East West Players
PanAsian Repertory Theatre
Northwest Asian American Theatre
Seven Out (dueEast, 2004)
Seven Out is lovingly based on the extensive interviews of Japanese Americans who lived, worked and played in, and around, an area of Chicago’s north side. Most, if not all, of these Japanese Americans, or Nisei, came to Chicago from internment camps, or from Hawaii, during the early post-war period. In their search for a better life, some of these men and women worked in organized crime, particularly in various gambling activities; one even attained a high ranking position (perhaps the only Asian-American to do so). Virtually all of them would discover that there was much about the American dream that is, and was, illusory. Seven Out is a dedication to, and a parable of, these Nisei lives: the many who endured much, while creating some place for themselves in an America that gave little back.
Pretty in Pink and Blues (EWP, 2009)
In this autobiographical one woman show, a naive Japanese teenager who dreamed of the America she saw in 1980's Hollywood movies gets a reality check in culture shock, the language barrier and racism. Caught between two cultures, she struggles to find her identity and a place to call "home."
The Halal Brothers (Lark Theatre, 2002)
Set in a Halal shop in Harlem on the eve of the assassination of Malcolm X, this play explores the American experience of two Bangladeshi brothers.
Denise Uyehara is a writer, playwright and performance artist whose work explores what it means to be a woman, an Asian American, a bisexual and a human being, not necessarily in that order. She has engaged in experimental theater since 1988 and toured internationally since 1993. Uyehara also works extensively in collaborative projects. She is 1/4 of Sacred Naked Nature Girls, a culturally diverse experimental performance collective which has also been preented internationally. A former member of the Mark Taper Forum Mentor Playwrights Project, Uyehara recently received a playwriting commission from the Taper's Asian Theater Workshop. She has conducted numerous workshops with Asian American men and women, queer and straight, as well as with senior citizens. Her fiction, poetry and essays have appeared in the Lesbian News, the Rafu Shimp, L.A. Weekly and the Asian Pacific American Journal. The Los Angeles Times calls her "Compelling.....Uyehara is definately one to watch." Featured in 1995 as "One of the Hundred Coolest People in L.A." by Buzz Magazine, she was chosen as "Best Performance Artist" among eight artists in the Western U.S. region in Entertainment Weekly. She was the recipient of numerous recognitions of excellence, including a New Langton Arts/National Endowment for the Arts grant; the City of Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department to conduct an oral history project with seniors; the Brody Arts Fund; the James Irvine Fellowship; and the James Clavell American Japanese Literary Award. Uyehara holds a B.A. cum laude degree in Comparative Literature from University of California, Irvine, where she also studied fiction, playwriting, and theater.
- Hiro (East West, 1994)
- Maps of City & Body (LA, 1999)
- Hello (Sex) Kitty ()
- Headless Turtlenecks and Other Relatives ()
- Jo and Millie Go to Court ()
Valentine, Emma HyeonJin
- (not) Lost and (not) Found (Mu Performing Arts, 2011)
Traveling from one great river (Mississippi) to another (Han), this story brings together several Korean adoptees as they journey back to Korea. It is about the common bond that adoptees share with each other. Everyone has a different process and speed to get to a place where they are comfortable in their own skin.
Vang, Katie Ka
WTF (Mu Performing Arts, 2010)
Three young people grow up with the complexities of being Hmong American in Middle America. Do their futures unfold the way they’re suppose to?
Brenden Varma is an actor and dancer who has performed at various locations in Washington, DC, including the National Theatre, Constitution Hall, and the Gala Hispanic Theatre. In New York, he is a regular dance instructor at D.J. Rekha‚s immensely popular Basement Bhangra parties and has worked with Camara Dance Unlimited and Arya International. The son of a Punjabi father and Maharashtrian mother, who met while both serving as captains in the Indian Army, he speaks Spanish and Portuguese.
- Safe Space (SALAAM, 2004)
Taking place in a community center in present-day Manhattan, this full-length play takes you to meeting of a support group for young gay South Asians.
- The Fate of Mewa Singh (Rasik Arts, 2011)
“The Fate of Mewa Singh” portrays two hopeful immigrants in their different voyages to Canada, one in 1906 & the other on the Komagata Maru in 1914, and intertwines their story with that of a British immigration officer, creating a compelling, human tapestry of the desire and the price of belonging.
