Experience Holi Festival of Colors p. 6 Volume III, 11 | March 2012
INSIDE Everything will even up...watch yourself.
Hermanos of the Future p. 4 Yvonne Lim Wilsonâ€™s Asian Austin p. 7 CASAâ€™s Foster Care Workshop p. 12 Photographer Ricardo Acevedo p. 14
Latino Austin Blazes a Path to SXSW by
Gavin Lance Garcia
www.TODOAustin.com new website coming
Bridge2Bridge From Montopolis Bridge to 360 Bridge, Everything Austin
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(Court Appointed Special Advocates) of Travis County
Volunteer Spotlight Makeisha Cunningham. Planning a wedding, going to school full-time for mental health counseling, working for Communities in Schools and volunteering with CASA of Travis County barely fazes Makeisha. “I’m immune to it, though I barely sleep at all,” says Makeisha. She enjoys all the work and loves networking and making a name for herself in the community. Makeisha grew up with her mother and brother in Missouri and later Texas and shares that her
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• • • • • • • • • • • • • • mom “never missed a beat. She always made sure we had what we needed and 90% of what we wanted.” While her mother did a great job raising her family, she credits her interest in volunteering with wanting to be “that positive, supportive adult in a child’s life who doesn’t have a father or mother figure.” Makeisha has been volunteering for a year with a teen girl and says that she uses her own experience growing up and how she coped with being a teen to advocate for her CASA teen. “I’ve learned that I’m a very good investigator. You can’t be afraid to talk to whoever you need to in a child’s life. You have to ask questions, be open-minded and try to see it through the child’s eyes, not through yours.”
ma r c h --------------------------------------------------Angélique Kidjo // Bass Concert Hall
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The Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center presents a documentary films series in tribute to César Chávez and the Mexican American civil rights movement from March 8-10. “Writ writer: One Man’s Journey for Justice,” “Lalo Guerrero: The Original Chicano,” and “The Fight in the Fields” will screen in the Black Box Theater and the Auditorium. Free. For times see maccaustin.org • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated in Central Texas on Saturday, March 17 at Cover 3 in Austin and The Lion & Rose in Westlake Hills. Authentic Irish culture including pipers, dancers and local Irish bands will be on display including award winning Irish super group Téada from Ireland’s Co. Sligo with Sean Nos dancer Brian Cunningham and Seamus Begley. No green beer or leprechauns here. stpatricksdayaustin.com • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • The long-awaited unveiling of the Tejano Monument at the Capitol is here. In conjunction with the installment, the Tejano Genealogy Society of Austin will hold a three day ceremony beginning with a conference on Thursday, March 29 from 10 a.m.–1 p.m. at the capitol. Scholars will gather there on Friday, followed by a banquet at UT. A Tejano Parade is Saturday, March 31, 9 a.m. on Congress Avenue. freewebs.com/nosotroslostejanos • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • “Fotos De Mi Alma,” the sixth annual Culture through the Lens charity photo exhibit and auction benefitting Latinitas, will be held Thursday, March 29, 6-9 p.m., at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center. Latinitas, a non-profit dedicated to empowering young Latinas through media and technology, produced the first digital magazine made for and by Latina youth. laslatinitas.com • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Ramanavami Utsavam, a free Indian music and dance festival, takes place Saturday, March 31 at C.D. Fulkes Middle School in Round Rock from 1-6:30 p.m. In addition to cultural performances, organizers are holding an essay competition and invite submissions of 300 words or less on the life of Lord Rama. Submissions from children, in the age 9-13 and age 14-18 categories, are due March 15. austinifa.org • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • For more than 50 years, the annual Zilker Garden Festival has been a one-stop, garden shopping destination when spring arrives in Austin and Central Texas. A family-friendly event, Saturday, March 31 and Sunday, April 1, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., the garden festival offers a flower show, music, gardening talks, a kid’s corner, food court and a variety of vendors. $8 adults/$4 kids (age 3-12), parking $5. zilkergarden.org • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Selections from Mexic-Arte Museum’s permanent collection were recently selected for the 2012 People’s Gallery Exhibition at Austin’s City Hall. Presented by the Austin Cultural Arts Division, the exhibition will feature more than 150 artworks from Austin-area artists, galleries, museums and art organizations through January 10, 2013. Also look for Mexic-Arte’s Free Family Day on Sunday, April 1. mexic-artemuseum.org • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Appearing Thursday, March 8, 8 p.m., Kidjo is one of the greatest forces in African music, a creative energy with eleven international albums to her name. In 2007, her album “Djin Djin” received a Grammy and in 2010 she took part in the FIFA World Cup Opening Ceremony in South Africa. Born in West Africa, Kidjo’s most recent release, “Oyo,” is a work of deep introspection and a measure of her maturity. --------------------------------------------------Ballet Austin’s Light/The Holocaust & Humanity Project // Long Center
This important full-length contemporary ballet and its accompanying Holocaust education partnership, launched in January with dozens of community partners, promote the protection of human rights against bigotry and hate through arts, education, and public dialogue. Catch the remarkable dance performances, choreographed by the indomitable Stephen Mills, March 23-24, 8 p.m. and March 25, 3 p.m. --------------------------------------------------Roy Haynes Fountain of Youth Band // Bass Concert Hall
Often called the pulse of legendary jazz, Haynes makes his first appearance at Texas Performing Arts Friday, March 30, 8 p.m. For more than a half-century, he has influenced and innovated, shaping some of the greatest recordings in jazz from Louis Armstrong to John Coltrane. His joyous drumming with the legends of the genre and his distinct style has altered the very fabric and direction of jazz improvisation.
LALO GUERRERO: THE ORIGINAL CHICANO by Dan Guerrero March 8 • 8pm March 9 • 7pm March 10 • 7pm
All screenings are free & open to the public. Meet Susanne Mason, producer/ director of Writ Writer, on Thursday, March 8 at 8pm and Friday, March 9 at 9pm. Q&A following the ﬁlm.
FIGHT IN THE FIELDS by Ray Telles & Rick Tejeda-Flores March 9 • 8:30pm March 10 • 8:30pm
by Susanne Mason March 8 • 7pm March 9 • 8pm March 10 • 9pm
600 River Street • Austin, TX 78701 512-974-3772 • www.maccaustin.org The City of Austin is committed to compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you require special assistance for participation in our programs or use of our facilities please call 512-974-3772 or 711 Relay Texas. La ciudad de Austin está comprometida al Acta de Americanos Incapacitados. Si requiere asistencia para participar en nuestros programas por favor llame al teléfono número 512-9743772 e 711 Relay Texas.
Good Times at Güero’s
For great tunes and great rita’s! Please join us for live music on our outside jardin stage, every Thursday through Sunday. Thanks to the fans & bands who support us!!! All outdoor shows are “weather permitting” march Line-up ----------------------------------------------------------------THU 3/1 THE BOB FUENTES SHOW (6:30) FRI 3/2 LOS FLAMES (6:30) SAT 3/3 LARRY LANGE & HIS LONELY KNIGHTS (6:30) SUN 3/4 THE TEXAS TYCOONS (3:00) ----------------------------------------------------------------THU 3/8 THE FABS (6:30) FRI 3/9 LOS FLAMES (6:30) SAT 3/10 PONTY BONE & THE SQUEEZETONES (6:30) SUN 3/11 TRENT TURNER & THE MOONTOWERS (3:00)
SOUTH X SOUTH CONGRESS THRU 3/18
1412 S. Congress Avenue • Austin, Texas 78704 Open Weekdays 11am-11pm; Weekends 8am-11pm
TUE 3/13 THE BOXING LESSON PRESENTS (noon-10pm) WED. 3/14 COMBOPLATE BOOKING ROSTER PARTY (2pm-9pm) THU 3/15 MIKE GALAXY PROMOTIONS (noon-9:20) FRI 3/16 A BADASS ROCK PARTY (noon-9pm) SAT 3/17 LIVEMUSICRECORDS.COM (noon-9:15) SUN 3/18 BOB FUENTES PRESENTS (1pm-7pm) ----------------------------------------------------------------WED 3/21 THE LARRY MONROE RADIO SHOW (6:30) THU 3/22 ERIN JAIMES & HER BAD HABITS (6:30) FRI 3/23 LOS FLAMES (6:30) SAT 3/24 EL TULE (6:30) SUN 3/25 CHICKEN STRUT (3:00) ----------------------------------------------------------------WED 3/28 THE LARRY MONROE RADIO SHOW (6:30) THU 3/29 EVE MONSEES (6:30) FRI 3/30 LOS FLAMES (6:30) SAT 3/31 MITCH WEBB & THE SWINDLES (6:30)
Volume III, Number 011 Publisher/Editor – Gavin Lance Garcia email@example.com
News and notes on current affairs and issues impacting our community from advocates and business leaders of Austin.
