YouTube is boon for Asian entertainers

From movies and TV shows to songs on the radio, there have been fewer opportunities in traditional media for Asian-American entertainers. But the Internet, especially YouTube, has changed that. Los Angeles has seen an explosion of Asian-American YouTube celebrities.

Clara Chung loves to create music. She does it in her home studio, surrounded by instruments, a microphone and a computer. She says she didn’t think her music would turn into a career until it ended up on the Internet.

“The Internet was probably the foundation for everything in my career and still is,” she said. “It provided a global audience.”

Using the stage name Clara C, the Korean-American indie pop artist hears from fans from around the world.

“With just a click of a button, Japan is watching, and Australia is watching, Europe is watching. It was crazy to see France, Germany, Indonesia, Singapore, whatever, everywhere it is all because of YouTube,” she said.

Chung is a part of a large group of Asian-American musicians, actors and comedians who have exploded onto YouTube. Julie Zhan produced a documentary about them called “Uploaded: The Asian American Movement.”

“Other than maybe a few Asian-American leading actors and actresses in television, we really do not see that many Asian-Americans on screen except for a lot of stereotypes,” Zhan noted.

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