Kyoung H. Park

Kyoung H. Park

Artist Statement

My central question as a theater-maker is how can the performing arts help us create a culture of peace? Through playwriting, intercultural, community-based dialogues, and interdisciplinary collaborations, I challenge artists and audiences to find new ways and forms of expression, to search for answers and truths that may not exist, or that may require new language for it to be articulated. I reach towards the limits of my own understanding in order to force myself into a state of imagination, invention and creation– of world peace. I find this both optimistically naive and seriously ridiculous; tonally, my work comes across as both.

On Stage

Kyoung H. Park is a North Korean playwright/director, born and raised in Santiago, Chile, currently living in unceded territory of the Lenape. As Artistic Director of Kyoung’s Pacific Beat, he has devised three full-length plays — disOriented, TALA, and PILLOWTALK, created over 35 community-based, experimental projects including performances for new media, and is author of Sex and Hunger, Walkabout Yeolha, and many short plays including Mina, which is published in Seven Contemporary Plays from the Korean Diaspora in the Americas by Duke University Press. Kyoung’s work centers stories of (im)migration, queerness, trauma, and the ways these intersect in communities of color; it’s described as “intensely personal” by American Theater Magazine and “very much of this moment” by the New York Times.

Kyoung’s Pacific Beat has been a resident company at The Tank, Bushwick Starr, Baryshnikov Arts Center, New Ohio, BRIC Arts Media, LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, Performance Project @ University Settlement and Kyoung has been International Exchange Fellow at Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, Writer-in-Residence at Sanskriti Pratisthan (New Delhi), Vermont Studio Center, Centro Cultural Gabriela Mistral (Santiago, Chile) and he is a member of the Ma-Yi Writer’s Lab, NYTW Usual Suspect, and co-founder of The Sol Project. He is currently a Steering Committee member of the Mosaic Network and Fund, Advisory Council member of HueArts NYC, and 2022 APAP Conference Committee member.

Before founding Kyoung’s Pacific Beat, Kyoung co-directed workshop productions of Lee Breuer’s LA DIVINA CARICATURA (PS122, Public Theater’s Under the Radar Festival), MABOU MINES’ GLASS GUIGNOL (Provincetown’s Tennessee Williams Theater Festival, Sundance Theater Institute at Mass MoCA, Wesleyan University, St. Ann’s Warehouse), interned for Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company (LEAR, Soho Rep) and 13P (WE’RE GONNA DIE, Joe’s Pub), and is an alum of the Royal Court Theatre’s Young Writer’s Programme (London), Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Youngblood, and Soho Theatre’s Writer’s Hub (London).

Kyoung is recipient of numerous fellowships including the 2021 Jerome Hill Artist Fellowship (Recommended Alternate), 2021 New York Foundation for the Arts Incubator for Executive Leaders of Color, 2019-2020 Dramatist Guild Fellowship, 2019-2020 Target Margin Arts Management Fellowship, 2018-2020 APAP Leadership Fellowship, 2018-2019 Intercultural Leadership Institute Fellowship, 2017 Creative Mellon Fellowship, 2015-2017 Field Leadership Fund Fellowship, 2014 Target Margin Theater Inst. for Theater-Making Fellowship, and was named a 2010 UNESCO-Aschberg Laureate (Paris). He is recipient of commissions from Mixed Blood Theater Company (Minneapolis), Latinx Theater Commons/Howlround (New York) and Kyoung has received grants from the Arvon Foundation (London), GK Foundation (South Korea), MAP Fund, Venturous Theater Fund, TCG Global Connections, Brooklyn Arts Council, Howard Gilman Foundation, Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant, and has been a grant panelist for the NEA, TCG, ART/NY and NALAC.

Kyoung lives in Brooklyn, New York with his husband, Daniel Lim, and continues his self-education in Buddhism, having made his refuge vows with His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, India. He holds an MFA in Playwriting from Columbia University (Dean’s Fellow), MA in Peace and Global Governance from Kyung Hee University’s Graduate Institute of Peace Studies, and BFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU (Founder’s Day Award).

