Friday, December 31, 2021

Ten most-read posts of 2021.


Here's a look back at the ten most-read Pennsylvasia posts of 2021; seven deal with new restaurants or Asian grocery stores opening in Pittsburgh:
1. Oriental Market moving up the road to Old McKnight Road and the former David's Bridal. [January 9]
2. Oishii Donburi to soft open, March 19. [March 17]
3. 98 K Burger opening in Squirrel Hill. [August 1]
4. Pittsburgh's Chinatown granted State Historical Marker. [March 10]
5. Panda Supermarket (熊猫超市) to open at new location, September 1, with expanded hours. [August 21]
6. African Cuisine moving into old Chaya spot, February 27. [February 16]
7. Sushi Kim 2 opening soon downtown. [July 7]
8. "Four Evenings" discussion with Charles Yu and his 2020 novel Interior Chinatown, October 14 at Pitt. [October 7]
9. New York-based, Chinese-owned fastfood chain 98K coming soon to Squirrel Hill. [September 5]
10. Pittsburgh Chinese Cultural Festival, October 16 at Mellon Park. [September 9]

Let's スケートing at North Park!

A number of Bauer hockey skates at the North Park ice rink have スケート (skate) printed on them in Japanese . . . lest you get the bladed boot confused with another type of footwear.

Thursday, December 30, 2021

Food delivery service Hungry Panda hiring Mandarin-speaking Business Development Specialist for Pittsburgh area.


Hungry Panda is hiring a Mandarin-speaking Business Development Specialist for the Pittsburgh area. As PennsylvAsia noted in Summer 2020, more Chinese delivery options, like Fantuan and Chowbus, are making their way to Pittsburgh.

Job Requirements:

  • Must be fluent in Mandarin and English
  • Educational requirements: Bachelor’s degree and above
  • Experience in business negotiation, sales and marketing management is preferred
  • Working experience in Internet companies is preferred
  • Strong time management and project management skills
  • High sensitivity on market trend, high sensitivity on data
  • Strong commercial acumen and a desire to work with restaurants, not afraid to be refused, have top-notch people skills
  • Excellent teamwork ability, cooperate with different teams to promote business cooperation, and be able to efficiently complete business negotiations independently
  • Have a valid driver licence and a vehicle

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Tickets now available for 2021 Japanese film Drive My Car (ドライブ・マイ・カー) at Harris Theater, January 20 through 27.


Tickets are now available for the acclaimed 2021 Japanese film Drive My Car (ドライブ・マイ・カー), which will play at the Harris Theater from January 20 through 27, 2022. A brief synospis from a December 7 NPR review:
The story follows a middle-aged Tokyo stage actor named Kafuku, superbly played by Hidetoshi Nishijima. He's a calm, mild-mannered guy who's been married for two decades to a screenwriter named Oto. We get a sense of their mutual devotion when we see Kafuku driving around in his bright red Saab, rehearsing his lines by listening to audio tapes that Oto has painstakingly recorded for him.

But their relationship is more complicated than it appears. Years ago, Kafuku and Oto experienced an agonizing loss that has led her to find solace — and perhaps something more — in relationships with other men. Kafuku has deep compassion for his wife, which doesn't make her betrayal any less painful. And then another tragedy strikes when Oto dies suddenly.
It will play at the Harris Theater in downtown's Cultural District (map), and tickets are available online or at the door.

Saturday, December 25, 2021

2001 film Cowboy Bebop: The Movie (カウボーイビバップ 天国の扉) at Row House Cinema, from January 14.


The 2001 film Cowboy Bebop: The Movie (カウボーイビバップ 天国の扉) will play at Row House Cinema from January 14 through 20.
This massively popular anime with fantastic animation and a very cool soundtrack from The Seatbelts is a house favorite. Like the original show, Cowboy Bebop is a sci-fi noir about a Star Wars-esque crew of bounty hunters trying to save a human settlement on Mars.
Tickets are available online. The single-screen theater is located at 4115 Butler Street in Lawrenceville (map).

Thursday, December 23, 2021

Pittsburgh's soul food (ピッツバーグのソウルフード) and Christmas.


Yasuda Women's University in Hiroshima sends cohorts of its English education students overseas each year for additional language training and cultural exchange, and since 2016 a group of students has come to the University of Pittsburgh's English Language Institute each fall and winter. Quick reports of their experirences and exchanges are blogged on Yasuda's Department of English and English/American Literature page. Entries cover Christmas, conversation partners, and Primanti Brothers ("Pittsburgh's soul food"). Program experiences like this are invaluable in helping students experience English as an actual language with real-life speakers, cultures, and meanings, rather than simply a school subject to be memorized and regurgitated.
Decorating a tree with her host family.

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Kishi Bashi in Pittsburgh, April 2.