- Quantum Love (AATC, 2009)
Do the laws of love and sex obey the laws of Quantum Mechanics?
Vendantam, Shankar and Drake, Donald C.
Shankar Vedantam is a staff writer at The Washington Post. Besides co-writing Tom, Dick and Harriet, which is his first play, he has completed a novel and a collection of short stories. One of his stories, The Scoop, was published in 2003 in Rosebud Magazine. He is one of the authors of Violence or Dialogue, a book scheduled for release in Oct 2003. He lives in Washington D.C. You can learn more about Shankar at www.vedantam.com
- Tom, Dick and Harriet (Lark Theatre, 2003)
The play follows the arc of a ménage a trios that goes awry. Three friends ford the hurdles of sex and love only to wash up on the shoals of marriage and parenthood.
Vongsay, Saymoukda Duangphouxay
- Kung Fu Zombies vs Cannibals (Mu Performing Arts, 2011)
In a world where modern civilization has collapsed beyond recognition and the earth has been littered by zombies and cannibals, two women from opposite ends of the world kill their way to salvation. Framed under the Five Buddhist tenets, their journey is told through an amalgamation of severed heads, forced kisses, human steaks, and a chorus of gang bangin' monks. Live video manipulation and fight scenes may cause epileptic seizures.
- Roatha (EWP, 2005)
A Cambodian defendant in the Asian Boyz Gang murder trial is found guilty and faces the death penalty. The defense traces his traumatic history from the "killing fields"of Cambodia to the "killing fields" of Los Angeles.
- Zoila (EWP, 2009)
A religious Belizean woman flees a hurricane and meets a perfect storm of conflict with LA culture and her family.
Wake, Brian Hiroshi
- Queen of Makaha: Rell Sunn (Kumu Kahua Theatre, 2004)
The play dramatizes a time in the life of Rell Sunn when she was in Texas receiving chemotherapy for cancer.
- Eddie Would Go (Honolulu Theatre for Youth, 1997-98 season)
Eddie features four young surfers who recount key episodes in the life of Eddie Aikau in an interactive stage show which includes the audience playing the ocean. Another co-production with Honolulu Theatre for Youth.
- Ala Wai (Kumu Kahua, 2007)
Bertram and Ernesto are two roommates who suddenly find themselves jobless and homeless. Ernesto has a drug habit and Bertram has an irrational but intense fear of tilapia. This fast-paced pidgin comedy turns surrealistic when Bert is stung on his privates by a portuguese man-o-war and miraculously acquires the ability to heal wounds…and clean up the waters of the canal. Will Bert use his new powers benevolently, or will greed prevail?
BIO: Lucy Wang Is an award-winning, published and produced writer, in spite of the odds, the pressure and the insanity. Wang began her illustrious career as a bond trader on Wall Street because her parents often threatened and screamed, "If we knew you were going to be a starving artist, we could have left you in China!" When Wang (nicknamed the "Hemingway of Memos") lost her job because the Mayor of New York lost his, Wang decided it was finally time to pursue her deepest passion. Everyone thought she was crazy to "waste" her University of Chicago MBA. Luckily, her biting first play JUNK BONDS won an award from the Kennedy Center and a new nickname, "the female David Mamet." She has been writing steadily ever since, surprising audiences with her diverse array of voices and life experiences and collecting as many awards, accolades and new nicknames along the way. Wang's other awards include a grant from the Berrilla Kerr Foundation, James Thurber Fellowship, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Honorary Fellow, Best New Play from the Katherine and Lee Chilcote Foundation, etc. Wang's plays have been produced all over and her voices span the gamut, from A to Z. In addition to plays, Wang has written screenplays, short stories, news articles, essays, and humorous creative nonfiction.
- Junk Bonds (HOME for Contemporary Theatre and Art, 1995)
In a fast-paced game of liar's poker, a young Asian American woman fights her way into the clubby, high rolling world of Wall Street. Immense welath, glamorous careers and intoxicating power are at stake in pursuit of a fat slice of American pie.
