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Yen Yang

MERRIGONGX 2020 Artist Profile


Writer/Director Hung-Yen Yang is a ‘typical’ Australian-Chinese: Born and living in Wollongong, Yen is a spicy hotpot of Hakka, Sichuanese and Indonesian descent. He is collaborating with seasoned creatives Stefo Nantsou (Director) and Greg Appel (Filmmaker/Composer).

Artist Statement

A Practical Guide to Self-Defence is my account of growing up Asian in 70’s/80’s Australia. It follows my unlikely transformation from pacifist, asthmatic geek into what one friend described as a ‘brutal, fighting machine.’ I decided to write this as I lay bedridden from a random act of brutality – being victims of violence is commonplace for us Asian males. My story breaks several taboos and tropes for people of my background:

• Taking on the bullies rather than staying under the radar
• Telling my own story in preference to those of my far more worthy parents’
• Wrestling my immigrant work instinct that screams ‘creativity is a luxury you cannot afford!’

Part play, part instructional guide, A Practical Guide to Self-Defence is sprinkled with practical demonstrations like how to fall and how to punch as we hurtle towards our existential contradiction – ‘How to defeat the beast within’.

Hung-Yen Yang

Digital Taster


Coming Up…