John-Michael Vincent Cortez – FuturoFocus on Healthcare // FuturoFund is excited to present our next FuturoFocus session spotlighting health care and the medical school initiative. Join Senator Kirk Watson and Jeff Garvey of the Austin Community Foundation as they discuss how current efforts to make Austin a prominent center for health care services and research will impact our Hispanic community. Following the FuturoFocus session, attendees will also have an opportunity to take a special behind the scenes tour of the Brackenridge Clinical Education Center. See all the things that “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Scrubs” leave out! Tuesday, March 6, 11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. (tour 12:30 p.m.–1 p.m.). Brackenridge Clinical Education Center (CEC), Room C1.114 (1400 N. IH-35, located at the corner of IH-35 South and 15th St.). Parking will be validated and is available in CEC parking garage. Lunch will be provided. Seating is extremely limited so please RSVP TODAY by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org —-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—//-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—Paul Saldaña – Attention Hispanic Voters // According to the latest data, we have nearly 120,000 eligible Hispanic voters in Austin. However, many of them are not yet registered to vote. Help spread the word and encourage our Hispanic/Latino communities to register and vote. Su Voto Es Su Voz! Go to www.votexas.org —-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—//-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—Kathy Vale – A Phenomenal Opportunity for a Remarkable Austin Latino High School Senior You May Know // The Smithsonian Latino Center’s Young Ambassadors Program (YAP) is a national program for graduating high school seniors aimed at fostering the next generation of Latino leaders in the arts, sciences, and humanities via the Smithsonian Institution and its resources. YAP is a college preparatory and leadership program encouraging participants to explore various academic and career opportunities through the lens of the Latino experience. Nominate someone at latino.si.edu/programs/youngambassadors —-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—//-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—-—Chasing an Illusion in College Admissions // For decades, the courts have tried to settle the use of race in university admissions only to find that when they grant satisfaction in one case, dissatisfaction arises to create another. The U.S. Supreme Court said on February 21 that it will consider a lawsuit brought against the University of Texas by a white student who says she was denied admission because a race-conscious policy kept her out. The justices will hear the case next term, which begins in October. – from the Austin American-Statesman.
Hermanos of the Future By Blanca Valencia
On my first day of teaching, I asked some of my students what they expected from me as a teacher. One student responded, “We just want you to get to know us like family.” They wanted me to understand that they were going to make mistakes, that they weren’t perfect and that they had needs. Most importantly, they wanted to know that I would be there for them when they needed me most. Hermanos de East Austin, the brainchild of East Austinite Jose Velasquez, is asking the same questions of the politicos representing the Eastside community but he’s not willing to wait idly by to see who responds. Though I am not currently a resident of the Eastside, I have joined Hermanos de East Austin in their efforts. My time working there in educational and 04 TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com
social services taught me a lot about what East Austinites are looking for. More importantly, many of those I love reside there. Eastside is familia now, and we take care of each other. The Velasquez family, who have carried a legacy as residents of East Austin for decades, understand what being part of the Eastside familia means and through Hermanos de East Austin aim to spread the sense of responsibility that comes with the familia of the Eastside. Hermanos de East Austin is composed of a group of people that are tired of being bystanders, a group of people that are not prepared to let their familia down and watch as it withers away in the hands of those who have never even remotely attempted to understand its needs. Hermanos aims to acquire more information about the community’s true and most immediate needs, to empower resident members to take responsibility for their own communities, and to embrace EVERY member of the familia.
Jose Velasquez at first Hermanos de East Austin meeting.
At the Saturday morning Hermanos inaugural meeting this past February 11, thirty-one group members became deputized to become a voter registrar, most of whom have never been civically active in any way. Jose Velasquez explained, “We’re here today because I got tired of looking around for heroes, I got tired of looking around for leaders and tired of looking for someone else to do it. We’re here today because I realized that each of us can contribute and are leaders in our own right.” Leadership, for Jose and the rest of the Hermanos, begins with giving the Eastside community a voice. The 31 voter registrars will begin reviving the voice of the Eastside by registering the thousands of untapped potential Eastside voters. Austin city councilman Mike Martinez, present at the meeting, emphasized the importance of enacting change in the community. “There is the Austin we show, and then the Austin we know,” he stated. To say that that the Austin we know has neglected the evolving Eastside is an understatement. The Austin we know has allowed there to be an insufficient amount of quality social services where they are most needed, especially those that provide relief for homelessness, hunger and lack of healthcare. The Austin we know has unjustly forsaken the education of Eastside students, most of which are students of color, standing watch as the dropout rate increases and as crucial educational programs remain underfunded or are completely cut. The future of East Austin, and America, hangs in the balance. So why should this matter to you? Well, if there is anything I’ve learned as an educator, it’s that the problems of East Austin are no longer contained east of IH-35, but so many are rooted there. As Martinez stated, “We’ve got to do something about the Austin we know, or we will lose the Austin we show.” It is time for us to stop waiting for a hero. We ARE our own heroes. We ARE our own voice. And who better to know what familia needs than your hermanos and hermanas? Join the familia. Join the movement. The tide is coming.
Art Director – Dave McClinton www.dmdesigninc.com Deputy Editor – Katie Walsh Contributing Editor - Erica Stall Wiggins Senior Editors – Cindy Casares, Güner Arslan, Harmony Eichsteadt, Sonia Kotecha, Yvonne Lim Wilson Associate Editors – Yadira Izquierdo, Harish Kotecha, Alexandra M. Landeros, Callie Langford, Julia Lee, Esther Reyes, Blake Shanley Contributing Writers/Artists – Pratima Agrawal, Mohammad Al-Bedaiwi, Joseph Banks, Stefanie Behe, Padmini Bhat, Adriana Cadena, Jason Cato, Sirsha Chatterjee, Jennie Chen, Priscilla Cortez, Layla Fry, Mita Haldar, Jillian Hall, Maria P. Hernandez, Paul Hernandez, Fabiola Hurtado, Ryan Hutchison, Gabino Iglesias, Nandini Jairam, Chaille Jolink, Jamie Jones, Ryan Jordan, Sushma Khadepaun-Parmar, Ramey Ko, Vandana Kumar, Heather Lee, Liz Lopez, David Marks, Jessica Meyer, Lata Narumanchi, Cristina Parker, Monica Peña, Aleah Penn, Kathy Pham, Karla Resendez, Jorge Reyes, Rebecca Robinson, Paul Saldaña, Marion Sanchez, Hani Saleh, Sameer Shaw, Jaya Shukla, Rupal Shah, Sachin Shah, Vinit Singh, Kristina Vallejo, Kuetzpalin Vasquez, Vanessa Valdovinos, Blanca Valencia, Joseph P.A. Villescas, Bowen Wilder, Sait Yavuz Photographers – Raul Angon, Heather Banks, Jenny Fu, Mark Guerra, Mari Hernandez, John M. P. Knox, JoJo Marion, Aimee Wenske, Matt Ziehr TODO Austin: Multicultural Media for All of Austin (TODOAustin.com) TODO Austin is a free, colorful print and online journal for all of Austin highlighting our multicultural heritage. Our mission is to promote the concept of community in an ethnically diverse city. TODO Austin’s content closely mirrors the changing demographics of Austin. TODO Austin is circulated throughout Austin, spanning the city from the West Side’s Pennybacker Bridge on Loop 360 to the Montopolis Bridge in East Austin. TODO Austin provides a platform that profiles Hispanic, Anglo, Asian, African American and other individuals, groups and organizations that are representing a positive vision in the community.
TODO Austin is published by Spark Awakened Publishing. © 2012 Spark Awakened Publishing. All rights reserved. Unsolicited submissions (including, but not limited to articles, artwork, photographs) are not returned. TODO Austin is a free print and online journal for all of Austin highlighting our multicultural heritage, promoting the concept of community in an ethnically diverse city. Advertising/Submissions/Editorial: Contact@todoaustin. com, 512.538.4115 // TODO Austin - P.O. Box 4142 Austin, TX 78765-4142
Could the DREAM Act Be a Decisive Factor This Election Year? By Karla Resendez
With so many societal benefits, it’s hard to understand why all Republican presidential candidates have strongly criticized the DREAM Act, calling it a “handout,” and even threatening to veto it if it ever reached the presidential desk. This hateful anti-immigrant—often anti-Latino— strategy may be designed to gain votes during primary elections, but it will alienate the growing Latino electorate and could prove to be a costly setback this November.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the DREAM Act is not a Latino-only issue; the majority of Americans support it. The reasons for this vary widely, many support it because they have a personal connection with an undocumented student, some know it’s the morally correct thing to do, while others look at the economic benefits. Whatever the reason, many supporters of the DREAM Act, including Latinos, will continue to follow the elections closely to determine who will support the DREAM Act and will make decisions The impact of the Latino vote on the November on who to support in turn. elections is a matter of numbers; according to the Pew Hispanic Center, the Latino population has grown by 43% in the last 10 years and accounts for 56% of the nation’s population growth. Vast population growth correlates with the fact that the Latino vote will be key in decisive states including Florida, Colorado and Nevada.
