SATURDAY, March 4, 6-8PM
Tou SaiKo Lee is a spoken word poet, teaching artist, recording artist and organizer from St. Paul, Minnesota. He teams up with his grandmother Zuag Tsab (Zhoua Cha) who does the traditional art of kwv txhiaj (Hmong Poetry Chanting) to form the group “Fresh Traditions.” He has facilitated songwriting/performance poetry workshops and residencies for students at schools and community centers in 15 different states in the U.S. and in Thailand for 15 years.
Lee received the Jerome Foundation Travel Study Grant in 2008 and is a 2009 Intermedia Arts VERVE Spoken Word grant recipient. In 2008 he was featured in an online video documentary in the New York Times called “Hmong Hip Hop Heritage.” He took part in another online documentary in 2010 through National Public Radio called State of the Re:Union – Twin Cities: Hmong Hip-Hop. Lee is a member of Twin Cities Asian Am Spoken Word group, “Speakers of the Sun.” He collaborates with HBLC (Hmong Breakers Leadership Council) to organize the annual Hip Hop event called Boom Bap Village that features a huge dance battle to coincide with the J4 Hmong Sports tournaments. Along with influential Hip Hop artists’ Maria Isa (Puerto Rico) and M.anifest (Ghana), Tou SaiK (Thailand) was featured in an international documentary called “We Rock Long Distance” released in 2015 by filmmaker, Justin Schell. Lee became a Bush Foundation Fellow in 2016.