“I’m not the person you think of when you imagine a winner,” said Ke Huy Quan, holding a golden knotted trophy. “I don’t fit the mold.” Instead, the image Quan describes – “1m68 tall with big muscles, handsome and a gentleman” – sounds similar to the K-pop idol who introduced his category, NCT’s Johnny Suh 127.
However, on Saturday night, the film won an Oscar Everything Anywhere All At Once star added another win to her growing list at the Music Center in downtown Los Angeles, where the Asian-American and Pacific Islander collective Gold House hosted the Gold Gala.
Over 700 attendees came together to recognize Gold House’s 2023 A100 List, published each AAPI Heritage Month to highlight the 100 Asia Pacific leaders who have had the most significant impact on culture and American society in the past year. This year’s honorees include Quan, Eva Longoria, Sandra Oh, Iman Vellani, Netflix’s Bela Bajaria, K-pop star NewJeans, transgender advocate Geena Rocero and Beef lead Ali Wong and Steven Yeun.
Attendees are encouraged to express their culture through their fashion of the night. Because Raya and the last dragon‘s Daniel Dae Kim, this means wearing a hanbok. “I don’t have anything, but I’ve had this authentic 1988 Seoul Olympics badge since I was a kid,” he said. shortcoming director Randall Park, pointing to a red rectangle on his lapel.
The night’s theme, “Golden Bridge,” reflected in the connections built across generations, cultures and professions both on and off the stage. On the stage, the four female leads of the upcoming suspense comedy ride joy honoring the four female leads of the acclaimed TV series Lucky Joy Club, celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. Meanwhile, Longoria pointed to countless similarities between Asian and Latin American cultures when she received the Golden Allied Award (“What we probably have in common is that most of us have fathers.” mom doesn’t understand what we’re really doing for living”), and Broadway star Lea Salonga lost her temper when she met Korean-American singer Eric Nam.
Salonga isn’t the only one feeling dizzy. “Actually I haven’t met a lot of people because I filmed everything during the pandemic,” Miss Marvel actor Vellani said hollywood reporter before entering the event. “This is my first time going to a really big place with so many Asians, and really all of the people I wish I grew up with, so tonight there will be a lot of people. Interesting things happen.”
To add depth to the hearty meet and greet, Gold House CEO and co-founder Bing Chen launched an all-night give-and-take game. Each gave something to give to the other and demanded something in return, which led to singer and TikTok influencer Bella Poarch asking for skiing lessons from the athlete. Olympic gold medalist Chloe Kim and western world co-creator Lisa Joy received a partner to join the writers strike. (Several stars of the night expressed solidarity with the WGA, which began its strike May 2 after failing to reach an agreement with AMPAS.)
For even more material delights, each attendee was given a quarter commemoration featuring native Hawaiian composer, dancer, singer, and hula teacher Edith Kanakaʻole, with the help of Hawaiians. First native to lead the White House initiative, Krystal Ka’ai. The gift bag also includes copies of the recently released book Amazing: Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders inspire us allwhich Olympic ice dancers Alex and Maia Shibutani spent two years writing.
“We wanted to be able to share our community and educate people about all the incredible achievements and contributions the AAPI community has made over a long period of time,” said Alex Shibutani. According to Maia, “The more people learn about how beautiful our community is as a whole, the more special it becomes.”
Rocero took the opportunity to do just that when she accepted her award for activism and journalism. “I wanted to explore what it means to be proud as an AAPI, especially as a proud transgender Filipino,” she said. “I want to live boldly, create surprises for us, and never apologize for who we are.”
Longoria also became a source of such information later that night when she mentioned Ralph Lazo, a Mexican-American who is the only known American non-spouse and non-American Japan voluntarily transferred to an internment camp during World War II. “An ally is defined as someone who gives you spiritual support,” says Longoria. “I will be more than that. I will be your steadfast colleague. I will be your collaborator. I will be your cheerleader.
Agreed, “What I love about our community is ultimately the support we have for each other,” says Cleaning woman creator Monica Kwok. “And I think that’s amazing.”
Chen’s energy was also unparalleled throughout the night as he navigated the crowd with the merciless teasing and fervent support often associated with close-knit families, making jokes that, in his words, can be “have” [him] got in trouble for saying that.”
“Asian people are wild,” the comedian said and ride joy Actress Sherry Cola. “Don’t underestimate us, okay? We are very wild.