Singer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter Kishi Bashi will perform at Thunderbird Cafe on April 2, 2022. His website provides an introduction:
Kishi Bashi is the pseudonym of singer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter Kaoru Ishibashi. Born in Seattle, Washington, Ishibashi grew up in Norfolk, Virginia where both of his parents were professors at Old Dominion University. As a 1994 graduate of Matthew Fontaine Maury High School, he went on to study film scoring at Berklee College of Music before becoming a renowned violinist. Ishibashi has recorded and toured internationally as a violinist with diverse artists such as Regina Spektor, Sondre Lerche, and most recently, the Athens, Georgia-based indie rock band, of Montreal. He remains based in Athens.
. . .
His latest album, Omoiyari (a Japanese word for the idea of creating compassion toward other people by thinking about them), was released in 2019. He is currently co-directing a feature length documentary of the same name about minority identity and the Incarceration of Japanese Americans in WWII.

In 2020 Kishi Bashi scored the entire soundtrack for the touching Apple TV+ kids show “Stillwater” with composer Toby Chu, and released it as an album featuring 18 tracks of uplifting orchestral tunes.

His new Emigrant EP, a very special companion piece to 'Omoiyari' is out physically and digitally now. Arranged and recorded over the last year, 'Emigrant EP' serves as a time capsule of the 2020 condition and a continuation of the concepts explored in 'Omoiyari'.
Tickets are now available online. The show is 18+ and attendees are required to show proof of vaccination. The Thunderbird Cafe & Music Hall is located at 4023 Butler St. in Lawrenceville (map).

Jasmine Cho named one of City-Paper's Pittsburgh's People of the Year.

Photo by Jared Wickerham.

Baker, author, and activist Jasmine Cho was named one of the Pittsburgh City-Paper's Pittsburgh's People of the Year.
Jasmine Cho’s activism has initiated conversations on race for years. As founder of online bakery Yummyholic and a self-declared “cookie activist,” she paints intricate portraits of Asian Americans with icing to give representation to the historically underrepresented community.

Dr. Freddie Fu named Pittsburgh Magazine's Pittsburgher of the Year for 2021.


The late Dr. Freddie Fu was named Pittsburgh Magazine's Pittsburgher of the Year for 2021.
With his boundless energy and spirited optimism, Dr. Freddie Fu built a world-class sports medicine program that turned Pittsburgh into a go-to international destination not only for surgeons, athletic trainers and physical therapists, but for many of the world’s best banged-up athletes

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Osechi-ryori, Japanese New Year's dishes, n Pittsburgh.


Highland Park's Teppanyaki Kyoto will again offer Osechi-ryori this year, available to order from December 21 through 27.
Hello everyone! As we are approaching the end of 2021, it is time to celebrate the new year's. In Japan, osechi riyori is a traditional dish enjoyed on New Year's day. As a part of the Japanese culture, it is often shared among family members and friends.

This year has been difficult time for small business restaurants like us. Fortunately, we were able to obtain the ingredients to make osechi riyori this year. So order your Osechi riyori before it sells out!

This special will be available to order from December 21 to December 27, pre-order only. Then the Osechi boxes can be picked up on December 30 or 31.

Order your Osechi Box before 12/27 8pm for pickup on 12/30 or 12/31 to enjoy, See the link in our bio. At- https://www.teppanyakikyoto.com/s/stories/traditional-japanese-new-year-food-oseichi-ryori?location=11eb2dced62400c78648ac1f6bbbd01e
Teppanyaki Kyoto is located at 5808 Bryant St. (map).

2003 Korean film Memories of Murder (살인의 추억) at Row House Cinema, from December 26.


Row House Cinema will present the 2003 Korean film Memories of Murder (살인의 추억) from December 26 through January 6 as part of its Staff Picks series.
Bong Joon-ho (Parasite) wrote and directed this fantastic crime thriller based on the real story of Korea’s first known serial killer. It’s widely considered one of the best films to ever come out of Korea and has been a longtime fav of our staff!
Tickets and showtime information is available online. The single-screen theater is located at 4115 Butler Street in Lawrenceville (map).

Saturday, December 11, 2021

Pittsburgh-based WholeRen Education (美国厚仁教育集团) hiring Mandarin-speaking Full Time Academic Tutor.



Pittsburgh-based Chinese education consulting and placement firm WholeRen Education (美国厚仁教育集团) has announced an opening for a Full Time Academic Tutor.

Pittsburgh Magazine reviews Squirrel Hill's Yue Bai Wei.

by Laura Petrilla for Pittsburgh Magazine.

Pittsburgh Magazine's Hal B. Klein has a review of Yue Bai Wei, which opened in June.
Smashed eggplant with hot pepper was the first dish I ordered at Yue Bai Wei. On a warm night in June, my pal Keith and I used a miniature pestle to pummel neat stacks of airy, pillowy slabs of eggplant dressed with sesame oil and piled high with fermented hot peppers and chopped scallions. As we tore our way through the intoxicating dish, I had flashbacks.

Everything came full circle when I learned that Yue Bai Wei’s executive chef and co-owner is Zhiyuan Tang. He is the same person who brought Sichuan Gourmet to prominence when he took over as executive chef of that Squirrel Hill restaurant in late 2017. I recall popping in for a snack one day in 2019, and the same dish was so unexpectedly tasty it prompted me to consider reviewing the restaurant. After a broader examination of the menu, I did, praising Tang for the way he improved the decade-old restaurant’s offerings.

