“Alien Citizen” and its Comical Look at Growing up TCK

Elizabeth Liang is a Third Culture Kid (TCK), and her one-woman show weaves humorous stories about growing up as an “Alien Citizen” abroad with American commercial jingles providing her soundtrack through language confusion, her first love, “racial ambiguity,” culture shock, friendship, Clark Gable, sexual harassment and sandstorms.

I’m not from a place. I’m from people.

Elizabeth Liang

Our must-watch recommendation, Alien Citizen: An Earth Odyssey, is the filmed version of Liang’s internationally toured, comical, poignant show about growing up as a dual citizen of mixed-race heritage in Central America, North Africa, the Middle East and New England.

As a TCK, she deals with the decisions most TCKs make repeatedly: to adapt or to simply cope; to build a bridge or to just tolerate. From being a Guatemalan-American teen in North Africa to attending a women’s college in the USA, Liang’s Alien Citizen: An Earth Odyssey reflects her experience that neither choice was necessarily easier than the other. How does a young girl cope as a border/culture/language/religion straddler in country after country that feels “other” when, in actuality, she is the “other”? Where is the line between respecting others and betraying self?

It is touted as the only intercultural solo show that highlights experiences of being multiracial, binational, multilingual, nomadic and female — living among many different worlds — all at the same time.

Although the narrative is largely in English, Liang speaks five languages in the film and depicts more than 30 characters living in Guatemala, Costa Rica, USA, Panama, Morocco and Egypt.

The stage production of this film has toured four continents.


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