Immigration, including the DREAM Act, has been a heated topic of conversation during the Republican presidential debates and could be one of the decisive issues this election year. The DREAM Act, which stands for the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors, addresses the plight of many undocumented youth who were brought to the United States as young children, providing them a path to earn conditional permanent resident status if they pursue higher education or serve in the armed forces. The impact that the DREAM Act will have during the elections is a little more complex. First, in the Currently, there are 2.1 million youth who would Latino electorate, immigration is a primary concern be eligible nationwide, and in Texas alone 258,000 when choosing a candidate. According to Latino students could benefit from the DREAM Act. Not Decisions, immigration is such a significant issue only does the DREAM Act embrace the principles for the Hispanic electorate that 51% consider it the of personal responsibility by granting status only most important issue followed by the economy to those who earn it, but passing it would also and creating jobs, and education. Secondly, when benefit the economy. A 2010 study conducted by deciding if a candidate is immigrant-friendly, the the North American Integration and Development DREAM Act has become a litmus test for the Center at UCLA found that passing the DREAM Act Hispanic community, who support it by 91%. So it could bring from $1.4 to $3.6 trillion in tax revenue is very likely that Latinos will make voting decisions over 40 years. based on who supports the DREAM Act.
Lilith Fund in Need of Spanish Speaking Volunteers
Standing for Justice By Carl A. Anderson
An excerpt from “Columbia” magazine
The Lilith Fund, an all-volunteer nonprofit that provides financial assistance to lowincome women in Texas to help them access reproductive services, including abortion, is seeking Spanish speaking volunteers to help with its hotline services. All that is required is a phone, internet access and three hours per month. Volunteers, including English speakers, are responsible for checking the Lilith Fund hotline for messages left by women in need and returning their phone calls. Volunteers then work with the women to see them through the process of getting funding for their abortion. By assisting Texas women in exercising their fundamental right to abortion by removing barriers to access, the Lilith Fund provides: • Direct financial assistance and counseling to
empower women seeking to terminate an unwanted pregnancy. • Education and outreach within the community about reproductive rights. • Envisions a society in which equal access to abortion is guaranteed for all women, regardless of economic situation.
The Lilith Fund, which takes its name from the first woman created by God, operates on the belief that reproductive equity and the right to choose an abortion is meaningless without access to abortion services. Restrictions on abortion access and funding are discriminatory because they especially burden low-income women. While opposing efforts to restrict abortion rights, Lilith is committed to fighting for access to abortion for all women. To contact the Lilith Fund, go to www.lilithfund.org.
Some say that Roe v. Wade should be accepted as “settled law” and that attempts to restrict or overturn it should end. This argument has appeal because there should be clarity and certainty in our laws. But it falls short because there is a principle more important than certainty in our legal system — justice. Although there are many problems with the legal reasoning in the Supreme Court’s opinion in Roe v. Wade, the most fundamental is that the court’s decision rests upon a falsehood, which is expressed in Justice Blackmun’s statement, “We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins.” Whatever Blackmun may have believed in 1973, it is simply untrue in 2012 to say that abortion does not take the life of an unborn human being. Because of this reality, abortion will never be settled law in the United States and must someday be overturned. As I wrote in my first book, “A Civilization of Love,” our situation is similar to that
The 2012 elections will be instructive for many parties involved. Anti-immigrant candidates will learn that pandering to nativists will backfire during general elections. Immigrant-friendly candidates will learn that Latinos were essential in helping elect them. Congress will learn that the DREAM Act is a key issue for a significant sector of the population they represent. DREAM Act eligible youth will learn that they have allies in their community. And finally, the Latino electorate will learn its own power in deciding elections and demand to be treated fairly and with respect.
faced by the civil rights movement after the Supreme Court ruled in the 1896 case of Plessy v. Ferguson that “separate but equal” laws were constitutional. That decision enshrined the hateful system of de jure segregation throughout much of the United States and took 58 years to overturn. The Supreme Court’s decision in Plessy v. Ferguson was based upon an untruth — the court rejected the obvious fact that the legally enforced separation of the two races “stamped” African-Americans “with a badge of inferiority.” The court went on to say that if African-Americans thought “separate but equal” laws were demeaning and unfair, it was only because they chose “to put that construction on” such laws. In his dissent, Justice John Marshall Harlan contended that the court’s view was pure fiction and that people knew it to be so. The same must be said of Roe v. Wade. If we remain determined and committed, it too will one day be brushed into the dustbin of history. Roe v. Wade will also one day be swept away for another reason: As I showed in my latest book, “Beyond a House Divided,” the decision has failed to gain the support of the American people after nearly four decades. Most Americans want legal restrictions on abortion that go far beyond what is permitted by the court’s ruling. TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com 05
Network of Indian Professionals by Sameer Shah
The Network of Indian Professionals (NetIP) Austin chapter is a nonprofit organization that recognizes and promotes the advancement of South Asian professionals in Central Texas. Our mission is to serve as the unequivocal voice for the South Asian Diaspora by developing and engaging a cohesive network of professionals to benefit the community. NetIP Austin is part of a network of 23 NetIP chapters across North America. To recap a bit of our history in Austin: The chapter was renewed in 2009, and within one year, NetIP Austin was recognized within the national organization as the “Best Small Chapter” with the “Best President.” Over the last few years, NetIP Austin has established its presence as a professional, family-friendly, cultural and service-oriented organization. In a few short years our network has grown to nearly 1,000 South Asian professionals. Our organization’s programming focuses specifically on four pillars— Professional Development, Cultural Awareness, Political Awareness and Community Service. Our past activities illustrate our organization’s emphasis and passion.
backgrounds. In past years, the cultural awareness pillar has organized events including Bollywood Trivia Nights, Diwali parties and book clubs featuring authors like fellow Austinite Nina Godiwalla, author of “Suits: A Woman on Wallstreet,” and Supriya Bhatnagar, author of “And Then There Were Three… A Memoir.” Political awareness, another one of our pillars, has been of keen interest to our membership. Our past events have nurtured discussions on issues including health care, Asian American voting trends, and the significance of mid-term elections. In the spring of 2010, NetIP Austin members attended the City of Austin’s Asian American Town Hall meeting with Mayor Lee Leffingwell. In the fall of 2010, NetIP Austin hosted a talk with the first Asian American Judge in Austin, Ramey Ko, and a mid-term election watching party. In summer of 2011, NetIP Austin organized a discussion on the Arab Spring and recent events in the Middle East led by Roy Casagranda, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Texas at Austin and a local expert on Middle Eastern affairs.
NetIP Austin 2012 Board (L-R): Pinki Modi, Sameer Shah, Vinit Singh, (back row) Sambhav Puri, Sumina Bhatti, Vani Irwin, Nandini Jairam, Robin Paul.
participation in activities such as the MLK Day of Service, organizing aid for Goodwill, assisting local nonprofits with fundraising events and quickly corralling efforts in response to the tragedies such as those in Haiti and Japan. In 2010, NetIP Austin’s third year, we coordinated the nation’s largest Be The Change National Day of Service, engaging more than 500 volunteers in service at more than 15 community service sites across Central Texas. NetIP Austin’s contribution to this event, based on the legacy of Mahatma Gandhi, was the cornerstone of our group in 2010.
Professional Development continues to be our most popular pillar. Events in this arena have included resume writing workshops, a talk on the With regards to cultural awareness, NetIP Austin NetIP Austin has always ensured that its habits of successful South Asians and a 2010 lecture has found various ways to celebrate South Asian members have opportunities to give back to by Rohit Bhargava, one of the nation’s thought culture while also promoting local artists of diverse the local community through volunteerism and leaders on marketing and social media. Professional
Experience HOLI, Austin
The University of Texas Hindu Students Association describes this month’s Holi Festival of Colors as a major Hindu festival celebrating both the arrival of spring and the victory of good over evil on the day of the full moon. On the day of Holi, people celebrate by throwing rang (colored powder) and water on each other, and by taking
part in traditional games to the sound of the dhol. Join Austin’s Hindu community at three familyfriendly events around Austin in March. Saturday, March 10 - Austin Hindu Temple holds its Holi Mela ceremonies from 11:30 a.m.–7 p.m. at 9801 Decker Lake Road. The temple’s Holi is where joy and happiness blend with sparkling colors, featuring South Asian and other foods, a cultural program, Holi Pooja and Holika Dahan, and lots of Gulal (dry color only) for the whole family. www.austinhindutemple.org 512-9270000. Saturday, March 10 - Radha Madhav Dham, located on a beautiful 200-acre property in Austin
UT Performing Arts Center’s Kathy Panoff, Conductor Wang Fujian and Asian American Cultural Center’s Amy Wong Mok at Bass Concert Hall. 06 TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com
development is at the core of our organization and we continue to find ways to help our members build their networks and grow their skills. In addition to pillar focused activities, NetIP Austin delivers a variety of professional networking opportunities through monthly dinner circles and networking mixers held at various homegrown Austin establishments. Please visit us at www. netipaustin.org and join our community on Facebook to see our upcoming events. NetIP Austin continues to thrive and make a difference in the community because of diversity of thought, talent and strong leadership. Learn more about our 2012 Leadership Board and grow your network by attending any NetIP events. We continually strive for excellence, and we encourage your involvement.
is a place of pilgrimage for millions of devotees living in the West. Experience a Braj-style Holi Festival of Colors from 3-7:30 p.m. The program includes Holi Songs (Pad Kirtan) at 3 p.m. , a talk by Swami Nikhilanand and arti in the Temple, Dinner Prasad from 5-6:30 p.m., Holi Play (dry color only) 6:30-7 p.m. with a 7 p.m. Holi Fire. 400 Barsana Road. Parking $5 per car. www. radhamadhavdham.org. 512-288-7180. Saturday, March 24 -The University of Texas Hindu Students Association holds its annual Holi celebration from 2 to 5 p.m. on the South Mall on the UT campus. The event is free to the public and includes free rang, water balloons, popsicles and t-shirts. studentorgs.utexas.edu/hsa
Jim Yatsu, Wilhelmina Delco, Yvonne Lim Wilson and Exalton Delco at the TACC 16th annual Lunar New Year Soiree.