Tang excelled in that kitchen but felt too constrained by long-standing customer expectations for a more generalized Chinese and Chinese-American restaurant to fully express his culinary chops, which are among the finest in Pittsburgh. That’s why he, his sister Li Tang and Alice Fu decided to break away from Sichuan Gourmet and open their establishment — Yue Bai Wei, which is located in the former Rose Tea Cafe space on Forbes Avenue.
See also his June write-up shortly after the restaurant rather suddenly opened.

Kagami mochi in Squirrel Hill.

Mini kagami mochi at Panda Supermarket in Squirrel Hill.

Friday, December 10, 2021

2021 Japanese film Drive My Car (ドライブ・マイ・カー) at Harris Theater, January 20 through 27.


The acclaimed 2021 Japanese film Drive My Car (ドライブ・マイ・カー) will play at the Harris Theater from January 20 through 27, 2022. A brief synospis from a December 7 NPR review:
The story follows a middle-aged Tokyo stage actor named Kafuku, superbly played by Hidetoshi Nishijima. He's a calm, mild-mannered guy who's been married for two decades to a screenwriter named Oto. We get a sense of their mutual devotion when we see Kafuku driving around in his bright red Saab, rehearsing his lines by listening to audio tapes that Oto has painstakingly recorded for him.

But their relationship is more complicated than it appears. Years ago, Kafuku and Oto experienced an agonizing loss that has led her to find solace — and perhaps something more — in relationships with other men. Kafuku has deep compassion for his wife, which doesn't make her betrayal any less painful. And then another tragedy strikes when Oto dies suddenly.
It will play at the Harris Theater in downtown's Cultural District (map), though tickets are not yet available.

Carnegie Mellon University hiring Part-time Research Analyst - Engineering and Public Policy; ability to work with data in Chinese preferred.

Carnegie Mellon University is hiring a Part-time Research Analyst - Engineering and Public Policy, with a preference for someone who can work with data in Chinese.

Carnegie Mellon University’s department of Engineering and Public Policy is searching for a part-time Research Analyst. This is an excellent opportunity for someone who thrives in an interesting and challenging work environment. You will contribute to the department by providing vital support by studying the effectiveness of environmental policy in China by analyzing large environmental compliance data sets using the techniques of applied microeconomics.

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Lunar New Year Celebration 2022 at Pitt, February 2.

via traveloriented.

The University of Pittsburgh's Asian Studies Center and Global Hub will host a Lunar New Year Celebration on February 2.
Join the Asian Studies Center and Global Hub for a Lunar New Year celebration in honor of the Year of the Tiger! Come for some light refreshments, crafts, a photobooth, performances, and more.
It runs from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm in the Global Hub on the first floor of Posvar Hall, and is free and open to members of the Pitt community who follow the university's COVID-19 safety protocols.

Pennsylvania seeking Request for Proposals for PA Japan Investment Representative position.


The State of Pennsylvania is seeing Requests for Proposals until February 4, 2022 for a PA Japan Investment Representative position.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) seeks an experienced consultant or consultancy to serve as an authorized representative, to be based in and focused on Japan. The consultant will be expected to contribute to the growth and strength of the Commonwealth’s economy through the attraction of foreign direct investment to Pennsylvania and the creation of quality jobs, thus increasing the opportunities for economic prosperity for all Pennsylvanians.

The Consultant, in joint effort with DCED’s Office of International Business Development (OIBD), will be responsible for development of programs to attract investors to Pennsylvania. The consultant will have extensive contacts with the region’s government officials, industry associations, business communities, the U.S. Foreign Commercial Service (U.S. Department of Commerce), chambers of commerce, and other organizations (private and public) that will further the Commonwealth’s investment goals and objectives of the region.

New Japanese animated movie Sword Art Online the Movie Progressive: Aria of a Starless Night (劇場版 ソードアート・オンライン プログレッシブ 星なき夜のアリア) stays in Pittsburgh through December 15.


The 2021 Japanese animated movie apanese animated movie Sword Art Online the Movie Progressive: Aria of a Starless Night (劇場版 ソードアート・オンライン プログレッシブ 星なき夜のアリア), which opened in Pittsburgh on December 3, will stay here through at least December 15. A synopsis of the film that, based on a manga series:
Return to the death game where it all began—Sword Art Online. In this new Aincrad Arc by original creator Reki Kawahara, the story is seen through Asuna’s eyes. What at first seems like a dream come true quickly becomes a nightmare when newbie gamer Asuna Yuuki learns the only way to escape the virtual world of Aincrad is to beat all 100 levels—but “Game Over” means you die in the real world.
It will play locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront, and tickets are available online. Please note, some shows are in Japanese with English subtitles while others are dubbed in English.

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Wild Ninja Asian Grill opening in Oakland, December 9.


Wild Ninja Asian Grill will hold its grand opening on December 9. It's located at located at 210 Oakland Ave. (map) in what was formerly Uncle Sam's Gourmet Subs. Work has been been underway at the space since December 2019.

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

2003 Korean film Memories of Murder (살인의 추억) at Row House Cinema, from December 26.


Row House Cinema will present the 2003 Korean film Memories of Murder (살인의 추억) from December 26 through January 6 as part of its Staff Picks series.
Bong Joon-ho (Parasite) wrote and directed this fantastic crime thriller based on the real story of Korea’s first known serial killer. It’s widely considered one of the best films to ever come out of Korea and has been a longtime fav of our staff!
Tickets and showtime information is available online. The single-screen theater is located at 4115 Butler Street in Lawrenceville (map).

