Discover Nikkei Logo

https://www.discovernikkei.org/en/journal/author/kyra-karatsu/

Profile image of Kyra Karatsu

Kyra Karatsu

@kyra.karatsu

Kyra Karatsu was born and raised in Santa Clarita, CA. She is currently a first-year Journalism student at College of the Canyons in Valencia, CA and hopes to transfer to a university after the completion of her AA degree. Kyra is a Japanese-German Yonsei and enjoys reading and writing about the Asian American experience.

Updated January 2021


Stories from This Author

Thumbnail for Identity in the Music Industry with Musician & Two-Time Grammy Nominee Nick Lee
en
ja
es
pt
Inspire Forward: Nikkei Heroes Under 30
Identity in the Music Industry with Musician & Two-Time Grammy Nominee Nick Lee

Aug. 30, 2023 • Kyra Karatsu

Introduction LA Native Nick Lee has amassed quite the resume during his time in the music industry: record producer, songwriter, composer, trombonist, and, as of 2021, two-time Grammy nominee for his work on pop hit “INDUSTRY BABY” by Lil Nas X (ft. Jack Harlow) and accompanying album MONTERO. “It’s still surreal to me,” Lee said, “Makes me feel proud of myself. It’s an incredible badge I have the honor to wear.”  Attending Juilliard for a short time before leaving to …

Thumbnail for Ancestry & Artistry: The Works of Annie Sumi
en
ja
es
pt
Inspire Forward: Nikkei Heroes Under 30
Ancestry & Artistry: The Works of Annie Sumi

Dec. 22, 2022 • Kyra Karatsu

Japanese Canadian Annie Sumi is many things: songwriter, ethereal folk artist, and, recently, co-creator of the Kintsugi exhibition at the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre in Toronto. Providing creative insight inspired by family heirlooms, her work on Kintsugi weaves together the threads of her ancestry with her artistry as a musician. Ancestry Sumi originally hails from Ontario, Canada. Second-generation Scottish through her mother’s side, she recalls that she grew close to the songs and traditions that were brought to Canada from …

Thumbnail for Food for Thought—TikTok & <em>Tamagoyaki</em>
en
ja
es
pt
Nikkei Chronicles #11—Itadakimasu 3! Nikkei Food, Family, and Community
Food for Thought—TikTok & Tamagoyaki

June 17, 2022 • Kyra Karatsu

Like any good Gen Z-er, I’ve made my fair share of TikToks since I first downloaded the app two years ago. Most are silly and trivial and recorded primarily for my “impressive” following of 45 followers—the majority being school friends.  Although it pales in comparison to the millions and even billions of views that top users (often dubbed “Content Creators”) regularly receive, the most popular TikTok that I ever made was, interestingly enough, a minute-long video of my dad and me …

Thumbnail for The Times of Tulelake
en
ja
es
pt
The Times of Tulelake

May 10, 2022 • Kyra Karatsu

Located near the Oregon-California border, the ghost of what once was one of California’s two internment camps now stands rather quietly against a backdrop of mountains and shrubs. But for much of the 20th century, Tulelake and the nearby town of Newell – where the Tule Lake Segregation Center stands – were no strangers to the bustle of human activity. A Japanese American relocation camp turned high-security segregation center turned homestead farming community, the Tulelake area has since evolved into …

Thumbnail for From Short Story to Stage Play: <em>Masao and The Bronze Nightingale</em>
en
ja
es
pt
From Short Story to Stage Play: Masao and The Bronze Nightingale

April 28, 2022 • Kyra Karatsu

After years of partnership and production, Dan Kwong and Rubén Funkahuatl Guevara’s Masao and The Bronze Nightingale has finally set stage at the CASA 0101 Theater in Boyle Heights. Based on Guevara’s short story of the same name, Masao and The Bronze Nightingale is set in post-war 1940s Bronzeville—a thriving African American community that sprouted in Little Tokyo after Japanese Americans were forcibly removed. As Japanese American jazz musician Masao Imoto (played by Michael Sasaki) navigates through the vibrant, multicultural …

