewed in American society and have shaped how Asian-Americans often view themselves.Tony Award- winning playwright David Henry Hwang will share how his experience as a Chinese-American has influenced his works and the challenges he faced to break through the competitive world of theater. Hwang will be joined in conversation with Thessaly La Force. David Henry Hwang’s stage works includes the plays M. Butterfly , Chinglish , Yellow Face , Kung Fu , Golden Child , The Dance and the Railroad , and FOB , as well as the Broadway musicals Aida (co- author), Flower Drum Song (2002 revival) and Disney’s Tarzan . Hwang is a Tony Award winner and three-time nominee, a three-time OBIE Award winner, and a two-time Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Drama. He is also the most-produced living American opera librettist, whose works have been honored with two Grammy Awards. He co-wrote the Gold Record “Solo” with the late pop icon Prince and worked for four seasons as aWriter/Consulting Producer for the Golden Globe-winning television series The Affair . Hwang serves as Head of Playwriting at Columbia University School of the Arts and as Chair of the American TheatreWing, founder of the Tony Awards. M. Butterfly recently returned to Broadway in a revival directed by Julie Taymor, which marked his eighth Broadway production. Recent honors include his 2018 induction into the Theatre Hall of Fame. He is currently writing the live-action musical feature film adaptation of The Hunchback of Notre Dame for Disney Studios, as well as a movie to star Gemma Chan. His newest work, Soft Power , a collaboration with composer Jeanine Tesori, opened in fall 2019 at the Public Theater and was named “Best Musical of 2019” by The Wall Street Journal. Host Raquel Sumulong. Members: Free; Guests: $15.

Aroused : How Hormones Control Just About Everything

list at the studio under The Princeton Club. An email with additional instructions will be sent a few days prior to the taping. This event is hosted by the Seniors Committee. All members are welcome. Cry Havoc: Charlottesville and American Democracy Under Siege MONDAY, MARCH 23, 6:30PM WINE RECEPTION, 7:00PM TALK In the two years since the rally in Charlottesville,Virginia, by white nationalist militias, the repercussions of Charlottesville are only increasing in America’s national memory and conscience. In his new book, Cry Havoc: Charlottesville and American Democracy Under Siege , former mayor of Charlottesville Michael Signer (’95) delivers a vivid, first-person chronicle of the terror and mayhem of the August 2017 “Unite the Right” rally. In doing so, he reveals how violent extremism affected not just one city but the nation itself. Pairing his experience as mayor with his expertise as a lawyer, historian, and political theorist, Signer gives an account of the 36 months before, during, and after the “Unite the Right” rally. With a refreshing degree of candor, Signer tackles several issues and criticisms that emerged in the aftermath of Charlottesville, such as policing, accountability, governance dilemmas, and the predicaments of leadership. The Honorable Michael Signer is a public scholar, practicing attorney, and executive. From 2016 to 2018, Signer served as mayor of Charlottesville. Signer holds a PhD in political science from the University of California, Berkeley, where he was a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow; a JD from the University of Virginia School of Law; and a BA in politics from Princeton University, where he graduated magna cum laude. Host Christine Loomis. Members: Free; Guests: $15. Flip-Flops and Microwaved Fish: Navigating the Dos and Don’ts ofWorkplace Culture TUESDAY, APRIL 7, *7:00PM WINE RECEPTION, 7:30PM TALK Peter Yawitz (’80), a longtime management communication consultant and author of the website, Advice From Someone Else’s Dad , will conduct an interactive, informative, and riotously fun session introducing his new book, Flip-Flops and Microwaved Fish: Navigating the Dos and Don’ts of Workplace Culture .

TUESDAY, MARCH 3, 6:30PM WINE RECEPTION, 7:00PM TALK Please join Randi Epstein as she takes us on a guided tour through the intellectually arousing history and science of hormones. Her talk will address some of the landmark discoveries (from the very first hormone experiment), and also outrageous claims (youth/libido enhancer then and now), and how these claims have shaped both scientific and public perceptions.Who came up with the name hormones ? How did this novel concept forge new understandings about the inner workings of the body? What can we learn from the past that can help us make healthier decisions today? Epstein is a medical author, adjunct professor at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, lecturer in the English Department at Yale University, and writer in residence at Yale School of Medicine. Her writing has appeared in The NewYork Times , The Washington Post , and Psychology Today , among other publications. Epstein received her BS from the University of Pennsylvania where she studied the history and sociology of science, her MS from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, her MD fromYale University, and her MPH from Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. She is the author of Get Me Out: A History of Childbirth from the Garden of Eden to the Sperm Bank and Aroused:The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything . Host Suzanne Roff. Members: Free; Guests: $15. The Dr. Oz Show WEDNESDAY, MARCH 18, *8:30AM - 11:00AM 320WEST 66TH STREET (BETWEENWEST END AVENUE AND FREEDOM PLACE) Make your appointment with America’s favorite doctor and be part of a live studio audience for The Doctor Oz Show . Dr. Mehmet Oz,Vice Chair and Professor of Surgery at Columbia University, discusses health issues and dispenses advice during his live tapings. Enjoy PCNY’s priority admission to the show and a chance to see yourself on TV! Members and Guests: Free. Due to limited availability, only one guest per member is allowed. * Please note as this is a live taping, end time is approximate and subject to change.You must be at least 18 years old to attend. Seats may be located anywhere in the studio. Member names will be on a

David Henry Hwang

Yellow Face

Flower Drum Song

M. Butterfly

Soft Power





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