Emerson College's student newspaper

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College's student newspaper

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College's student newspaper

The Berkeley Beacon

Ryan Yau

Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor

Ryan Yau (he/him) is a first-year journalism major from Hong Kong. He writes and edits for the Living Arts section, normally feature stories on artists and arts events in Boston, usually film-related. Occasionally he has an opinion. He recreationally play saxophone.

Latest from Ryan Yau
Courtesy Kevin Becerra

Roots of the nation: At ArtsEmerson, conversation is The Point

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
September 14, 2023

What is art? Or more importantly: what is considered art, and by whom? These were some of the questions touched upon in the latest conversation for The Point, a series hosted by ArtsEmerson that allows...

The Maximilian Mutchnick Cafe.

Forsake minimalism, embrace the Max

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
September 13, 2023

The Max, formally the Maximilian Mutchnick Cafe, underwent its now-infamous remodel over the summer. Gone are the homely red tile, oil-slick couches, and lived-in decor, replaced with abject minimalism...

Multi-hyphenate Emerson alum releases second book ‘The Other Side of Infinity’

Multi-hyphenate Emerson alum releases second book ‘The Other Side of Infinity’

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
April 26, 2023

Emerson alum Joan F. Smith ‘10 released her second young adult novel “The Other Side of Infinity” on April 25. She graduated from the Creative Writing MFA program and currently resides in Massachusetts. The...

Corporate nihilism for a post–‘The Super Mario Bros. Movie’ apocalypse

Corporate nihilism for a post–‘The Super Mario Bros. Movie’ apocalypse

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
April 19, 2023

I should be stoned for enjoying “The Super Mario Bros. Movie.” The movie represents everything I dislike about contemporary children’s cinema: a transparent effort to churn out the next big franchise;...

How to narrativize an ethical argument

How to narrativize an ethical argument

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
April 12, 2023

Daniel Goldhaber’s “How to Blow Up a Pipeline,” adapted from the 2021 book of the same name, is concerned with one question: why can’t fun movies be radical? Andreas Malm’s original nonfiction...

Wicked Queer is here: alum-programmed film festival uplifts LGBTQ voices

Wicked Queer is here: alum-programmed film festival uplifts LGBTQ voices

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
March 29, 2023

The Boston LGBTQ+ Film Festival—now known as Wicked Queer—has survived the ups and downs of queer history. It was founded in 1984, before gay marriage was even legal in Massachusetts. The 39th annual...

Boston Underground Film Festival preview: the subterranean avant-garde

Boston Underground Film Festival preview: the subterranean avant-garde

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
March 22, 2023

What was once an all-night film marathon hosted by a single person—founder David Kleiler—is now one of the most celebrated film festivals in Massachusetts. Over the course of its 23-year run, the Boston...

Boston SciFi: the future of film is independent

Boston SciFi: the future of film is independent

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
March 2, 2023

The Boston SciFi Film Festival is unstoppable. It began in the legendary Orson Welles Cinema, once a staple of the Boston-Cambridge independent film scene. When a popcorn-related incident burned down the...

Fresh Ink in the quest to uphold local theater

Fresh Ink in the quest to uphold local theater

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
February 23, 2023

In a post-“Cats” franchised theater landscape, every show seems to be a long-running play. To counter this, Fresh Ink Theatre Company is helping new works from local playwrights land on their feet. Fresh...

The ramifications of a post-Avatar’ blockbuster landscape

The ramifications of a post-‘Avatar’ blockbuster landscape

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
January 26, 2023

When James Cameron announced that the “Avatar” sequels had set release dates, internet discourse commenced about the original movie’s cultural impact—or perceived lack thereof. Doubters noted...

Alum film Everything Everywhere All at Once leads with 11 Oscar nominations

Alum film ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ leads with 11 Oscar nominations

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
January 25, 2023

Tuesday’s announcement of this year’s Academy Awards nominations came as an impressive feat for the Emerson film community. Emerson alums Daniel Kwan ‘10 and Daniel Scheinert ‘09 continue their...

‘The Five Fingers of a Dog’: Emerson students debut horror short film

‘The Five Fingers of a Dog’: Emerson students debut horror short film

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
December 7, 2022

No filmmakers have been bold enough to suggest dogs have fingers. Classical thought considers dogs’ forelimbs to be legs, making the phalanges on their paws “toes.” None until Charlie Compton...

‘Bad Axe’ is family business

‘Bad Axe’ is family business

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
December 1, 2022

Bad Axe, MI, is a town with a population of 3,000, where everyone is friends on Facebook and within two degrees of separation in Walmart. “Bad Axe” is filmmaker David Siev’s directorial debut,...

Illustration by Ryan Yau

‘Wednesday’ is plagued by the influence of the CW

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
December 1, 2022

The new Addams family spinoff “Wednesday” released last Wednesday.  The eight-part miniseries focuses on a teenaged Wednesday Addams as she transfers to an outcast-only boarding school—“outcast”...

Emerson graduate student receives first Harlequin Diverse Voices scholarship

Emerson graduate student receives first Harlequin Diverse Voices scholarship

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
December 1, 2022

Some people yearn for scholarships. For others, scholarships fall in their laps. Graduate student Ying Gao is the first recipient of the Harlequin Diverse Voices scholarship for Emerson College’s...

The faces of the Boston Asian American Film Festival

The faces of the Boston Asian American Film Festival

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
November 2, 2022

The annual Boston Asian American Film Festival was held in the Paramount Theatre from Oct. 20 to Oct. 31. This year’s program contained three narrative films, three documentaries, and various shorts...

Portraits of Pride intersects the past and future of LGBTQ history

Portraits of Pride intersects the past and future of LGBTQ history

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
October 14, 2022

At the intersection of Boston Common and the Public Garden, two of the oldest parks in America, lies the Portraits of Pride exhibition. The exhibition is itself an intersection in LGBTQ history, showcasing...

Smile will make you grin and grimace

‘Smile’ will make you grin and grimace

By Ryan Yau, Assistant Living Arts Editor
October 6, 2022

This article contains spoilers. Parker Finn’s feature directorial debut “Smile” is a genre relic. In the post-streaming, post-COVID era of cinema, audiences are excited for high-tempo horror in...

To save Chinatown, we must Experience Chinatown

To save Chinatown, we must Experience Chinatown

By Bryan Liu and Ryan Yau
September 29, 2022

Through the Chinatown gate lies a wrinkle in time against the backdrop of metropolitan Boston. The neighborhood evokes a sense of anachronism: faded, old-fashioned architecture contrasts with the surrounding...

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