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One in a Billion

“One In A Billion” is a podcast about China, through the voices of Chinese millennials in America. They have personal ties or deep roots in China. They also have big dreams and high hopes in America. “One In A Billion” is a platform for this rising generation of entrepreneurs, artists and other creative types. Hosted by Mable Chan, “One in a Billion” listens to China, one person at a time.
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Now displaying: 2017
Dec 12, 2017

An unexamined life is not worth living.

What leads one to examine one’s life?

A surprise setback? An unforgettable encounter? An ongoing desire?

All of these experiences tend to re-emerge or surge in our memory as we look back on 2017.

In this last episode of Season 2 “Reflections on 2017: What’s Weighing on My Mind,” we listen to three compelling stories from Maggie Shi, Joel Tsui and Justine Yan. Each embodies a personal awakening during one’s reckoning with the past, present and future.

I hope you’ll find them helpful to your own thinking about this year as we count down to 2018.

Listen to our latest podcast episode “Reflections on 2017.”

We want to include you in this conversation.
To send us your comments or stories, just go to our Facebook page or our website at OneinABillionVoices.org under “Pitch a Story.”

Share your thoughts? Pitch me a story?

“One in a Billion” is listening to #China, one person at a time.

Subscribe to “One in a Billion” below:
PRx | iTunes | SoundCloud

Music used:

Dave O'Brien's Busy Bees
Doctor Turtle's Which That is This
Arne Bang Huseby's Stormy Blues
Lobo Loco's Mountain Monk
Chan Wai Fat's Dream Instrumental
Dengue Fever's One Thousand Tears of a Tarantula Live
Jason Shaw's Landra's Dream
Live music in Kasghar, Courtesy of Justine Yan

Nov 14, 2017

She carries the good genes of music and science from the family.

Her grandmothers are physics professors in China, one of them plays the piano as a child.

Her father is a computer scientist, her mother is a medical scholar.

Yet, she struggled to learn the piano as a child. Her head was bored from slavishly following the sheet music. And her heart was burdened with a bitter childhood memory.

But all that changed when she discovered her fascination with computer programming as the pathway to animate her approach to understanding music.

How did Xiao Xiao eventually reach a breakthrough?

How did she combine her head and her heart to break the barrier between the technical and the emotional, the physical and the digital?

How did she confront gender bias and societal pressure as a woman in STEM?

Listen to Episode 6: “She Has Overcome: Cracking the Code of Learning Music” - my interview with Xiao Xiao - an artist, an autodidact, and a technologist with a Phd in Media Arts and Sciences from MIT Media Lab.

Music Used:
Johann Sebastian Bach's Partita No. 1 in B flat major BWV 825
Donal Fox's Partita for Three Characters
Beethoven's Opus 126 Bagatelles
Erik Satie's The Gnossiennes
Maurice Ravel's Sonatine 2nd Movement
Frédéric Chopin's Études
David O'Brien's Busy Bees

Oct 17, 2017

Kira Omans was just four months when she was abandoned in a public walkway near a bridge in Zhongshan, China.

Not only was she discovered and adopted to begin a new life in America, she would go on to become Miss Pacific Asian American (2015), a model, dancer, and an actress with her first lead in a new feature film “Shoes.” 

How did she get back up when kids kick her down? Who discovered her talent as a actor and a dancer? Why did she enter a beauty pageant she once thought was filled with “airheads?”

Listen to my interview with Kira Omans in Episode #5 “She Has Overcome: Re-imagining an Unforgettable Past.”

We want to include you in this conversation.

To send us your comments or stories, just go to our Facebook page or our website at OneinABillionVoices.org under “Pitch a Story.”

Share your thoughts? Pitch me a story?

“One in a Billion” is listening to #China, one person at a time

Subscribe to “One in a Billion” below:

PRx | iTunes | SoundCloud

Music used:

David O'Brien's Busy Bees
Jay Man's Playful Fun Days (ourmusicbox.com/)
Josh Woodward's Little Tomcat
Jason Shaw's Solo Acoustic Guitar

Sep 19, 2017

What would you do when someone tries to break you down, yelling at you saying “You’re the worst!?”

What would you do when no one believes in your startup idea, saying “it’s too idealistic. It’s never going to work!?”

What would you do when you face humiliating questions and intense scrutiny in front of millions of TV viewers?

Listen to Part 2 of my interview with Kimberly Jung in Episode #4 “Keep Climbing.”

An entrepreneur after overcoming class, cultural and gender barriers to forge a path that puts her at the heart of a bigger mission.

Music Used:

David O'Brien's Busy Bees
Jesse Spillane's Untitled
Komiku's Boss 1: The first challenge
Kai Engel's Chance

Sep 12, 2017

What would you do when you hit a storm in the middle of climbing to the mountain top? Would you stop? Would you keep going?

She would keep climbing.

What would you do when your parents want you to marry a doctor or a lawyer, go to Harvard or Stanford?

She would rebel. She would choose a different path, become an army officer and an entrepreneur. How? Who is she?

She is Kimberly Jung - CEO/Founder of Rumi Spice.

Kimberly shares the story of her becoming brave, transcending barriers and making tough choices at different crossroads in her life.


Listen to Part 1 of my interview with Kimberly Jung in Episode #3 “Breaking Barriers.”

Music Used:
David O'Brien's Busy Bees
Andy G. Cohen's A Perceptible Shift
Lee Rosevere's Love Wins
Jahzzar's No-End Ave

Aug 22, 2017

In America, the freedom of speech a First Amendment right enshrined in the U.S. Constitution.

The right to speak our mind is not only valued in the American culture but expected in our liberal democratic society where voices are votes. The American electoral process expects it, and American citizens demands it.

But what happens when the culture and society in which you grew up devalues or demeans free speech?

In this Episode #2 “Free to Speak?” we interview Chinese and Americans who have reflected on their cultural identity and their right to speak, after watching a controversial speech by Chinese student Shuping Yang at University of Maryland.

As Chinese in America, how freely can you speak? Who try to silence you?

Leanne Fan and Karen Su joined me for a studio conversation. Listen to “Free to Speak?”

Music Used:
Busy Bees by David O'Brien
Travel Light by Jason Shaw
Heroin by Mitch Hanley

Jul 25, 2017

It sounds like a simple question, “Are you Chinese?”

But why would someone ask it?  And what makes it difficult for someone to answer it?

Eric Liao, our blogger/podcast intern at One in a Billion, started writing a blog about this question a month ago. When I first read it, it overwhelmed me with provocative ideas and perplexing analogies, and many of the underlying sentiments turn out to resonate with many young Asians in America. So we decided to turn that unfinished blog into a full-fledged podcast.

“Are you Chinese?” is not a simple question, as we've discovered after interviewing Eric and listening to dozens of Chinese and non-Chinese in America. It challenges their sense of belonging and individuality.  Now, they’re speaking up.

Their experiences tell a story of our common struggle when we’re in our 20s - our struggle to establish our identity and individuality, and our search for belonging.

Listen to Eric’s story in “Are You Chinese?”

 

Music Used:

Busy Bees by David O'Brien
Xi by Andy G. Cohen
The War Drums of Peace by The Marian Circle Drum Brigade
Marty Ladies and Gentlemen by Doctor Turtle
The Encouragement Stick by Doctor Turtle
Grey Snow by John Woodward

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