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Magdalen Hsu-Li 8/11/10

Magdalen Hsu-Li is a true Renaissance woman.  Music, art, poetry and activism–Magdalen has got talent, and she’s turning heads around the world. Despite how busy she is, Magdalen answered the Out and Successful questions for us today. Thanks so much for your time and devotion to the community Magdalen! Magdalen Hsu-Li is an internationally acclaimed singer-songwriter, painter, and cultural activist that is redefining the female musician and smashing the ceiling in the American music industry. She is based in Seattle, Washington.
Who? name, age, what you identify as (or not).
Magdalen Hsu-Li, bisexual

What? what do you do for a living or things you would like to do.

Musician, Speaker, Painter, Poet, Cultural Activist…currently working on a new book and CD.

When did you come out? Any stories? 

Came out in my 20s as a bisexual because I was outed against my will by others at a gig. Often people called me a lesbian when in fact I was bisexual. Took a stronger and more open stance as bisexual to clarify things to my fans and the general public.

How did coming out impact your career or relationships with others?

I think there are those in my life that fully approve who I am, and there are those that fully condone it, however I have to be myself and that’s the most important thing to me. In general I feel I have experienced less overt homophobia than my gay or lesbian contemporaries in music.  But I definitely have experienced some strange gigs where I got the funny and uncomfortable feeling the promoter hired me because of some kind of bisexual fantasy they had going on in their head. It’s bizarre when that happens but I am not surprised by anything. Bisexual means many things to many people. To me it’s my orientation and a way of identifying myself culturally.  To others it has a fantasy connotation.  When that happens it’s quite annoying, because what they are thinking and what I am thinking in regards to the word “bisexual,” could not be farther apart.

Advice you can give to other Asian, Gay & Proud readers.

The greatest way to create change in the world is to change yourself. Your vibration and aspect if calibrated to heal – have incredible power to create a ripple effect in the lives of others around you. Never doubt your ability to influence.

To find out more about Magdalen Hsu-Li, visit her website here: http://www.magdalenhsuli.com/
To listen to her music, visit her myspace page:

About Miyuki Baker

Miyuki is a resident of the place where circles overlap. As a queer, nomadic, multi-racial/lingual female mixed-media artist activist and healer, she uses common or discarded objects, personal anecdotes, public spaces and performance to make accessible art that brings non-mainstream identities and ideas into maximum visibility. After graduating from Swarthmore College in 2012, she traveled for 14 months as a Watson Fellow to fifteen countries documenting the intersections of art and activism in queer/trans communities in blog posts and self-published magazines while making performance art. The eight magazines Miyuki created on this trip (queerscribe.com) and their strong media following exemplify her illustration/graphic design, storytelling and people skills. Her work has been featured in several magazines such as Hyphen, Broken Pencil and Knik, blogs and radio shows, well-known for their interactive and eye-catching mixed media approach to activism that utilizes both online media and on-site performance and workshops. This fall she will begin the PhD program at UC Berkeley in Performance Studies. You can follow her travels at heymiyuki.wordpress.com and email her at heymiyuki@gmail.com


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