- Down Under ()
A semiautobiographical play about a brother and sister who receive a mysterious letter from their mother in Australia. They must decide whether they will visit her. The play has both fairy tale notions of motherhood, surreal elements and many Ohio references
- Bird's Nest Soup (Mark Taper Forum)
Hilarious and poignant coming of age story about a family that has moved from Asia to the fictional Acorn, Ohio.
- Mah-Johng ()
About a mixed marriage.
- Trayf (Naked Angels)
Caught in a Sino-Semitic triangle, Ruth discovers that what's good for you isn't always good for you.
- Goldie and the Providential Prosecution (Kol Neshama Summer Performing Arts Program.)
- Big Red and Little Tiger (Actors Theater of Louisville)
An intriguing urban myth exploring the corruption of the justice system in America, this is a short sketch full of twists and turns and power shifts.
- Melting (Cleveland Public Theatre, 1999)
A dark comedy about corporate backstabbing, infidelity, sexual politics and such.
- Solika (Bais Miriam Summer Performing Arts Program, 2000)
Based on the Moroccan Jewish tale.
- Number One Son (New Federal Theatre)
A father and son are the only family members who have come to the United States from China; now the son has to tell his father he is gay.
- Concerto for an Organ in B-Sharp (2002)
Contestants compete for a liver transplant on the game show "Who Wants to Be An Organ Donor?" Biting 10-minute play.
- Good Mourning America (2005)
focuses on the immediate aftermath of 9/11 and explores how terror, tragedy and the misappropriation of tragedy stirs a melting pot, adding plenty of spice and a wicked spleash of dark comedy. Friendship, hope and American ingenuity on the rebound, with a biting vengeance.
- Bullfighting: Annie, an insurance claims adjuster, summons Ernest Hemingway to the rescue.
- (IN)Security: Joe Schmoe and Jane Doe meet at the airport terminal and reassure themselves they're safe, in spite of the changing security alerts. But, how safe are they?
- Cinderella’s Bawl: Cinderella enlists Bobby Shaftoe, Old Mother Hubbard, Gretel and Farmer in the Dell for help in finding the perfect sperm.
- How Now Brown Couch: A mysterious visitor shows up to Dan’s pad and threatens to take his brown couch, citing the law of attraction.
- In Need of Goddesses (Eth-No-Tec, 2004)
Four women on a peace pilgrimage find themselves traumatized by a belligerent Hut Master at the top of mountain hut. They call upon the spirit of Amaterasu as they attempt to engage their inner power while battling the misogynistic Hut Master and their own self-doubt. Based on an actual event that took place atop Mt. Fuji, woven with the Japanese myth of Amaterasu, the Sun Goddess and her battle with Susano-Wo, the Storm God.
- The Tale of a Mask (Go For Broke Festival, 1996)
Tale of a Japanese immigrant's descent into madness.
- Five Past Midnight (EWP, 2006)
It's Five Minutes Past Midnight on the Doomsday Clock, and your are 80 stories undergroup in a nuclear bunker with Van, the last remaining man. Can he answer to his captors for mankind's folly? The clock is ticking. If you miss this show, it may be too late.
- The Songmaker's Chair (2003, New Zealand)
The Songmaker’s Chair is the story of a Samoan family, the Aiga Sapeseola, whose members have been in Auckland since the 1950’s. It is about migration and what has happened to this adventurous family over three generations. To survive and adapt to New Zealand, they have intermarried with Maori and Pakeha (whites) and developed what they call the Peseola Waydefiant, honest and unflinching, even in the face of death.
- Waiting for the Dough (EWP, 2013)
Theatre history repeats itself when a struggling dramaturg is forced to get a job at a bakery during the height of the recession.
Wilson, Gary A.
- I Am Not a Bug (EWP, 2009)
A son finds his mysterious, long lost father with unforeseen consequences.
Cary Wong earned his MFA in playwrighting from Columbia University, and received a Van Lier playwriting Fellowship from the Manhattan Theatre Club in 1992. His MTC-commissioned play, Mirrors Remembered, was produced at New York Stage and Film in 1995.
- Eclipses (NY Shakespeare Festival, 1991)
- High Fashion (Seattle Group Theatre, 1992)
- Oriental Romeos (NY Shakespeare Festival, 1993)
Asian American males go out for a night that veers abruptly toward nightmare.
