Everything Done Right with Wong

Courtesy of Amy Tierney

Courtesy of Amy Tierney

“Ladies, gentlemen and all non-conforming people,” roars the star of the show as she gets the audience involved with her hashtag activism rant.

Quick-witted, sassy and insightful, Kristina Wong is a veteran performer with great timing and stage presence. Equipped with an iPad as her weapon of choice, she graces the audience with her insights, stage gags and personality. This one-woman show carries the audience through her part Ted talk lecture, part hip-hop extravaganza that is “The Wong Street Journal.”

Wong’s  performance is one of the many acts at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts “Off Center Festival” — an eleven day avant-garde and multi-genre arts experience  that took place  in Costa Mesa from Jan. 21 to 31.

Part comedic social commentary and part dramatic existential realization, Wong’s work is inspiring, yet at times light-hearted. She is a writer and cultural commentator able to use her previous acting skills and social media knowledge to create a powerful performance.

Calling out the audience and playing the role of a social media anthropologist, Wong is able to paint an interesting picture on a serious topic. Weaving in her real life journey to Uganda, she has been able to create a moving and hilarious piece that is easily relatable, while at the same time critical of our millennial generation and humanitarian efforts.

Wong, with her background in education and social change, is able to be both entertaining and thought-provoking. Using props and film clips, she delivers hilarious timing and her use of satire is on point. Her talking points are passionate and she is able to touch on the internal struggle of privilege and her accidental journey to become a rapper and international hip-hop collaborator.

“Her performance was moving and exciting and I never knew what to expect,” said Irvine attendee George Nguyen.

From the Wall Street Stock Exchange backdrop to her impromptu rap session, the atmosphere was cinematic and detailed.  Wong’s ability to relate to the audience and touch on real world topics creates a fast-paced and exciting production. Her sassy style and flow create an impressive presence, and you can never tell when she’s being whole-hearted or ironic.  She’s been able to curate a wonderful routine and creates a powerful podium for her talking points.

There is a bevy of issues she touches on, and it leaves the audience waiting for that “aha” moment. We realize that there are more important things in life than how many reposts we get on Twitter and how many likes our social media activism posts get. Although her journey is very empowering, we are left speechless and in awe of the wondrous and powerful stagecraft Wong is able to deliver.

Definitely worth experiencing, Kristina Wong is a master of timing and execution and her hilarious journey leaves a lasting imprint.