All posts tagged: Saysomphorn Sisavatdy

An Interview with A Million Elephants

This is Part One of a Two-Part Series on Lao Home and Fashion Pioneers, A Million Elephants. “There are a lot of people who don’t even know that Laos exists.” “As a person of mixed ethnicity, I’m always asked, ‘what are you?’. Every time I said my dad is Lao, nobody knew what it was. So I used to say that I’m Thai. But as I got older, I decided I’m not going to say that. I’m going to say ‘Lao’ so that people know what it is.” Brittany Petrie grew up in a small city in Ontario, Canada. Surrounded by a large Lao community, she was never short on cultural experiences or friends who shared her love of sticky rice and laap. But despite that, she longed for a deeper connection with her roots, to celebrate her heritage and pass it on to the next generation. And that’s how  A Million Elephants got its start. A Million Elephants, a Canadian company, sells handcrafted products, all of which are created in Laos. Working with talented …

Conversations with Sarky: The Early Years

This is Part One in a series about Lao American music artist, Sarky Mekmorakoth. Music has always been an integral part of my life. I fell into it escaping from the harsh realities of being a 1st gen immigrant child of refugees: out of place, out of time. I found out just how much power it holds, too. Sometimes the electric charge was filled with feverish euphoria and other times, just an echoing sadness filled by gravity-induced silence, and everywhere in between. Early on, it was my light at the end of the tunnel–the constant melody that sang to me about my worth, filling that primal need for hope within me with hollow, deep, bass-filled down beats. About the only thing that could compare to my love of music and its magic, was my insatiable love of books. If music gave me hope, books and stories showed me what could be waiting if I persevered. In the mid-80s, when I first discovered Whitney Houston’s “Greatest Love of All” it became my anthem. I didn’t know …