Macross Plus Movie Edition (マクロスプラス MOVIE EDITION) in Pittsburgh, December 14.


The Japanese animated film Macross Plus Movie Edition (マクロスプラス MOVIE EDITION), a threatrical cut of a 1994-1995 four-volume series, will play in Pittsburgh on December 14. From the distributor:
From the minds of vision creator Shoji Kawamori and co-director Shinichiro Watanabe, and featuring renowned composer Yoko Kanno, MACROSS PLUS MOVIE EDITION is an action-packed animated masterpiece made for the big screen!

In the year 2040, on the distant planet Eden, former childhood friends Isamu Dyson and Guld Bowman find themselves pitted against each other as test pilots of rival teams in a competition to decide the next generation of variable mecha fighters. The two must also deal with their own unresolved history with mutual love interest, Myung Fang Lone, who has returned as the manager of Sharon Apple, the AI pop star (virturoid) and the galaxy’s biggest singing sensation. When Sharon’s advanced artificial intelligence gains consciousness, Isamu, Myung, and Guld must face their turbulent past and come together as Sharon Apple becomes self-aware and takes control of the Macross battlefortress itself!
It will play locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront and the Cinemark Theaters in McCandless, Monaca, Monroeville, and Robinson. Tickets are available online.

Thursday, December 2, 2021

Pittsburgh Opera presents world premiere of In A Grove, based on short story by Ryūnosuke Akutagawa, from February 19.


Pittsburgh Opera will present In A Grove, based on short story by Ryūnosuke Akutagawa, from February 19.
Music by Christopher Cerrone, libretto by Stephanie Fleischmann, based on the short story by Ryūnosuke Akutagawa

A silent, expectant grove. A violent encounter between a man, a woman, and a notorious brigand.

Seven testimonies, each proposing a different perspective on the crime. Akutagawa’s classic short story “In a Grove,” which inspired the plot of Kurosawa’s renowned film Rashomon, offers a searing investigation into the impossibility and elusiveness of truth.

Epic and intimate, timeless and devastatingly timely, the story’s structure lends itself powerfully to music’s ability to conjure—via repetition and variation—how human perception, memory, and desire are fallible, imprecise, and subject to interference.

Join us for this unique world-premiere experience in a place where the ground shifts beneath your feet—a space of ambiguity and clarity, of beauty and menace, and of fragility and strength.
Performances are on February 19, 22, 25, and 27, and March 1 and 3, 2022. Tickets are now available. The theater is located at 2425 Liberty Ave. in the Strip District (map).

"The Chinese Laundrymen of Squirrel Hill" presentation by Squirrel Hill Historical Society, February 8.

Tom Yee Laundry in Homestead, circa 1925.

The Squirrel Hill Historical Society will present Tammy Hepps and her discussion on "The Chinese Laundrymen of Squirrel Hill" on February 8.
Homestead Jewish historian Tammy Hepps, homesteadhebrews.com, will discuss the traumatic dispersion of Chinese laborers after the transcontinental railroad was built, examining their lives as laundrymen in context the microcosm of Squirrel Hill and Homestead.
For much more information on early Chinese residents in the area, and the context, see this well-researched article from the Homestead Hebrews website, whence the photograph of Tom Yee Laundry in Homestead comes.

The talk begins at 7:30 pm and is tentatively planned for the Church of the Redeemer at 5700 Forbes Ave. (map), though recent discussions have just been held over Zoom.

Concert film Monsta X: The Dreaming in Pittsburgh, December 9 and 11.


The concert film Monsta X: The Dreaming will play in Pittsburgh on December 9 and 11.
Is it the knowingIs it the seeingOr Is It The DreamingBest known for their powerful, iconic, and superb performances, K-pop and pop band MONSTA X is loved by -and devoted to -their countless fans around the world.As a gift to their fandom, this brand-new film gives an intimate look at their rigorous journey over the past six years including exclusive one-on-one interviews with each individual member, personal stories from their time in America, and a special concert clip exclusively for MONBEBE. This unmissable cinema event also includes high-energy musical performances of their chart-topping hits along with an exclusive first-look at their upcoming album. Challenge, evolve, and dream. Celebrate the magnificent achievements and the stunning tomorrow of MONSTA X.
It plays locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront and the Cinemark theaters in Monroeville and Robinson, and tickets are avaiable online.

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

1988 film My Neighbor Totoro (となりのトトロ) in Pittsburgh, December 5, 6, 9.


The 1988 Studio Ghibli film My Neighbor Totoro (となりのトトロ) will play in Pittsburgh on December 5, 6, and 9, as part of Ghibli Fest 2021. From the distributor:
From the legendary Studio Ghibli, creators of Spirited Away and Ponyo, and Academy Award®-winning director Hayao Miyazaki, comes a classic tale of magic and adventure for the whole family.

