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Jennifer Zhang Becomes 1st Chinese American Artist to Win Chicago Music Award

Jennifer Zhang became 1st Chinese American to Win Chicago Music Awards

Jennifer Zhang became 1st Chinese American to Win Chicago Music Awards

Jennifer Zhang Receives Trophy on Stage at Chicago Music Awards 39th Annual Ceremony

Jennifer Zhang, Passionate about Chinese Music and Art, Performs Her Original Songs: "Flying High" & "On the Throne"

Musician, model, influencer, and activist Jennifer Zhang uplifting communities worldwide in the face of Covid-19 pandemic and rising anti-Chinese xenophobia.

I have got so much to offer, as I am the only one who has all that I can give.”— Jennifer ZhangCHICAGO , IL, UNITED STATES, March 10, 2021 / -- Jennifer Zhang hasn’t sat back and relaxed during the last year of the coronavirus. On top of her work as a musician, an in-demand model, and a social media influencer, she has also continued her advocacy for environmental and community justice. The good news is that these efforts are certainly being noticed. Recently, Jennifer has won the Best Asian Entertainer Award at the 39th Annual Chicago Music Awards, one of the most historic and significant annual musical events in the greater Chicago area. This honor is even more important due to its timing. With Americans struggling with the coronavirus, there has been an unfortunate and ignorant spike in anti-Chinese sentiments and violent attacks on Asian-Americans across the nation. Jennifer is proudly ethnically Chinese and plans on using the award as a platform against xenophobia, hoping that this will help inspire and uplift minority artists in Chicago land and beyond to chase their dreams with confidence.

For over 30 years the Chicago Music Awards has celebrated and honored some of Chicago’s best talent and entertainers in more than forty musical genres, such as pop, blues, reggae, and more. Sharing the same stage this year is COMMON, who accepted the DuSable Humanitarian Award during the ceremony. The signature event is marked by a proclamation from Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Cook County clerk declaring March 18, 2018, as the 37th Annual Chicago Music Awards Day. Some of CMA’s past awardees and performers include Kanye West, Chance the Rapper, and Jennifer Hudson.

During the hour-long ceremony which will telecast on NBC 5, Jennifer lit up the stage performing her original single “On the Throne”, singing, playing the Chinese bamboo flute (dizi), and dancing together with two of her dancers. Following her performance, out of four nominees this year, she was announced to be the winner of the Best Asian Entertainer Award. Jennifer delivered a touching speech on the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic on the artist community as well as the minority Americans in our country.

“Thank you Chicago Music Awards for giving me the Best Asian Entertainer Award,” commented the clearly passionate and grateful artist. “As the first Chinese American ever to receive this award in history, I am so grateful beyond words. From a little girl who only dared to sing alone in her bathroom, who came to America barely speaking any English, who had such terrible stage fright that she almost passed out on the spot, I would never have dreamed of receiving this award and sharing this incredible platform.”

Sadly, statistics reveal very clearly that Asian Americans are quite underrepresented in the entertainment world, something Jennifer is working hard to change in a positive, uplifting way. Winning the Asian Entertainer Award is surely a big step in that direction. With the Coronavirus crisis impacting Asian Americans in a very negative way socially, her efforts in this area are as timely as they are needed.

Jennifer continued, “The pandemic has brought great difficulties and challenges to our communities. Many businesses are closed and many friends lost their jobs. With limited resources and opportunities due to the ban on large public gatherings, our artist community has really been hit hard. In addition, due to public fear and the origin of Coronavirus, there has been a spike in anti-Asian sentiments and violent attacks on Chinese Americans in our country. Many elderlies were pushed over and Febrezed on in the city streets innocently just because of their appearances. Moreover, as there has always been a lack of representation of Asian Americans in entertainment and media, many Asian Americans feel marginalized and misrepresented, and many Chinese American artists had to change their last names to land more opportunities to audition and to perform. I personally have also received messages from concerning fans asking now that with the pandemic going on, maybe I should change my brand image to less of a “Chinese” one. I want to use this platform to raise awareness of this pertinent issue and would like to let you know that I am super proud of my musical heritage and cultural background. With more than 5000 years of history and 1 billion in population, it is hard not to find anything to love about! I have got so much to offer, as I am the only one who has all that I can give.”

Jennifer Zhang is well-known for her accomplishments as a musician, model, actress, social media influencer, and entrepreneur. In addition to being a singer, pianist, and composer, Jennifer plays nine different Chinese instruments. Jennifer has showcased her musical talents in front of many leaders of our generation, such as former President of the US Barack Obama, Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau, Bill Gates, Jack Ma, Anna Wintour, and Cindy Crawford. From her crowning of the Miss Friendship Ambassador of Chicago 2015, she has won an impressive total of five international titles such as the Miss China International 2017 and the Brilliant Miss World 2020. In addition, Jennifer has received numerous awards in musical performing arts and community services, for instance, Best Music Video Award by 2019 US-China Film Festival, 2020 Global Clean Environment Award by Action for Clean Environment, and 2017 Exemplary Community Service Award by Asian American Coalition. She was the tourism ambassador for Visit Florida and helped promote Florida's tourism by starring in the 2018 Visit Florida Video series. By serving as an angel ambassador for Project Michael Angelo Foundation, Jennifer has also tutored and fundraised for many girls with special needs. Jennifer graduated from Northwestern University with advanced studies at Berklee College of Music and China’s Central Conservatory of Music.

Expect Jennifer Zhang to continue her work as a musician, model, and social media voice, while standing up for what’s right - whether it is to raise awareness of the underprivileged community, or to fight against racism and xenophobia. This future superstar, with a golden heart, truly cares about much more than herself.

Jennifer Zhang
Jeneration Entertainment
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Jennifer Zhang's Performance and Acceptance Speech at 39th Annual Chicago Music Awards

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