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Conversation with Lynn Chen

Discover this Upcoming Actress of Many Talents
In this in-depth interview with this hard-working NYC-based actress

Page 1 of 8


IN THE BEGINNING

US ASIANS: Could you share how a Chinese girl born in Queens became a great artist?

LYNN CHEN: I’m someone who really enjoys the arts but I don’t really consider myself “a great artist.” I’ve had supportive parents and friends who’ve given me a lot of confidence about my abilities.

US ASIANS: In what ways have your friends and family been supportive?


Mom, Dad, Brother and Lynn
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LYNN CHEN: The support from my folks and friends has been mostly verbal – though there have been many times that both my parents and my peers have helped out financially, with food, and setting me up with part-time jobs and whatnot.

US ASIANS: What are the basic facts on your background (i.e. brothers, sisters, parents, etc.)?

LYNN CHEN: My parents and my older brother, Morgan, are all musicians: my mom is an opera singer, my father got his PhD in ethnomusicology, and my brother is in a number of bands.

US ASIANS: Did your family immigrate from either Taiwan/Hong Kong and/or Mainland China to the United States – and when?

LYNN CHEN: Both my parents came from Taiwan in the late 60’s

A PERSONAL LOOK
OF LYNN CHEN

I was born in Queens and raised in Cresskill, NJ, where I went to elementary, middle, and high school.

I got married to my college sweetheart this past April (2003).

My likes include: video games, junk food, dogs, FOX's “The Simpsons,” “Sex and the City.”

My dislikes are being sick, crowds and mosquitoes.

.US ASIANS: Could you share some details on the achievements of your mom (as an opera singer) and your father in ethnomusicology (in Taiwan)?

LYNN CHEN: My mother has been a member of the Metropolitan Opera House’s Ladies Chorus for over 25 years.

My father was the founding president of The Kunqu Society, Inc., which is a New York-based company devoted to the to the preservation, study, and advancement of Kunqu, a genre of Chinese musical drama.

US ASIANS: What bands has your brother been in and did he help you with your tracks that are on mp3.com?

LYNN CHEN: No, I wrote and performed all those mp3.com songs on my own, though my husband helped me record them.

My brother, Morgan, has been in various New Brunswick bands, and is currently the lead singer and guitarist for “Skyline Rodeo” that has just finised recording their c.d.

LYNN'S "MIGHTY MING" (Ming Kao Margan Michael Matthew Chen)


Ming Just "Chilling"


Ming Playing Music

Ming Kao Morgan Michael Matthew Chen's (aka Mightyming) has a debut effort entitled “DIY for ADD” that was recorded with the talents of drummers Tommy Bendel (Bionic Rhoda, Prosolar Mechanics, and Plug Spark Sanjay) and powerhouse Brian Stoor (Bunt, Aviso Hara, and the Milwaukees).

His current project is tentatively titled “Donut On A Fat Farm”. The medium for his solo performances has evolved into a one-man show complete with guitar,sampler, delay and autoharp. Previously, he was part of a band called "The Makeout Party."

Listen to the music of Lynn Chen and Ming Chen at the Asian American Artistry Music Station by clicking HERE and vote for them at our "Music Poll."

US ASIANS: What are the priorities in your personal life and why?

LYNN CHEN: My health and happiness are important. I’m happy when my husband is happy, when my family is happy, when I’m performing, when I’m eating good food… so whatever helps me attain happiness is what I focus on.

 
Indulging in a favorite pastime
 

US ASIANS: What are your favorite foods?

LYNN CHEN: I like almost everything, from crap to gourmet, vegan to BBQ. I used to be a vegetarian in high school and college, but I just couldn’t limit myself anymore. One of my favorite foods is chunky peanut butter and strawberry jam between toasted Eggo waffles. You have to toast it to perfection though, and allow the peanut butter to melt a bit, or it’ll ruin the whole experience.

US ASIANS: Who are your role models in your personal life?

LYNN CHEN: I used to idolize certain people when I was growing up – musicians and actors and people in my life. I find that I don’t do that anymore; there are many people who I find inspiring, but I don’t try to emulate them like I used to.

US ASIANS: Which people do you find inspiring?

LYNN CHEN: People who are unafraid and determined, despite whatever difficulties life has given them.

US ASIANS: Could you share how your husband has been supportive of your acting career?

LYNN CHEN: He helps me memorize my lines, he edits my acting reel and tapes my auditions, he gives me constructive criticism, and he is as enthusiastic as I am about any success that I have.

US ASIANS: What degrees did you receive from Wesleyan University and/or any other schools?

LYNN CHEN: I got a BA in Music and Women’s Studies at Wesleyan.

US ASIANS: Was it yours and/or your parents’ decision at 12 to concentrate on school?

LYNN CHEN: It was my decision – I was missing a lot of school performing, and I wanted to be able to hang out with my classmates.

US ASIANS: What prompted your decision to reenter the professional world of acting?

LYNN CHEN: I was curious to see if I could do it. It’s one of the few things I can see myself being happy doing for the rest of my life.

US ASIANS: What prompted your decision to reenter the professional world of acting?

LYNN CHEN: I was curious to see if I could do it. It’s one of the few things I can see myself being happy doing for the rest of my life. It was a decision that I made on my own.

 

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Lynn's 1st B-Day and Audience

THE "ALL" IN THE (LYNN'S) FAMILY

US ASIANS
: Could you share a little about your family and how they shaped your acting career?

LYNN CHEN: My parents have always been amazing about me pursuing the acting thing – they did the research and got an agent for me when I was a kid, drove me to and from auditions and performances on a daily basis….They were always telling me that I was talented and that they would support whatever decisions I made. My brother was cool about it, too – he never whined or complained that they were focusing too much on me.

US ASIANS: Were they supportive of your endeavors that are not “in line” with what many Asian Pacific American parents would want their children to participate in?

LYNN CHEN: When I went to Wesleyan, my parents told me that my second major had to be in something non-arts related, I suppose because they wanted me to have something else to fall back on in case acting or music didn’t work out. I chose women’s studies with my music major, a decision we were all happy with.

US ASIANS: When you were young, did your parents place in you acting/dancing/music lessons?

LYNN CHEN: I took ballet for a few years when I was about 7 started studying piano about that same time, until I graduated from college. No acting lessons, I guess that’s why I’m still not used to them.

US ASIANS: Are they presently supporting your acting career?

LYNN CHEN: My parents are terrific fans; I think they’d be disappointed if I decided to quit now.

 

 
 
Click HERE to continue
   
 
Read about Lynn's views on other subjects by clicking on the subjects listed below
 
  Part 1: Background Information (Family and Personal)
  Part 2: Training as an Actress and a Singer, YPOK2 and Linklater
  Part 3: Eric Lin's "Fortune," Priorities, Entertainment Role Models, Contact Info, Print and Commercial Work
  Part 4: Film and Television Work, Her Dance Career and Theater Life
  Part 5: Past Theater Roles, Industrial Films, Actor Role Models and Father's "Kunqu Society"
  Part 6: Fav Films & Directors, Life on "All My Children" and Ivan Shaw
  Part 7: Her views on diversity and the status of "Asian American Cinema"
  Part 8: Fav Asian Pacific American directors and films - along with her overall aspirations

 

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