AAPI Heritage Month 2024

In 1992, Congress officially designated May as Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month to celebrate the significant contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders to our country. The theme for AAPI Month 2024 is “Advancing Leaders Through Innovation.” In accordance with this theme, let us pay homage to AAPI visionaries and trailblazers who have shaped America’s history and continue to influence our collective future.

Increase your cultural awareness by learning more about Asian American and Pacific Islander history, heritage and culture:

  • Read more about AAPI Heritage Month here.
  • Explore exhibits and collections highlighting AAPI life, history, and culture here.
    Learn about Asian Americans Advancing Justice and their fight against racism here.
  • Learn about Asian Americans Advancing Justice and their fight against racism here.
  • Check out these events in Dallas celebrating AAPI Heritage Month:
    • AT&T Discovery District has AAPI Celebration on May 6 at 11 a.m. Dive into the rich and diverse cultures of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander heritage at the AT&T Discovery District!
    • AT&T Performing Arts Center has a Family Weekend AAPI Celebration on May 6 at Sammons Park. Starting at 10 a.m. there will be Asian food trucks, a vendor market, local artist exhibits, Asian organizations, musical and dance performances, and cultural demonstrations.
    • Krio Dallas is hosting an AAPI Night Market Block Party on May 27 benefiting Make-A-Wish North Texas. Featuring 30 local food and art vendors showcasing the delicious food and creative art DFW has to offer.
    • Check Visit Dallasā€™ Asian heritage hub for even more events and updates on how to celebrate AAPI Month all month long.

DSO AAPI Heritage Month Reflections

Zexun (Jason) Shen

Cello,
Dallas Symphony Orchestra


Why is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month important?


As a musician, I am very fortunate to be able to work in an environment that has such great diversity. In the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, we have members from many different countries. Although we come from very different cultural backgrounds, we can still easily find a unified voice when we make music together. That is because we watch and listen to each other’s playing carefully with great commitment and respect, and we often inspire each other during rehearsals and performances. I hope that Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month will provide all of us an opportunity to be more aware of different cultures and to promote understanding, appreciation, and respect for not only the AAPI communities but also people of other backgrounds.

Ellie Lin

Artistic Director,
Dallas Symphony Children’s Chorus


Who is a notable figure, past or present, from the AAPI community that inspires you, and why?


I am inspired by Yo-Yo Ma, the musician and the person. He sees music as a unifier of vastly different communities. That vision comes through clearly in his artistry. Since hearing him play in person and meeting him for the first time as a student at the Eastman School of Music, Yo-Yo Ma has continued to inspire me to create music with children and communities.

Cayden Chen

Cello, Dallas Symphony
Young Strings


Why is AAPI Heritage Month important?


Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is important because it recognizes the influence the AAPI community has exerted on our lives today. I feel it is necessary to celebrate AAPI culture and achievements.

Xiaohan Sun

Viola, Dallas Symphony Orchestra


What brings you joy about your heritage and culture as a member of the AAPI community?


As a member of the AAPI community, I take great pride in embracing and perpetuating the diverse cultural traditions that have been passed down through generations. Having come to the US to study at the age of 13, I was introduced to Western culture at a relatively young age. I’ve had the privilege of receiving and appreciating both cultures equally, integrating elements from each that resonate with me the most. Being part of the AAPI community allows me to share the beauty of Asian culture with friends of all backgrounds, fostering meaningful cross-cultural exchanges and understanding. This unique background fills me with pride and serves as a constant source of inspiration and motivation for personal growth and progress in life.