AABANY Joins 12th Annual Commemoration of Private Danny Chen

On Tuesday, October 3, 2023 on the corner of Canal and Elizabeth Streets in Manhattan’s Chinatown, a crowd gathered for the 12th Annual Commemoration of Private Danny Chen. Danny Chen ended his life while deployed in Afghanistan after suffering from persistent and severe verbal and physical abuse by his fellow soldiers as a result of his race. 

At the Commemoration, Pvt. Danny Chen’s life and legacy were told in twelve chapters by twelve speakers. The speakers included his family and friends, his teachers and mentors, community activists speaking on behalf of Chinatown Head Start and OCA-New York, and award-winning playwright David Henry Hwang. The Commemoration transported us from Danny Chen’s colorful childhood in Manhattan’s Chinatown to the gruesome details of the harassment and humiliating treatment he was subjected to while he served his country. You can watch the 12th Annual Commemoration of Private Danny Chen here.

AABANY members Rocky Chin and Marilyn Go, as well as Yang Chen, Executive Director attended the ceremony. The New York Times reported on the observance.

Pvt. Danny Chen’s legacy is immortalized by the opera An American Soldier. With a libretto by Tony and Grammy winner David Henry Hwang, An American Soldier recounts the powerful true story of a young soldier from Manhattan’s Chinatown who sought to serve his country, only to find his biggest threat was the very people who swore to protect him. It is told through the multidimensional music of Huang Ruo and directed by Obie Award winner Chay Yew. The opera will premiere in NYC from May 12–19, 2024 at the Perelman Performing Arts Center.

To keep Pvt. Danny Chen’s legacy alive means to continue the fight against racially motivated injustice and discrimination. Twelve years after his death, Asian Americans are still perceived by individuals and elected officials as “perpetual others.” AABANY, alongside numerous community partners, will continue to honor Pvt. Denny Chen’s legacy as we pursue our mission of advancing social justice, diversity and inclusion for the AAPI community.

AALDEF Theater Party – “Soft Power”

The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund is excited to host its next theater party on Saturday, October 5, 2019.

Join AALDEF for a performance of “Soft Power,” the new musical by playwright David Henry Hwang, a 1987 AALDEF Justice in Action Award recipient, at the Public Theatre.

For AALDEF ticket holders, David will do a post-show talkback after the performance.

Soft Power is an exploration of America’s current place in the world, told through an East-West musical from China’s point of view, in which a theater producer from Shanghai forges a powerful bond with Hillary Clinton. SOFT POWER is a fever dream of modern American politics amidst global conversations, asking us all – why do we love democracy? And should we?” – Public Theatre

“Soft Power is based on a brilliant concept from which intelligent insights into race and culture naturally spring.” – The Hollywood Reporter

Join AALDEF for a special evening at the theater! Tickets are $90 and include the performance and post-show talkback. Call 212-966-5932 Ext. 208 to purchase your tickets today.


We are offering a special discount for this show for you and your community!
B. Madonna


Maureen-Fleming photo by Odo.jpg


Internationally acclaimed performer, Maureen Fleming brings her contemporary unveiling of the myth of Persephone to the stage of the Ellen Stewart Theatre. With text by David Henry Hwang and music by Philip Glass (performed live by pianist Bruce Brubaker), original accordion music by Guy Klucevsek, and Taiko drumming by Kaoru Watanabe, this beautiful, multimedia meditation on ’miracles’ juxtaposes Fleming’s new and repertory works with three-dimensional video projections designed by longtime collaborator Christopher Odo

La MaMa is introducing a new initiative, 10@$10, through which ten $10 tickets will be available to every performance on a first-come, first-served basis.  Even if the 10@$10 is not an option, you can still get a ticket for as low as $15.Use the DISCOUNTcode:REACH applicable for the first week of the production only.

Ellen Stewart Theatre at La MaMa
by Maureen Fleming

”Fleming…seemed to transcend the material world and enter a realm of pure spirit…Wondrous choreographic metamorphosis.” 
– The New York Times

This performance contains nudity

For tickets and more information: click here or call our box office at (212) 475-7710

AABANY at Chinglish, Jan. 20

Thanks to all the AABANY members and friends who joined us on Friday night, January 20, to catch David Henry Hwang’s latest play, Chinglish, which played at the Longacre Theater on Broadway.

Members of the New York chapter of NAAAP (National Association of Asian American Professionals) and their friends also held a theater outing to see Chinglish that same night, and we got together with them before the show at Hurley’s, a bar next door to the Longacre Theater, for a pre-show networking reception.

The show featured a talented cast of mostly Asian American actors, telling the story of a hapless American businessman trying to close a business deal in China.  He encounters linguistic and cultural barriers along the way, resulting in numerous comedic incidents.

At the show’s conclusion, playwright David Henry Hwang joined the cast for a talkback, and both the AABANY and NAAAP groups got to stay and ask questions of Mr. Hwang and the cast.

Following the talkback, members of our two groups took photos with Mr. Hwang and got autographs from him and the cast on Chinglish posters that we all received.  After that, we headed next door to Hurley’s for a post-show hangout.  We got to meet some of the cast members there and also got to mix and mingle with each other.

Thanks to Lily Fan, an AABANY member and one of the show’s producers, for helping to bring about this wonderful evening.  Sadly, Chinglish will have its final performance on January 28.  It’s a funny, well-written and well-performed show, so if you have a chance to catch it before it leaves New York, go!

Chinglish poster 

AABANY Theater Outing at Chinglish: Jan. 20

AABANY Theater Outing at Chinglish: Jan. 20