An Evening with BD Wong

BD Wong is an award-winning actor and activist, most commonly known for his roles in Law & Order SVU and Jurassic Park, among many others including my two favorites: Father of the Bride I/II and Mr. Robot. Last night, I met him!

This performance was organized by Olympia, Washington's South Puget Sound Community College as part of their year-long Artist & Lecture Series. Although marketing on photography regulations was poor, I still managed to snap some pretty decent shots.

The long minutes leading to Wong's stage entrance felt like eternity!

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Heavily involved in LGBTQ and race awareness advocacy, Wong is passionate about equality and diversity, including the sentiment of minority groups being able to pursue their dreams. His talk greatly centered around how he discovered passion for acting through life's ups and downs, as well as his identity as an Asian-American gay man.

A few lessons I learned from BD Wong:

  1. You must never stop learning about your craft or passion: it evolves as you evolve.
  2. "You end up being the instrument you're playing," and you have to take care of it.
  3. Meet people who are good in your field who believe in your talents and can inspire you to not give up.
  4. Go into your field with the bar set high and attempt to make contributions to this field, not only fulfilling yourself.

He felt the most inspiring thing about Olympia is that everyone fosters the unique talent within the community so that the community can benefit from it--something I've felt growing up here.

He could've given a cliche spiel to wrap up his presentation, but he stated he would rather listen to the insightful questions of others (particularly students who are aspiring to live out their dreams).

He proceeded to Periscope a ~half hour long Q&A session with many deep musings and thoughtful answers. Later during the Meet & Greet, he took the time to answer additional questions that he missed on stage. A humble and generous man, BD Wong lives up to every expectation.

It was a night to remember!

*Be sure to tune in to Mr. Robot on USA Network during Season 2 and keep your eyes pealed for his groundbreaking trans character White Rose.

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