Shanghai Chinese Orchestra players met with patrons after their February performance.
China’s Consulate General, Cai Lian, center, with members of the Shanghai Chinese Orchestra at Bass.
Asian Austin: About Town By Yvonne Lim Wilson Lunar New Year celebrations continue
AA: It was great to see a full cast of Asian Americans “Daylight Savings” and Goh’s single of the same in the film. Was there a certain Asian American name? What does the title mean to you? The Texas Asian Chamber of Commerce celebrated sensibility you wanted to bring to the story? DB: “Daylight Savings” is a song that Goh wrote the Year of the Dragon with its 16th annual Lunar New Year Soiree on February 9 at the St. Vincent DB: I wasn’t trying to bring an Asian American many years ago, and it’s a very personal song for de Paul Auditorium of the Seton Administration sensibility to the storyline so much as I was trying to him. In the movie, Goh begrudgingly licenses Offices. The event celebrates Asian culture and paint a handful of individuals. More than anything the song to an antidepressant commercial and heritage, bringing together community members else, I was trying to capture a mode of behavior ironically it becomes his biggest success. For me, and business leaders in a festive atmosphere. that I think the “Goh” of the movie represents very that situation pretty much sums up the entire Featured speakers included HelioVolt founder well. Contrary to the image of most “rock stars,” movie. and CEO/CSO Dr. BJ Stanbery and Dr. Robert he’s soft spoken, thoughtful, and laid back, almost AA: What’s your favorite scene? Bonar, President and CEO of Dell Children’s to a fault. Medical Center. Alex Gonzales, president of the Texas Asian Foundation, also announced a call for nominations for annual TAF scholarships for Asian American high school students. TAF, a 501(c)3 created by TACC in 2005, supports charitable causes and scholarships.
AA: Please tell me about your casting decision with Goh Nakamura and Yea-Ming Chen, who are both indie musicians playing themselves. Was there something specific you wanted to highlight with Asian Americans and the indie music scene?
“Daylight Savings,” a new film by David Boyle, premiers at SXSW
DB: I like working with non-actors. Every once in a while, you meet someone who just has the gift of being interesting on camera. Goh is definitely in that category.
David Boyle, the director of critically acclaimed “White on Rice” presents “Daylight Savings,” the After “Surrogate Valentine,” in which Lynn Chen sequel to 2011 SXSW hit and award-winning played the main love interest, I thought about “Surrogate Valentine.” “Daylight Savings” follows having Goh pursue someone more like himself in
“Modus Anomali” written and directed by Joko Anwar, described as a “pioneer of Indonesian new cinema.” The story is about a man and his family on a holiday in the woods who are surprised by the arrival of an uninvited guest. Suddenly, the man experiences a time lapse and finds himself separated from his family. He has to race against time if he wants to see his family alive. Meanwhile, another family is in the woods, who may be related to the strange events.
512 Sound during SXSW Music
DB: I really like the scene in Vegas when Goh and Yea-Ming wake up together. I was really proud of both of them, and I think they put their all into that scene. I’m also really fond of Goh’s scenes with Ayako Fujitani.
You don’t have to go to SXSW to catch amazing Asian American talent. 512 Sound, an Austin-based, Korean-American band featuring an Hispanic singer, is playing during SXSW and throughout the year. Catch them on March 11 and 18 from 8-9 p.m. at the Trophy Room on Sixth Street and on March AA: What message do you hope people will get 12 in Leander. from the film? 512 Sound is comprised of Harold Jang (bass), DB: The film is a more of an observational story. Kilbum Kil (guitar), Joe Kim (keyboard), Sam I was hoping to realistically capture the post- Kang (guitar), Leo Hwang (drums) and Maribel breakup fog, and how that can lead people to make Rubio (vocals). Jang and Kil founded the band and additional members joined in the fall of 2011. some crazy decisions. Songs are performed in English and Korean. Right AA: Anything else you’d like to say about the film? DB: I’m really proud of “Surrogate Valentine” and “Daylight Savings,” and I hope Goh and I get to continue this series.
SXSW Asian Films This is an amazing chance to get out and see Asian and Asian American bands and films as well as panel discussions such as “Why the Global Music Industry Needs China.”
Indie rockers Goh Nakamura and Yea-Ming Chen star in David Boyle’s latest film “Daylight Savings | Photo by Mye Hoang
San Francisco musician Goh Nakumura (playing himself) at the height of his musical career. When his long-distance girlfriend Erica (Ayako Fujitani) abruptly ends their relationship via Skype, Goh feels lost and searches for meaning. He meets fellow indie musician Yea-Ming (playing herself) and before he knows it, finds himself on the road with his cousin Mike in search of a new beginning.
the sequel (i.e. another musician). Goh and my producer Gary Chou both suggested that I consider Yea-Ming as a potential co-star. After meeting her at a “Surrogate” screening, I immediately sparked to the idea.
I didn’t have a specific message about the Asian American music scene that I wanted to highlight, but I did want to impart a sense of the community I had the chance to interview Boyle about the that the fictional Goh is a part of. Having Jane Lui new film, which screens March 10 at the Alamo make an appearance was also part of that. Drafthouse on South Lamar, March 12 at the Violet Crown, March 15 and March 16 at the Alamo Ritz. AA: What is the relationship between the movie
Paul Kim, president of Mandoo Entertainment, has been working to connect the Korean bands with the Austin music scene and welcomes five Korean bands to SXSW this year: Galaxy Express, Yellow Monsters, 3rd Line Butterfly, Asiatics and Crying Nut. “They are very famous in Korea. It’s very exciting,” Kim said. Kim has been working to connect Austin and Gangneung City, which has an active music scene similar to Austin and Nashville. He invited a Korean band to perform at SXSW in 2006, which was the first Korean band to perform at the festival. Now, the connection has blossomed. “SXSW became popular in Korea, especially with the indie music scene. Once they came here, they have gotten rave reviews,” Kim said. “K-pop is huge.” In addition to “Daylight Savings,” other SXSW Asian and Asian American films to watch for: “Seeking Asian Female,” a documentary about Steven, an aging white man with “yellow fever” obsessed with marrying an Asian woman. Filmmaker Debbie Lum follows Steven through his search, marriage to Sandy from China and their first year together.
512 Sound during SXSW Music
now, the band is performing mostly covers as they create original works. Each band member brings a different musical sensibility and background ranging from death metal (Kang and Hwang) to Christian music and pop (Jang). Jang and Kil work in the semiconductor industry; Kang is a college student and Kim is a songwriter. What brings them together is their love of music. “One of our goals is to take our band to Korea and Asia, broadcast out there and do concerts,” Kim said. Kang added, “We want to be a role model for young Korean Americans and we hope to be a role model to the Korean American community and bring empowerment to them.” For more information, visit 512 Sound’s page on Facebook. __________________________________________________________ Yvonne Lim Wilson is founder and publisher of Asian Austin at AsianAustin.com, an online news magazine featuring news about Asian American people, organizations and events in Austin. Contact Yvonne at email@example.com. TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com 07
Austin Latinos Create A Culture Path to SXSW by
In my 20 years of travel around the globe, I’ve discovered that Austin’s status as an entertainment capital is respected everywhere. Except for one locale: East Austin. My first experience with this perception came in 1994 when I was volunteering at the now defunct Our Lady’s Family Center on East 6th Street and Chicon. The Catholic youth center was a second home to middle and high schoolers of Austin’s poorest neighborhoods. The kids we served were Latino and all came from broken homes. One summer, just before I left Austin for graduate school, the kids and volunteer chaperones spent 10 days in Mexico City with host families. We decided we should return the favor by inviting our hosts to visit us in Austin. “But …” came the exasperated sigh from one adult volunteer who was raised in East Austin, “what is there to do in Austin?” I stared at him in astonishment. Having only moved to Austin as a young adult, I thought it was paradise on Earth. A big part of my affinity for Austin was based on its ability to constantly entertain budding creative minds like mine, the pinnacle of which was the South by Southwest Music Festival. By 1994, SXSW was well established and attracting cutting-edge musicians from around the world. Add to that the myriad festivals, live shows and outdoor activities available in Austin and I couldn’t believe that anyone could think the city was boring. 08 TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com
But it shouldn’t have surprised me. I had long ago noticed that, amongst the kids and adults from the East Side, there was a kind of self-imposed segregation. No one in their right mind would venture to the West Side, they often joked with each other. This attitude, I sensed, was part of a legacy of self-defense. A sort of, “I’ll reject you before you reject me” strategy adopted by an entire group that—long ago—had been made to feel unwelcome in their own town. It was many years (and much gentrification) later that a group of Austin Latino community leaders planted some seeds of hope for their community. On a hot summer afternoon in August of 2008, Austin City Councilman Mike Martinez, former State Senator Gonzalo Barrientos, Austin Tejano Music Coalition representatives Leonard Davila and Liz Hernandez, and community activist Gavin Lance Garcia gathered at the Austin Chronicle offices to meet with Louis Black, the weekly’s editor. Discussions were cordial but the subject was pointed, with the central topic being how the Latino community felt under-served by the local media—the Chronicle in particular. “We believed that Austin needed a Latino paper that catered to a community whose preferred language was English,” Davila said. “That reported the goings-on of the Tejano/Mexican-American/ Chicano community, including music and the good that came out of the above-mentioned community.”
