Please join us for the screening of 9-MAN, a documentary film about the sport 9-man played in Chinatowns across the USA and Canada. The Screening will be followed by a Q & A with film director Ursula Liang who will be joining us remotely.
Largely undiscovered by the mainstream, the 9-Man game is a gritty, athletic, chaotic urban treasure traditionally played in parking lots and back alleys and it is fiercely protected by a community of men who require that 2/3 of players are “100% Chinese.” A 9-Man tournament grew in the 1930’s, at a time when anti-Chinese sentiment and laws forced restaurant workers and laundrymen to socialize exclusively amongst themselves. Today it’s a lasting connection to Chinatown for a dynamic community of men who know a different, more integrated world, but still fight to maintain autonomy and tradition. https://www.9-man.com/
Director, producer, cinematographer
Ursula Liang (director, producer, cinematographer) is an award-winning director and producer with 25 years of experience in storytelling. Her debut feature, 9-Man, was broadcast on public television and called “an absorbing documentary” by the New York Times. Her second film, Down a Dark Stairwell, had its premiere at True/False and was called “the most essential Asian American documentary in decades.” Her latest feature, Jeanette Lee Vs., is part of ESPN’s acclaimed 30 for 30 series while her most recent short, Two Strikes, aired on the iconic PBS series Frontline. Her work has been supported by ITVS, Ford Foundation, Sundance Institute, Firelight Media, and the Center for Asian American Media. Before becoming a filmmaker, Ursula held staff positions at The New York Times Op-Docs, T: The New York Times Style Magazine, ESPN The Magazine, Asia Pacific Forum and Hyphen magazine. She also produced for television (UFC Primetime, NBC Spartan Ultimate Team Challenge). Ursula is a member of Film Fatales, A-DOC, IDD, and is the Vice President of Brown Girls Doc Mafia. She is from Newton, Mass. and currently freelances from Oakland, Calif. after two decades in the Bronx.
Alex Wong is the author of "Prehistoric: The Audacious and Improbable Origin Story of the Toronto Raptors." He has written about sports and culture for The New Yorker, GQ, SLAM, The New York Times, The Toronto Star, TVO, and more.
Head of Athletics and Physical Education Teacher, Toronto District School Board
Vivian Chan is a Varsity Blues Alumnus of the Women’s Volleyball team from 2006-2009, and studied Health & Physical Education/Kinesiology at the University of Toronto. She is currently a high school physed teacher in the Toronto District School Board, where she is the Head of Athletics and coaches volleyball amongst many other sports. Vivian also enjoys running volleyball clinics and has helped with Team Ontario in the past in hopes of helping to develop young elite athletes. Vivian played for the Toronto Connex Volleyball Club from 2004-2019. She was also highly immersed in the beach volleyball scene and represented Canada at the 19U/21U World Championships.