When Satsuki and her sister Mei move with their father to a new home in the countryside, they find country life is not as simple as it seems. They soon discover that the house and nearby woods are full of strange and delightful creatures, including a gigantic but gentle forest spirit called Totoro, who can only be seen by children. Totoro and his friends introduce the girls to a series of adventures, including a ride aboard the extraordinary Cat Bus, in this all-ages animated masterpiece featuring the voices of Tim Daly, Lea Salonga, and real-life sisters Dakota and Elle Fanning, in early roles.
It plays locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront and the Cinemark theaters in Monroeville, North Hills, and Robinson. Tickets are available online, but please note that the December 5 and 9 shows are in English while the December 6 show is in Japanese with English subtitles.

Chinese, Korean, Japanese language kits available for check-out at Hampton Community Library.


Hampton Community Library has unveiled media and language kits for families, with Chinese, Japanese, and Korean packs among those offered.
Kits are designed to spark engagement between children & families. Use your library card to investigate, create, sing, dance, listen, speak & read!

Monday, November 29, 2021

“The Unmaking of the Chinese Working Class: A Brief History of Inequality in the PRC," December 6 at Pitt.


The University of Pittsburgh's Asian Studies Center will present Teemu Ruskola and his talk “The Unmaking of the Chinese Working Class: A Brief History of Inequality in the PRC" on December 6.
China’s ongoing economic reforms have produced new types of legal, political, economic, social, and familial subjects. The revolutionary political subject of Maoism—“the People”—has been atomized into independent economic subjects responsible for their own welfare outside of work. This has been marked by the abolition of the so-called “iron rice bowl,” or a system of cradle to grave welfare for privileged urban workers, in contrast to exploited rural citizenry who have historically subsidized China’s urban industry. With the contractualization of all labor, even urban workers no longer enjoy a guaranteed share of the benefits of economic development. An earlier politically enforced inequality between city and country is increasingly eclipsed by a society-wide gulf between the rich and the poor, without any necessary geographical correlate. Collectively, China’s rural and urban reforms have resulted in tectonic shifts in the boundaries among the state, the market, and the family. For example, the state has been turning increasingly to the family to re-assume its traditional welfare functions, even as the very reforms that motivate this turn undermine the traditional family itself.
It runs from 4:30 to 5:45 pm in 211 Lawrence Hall or on Zoom; registration is required.

Friday, November 26, 2021

New Japanese animated movie Sword Art Online the Movie Progressive: Aria of a Starless Night (劇場版 ソードアート・オンライン プログレッシブ 星なき夜のアリア) in Pittsburgh, from December 3.


The 2021 Japanese animated movie apanese animated movie Sword Art Online the Movie Progressive: Aria of a Starless Night (劇場版 ソードアート・オンライン プログレッシブ 星なき夜のアリア) will play in Pittsburgh from December 3 through 9. A synopsis of the film that, based on a manga series:
Return to the death game where it all began—Sword Art Online. In this new Aincrad Arc by original creator Reki Kawahara, the story is seen through Asuna’s eyes. What at first seems like a dream come true quickly becomes a nightmare when newbie gamer Asuna Yuuki learns the only way to escape the virtual world of Aincrad is to beat all 100 levels—but “Game Over” means you die in the real world.
It will play locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront, the AMC Classic Westmoreland, and the Cinemark theater in McCandless, and tickets are available online. Shows on December 3, 4, and 9 are in Japanese with English subtitles, while shows on December 7 and 8 are dubbed in English.

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Pittsburgh Pirates to re-sign Yoshitomo Tsutsugo to one-year contract.

via the Associated Press.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are reportedly set to re-sign Yoshotimo Tsutsugo (筒香 嘉智) to a one-year contract valued at $4 million. Tsutsugo was signed in August and appeared in 43 games for Pittsburgh, hitting 8 home runs and being one of the bright, though inconsistent, spots late in the season. He is a native of Wakayama, Japan, and is the fourth Japanese player in Pittsburgh Pirates history, after pitcher Masumi Kuwata in 2007, infielder Akinori Iwamura in 2010, and pitcher Hisanori Takahashi for nine games in 2012.

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Pittsburgh Sichuan Cuisine Week gets started.

via Harry Funk of the Observer-Reporter

The first ever Pittsburgh Sichuan Cuisine Week started last week with some fanfare but no information: it was mentioned in passing in the local papers that the Chengdu Foreign Affairs Office was collaborating with the Pittsburgh Chinese Restaurant Association and local Sichuan restaurants on some type of dining celebration. The Pittsburgh City-Paper writes:
The Chengdu Foreign Affairs Office also presented PCRA with gifts valued at $10,000 to be given to guests who dine during the week.
More background comes today via Washington county's Observer-Reporter, which traces the recent exchanges between Pittsburgh and its Chinese Sister City:
Shortly after a performance group from Chengdu, China, returned home from the Pittsburgh area in early 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic went full throttle.

Then during the summer, an earthquake struck Sichuan Province, of which Chengdu is the capital, causing three deaths and damaging thousands of homes.

In Western Pennsylvania, the problems did not go unnoticed.

“The Chinese community here mobilized and donated 20,000 masks to the city of Chengdu,” Kwun Kwong Kai reported.