Black, who is also a co-founder of SXSW and its Executive Director, told the group that the Chronicle would back a Hispanic news journal and put members of his staff at their service. “The objective of the meeting was to try and get support for a community paper,” recalls Davila. “Louis is a good man, and with his and the Chronicle’s support, we started a monthly called Aviva.” With an assist from the Chronicle’s production manager and advertising director, plus former Chronicle graphic designer Dave McClinton, the journal debuted in January, 2009. In May of that year, Aviva morphed into TODO Austin to more closely mirror the city’s changing ethnic demographics. “We wanted to simultaneously recognize long-standing cultural traditions while reaching out to a younger, multicultural audience,” said McClinton. “We’re trying to build bridges and shine a light on the breadth of cultural contributions provided to Austin by under-recognized sources, the voices that are often relegated to ‘special issues’ and small windows of time in our city.” Members of the Austin Tejano Music Coalition next discussed approaching Black about an official SXSW showcase. Black pointed them in SXSW Creative Director Brent Grulke’s direction. The festival’s managers gladly accommodated the request, arranging a Tejano showcase and a music panel at the Austin Convention Center. “I had been trying unsuccessfully for quite some time to get Tejano artists to perform during SXSW,” said Davila. “With Gavin’s help, I was able to put together an
official program headlined by Little Joe Hernandez and Ruben Ramos at Kenny Dorham’s Backyard, and we had an overflow crowd.” The SXSW music panel, titled “Reaching America’s Fastest Growing Market,” was likewise a success as it featured prominent marketing professionals Becky Arreaga, David Chavez, Ruben Cubillos, with Little Joe and Garcia discussing the impact of Hispanics on the music industry. “I think there is probably a case that Austin musicians in general—whether they be of the Tejano genre or not—feel like they are not overly, or properly, recognized by the SXSW event leadership,” Arreaga said. “But (SXSW) was not, I believe, created to promote ‘Austin music’ to the world; it was created to bring the music world to Austin. However, that said, I do feel there could be more done during the SXSW event time period to create a more inclusive environment and supportive community for artists, local, Latin, Tejano, etc. And there are ways to do it so that everyone can benefit economically.” A few weeks after the festival, Davila met with SXSW officials to discuss future plans. “They told me it was going to be different the next time around,” Davila recalls. “But I never was contacted again so I called some friends together to form our own production company, Crossroads Events.” The Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center (MACC), which in previous years Cont. on pg. 10
Pan Americana Festival 2011 A.B. Quintanilla
Pan Americana Festival 2011 Ozomatli (Asdrubal Sierra) | www.jennawedgewood.com Big crowd, big night, Pan Americana Festival 2011 Ozomatli | www.jennawedgewood.com
Tejano legends Roberto Polido, Ruben Ramos, and Little Joe Hernandez at Mexican American Experience
Diverse faces, Pan Americana Festival 2011 Ozomatli www.jennawedgewood.com
2010 SXSW Latino music panel TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com 09
Cont. from pg. 8
Pan Americana Festival 2011 (L-R): J.J. Barerra and Ozomatli’s Raul Pacheco www.jennawedgewood.com
had been rented during SXSW, was interested in programming its own event for 2011. Crossroads put together a proposal for the “Mexican American Experience” to showcase “Tejano acts, Grammy winners and Tejano legends,” said Davila. TODO Austin presented a second proposal it had been working on for a year, the “Pan Americana Festival,” designed to cross Austin’s Hispanic musicians with the local Americana music scene, hoping it would become an official SXSW event. Later that summer, Cubillos introduced Garcia to businessmen Andy Ramirez and Frank Fuentes. Ramirez, a well-respected entrepreneur and cofounder/Chairman of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, had a vision to create a large-scale Hispanic music festival. The group formed a nonprofit, Bellas Artes Alliance, and using the previous “Pan Americana” title, designed a new proposal for
Mexican American Experience, a Taste of Latino Talent By Liz Lopez
The Mexican American Experience 2012, a twoday music showcase, returns to the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center in Austin on March 14-15. The concerts will be outdoors in the center’s Zocalo area and are free to the public from 6-10 p.m. The familyfriendly setting is especially enticing for those seeking cultural events during spring break. Last year’s inaugural event saw multi-generational families sharing the cultural experience. Featured artists for this year’s showcase on Wednesday are multi-Grammy winning Tejano legend Little Joe y La Familia, local favorites Los A-T Boyz, Mike Torres III and the Grooveland Chicano Band, from West Texas, Austin-based Latin rock artist, Haydn Vitera, and Austin Tejano Music Coalition’s winner of the 2011 Tejano Idol singing contest, Ashley Borrero. On Thursday, San Antonio’s Sunny and The Sunliners and Shelly Lares are featured, with Austin’s talented Patricia Vonne and Susan Torres y Conjunto Clemencia. Created by Crossroads Events, in collaboration 10 TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com
2010 Latin music showcase
the MACC with the goal of promoting emerging Hispanic artists. “The notion that we wanted to encapsulate is captured in the word ‘Pan-American,’ because it crosses all Hispanic/Latino nationalities within our Hemisphere,” said Ramirez. “The concept for the festival was simple,” Cubillos further explained. “Build a venue to showcase and expo a variety of established and/or new Latino talents both nationally and internationally. I believe Latino artists and acts had been totally underexposed during South by Southwest, a time when the city of Austin was on fire with a ‘Super Bowl’ like fever.” The two proposals presented to the MACC led to the inaugural Pan Americana Festival and Mexican
with the ESB-MACC, the City of Austin and the Austin Parks and Recreation Department, the Experience will include food, beverage and bleacher seating. The public is encouraged to bring lawn chairs. Doors open at 5 p.m. with music at 6 p.m. A free shuttle service will be available with departures from Martin Middle School, 1601 Haskell St., and Sanchez Elementary School, 73 San Marcos St., on the East Side.
Pan Americana Festival 2011 (L-R): Ruben Cubillos and Mike Martinez
American Experience in 2011, both of which brought thousands out to hear headliners A.B. Quintanilla and Ozomatli at the former event and noted Tejano acts and legends at the latter. Recognizing that SXSW was more than willing to include these types of shows in the SXSW schedule, Garcia made another attempt at finding a way for the groups to collaborate. He reached out to Councilman Martinez and the two met with SXSW management late last summer. “We see strengths in the diversity of our city,” said Martinez. “We want to do all we can to create as many platforms as possible to welcome and enable sharing our cultures and backgrounds.” SXSW was eager to work with the local Latino promoters. BAA Chairman Andy Ramirez and Executive Director Linda Ramirez met with SXSW
rock and other unique mezclas created from the artists’ unique influences and experiences.
staff for a series of meetings with the result being that the “2012 Pan Americana Festival” will be an official SXSW showcase. So it was that Latino Austin found its way into the city’s greater cultural mainstream. “As we become a much more significant portion of the population, it is a good idea that we share our culture and inherent beliefs that hopefully will provide a better understanding and appreciation by non-Hispanics,” states Andy Ramirez. “We are a very rich culture, with traditions and beliefs that mirror all cultures. There’s not a greater way to share, enjoy and provide understanding as well as appreciation than through music and the visual arts.”
Producers faced new challenges this second time around with road closures and financing. “Rainey Street is to be closed for other music events in town, but we need it to be available for people to drop off the disabled and/or elderly,” stated Davila. “This year, funding is harder, but we have sponsors to help keep it a free event. It is not as easy as it appears. It has been 24/7 since last year to plan for this year’s event.” Davila anticipates making the Experience an annual tradition in the future. “We want people to be proud of what we’ve got. My grandchildren from Circle C had not been to an event like this before last year and they are asking me if they can return this year. It’s about exposure for the young.”
