Claire Hirano is currently entering her first year at Cal State Long Beach. She became involved with TNP as part of her government service learning project in high school and continued to help out with TNP throughout her summer. Here’s why she loves Tuesday Night Project:
I originally started volunteering at Tuesday Night Café on the recommendation of my friend, and as a way to fulfill my school’s required 20 hours of community service. I didn’t feel like volunteering at the Salvation Army, and being a ticket checker at the community theater near my house did not seem like a thrill either. Tuesday Night seemed more exciting than either option, and it was an easy way to get my hours done. I expected to go, set up, hear some singing, some poetry, break down the equipment, and go home.
I did not expect to learn as much as I did. I learned what the eff an XLR cable is, how to run a smooth open mic sign up, and what an amazing community exists in Little Tokyo. At TNC, you’ll often hear people talk about “this space”. When I first heard a performer talk about what “this space” meant to them, it struck me as odd. This space? This theater? This courtyard? This particular plot of Judge John Aiso Street? But as I continued to volunteer at Tuesday Night, I came to understand exactly what they meant by “this space”. “This space” was the community that was always open to them. TNC has been around since before I was born. Some people started their performing careers there. Friends have been made there. Causes have come together to support each other there. Connections have been made there. And through all those interactions, an odd little community was forged. “This space” was something that could be counted on to be there when the next season rolled around. and it is a space where if you know one person, you indirectly know everyone else there.
Being involved with Tuesday Night Café has been fun and fulfilling and educating and enlightening. I’ll be back next season, it is certainly worth the traffic. :]
Help keep TN a free space! We’re launching our official campaign for $10,000 on October 2nd, when we’ll also be releasing tracks from our J-Town Summer Sessions artists. Can’t wait to donate? Click here.