Film Screening: A Children’s Song

+ Panel:  “Jews, China & Hollywood”

a Youth Voices on China Benefit Kickoff

As we kickoff the season for our 2017 national student video contest, Youth Voices on China, please join us for a Sunday brunch reception featuring a film short screening of A Children’s Song and a fascinating panel talk on “Jews, China & Hollywood.”  Also, meet some of our  2017 contest judges & 2016 Youth Voices winners!

Sunday October 23, 2016

10:00 am – 1:00 pm

Delancey Street Screening Room
600 Embarcadero Street (at Bryant), San Francisco
Please enter through Embarcadero street gate | map


  9:45 am   Doors Open
10:15 am   Welcome & Screening
11:00 am   Panel
11:45 am   Brunch Reception & Networking


Buy Tickets Here: 
Advance Tickets Only – Purchase by Saturday 10/22

  • $15 Adults
  • $10 Educators & Students (with valid .edu email address)




  • Film Screening: A Children’s Song (26 mins)
    Our morning begins with the screening of A Children’s Song, a heartwarming film short that follows the story of two young women students, one Jewish American and one Chinese immigrant, who compete for a music scholarship and discover that their original compositions are both based on a single family song.  Both are determined to prove ownership, leading them to uncover the long lost true origin of the melody: a story of salvation and hope when over 20,000+ Jews emigrated to Shanghai during World War II. The girls learn about a deep friendship formed decades ago by their grandparents in Shanghai, who found common ground between their two distinct cultures through their love of family, food and music.
    This fictional story is based on the largely unknown story of Shanghai’s role in Jewish emigration in the 1930s and 40s  — of all the cities in the world, Shanghai, China opened its arms to more Jewish refugees from Europe than any others. Although not addressed in the film, San Francisco resident Ho Feng Shan is known as China’s Schindler, as he was China’s Consul General  in Vienna at that time and  issued thousands of special Shanghai visas enabling the Jewish to flee Nazi-occupied Europe.

    This award-winning film short premiered at the Mill Valley Film Festival and is produced by Sid Ganis and actor/producer Jane Wu, and written and directed by Shayna Cohen. View the trailer here:

A Children’s Song Trailer from J Wu Entertainment on Vimeo.


  • Panel:  Jews, China and Hollywood
    Following the screening, acclaimed Hollywood producer and 1990 Institute board member Janet Yang will moderate a talk with the team behind “A Children’s Song,” covering topics including:

    • The making of the A Children’s Song and what’s next for the film
    • The Jewish communities in Shanghai and China, present and past
    • The latest on China’s growing influence and investment in Hollywood


    • Jane Wu, the co-producer of A Children’s Song is also a rising martial arts actress to watch in the U.S..  She recently starred in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows.
    • Shayna Cohen, Director of A Children’s Song, previously won a Student Directors Guild of America award for Gelfite Fish.  Currently a script coordinator at DreamWorks Animation, she is working on How to Train Your Dragon 3, slated for release in 2018.
    • Sid Ganis is past President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.  Sid has had a distinguished career in Hollywood as a senior executive at major studios including Sony Pictures, Lucasfilm, Warner Bros. and Paramount. Known for his legendary marketing prowess, he was involved in the success of Ghost, Forrest Gump, The Empire Strikes Back, two Indiana Jones films, Akeelah and the Bee, among many others. He is co-founder and Chairman of Jiaflix, a US company that helps bring in large studios into China and has a long-term partnership with China’s state-run China Movie Channel (CCTV6) and streaming site 1905.com, both under SARFT.  He is an Honorary Chairman of Wuxi Studios, one of China’s three leading filmmaking centers. Notably, Jiaflix was behind the record-breaking success of Transformers 4 in China, surpassing the previous China box office record set by Avatar.
    • Read full bios and more about “A Children’s Song” here.

About Youth Voices on China


Voices on China is the 1990 Institute’s national video contest that engages American students age 13 & up to think more deeply about U.S.‐China relations.  Together with celebrated actress/filmmaker Joan Chen and our prestigious panel of judges, we hope to inspire students to seek balanced viewpoints on China and empower them to make positive change through
creative media.  Sponsoring teachers win when their students win!  For 2017, our third annual contest, our theme is “Discover Your China” — tell us why you want to travel to China and a unique experience you’d build in.  Click here for 2017 Youth Voices contest details.