Crossroads Events was cofounded by several Austin businessmen in 2011 with the mission of showcasing the diversity and talent of Mexican American musicians. “The reason we are doing this is Austin is known as the ‘Live Music Capital of the World’ and is host to events with national recognition,” said Leonard Davila. “We are able to have talent that is local and perhaps may be seen by visitors who may be in town.” The Experience includes Tejano, conjunto, country,
Austin has last several Tejano radio stations in the past decade and currently has one station playing the format, KTXZ Para la Gente. “You used to be able to hear what went on in the community; births, deaths, scholarships, etc. on the radio,” said Davila. “I’m concerned about Austin, not other cities; what has been here and not was is brought from elsewhere. That’s why we created this event. The only way Crossroads benefits is knowing we had a good show. This is a chance to show our community and others that this genre of music still exists.”
Pan Americana Festival 2012 The Pan Americana Festival will occupy a spicy spot at South by Southwest on Friday, March 16 and Saturday, March 17. The free celebratory weekend of music and family-friendly fun builds upon last year’s springboard event, which brought over 5,000 fans to the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center. Produced by Austin-based Bellas Artes Alliance, in collaboration with ESB-MACC and SXSW, Pan Americana Festival eases emerging Latino artists into the spotlight, acting as a launching pad for creative discovery.
The festival brings together a multinational convergence of Latino artistic talent shaping American culture and the U.S. marketplace and includes a variety of genres from Tejano, rap and electronica to dance, funk and pop. In addition to music, delectable regional foods and cold libations abound, with free parking within walking distance of the venue. For more information go to www.panamericanafestival. com.
Friday March 16 on the scene. Alfredo y Tortilla Factory received a Grammy and Latino Grammy nomination in 2011 for their “Cookin’” album. Rio Jordan // Once the supporting band for the legendary accordionist Esteban Jordan, has moved to the fore and continues the Jordan tradition of innovative, genre-bending conjunto music. With the legendary Juanito Castillo and Roberto Perez on accordion, the Jordan Brothers, Esteban III and Ricardo, along with
Paul Wall // Wall, a Houston native, is known as “The People’s Champ,” in Texas music. Wall’s success as an independent recording artist began with Swishahouse Records and his 2005 major label debut, “The Peoples Champ,” entered Billboard Magazine’s “Top 200” at number one, quickly reaching platinum status. He was nominated for a Grammy for his appearance on Nelly’s “Grillz,” and his 2010 release, “Heart of a Champion,” was noted for its lyrical vigor. Admired for his charitable involvement, Wall regularly gives his time to numerous schools, hospitals and performances for troops overseas. He has also served on the Board of the Texas Chapter of the Recording Academy for the past five years and is currently its President. Ricardo Castillon y La Diferenzia // Castillon is called one of Tejano’s progressive masterminds. He inherited his musical pedigree at age 12, following his father’s footsteps with La Conexion Tejana. The younger Castillon formed his own band in the 90’s—Ricardo Castillon y La Diferenzia—based out of San Antonio. La Diferenzia has topped charts, travelled the U.S. and achieved platinum status with their self-titled debut in 1994. Castillon launched a successful solo career in 1999, followed by a long hiatus and a return as producer of his 2007 comeback solo album. In 2009, Castillon released “Siempre En Mi Mente,” a collection of hit songs from some of his influences recorded with his own interpretation. Alfredo y Tortilla Factory // Tortilla Factory formed in the 70’s as a unique Texas Chicano band. They have the status of being called the top Texas Chicano band. Tortillas Factory’s music is blend of American music and the old Mexican folkloric songs that were taken and given a completely difference sound and style which is known as their unique Texas Chicano sound. Alfredo Antonio, son of Tony “Ham” Guerrero, joined the Tortilla Factory and is considered the new super talent
Alex Valdez on drums, Rio Jordan is pushing the limits of conjunto music. Incorporating jazz, mariachi, rock, cumbia and salsa into their sound, Rio Jordan is easily the most progressive accordionled band around, and their live shows are the proof. Fama // Formed in 1989, the band gained prominence in the mid-1990s with a string of hit albums. Given the nickname, “The Golden Boys,” by Tejano music DJs, Fama signed with Discos CBS International in 1989. A string of career hit singles came their way in the mid ‘90s as the band spent numerous weeks atop Latin Billboard airplay charts, earning numerous awards and nominations. One of the few groups to have shattered international barriers, they’ve recorded 18 albums, of which four were certified gold, three platinum and one double platinum. Fama’s sound represents the past, present and future of their genre.
SHOW INFO // WHERE: Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center (600 River Street) WHEN: Friday, March 16 and Saturday, March 17 COST: FREE DOORS: 4 p.m. on Friday; 4 p.m. on Saturday ITEMS NOT ALLOWED: Pets, video cameras, ice chests, knives/weapons/chains, outside food and beverage, tents, flags, drugs. ITEMS ALLOWED: Lawn chairs, blankets, beach towels, backpacks, digital/disposable cameras, bring legal ID for alcoholic consumption. FREE PARKING/SHUTTLES: Park East of Interstate 35 and hop on the FREE shuttles from: Sanchez Elementary (73 San Marcos St.) and Martin Middle School (1601 Haskell St.)
Saturday March 17 Nortec Collective: Hiperboreal is a music project that is part of the most important electronic music ensemble in Latin America, the Nortec Collective. Based in Tijuana, pg beas & vg pichardo make up Hiperboreal and combine electronic music with musical elements from the northern region of Mexico. In 1999, two of Hiperboreal’s tracks, “Loop Eterno” and “Kinklé Futurista,” were featured on the “Nortec Sampler,” the first Nortec Collective release. Nortec’s 2001 release, “Tijuana Session, Volume 1,” on the Palm Pictures label, and their followup, “Tijuana Sessions, Vol. 3,” on Nacional Records, boosted the Collective’s reputation worldwide with the latter nominated for two Latin Grammy awards. In 2008, the Collective entered a break giving rise to projects such as Hiperboreal. Suénalo // Latin funk. Fusion. Jam band. Multicultural cocktail. The sound of Miami. Afro-Latin-Baby-Makin’-Descarga-Funk. They’re all names that have been used to describe Suénalo. With three albums under their belt, the band has displayed a mastery of both the studio and the stage, from their 2003 debut “Collages”
to 2006’s self-titled, star-studded studio effort to 2009’s “Live at Transit,” which is a prime depiction of the band on a typical night, in their typical prime form. Winner of Miami New Times’ Best of Miami Awards as Best Latin Rock Band in 2005, and Best Latin Band in 2011, their notoriously raucous performances are making waves across the U.S. Bang Data // Straight out of the Bay Area in early 2008, Bang Data brings a mix of slick and melodic guitar, gritty synch and bass over bang electro-acoustic rhythms, making a perfect canvas for Deuce Eclipse’s bilingual rhymes and melodies. Bang Data’s
Master Blaster Sound System // is at the nexus of Cumbia Crunk, Roots Norteño and Deep Club tracks. South Texas Cumbia
OG’s Dj Dus, Brian Ramos, and Cecy Treviño are at the creative center of this brutal collaboration several years in the making. Producing fresh sounds and beats for a new generation of crosspollinated youth—a delirious blend of edgy material the band uses electronic toys, live beats and a push in their live shows—the band is a cultural bridge between DJ culture, live music and the cumbia underground. Charanga Cakewalk // Miguel Ramos, the king of cumbia lounge, makes feelgood music from a mix of Tejano, merengue, salsa, garage rock and other music styles. With a distinct reputation as a collaborator with artists ranging from John Mellencamp to the BoDeans, the Austin-based multi-instrumentalist leads CC—his project since 2002— featuring Ramos on everything from accordion to Hammond B-3 performing a combination of Latin Jazz mixed with traditional Latin rhythms. CC’s albums “Loteria De La Cumbia Lounge,” “Chicano Zen” and their latest, “El Brown Recluse,” underscore the band’s inventiveness and fill dance floors. Maneja Beto // is a band without borders. With music that spans decades, cultures and languages, and a sound that can be described as both traditional and progressive. They are like a bizarre love triangle between indie, Rock en Español and 80s synth-pop. New York Times critic Jon Pareles wrote in a review that the band plays “Latin alternative rock that confidently separated itself from models like Cafe Tacuba or Santana. The music was grounded in rhythms like the Mexican cumbia, but topped with cool keyboard tones that tilted the songs toward 1980’s electro or jazz.”
sound is a mash-up of styles combining hints of Latin, reggae, hip-hop and rock. Their sound triggers echoes of traditional Latin music styles while offering a futuristic vision of Latin alternative music. Their live show is energetic and contagious, as are the bands recordings, their debut “Maldito Carnaval” and their latest, “La Sopa.” TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com 11
Workshop Aims to Improve Outcomes for Children of Color in Foster Care
Making Good on a Promise to Change a Community
By Callie Langford
By Aleah Penn and Cindy Casares
Based on national and statewide statistics, children of color in the foster care system, specifically African American children, spend more time in foster care, are less likely to be reunified with family and wait longer to be adopted than children from other ethnic groups. Data released by the Center for Public Policy Priorities in 2011 indicates an overrepresentation of youth of color and underrepresentation of white youth in the Travis County foster care system. Only 11% of our total child population in Travis County is Black/African American, but they represent 28% of youth in our child welfare system. While children who are Hispanic/Latino aren’t as significantly overrepresented, they make up 47% of the total child population in Travis County, but almost 49% of youth in care. Children who are white make up 36% of the child population in Travis County, but only 15% of youth in care.
