Thursday, October 22, 2009

[Introduction To Lao Writers] Catzie Vilayphonh

Catzie Vilayphonh is one part of the spoken word duo, Yellow Rage. Many became aware of her through her interview in Lao Roots Magazine, but she's been on the scene for years.

At a very young age, Catzie chose to break the mold by refusing to conform to the stereotypes about Asians. Her popularity as a spoken word performer in Yellow Rage exploded after an appearance on Russell Simmon's Def Poetry Slam where they performed their famously endearing piece "Listen Asshole."

As an amusing aside, she and I often spar over the phrase "Laos In The House," and she is one of several writers whose work I happily respond to in Tanon Sai Jai. To me, there can be no question about the vibrancy and energy she brings to her work, an eclectic approach I'd call Catziesque. She's also one of the few Lao American writers I'd met in person before I'd seen her work.

Today, Catzie raises awareness issues confronting Asians by performing her spoken word poetry at venues across the country with humor and significant innovation. You can find information about her all over the web, but she has been the Fashion Director for magazine where she also does her weekly column Catz Out The Bag with everyone from designers to directors and artists to actors. She’s also been an editor at She's definitely worth keeping an eye on. :)

Just don't ever get on her bad side.

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