Thumbnail for To Build a Bridge
en
ja
es
pt
To Build a Bridge

March 18, 2022 • Kyra Karatsu

“Why do you want to marry him?”  That is what my maternal grandfather asked my mother in the days leading up to her wedding.  It was genuine, blunt, honest. Even today, it was a question that my mother recalls as one that stunned her into momentary silence. After a pause and some thoughtful reflection, she was finally able to answer his query. The matter was then put to rest, never to be spoken between the two again. Her father’s curiosity …

Thumbnail for Cole Kawana: JANM and the Power of Artificial Intelligence
en
ja
es
pt
Inspire Forward: Nikkei Heroes Under 30
Cole Kawana: JANM and the Power of Artificial Intelligence

Jan. 24, 2022 • Kyra Karatsu

“A snapshot of human memory.”  That’s what 23-year-old Cole Kawana likes to call one of the Japanese American National Museum’s newest exhibits, The Interactive StoryFile of Lawson Iichiro Sakai. Kawana, a recent graduate from the University of Southern California and a 5th generation Japanese American, envisioned the technology-based project in 2019. As the founder and president of Japanese American Stories—a nonprofit that develops artificial intelligence avatars to help preserve and share the oral histories of Japanese Americans who lived through …

Thumbnail for My Two Aunt Karens
en
ja
es
pt
My Two Aunt Karens

Nov. 2, 2021 • Kyra Karatsu

The name “Karen” has grown to symbolize many things in the recent year. Specifically, it’s become a sort of slang to describe an entitled, conceited woman who cries out for a store’s manager when things don’t go her way. From making a scene at the gas station to harassing teenagers on the street, the name “Karen” has undoubtedly carried a hefty weight. Ironically, I have two Karens in my life, neither of whom, thankfully, fits such a description. And while …

Thumbnail for Grammy-nominated Flutist Ron Korb on his Journey to Japan
en
ja
es
pt
Nikkei Chronicles #10—Nikkei Generations: Connecting Families & Communities
Grammy-nominated Flutist Ron Korb on his Journey to Japan

Sept. 1, 2021 • Kyra Karatsu

There’s a glint of pure excitement in the eyes of Grammy-nominated flutist and composer Ron Korb as he begins to open up about his experiences in Japan. “Every single day, there was some new thing, some exciting little thing,” he reminisces, “It was never boring. I just loved every minute of it.” From the good, to the bad, and to the beautiful, Korb recalls the events that have made the country worth visiting 21 times. Korb’s journey to Japan began …

Thumbnail for <em>We Hereby Refuse</em>: The Illustrated Stories of Camp Resistance
en
ja
es
pt
We Hereby Refuse: The Illustrated Stories of Camp Resistance

June 11, 2021 • Kyra Karatsu

“It’s the story of camp as you’ve never seen it before,” said Frank Abe, one of two authors of the upcoming graphic novel We Hereby Refuse: Japanese American Resistance to Wartime Incarceration. “I hope readers see that there were several paths to resistance, and none of them were easy,” Tamiko Nimura, the second author of the novel commissioned by the Wing Luke Museum, commented in a recent interview. Blended into over 150 pages of art by illustrators Ross Ishikawa and …

We’re looking for stories like yours! Submit your article, essay, fiction, or poetry to be included in our archive of global Nikkei stories. Learn More
Discover Nikkei brandmark New Site Design See exciting new changes to Discover Nikkei. Find out what’s new and what’s coming soon! Learn More

Discover Nikkei Updates

NIKKEI CHRONICLES #13
Nikkei Names 2: Grace, Graça, Graciela, Megumi?
What’s in a name? Share the story of your name with our community. Submissions now open!
NIMA VOICES
Episode 16
June 25 (US) | June 26 (Japan)
Featured Nima:
Stan Kirk
Guest Host:
Masumi Izumi
PROJECT UPDATES
NEW SITE DESIGN
See exciting new changes to Discover Nikkei. Find out what’s new and what’s coming soon!