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Travis County has brought the Center for the Healing of Racism from Houston to bring the conversation about race to Austin volunteers, professionals and community members. The Center presents a workshop with discussion about “Race: The Power of an Illusion,” a three-part PBS documentary. The training can be emotionally trying and challenging at times, but is well worth it for those who participate. Attendees have stated that they’ve been surprised to learn “how ingrained racism is in our society” and they appreciate the “gut honesty of the videos and enthusiasm of the presenters.” CASA began hosting the workshop to better equip CASA staff and volunteers to advocate for children’s best interests. Recently, the workshop has received overwhelming attention from a number of child-serving systems, including Austin Independent School District, who is joining with CASA to deliver the workshop to more child advocates this spring. Over 200 people have gone through the workshop in the past year. “CASA advocates for the best interest of children,” said Laura Wolf, Executive Director of CASA of Travis County. When children of color are disproportionately represented in the system, that cannot be in their best interest.”
Reducing the disproportionate representation of children of color in the foster care system and improving outcomes for all children starts with more discussion regarding the history of race in this country.
By educating ourselves on the history of racism, CASA believes our community can improve outcomes for all children and families by being better informed and objective in making recommendations to the court and ensuring the best decisions are made on behalf of the children we serve. CASA of Travis County continuously works to recruit more volunteers of color, train volunteers to be culturally competent and create a more inclusive workplace for volunteers and staff all in the hope of better serving children. To learn more about CASA of Travis County or to become a CASA volunteer, please visit www.casatravis.org.
Eight years ago, Southwest Key embarked on a journey with the neighborhood of East Austin to transform families’ lives through education and opportunity. East Austin Children’s Promise was the name given to the nonprofit’s mission to bring together a coalition of partners to provide a continuum of services that generate positive change. Since then, East Austin Children’s Promise has created a host of employment, educational and enrichment opportunities. Southwest Key’s founder and CEO, Dr. Juan Sanchez, strongly believes in asking the community what they want and having their needs drive the direction of East Austin Children’s Promise. For that reason, the company hosts a series called “Meet el Presidente” which often consists of dinner and conversation between Sanchez and the interested public. Whether community members have questions about evening GED classes, Southwest Key’s shelters for immigrant children, the East Austin College Prep school, green energy jobs, or voter registration, these gatherings are a way for Southwest Key to get more input and feedback from the people who set the course for the nonprofit’s future. Most of the East Austin Children’s Promise events take place at El Centro de Familia on Jain Lane where Southwest Key’s national headquarters are housed. The facility, established in 2007, contributes to the beautification of the neighborhood and provides a place where community members can do anything from take free Zumba classes to work on their GED while their kids are in child development programming. One of the most popular events at El Centro de Familia is the mobile food bank that pulls up each second Friday of the month courtesy of the Capital Area Food Bank, with the generous support
of JPMorgan Chase Foundation and volunteer workers. December, 2011, marked one year since the mobile food bank program began and, in that time, over 12,000 individuals were served over 92,000 pounds of food at Southwest Key. The number of people served continues to rise in 2012. “People are seeing this as a place to come to, a place where things are happening and a place where they are respected and valued,” said Southwest Key Vice President Jennifer Nelson, who leads the Children’s Promise initiative. “We have people coming to get food because they are hungry, kids coming to play in our playground because it is safe. Parents coming for financial literacy and ESL class or computer literacy class because they have a desire to learn and we provide childcare for their children. People are coming because they have a need and they see this is a place where, with dignity and respect, they can get their need addressed.” Nelson stressed that Southwest Key depends on the entire community to make good on the Children’s Promise. “We have found so many partners able to contribute their time, energy and resources to make the Children’s Promise grow. It is with this spirit of commitment, and in working together, that we are having the impact we had hoped to.” Southwest Key invites anyone interested in becoming an East Austin Children’s Promise partner to contact Jennifer Nelson at 512.583.2518 or firstname.lastname@example.org, and those interested in volunteering at the mobile food bank to contact Kristen Silva at email@example.com. The full calendar of free classes and events can be found at www. swkey.org/promise.
// Sekerpare (Turkish Sugar Cookies)
2 ½ cups water 1 tbsp lemon juice • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 1. As we must let the syrup get cold before pouring it on sekerpare cookies, start with making the syrup first. Pour water and sugar in a pot. Heat them until it boils. Let it boil about 15 minutes until it reaches the right consistency. Add lemon juice and remove from the heat. Put it aside and start preparing the cookies. 2. Combine butter, flour, semolina, sugar, an egg and baking powder and knead them well. Preheat the oven at 380F. 3. Make walnut sized pieces and roll them. Put them in an oiled tray leaving enough space between each as they will rise when cooked. 4. Place hazelnuts on their top, pressing gently. Cook them in oven for 25 minutes Here’s a recipe from the Turkish House. All until golden. 5. Pour the syrup when the cookies ingredients must be at room temperature. These are still hot. You can pour it with a ladle on each ingredients make 50 pieces of sekerpare. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • piece. Wait until the cookies absorb the water. You can serve it with black tea. For sekerpare dough, use: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 2 cups flour Note: You can make 50 pieces from these ½ cup semolina ingredients, but pour the syrup on 25 of them ½ cups sugar and put the other half in a refrigerator to make 1 egg another time. If you have any unexpected guests, 125g butter just prepare the syrup and pour it hot on the 1 dessert spoon baking powder cold cookies to serve as tasty sekerpare. Don’t Hazelnut forget the rule for pouring syrup on cookies for sekerpare. If the cookies are hot, the syrup must For sekerpare syrup, use: 2 cups sugar be cold or vice versa. Raindrop Turkish House is a non-profit 501(c)(3) founded by Turkish-Americans with an operation in Austin. The mission of Raindrop is to introduce Turkish culture into American society, cultivate friendship and promote the understanding of diverse cultures through its unique services to the community, through dialogue and cooperation. Raindrop contributes to Austin in colorful ways by organizing, sponsoring and hosting cultural and social events such as Turkish cuisine classes, cultural nights, Nevruz picnics, traditional dinners, Turkish coffee nights, International Women’s day, soccer games, Noah’s pudding days, Whirling Dervishes’ performances, and Intercultural Dialog Dinners.
Austin Classical Guitar Society Presents Paraguayan Virtuoso Berta Rojas By Monica Peña The Austin Classical Guitar Society (ACGS) continues its 17th International Concert Series by presenting one of the most celebrated classical guitarists in the world today, Paraguay’s Berta Rojas in concert on Saturday, March 3, at Northwest Hills United Methodist Church. ACGS’s Educational Outreach Program will also present the McCallum High School Advanced Guitar Ensemble, under the direction of Andrew Clark.
soloist of the RTE Irish Radio and Television Orchestra. She opened the Summit of the First Ladies of the Americas in Paraguay attended by then First Lady, Hillary Rodham Clinton. She was acknowledged for her artistic excellence by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, which named her a “Fellow of the Americas.” As a commitment to furthering the growth of classical guitar in the Americas, especially in the development of young performers, Rojas created the first online classical guitar competition, the Barrios WorldWideWeb Competition. This generated a tremendous impact on the guitar world. She is also the Artistic Director of the Ibero-American Guitar Festival in Washington D.C. featuring master classes and concerts by top guitarists.
Renowned for her flawless technique and innate musicality, Rojas is a musician who moves easily between classical and other musical genres. She has captivated music lovers on her frequent tours in the Americas, Europe and Asia. “Berta Rojas is elegance, lyricism and rhythmic intensity embodied in music,” says ACGS Executive Director, Dr. Matthew Hinsley. “She’s one of my favorite artists, and I am always looking for Founded in 1990 and now in its 21st season, opportunities to infuse Austin with her unique Austin Classical Guitar Society is recognized as one of the leading guitar performance and energy.” education organizations in the world. As part Rojas has appeared at Weill Recital Hall at of ACG’s International Concert Series, Yamandú Carnegie Hall and Frederick P. Rose Hall, the Costa, recognized as the musician who revived “Home of Jazz” at New York’s Lincoln Center. She Brazilian guitar music, will perform in Austin on his sold out performances at The Kennedy Center in first United States tour in April. Past International Washington D.C., South Bank Centre in London Concert Series and a Summer Chamber Music and at the National Concert Hall in Dublin as Series, included acclaimed artists Pepe Romero,
John Williams, Christopher Parkening, Eliot Fisk, Xuefei Yang, Jorge Caballero and David Russell. With successful partnerships with artists, educators, Central Texas schools and community organizations, Austin Classical Guitar Society have established one of the most recognized and respected performing arts education programs in the country. Anchored by the Educational Outreach Program that brings artists into classrooms and community workshops, the arts education projects help expose new audiences of different ages and diverse backgrounds to music with the most celebrated performers of our time. For more information, visit www. austinclassicalguitar.org.
