LETTERS TO OUR GRANDCHILDREN
Started in 2014 as a collaboration between Lazy Hmong Woman Productions and The Peoples Cook, Letters to Our Grandchildren is a theater project that engages Hmong elders in telling their own stories, in their own words.
The Hmong community has been in the United States for approximately 40 years. There is a generational gap and also a generation dying off, and with them, stories, customs, and practices. Elders in the Hmong community don’t tell their own stories nor do they have the agency in the creation of them—usually, their story is told for them. They do not have the tools, resources, space, and opportunity to engage in art making. They also have the additional barriers of language, transportation and in some cases, mental health issues associated with age and PTSD, a result of the Secret War in Laos.
In 2014, artists May Lee-Yang and Robert Karimi partnered with Hmong Elder Center, an adult day center, to do programming for Hmong elders. After ten months, we produced KEEB KWM, an original show created and performed by Hmong elder artists, a short documentary about the project created by Joua Lee, and cookbook of recipes gathered from Hmong elders.
To view the short documentary, go to https://vimeo.com/117552485.