In the Field

  • “BIPOC Affinity Space,” Co-Facilitator, Association of Performing Arts Professionals, New York City. Jan. 9, 2021
  • “Redistribution of Power: Building Radical Collective Action,” Mosaic Fund and Network / Kyoung’s Pacific Beat, New York City. Oct. 13, 2020
  • “Redistribution of Power: Imagine Forward,” Mosaic Fund and Network / Kyoung’s Pacific Beat, New York City. Sept. 17, 2020
  • “Redistribution of Power: Addressing the Urgency of Now,” Mosaic Fund and Network / Kyoung’s Pacific Beat, New York City. Aug. 19, 2020
  • “Building Community Care Platforms for the Indie Theater Community,” New York, May 4, 2020
  • “Building Community Care Strategies for the Indie Theater Community,” New York, Mar. 23, 2020
  • “How Artists and Presenters do Anti-Oppression Work,” Association of Performing Arts Professionals (APAP) Conference, New York, Jan. 13, 2020
  • “Intercultural Leadership PreConference,” Intercultural Leadership Institute at Americans for the Arts Annual Convention, Minneapolis, Jun. 13-14, 2019
  • “Asian-Americans for Equality’s 8th Annual Youth Career Conference”, Asian-Americans for Equality, New York, NY. Apr. 13, 2019
  • “Feminist Perspectives on Building Intersectional Communities”, Kyoung’s Pacific Beat, Chicago, IL. Aug. 17, 2018
  • “International Devised Theater Conference”, The Dramatists Guild of America, New York, NY. Jul. 28, 2018
  • “Opening Night: Arts Showcase”, KQTcon- A National Conference for Queer and Trans Korean Americans, New York, NY. Apr. 6, 2018
  • “Activate Equity”, The Field, New York, NY. Mar. 17, 2018
  • “Marriage Equality Across the Generations”, Kyoung’s Pacific Beat, New York, NY. Jan. 13, 2018
  • “The Creative Process: Artist-Driven Transformational Research”, APAP/NYC 2018, New York, NY. Jan. 13, 2018
  • “Meeting a Distant Star”, Abrons Arts Center, New York, NY. Sept. 28th, 2017
  • “Literature and Social Practice”, Ehwha Women’s University, Seoul, South Korea. July 2017
  • “Colaboracion Experimental”, Teatro DUOC, Santiago, Chile. June 2017
  • “Art for Change: A Panel Discussion”, Asian-American Arts Alliance, New York, NY. Dec. 8, 2016
  • “Politics, Revolution, and Art: A Theatrical Symposium”, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, The Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics, Global Theater Initiative in association with the Middle East Institute’s Arts and Cultural Program, Washington, DC. Nov. 5, 2016
  • “Creating Peace Through Art”, Korea Arts Council – Artist House, Seoul, South Korea. Oct. 21, 2016
  • “Devising Outside the Box”, Seismic Shifts: 5th National Asian American Theater Conference & Festival at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Ashland. Oct. 3, 2016
  • “Creating Peace Through Art”, Hot Asian Everything: A Seismic Exhibition, Mulnomah County Library, Portland. Oct. 2, 2016
  • “Finding Home: Migration, Exile and Belonging,” TCG Global Pre-Conference at George Washington University, Washington, DC. Jun. 22, 2016
  • “Morley: Circle Round Dignity, Courage & Survival,” David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center. Apr. 27, 2016
  • “Checkpoints: Communication Consciousness.” NYC Asian-American Student Conference, New York University. Mar. 14, 2016
  • “Dreaming the Americas—Cultural Appropriation- Who’s Telling Whose Story” NoPassport Conference. New York University. Mar. 14, 2016
  • “LabEscenico,” Festival Santiago a Mil / Theater Communications Group (TCG). Santiago, Chile. Jan. 22, 2016
  • “Dramaturgia Experimental,” Interdram at Matucana 100. Santiago, Chile. Dec. 21-29, 2015
  • “Open Spectrum Critical Community Dialogues: Navigating Privilege,” Culturebot / MAPP International Productions. New York Live Arts. Dec. 7, 2015
  • “The Conscious Language In Practice,” Poetic Theater Productions. Wild Project Theater, NYC. Aug. 29, 2015
  • “Healing Political Trauma,” Kyoung’s Pacific Beat. Performance Project @ University Settlement. Jan. 15, 2015
  • “Latino Commons Encuentro,” Martin Segal Center, CUNY. Nov. 10, 2014
  • “Queering Gay Marriage,” Kyoung’s Pacific Beat. Ma-Yi Studio. Jun. 2, 2014
  • “The Uncomfortable Conversation,” Brooklyn Commune Global Congress. Invisible Dog Center, NYC. Nov. 22, 2013
  • “On the Nature of Political Revolutions,” Kyoung’s Pacific Beat. HERE Arts Center. Jul. 29, 2012
  • “North Korea: WTF?” Kyoung’s Pacific Beat. Theater C @ Peter Jay Sharp Theater on 42nd Street. Feb. 26, 2011.

In the Community

  • Asian/Pacific/American Institute at New York University, A/P/A Voices: A COVID-19 Public Memory Project. Jan. 2021 – Present
  • Mosaic Fund and Network, Steering Committee Member. Apr. 2020 – Present
  • Indie Theater Fund, Board Member. Apr. 2019 – Apr. 2020
  • Sol Project, Advisor, Co-Founding Member. Aug. 2014 – Present
  • The Dramatist Guild, Devised Theater Committee Member. Apr. 2016 – Jul. 2018
  • Performance Project @ University Settlement, Artistic Advisory Board. May 2016 – May 2017
  • Brooklyn Commune, Director of Cultural Democracy and Representation Research Team. May 2013 – Nov. 2014
  • Second Generations, Director of Strategic Planning, Program Director for Community Voices: Queer API. Aug. 2012 – July 2013
  • GAPIMNY, Fundraising Chair. Aug. 2011 – Dec. 2013