B r a n d i C o w l ey 1611 W. 5th Street 512.473.0700 | brandicowley.com
TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com 13
TODO artist Profile:
Ricardo Acevedo Austin TX based photographer Ricardo Acevedo brings a sultry heat and keen eye for color, light and shadow to his work. With humor, passion, and a decidedly film noir slant, he focuses his lens on fabulous forms, then layers and manipulates the results to create his intricate and evocative images. Embrace the joys and mysteries of Ricardo Acevedo’s work with the 57 images presented in his new book; a few in deep black and white, and most in full rich color. “Ricardo has been pushing his own envelope for years. His work consists of balancing photography, illustration and painting as one. Composing images using models juxtaposed with tattoo-like colors, Ricardo likes to bring a little twist, a little bawdiness and “gotcha” to his photography.“ - Neil Coleman of Pro-Jex Gallery
Working Woman 2004
Lexi Smoke 2008
Acevedo’s Book, “Interloper” is available in Austin at Bookpeople (6th & Lamar) and http:// polymarketpress.net/books/interloper/ Also at barnesandnoble.com, amazon.com, bookdepository.com,thereadingroom.com, paddyfield.com, booktopia.com, superbookshop. com, boonebridgebooks.com. Ricardo Acevedo can be directly contacted via http://inthera. tumblr.com/
Couple 13 2001
Pan Box 2000 Pulling The Heart Down 2001
TEMPEST 2009 14 TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com
Chronicles of Undercover Mexican Girl:
The Social Revolución By Alexandra M. Landeros
Juan Alanis, Elianne Ramos, Melanie Mendez-Gonzales, Dolores Huerta & Alexandra M. Landeros @ 2011 LATISM Conf.
I’ve had a blog since 2005, which is around the same time I also started using Friendster and MySpace during the early days of “social media.” My blog, www.undercovermexicangirl.com, began as personal rants and confessions—a glorified, digital diary. As a result of one particularly mean post about an ex-boyfriend’s blog, I ironically restored a friendship with that particular ex. As it turned out, we had been reading each other’s blogs for some time prior to that incident. Throughout the years, my blog evolved into a way for me to analyze and express my thoughts about being bicultural, that is, raised by parents from Mexico in a very diverse multiethnic American world in Los Angeles, California. Since the fall of 2010, my blog has further evolved to become a platform for discussing current issues about our food system, agriculture and the environment, and how it affects our health–both as individuals and as a collective society. As a result, I recently spun off a new blog, www.ecoloxica.com, to write about my new adventures as an ecological Mexican American chica, doing all I can to live sustainably in body, soul, and on this planet earth. While I was discovering that blogging could be a way to voice important social issues, in early 2011, I also discovered an online network of Latinos, aptly named Latinos in Social Media. They began as an informal community on the Internet, but they evolved into an official nonprofit in 2009 and are most visible online with the use of their Twitter hashtag #LATISM. Up until recently, I felt that many bloggers who were getting the spotlight were those connecting with corporate brands as spokespeople and being successful as marketing entrepreneurs. But I wanted to know more about those who weren’t interested in getting paid for their work, but rather shaking up the status quo and making a difference. My blog, and my interactions on social media, have transformed greatly in the last seven years. Instead of merely sharing my musings, I’m sharing the work I do in real life: my attempts at growing a backyard vegetable garden, avoiding packaging to reduce the amount of waste I produce, trying to make sense of what all these labels on our food and hygiene products really mean. And beyond posting about my personal efforts, I am recently inspired to go back out into the community and volunteer with urban farming collectives, as well as helping those who are less privileged or less knowledgeable about
what I’ve learned. Alma de Mujer Center for Social Change is a 22-acre retreat center located in Northwest Austin near Lake Travis, where they have an organic vegetable garden they are working on getting re-established. El Buen Samaritano in South Austin has a community garden they are trying to get off the ground. The Sustainable Food Center needs help with general maintenance of several community and school gardens by volunteering during garden workdays. There are so many opportunities to help the community doing what I love–growing local, organic, sustainable food, as well as finding ways to be creative with limited resources. Tweeting and blogging should be secondary. I’ve thought lately, every social media organizer and activist should have the following mantra: “Do it, then post about it.” In other words, walk before you talk. Social media should not be an end unto itself. It should be a tool, or a means, to promote projects in the real life social world, to create change, and to motive others to be agents for change. Cultural Strategies, based in Austin, is partnering with South by Southwest Interactive this month for “The Social Revolución,” an interactive movement of Latinos using social media as their platform to create and inspire change by spreading ideas, fostering communities, and inspiring their worldwide audience into action. On March 12, SXSWi badge holders and special guests are invited to attend the first official Latino Lounge and After Party. The event features The Revolucionario Awards, which will celebrate the impact that Latinos have created by making use of social media and online tools. This year, I’m simply helping to spread the word. I have not done the kind of work offline– meaning, in the community–that I feel merits a self-nomination as a Revolucionaria. But I hope that between now and March 2013, I can proudly join the rest of the nominees. One seed at a time, throughout the next twelve months, I hope to plant the food that will nourish communities, both physically and spiritually. And maybe one day, on my blog and through social media, I can share other’s stories in this ecological journey, as well as my own. Want to learn more about The Social Revolucionarios? Visit www. thesocialrevolucion.com.
Frame of Reference
By Blake Shanley
When I hear someone say, “it’s just business, it’s nothing personal,” what I understand that to mean is, “I am doing something that may hurt you or upset you financially, emotionally, professionally or energetically, but it is in the name of profit— my profit—and the overall furthering of my business interests. Therefore, you should simply understand and accept it. It doesn’t mean I’m a bad person or that I don’t like you.” There is no difference between what you do “personally” and what you do “professionally” in terms of how it reflects on who you are and what makes up your constitution as a human being. You do what you do, as you are what you are. There is no difference between how you treat people in personal relationships and how you treat them in professional relationships, or otherwise. It’s all personal. It’s all people. Compartments don’t exist when it comes to your consciousness, the way you live your life, what you put out into the world and how you treat others. Period. You shouldn’t have a separate set of guidelines and requisites that you follow in one aspect of your life but not another. If you think you have given yourself different guidelines for different situations, you might want to rethink all those loopholes you’ve given yourself. If you live with integrity, in a state of awareness,
care and compassion in your personal life, if you respect others and believe in living honestly— particularly with regard to others in your personal life—how can you justify living any other way in other aspects of your life or treating people any other way in your professional life? Because it’s “business” and it involves money? Um ... nuh-uh ... You can’t justify it no matter how hard you try. If you push people as far as you can, if you put your interests high above others’, if you are willing to hurt people financially, professionally or otherwise—by hiding behind a tenet of acceptable occupational hazards by your own hand—how are you able to go home and attempt to teach your children the foundations of being a good, well-rounded and authentic human being? How are you vacation with your partner when you blatantly, without hesitation, cause another to forgo his vacation to compensate for your not-so-honest business dealings? When you see yourself for exactly who you are, no matter the environment or situation, you can see yourself clearly without compartments, without excuses and without justification for ever treating people without respect or regard or care or compassion. It’s never “just business.” It’s only and always personal and it’s only and always just people.
By Yadira Izquierdo
I’ve encountered more than one heartbreaking story in my new job in the social sector. From children having children to women who don’t care about their children, and people who care but have difficulties providing for their kids, I’ve heard everything. Maybe it’s just that I’m the newbie or it’s just because I have been questioning myself about motherhood. But it bothers me. I recently tried to help a 16-year-old girl find medical services for herself and her newborn. Noticing she was pregnant with a second child, I asked for her legal guardian. She replied, “I’m pretty much by myself.” The phrase froze me for a moment. I looked at her record and saw a female name that shared the same as the minor. I thought it was her mother but she insisted that she was alone. I explained to her that because of the type of program she was involved in, I couldn’t make the changes she needed. She could not really understand why. In her world, making changes was simple: I just needed to alter information on her record. Simple, is it not? Unfortunately for both of us, we live in a world full of legal standards we are forced to follow. I debated making the changes and the possible consequences of not following the rules. The dichotomy was killing me. I decided to contact
a supervisor, even though I knew what she would say. I gave her the details with a noticeable urgency in my voice. The supervisor was calm and showed no emotion. We went through the case and came to the same conclusion: our department could not help. Not good news. I tried once again to explain to the supervisor the client’s peculiar situation. I don’t know if she felt compassion for the girl or for me, but she accepted my request to speak with the girl. The day became even more hectic and I didn’t have a chance to talk with the supervisor again, but days later, I ran into her and asked about the girl’s case. She did not recall it. I guess it was just another case for her but it was something more for me. Motherhood is something I would like to experience. I honestly hope that my children will never feel as fragile and as alone as the teen with a baby in her arms and another on the way. Because of bureaucracy, I wasn’t able to make an inane change on her record. Is that what the state considers an efficient system? Are we just there to protect the state from possible lawsuits or are we there to help people? Is this specialization of tasks really working? TODO Austin // march 2012 // TodoAustin.com 15
Pan Americana Fest coming March 16-17 to the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center www.bellasartesalliance.com
To enter a raffle for a Huichol Guitar,
visit to bellasartesalliance.com or contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 512.282.9112
TODO Austin is a free-distribution, full-color, monthly newspaper that focuses on Austin's multicultural community. TODO Austin is published...