With Sherry Kai, his daughter, serving as translator, he welcomed guests to a dinner at Sichuan Gourmet in Squirrel Hill. Representing the Chengdu Foreign Affairs Office, Kwun expressed gratitude by hosting the event and presenting gifts to those in attendance.
Several restaurants are participating in Pittsburgh Sichuan Cuisine Week, which runs from November 19 through the 28th: Sichuan Gourmet, Chengdu Gourmet, Jade Grille, Szechuan Spice, and Little Asia. Diners are to receive gifts of thanks via the Chengdu Foreign Affairs Office.

New Chinese film Railway Heroes (铁道英雄) in Pittsburgh, from November 24.


The new Chinese film Railway Heroes (铁道英雄) will play in Pittsburgh from November 24 through November 30.
In the winter of 1939, when the Japanese takeover the Jin-Pu Railway in Shandong during World War II, an underground resistance group forms to combat them. Based on a true story.
It will play locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront, and tickets are available online. The theater is located at 300 West Waterfront Dr. in the Waterfront shopping complex in Homestead (map), across the Monongahela River from Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, and the rest of Pittsburgh.

Quantum Theatre presents Lucy Kirkwood play Chimerica, November 27 - December 19.


The Quantum Theatre will present the Lucy Kirkwood play Chimerica from November 27 through December 19 at The Maverick Hotel in East Liberty.
Lucy Kirkwood’s award-winning play reminds us of an image that arrested the world: a protester facing down four tanks in Tiananmen Square in 1989. Who was he, and who was the photojournalist who captured it? From there to the fraught present of US/China relations, it examines capitalism and culture, journalism and censorship.
Tickets are now available. The Maverick Hotel is located at 120 S. Whitfield St. (map).

Sunday, November 21, 2021

2021 Japanese animated film Belle (竜とそばかすの姫) in Pittsburgh, January 12.


The 2021 Japanese animated film Belle (竜とそばかすの姫) will play in Pittsburgh from January 12. From the distributor:
From the celebrated Academy Award®-nominated director Mamoru Hosoda and Studio Chizu, creators of Mirai, Wolf Children, Summer Wars, and more, comes a fantastical, heartfelt story of growing up in the age of social media.

Suzu is a shy, everyday high school student living in a rural village. For years, she has only been a shadow of herself. But when she enters “U”, a massive virtual world, she escapes into her online persona as Belle, a gorgeous and globally-beloved singer. One day, her concert is interrupted by a monstrous creature chased by vigilantes. As their hunt escalates, Suzu embarks on an emotional and epic quest to uncover the identity of this mysterious “beast” and to discover her true self in a world where you can be anyone.
Belle was the top movie in Japan for three weeks over the summer and is the second-highest grossing film in Japan for 2021 so far. It has been announced so far for the AMC Loews Waterfront, and tickets for that are available online, though more showtimes are likely to be announced later.

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

2019 Taiwanese film Detention (返校) still available virtually via Row House Cinema.


The 2019 Taiwanese film Detention (返校) is still available virtually via Row House Cinema, for a limited time.
Set in Taiwan during the “White Terror” period of martial law, a high school girl awakens in an empty school only to find that her entire community has been abandoned except for one other student. Soon they realize that they have entered a realm filled with vengeful spirits and hungry ghosts.

Adapted from the eponymous video game, this masterful debut from director and co-writer John Hsu creates an at once shocking historical drama, a melancholy coming-of-age tale, and a nightmarish horror film; that recalls the best of Guillermo del Toro (The Devil’s Backbone, and Pan’s Labyrinth), and with enough blood, striking sound design, art direction and special effects to evoke the best of Silent Hill.
The film is available to those in North America, and the cost to unlock is $10.

Pittsburgh Sichuan Cuisine Week, November 19 through 28.

The Pittsburgh Chinese Restaurant Association will host Pittsburgh Sichuan Cuisine Week from November 19 through 28. Participating restaurants include Sichuan Gourmet, Chengdu Gourmet, Jade Grille, Szechuan Spice, and Little Asia. The Pittsburgh City-Paper writes:
The Chengdu Foreign Affairs Office also presented PCRA with gifts valued at $10,000 to be given to guests who dine during the week.
No other details have been made available at this time.

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

2021 movie My Hero Academia: World Heroes' Mission (僕のヒーローアカデミア THE MOVIE ワールドヒーローズミッション) continues in Pittsburgh, through November 23.


he 2021 movie My Hero Academia: World Heroes' Mission (僕のヒーローアカデミア THE MOVIE ワールドヒーローズミッション), which opened in Pittsburgh on October 29, will play here through at least November 23. A synopsis, from the distributor.
When a sinister organization threatens to wipe out all superhuman powers, the fate of the world is on the line. With two hours until the collapse of civilization, Deku, Bakugo, and Todoroki manage to work as a team, but there’s still one problem. Deku’s on the run for murder.
It will continue at the AMC theaters at the Waterfront and South Hills Village Mall. Tickets are available online; please note, some shows are dubbed in English while others are in Japanese with English subtitles.

Ross Park Mall's Tiffany & Co. hiring Mandarin- and Japanese- speaking seasonal help.



The Tiffany & Co. store in Ross Park Mall is hiring seasonal ambassadors and seasonal operations professionals, with a preference for Mandarin, Japanese, or Spanish proficiency.

Monday, November 15, 2021

1988 film My Neighbor Totoro (となりのトトロ) in Pittsburgh, December 5, 6, 9.


The 1988 Studio Ghibli film My Neighbor Totoro (となりのトトロ) will play in Pittsburgh on December 5, 6, and 9, as part of Ghibli Fest 2021. From the distributor:
From the legendary Studio Ghibli, creators of Spirited Away and Ponyo, and Academy Award®-winning director Hayao Miyazaki, comes a classic tale of magic and adventure for the whole family.

When Satsuki and her sister Mei move with their father to a new home in the countryside, they find country life is not as simple as it seems. They soon discover that the house and nearby woods are full of strange and delightful creatures, including a gigantic but gentle forest spirit called Totoro, who can only be seen by children. Totoro and his friends introduce the girls to a series of adventures, including a ride aboard the extraordinary Cat Bus, in this all-ages animated masterpiece featuring the voices of Tim Daly, Lea Salonga, and real-life sisters Dakota and Elle Fanning, in early roles.
It plays locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront and the Cinemark theaters in Monroeville, North Hills, and Robinson. Tickets are available online, but please note that the December 5 and 9 shows are in English while the December 6 show is in Japanese with English subtitles.

Sunday, November 14, 2021

2021 movie Gintama: The Very Final (銀魂 THE FINAL) in Pittsburgh, November 21 and 22.


The 2021 movie Gintama: The Very Final (銀魂 THE FINAL) will play in Pittsburgh on November 21 and 22. From the distributor:
This is the actual ending.

The countdown to destruction has begun! All will join to reclaim an Edo in grave peril! Earth is facing its darkest days, and the members of the Odd Jobs must come together to save it from an otherworldly menace.

Old allies Gintoki, Takasugi, and Katsura strive their hardest for their own ideals, but standing in their way is someone with whom they share a sad history: Utsuro, an alternate personality of their former teacher and mentor, Shoyu. Having been spawned by Altana, the energy that fuels all planets, this immortal fiend has regenerated multiple times until finally becoming Utsuro, the ultimate enemy... And he intends to take down the entire world in order to end his own life.

Gintoki and the others set out to fulfill the wishes of their teacher Shoyo and thwart Utsuro's plans. Shinpachi, Kagura, the Shinsengumi, members of the Kabuki District, and even former enemies will join their fight.

As Utsuro's power grows, Takasugi fights for his very life. Will Gintoki be able to put
an end to all this?!
It will play locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront and the Cinemark theaters in Monaca, Monroeville, North Hills, and Robinson, and tickets are available online. Note that some shows are dubbed in English while others are in Japanese with English subtitles.

Friday, November 12, 2021

Macross Plus Movie Edition (マクロスプラス MOVIE EDITION) in Pittsburgh, December 14.


The Japanese animated film Macross Plus Movie Edition (マクロスプラス MOVIE EDITION), a threatrical cut of a 1994-1995 four-volume series, will play in Pittsburgh on December 14. From the distributor:
From the minds of vision creator Shoji Kawamori and co-director Shinichiro Watanabe, and featuring renowned composer Yoko Kanno, MACROSS PLUS MOVIE EDITION is an action-packed animated masterpiece made for the big screen!

In the year 2040, on the distant planet Eden, former childhood friends Isamu Dyson and Guld Bowman find themselves pitted against each other as test pilots of rival teams in a competition to decide the next generation of variable mecha fighters. The two must also deal with their own unresolved history with mutual love interest, Myung Fang Lone, who has returned as the manager of Sharon Apple, the AI pop star (virturoid) and the galaxy’s biggest singing sensation. When Sharon’s advanced artificial intelligence gains consciousness, Isamu, Myung, and Guld must face their turbulent past and come together as Sharon Apple becomes self-aware and takes control of the Macross battlefortress itself!
It will play locally at the AMC Loews Waterfront and the Cinemark Theaters in McCandless, Monaca, and Robinson. Tickets are available online.

Short films from Korea, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Asian America part of Pittsburgh Shorts Film Festival, November 18 - 21.


Though the Three Rivers Film Festival will feature no full-length Asian films this year, its companion festival, the Pittsburgh Shorts Film Festival running from November 18 through 21, will feature shorts from Korea, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Asian America.

The program of films includes "Americanized," "Raspberry," and "Windup" from the USA; "Annah la Javanaise" from Indonesia; "Colorful" and "Georgia" from Korea; and "Dinner" from Vietnam. The short films are grouped into various blocks and play at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater in East Liberty (map) and, in some cases, virtually. Tickets are available online.
Still from "Windup."
Still from "Colorful."

Thursday, November 11, 2021

AAPI COVID Vaccine Booster Clinic at UPMC Mercy Southside, November 14.

Marian Lien of OCA Pittsburgh shares news of an AAPI COVID Vaccine Booster Clinic taking place on November 14.
We will be holding an AAPI COVID Vaccine Booster Clinic THIS SUNDAY Nov. 14th. from 9am to 12pm with translators on site. All vaccines Moderna, Pfizer, and J&J will be available. Reminder, to have a booster, you must be at least 6 months from the date of your second Moderna or Pfizer vaccine or first J&J vaccine. We also have a limited supply of children's vaccines available for those 5 years old to <12 years old. We will also have free flu vaccines on hand.

It will be at the UPMC Southside Clinic (2000 Mary Street Pittsburgh, PA 15203). No need to bring your ID, just your vaccine card so the nurses can fill out. Everyone is welcome!

Japanese-English Language Social Hour at Pitt, November 18.


Interior of Pitt's Cathedral of Learning, from the 2019 Yasuda Women's University promotional catalog.

The University of Pittsburgh's Asian Studies Center will present an Japanese-English Language Social Hour on November 18.
A Japanese-English language social hour to bring together visiting students from Yasuda University and local Pitt students. An evening of language and cultural exchange.
Pitt's English Language Institute has hosted large cohorts of Yasuda Women's University students each fall since 2016. The event starts at 4:00 pm in the Global Hub on the first floor of Posvar Hall, and is open to members of the Pitt community compliant with its health regulations.

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

New Japanese animated movie Sword Art Online the Movie Progressive: Aria of a Starless Night (劇場版 ソードアート・オンライン プログレッシブ 星なき夜のアリア) in Pittsburgh, from December 3.


Showtimes were just announced for the 2021 Japanese animated movie apanese animated movie Sword Art Online the Movie Progressive: Aria of a Starless Night (劇場版 ソードアート・オンライン プログレッシブ 星なき夜のアリア), which will play in Pittsburgh from December 3 through 9. A synopsis of the film that is based on a manga series:
“There’s no way to beat this game. The only difference is when and where you die…” One month after Kayaba Akihiko’s game of death began, the death toll continues to rise, two thousand players having already lost their lives to the ultra-difficult VRMMO world of Sword Art Online. On the Day of the strategy meeting to plan out the first-floor boss battle, Kirito, a solo player who vows to fight alone to get stronger, runs into a rare, high-level female player. She gracefully dispatches powerful monsters with a single rapier that flashes like a shooting star in the night.
It has been announced so far for the Cinemark theater in McCandless, and tickets are available online. Shows on December 3, 4, and 9 are in Japanese with English subtitles, while shows on December 7 and 8 are dubbed in English.

Miyazaki Week at Row House Cinema, from November 12; $28 all-you-can-see week pass available.


Following its Wong Kar-Wai film series from November 5, the Row House Cinema in Lawrenceville will present Miyazaki Week from November 12 through 18. The film series consists of 1979's Lupin the Third: The Castle of Cagliostro (ルパン三世 カリオストロの城), 1997's Princess Mononoke (もののけ姫), and 2001's Spirited Away (千と千尋の神隠し). Tickets and showtime information is now available online; there is a $28 all-you-can see weekly pass available for the series as well. The single-screen theater is located at 4115 Butler Street (map) in Lawrenceville.

"Innovative Curricular Models in East Asia," November 17 at Pitt.


The University of Pittsburgh's Institute for International Studies in Education will host "Innovative Curricular Models in East Asia" on November 17.
IISE is honored and proud to host Huiyuan Ye (Pitt alum), Research Fellow of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at Duke Kunshan University in China; Weiyan Xiong (Pitt alum) Research Assistant Professor at Lingnan University in Hong Kong; and Gerardo Blanco-Ramírez, Associate Professor and Academic Director of the Center for International Higher Education at Boston College.

Our distinguished participants will be sharing their work/study on innovative liberal arts and sciences curricular models in East Asian region.
The free event runs from 11:00 am to 12:00 pm on Zoom, and registration is required.

"Imperial Gateway: Colonial Taiwan and Japanese Expansion in South China and Southeast Asia, 1895–1945," November 15 at Pitt.

via @seijishirane

The University of Pittsburgh will host Dr. Seiji Shirane and his talk "Imperial Gateway: Colonial Taiwan and Japanese Expansion in South China and Southeast Asia, 1895–1945" on November 15, part of the center's Asia Now Fall Lecture Series.
This talk examines how Japanese colonizers and Taiwanese subjects transformed colonial Taiwan—the sub-tropical island Japan acquired from China in 1895—into a staging ground for imperial expansion across the East and South China seas. Taking advantage of Taiwan's proximity and cultural affinities with South China and Southeast Asia, Japanese colonial leaders innovated new strategies to compete with the Chinese and Western powers for regional hegemony. They mobilized Taiwanese overseas as economic and cultural brokers in the pre-war period (1895–1937) and as military personnel during the Asia-Pacific wars (1937–45). Studying the intricate ties between colonial governance and international relations helps us transcend the conventional emphasis on two-way relations between Japan's home islands and each of its colonies. A regional approach to Taiwan allows us to recover transnational networks often neglected due to divisions in area studies. Japanese imperialism was a contested process among not only state agencies but also mobile colonial subjects whose interests did not easily map on to national, local, or ethnic categories. The overseas Taiwanese in particular challenge prevailing assumptions of imperial hierarchies. Gradations of power and categories of identity—colonizer and colonized—were much more fluid outside Taiwan's territorial borders.
It runs from 4:30 to 5:45 pm in 211 Lawrence Hall, and is free and open to members of the Pitt community who abide by the university's health guidelines.