- Mirrors Remembered (Manhattan Theatre Club, 1993)
Beginning life as a college project, the play offers a landscape where 11 characters forge their daily existence in New York City. At its core are five Asian American women who range from an artist to a shopkeeper to a bag lady to a champion diver.
- Private Property (co-writer) (Edinburgh International Fringe Festival, 1994)
- Dancer in the Dark (Mark Taper, 1997)
- Family of Origin (Manhattan Theatre Club, 1997)
- Off White (Queens Theatre in the Park, 2006)
OFF-WHITE takes place in two hip Manhattan bars as two Asian friends try to conquer the singles scene and discuss the desirability of Asian mates.
- The Cello Plays (Queens Theatre in the Park, 2008)
"The Cello Plays" is a celebration of New York City and the diverse stories and backgrounds of its inhabitants. Vignettes of businessmen, college students, an immigrant family, aspiring artists and rich socialites are melded together in a slice of life collage connected together by the story of a young cellist prodigy's upcoming debut at Carnegie Hall as well as the city they all live in.
Wong, Diane Yen-Mei
- Happy Birthday (AATC, 1995)
Birthday is a play about women coping with various forms of sexism - principally, 2,000-year-old Chinese cultural attitudes toward women, but also sexism in the American workplace and, to a certain extent, homophobia.
- The Canoe (InterACT, 2002)
The Canoe, directed by Dennis Yep, is a delightful tale filled with the sprit of Polynesia through its mele (song) and hula (dance). Written by Diane Yen-Mei Wong, George "Keoki" Winston has composed and recorded several pieces on the ki ho 'alu (slack key guitar) for this play. Amy Shima-Cornellier of Hapa Hao'le Hula Dancers is the mele and hula consultant. Lighting design is by Dion Cook, whose credits include the Best of Broadway productions. As told by Tutu (grandmother - played by Suzanne Brooks), an eleven year-old girl, Hoku (Juliana Yee), has always wanted to find the magical island that her deceased parents told her about when she was a little girl. Guided by a mysterious Sensei (Brian Doan), she and her rainbow kitty, Kala (Leana Machado), learn to paddle a canoe so that they may search the ocean for the magical island. Palm Tree (Andrea Blalock), the largest tree in the midget jungle, watches with delight as Wind (J. Lawrence Lew) and Turtle (Matthew Robinson) assist Sensei in guiding Hoku in her search for an adventure.
Elizabeth Wong holds an MFA from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, and she's proud of the recent accomplishments of fellow classmates Neil LaBute, Lamar Damon, Illka Jarvilaturi and Jennifer Maisel.She's listed in the "Dictionary of Literary Biography: 20th-Century American Dramatists," and in the Oxford "Who's Who of American Women Writers." Her television credits include staff writer of the ground-breaking ABC comedy series with Margaret Cho, All-American Girl. She's a member of Writers Guild West, the Dramatist Guild (NYC), and a board member of Theatre Emory, and ASSITEJ (an international organization promoting theatre for young and family audiences). As an adjunct visiting professor, she teaches playwriting at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and at University of Southern California. She's been playwright-in-residence or visiting guest lecturer at Bowdoin College, University of Southern Maine, Catawba College, Texas A & M, and Harvard University/Radcliffe, among others. For an in-depth look at Elizabeth's creative process, you can explore the Elizabeth Wong Archives at the California Ethnic & Multicultural Archives, Dept. of Special Collections, Davidson Library, University of California, Santa Barbara."I was a general assignment newspaper reporter for 10 years, covering everything from cops and city hall in San Diego to aviation and transportation in Hartford, CT., but contrary to popular belief, I never covered the black boycott of the Korean stores in NYC. The inspiration for that play was Lai Ling Jew, a producer friend of mine at DATELINE in NYC," -- Elizabeth Wong.
- Letters to a Student Revolutionary (Pan Asian Rep, 1991)
This powerful and disarmingly funny play is about friendship and political awakening. Bibi Lee is a typically jaded American rebel reluctantly on a "back to your roots" family vacation in China. Desperately, Bibi sets out to find fast food and familiar faces. Instead, she finds Karen, a young, idealistic Chinese girl who wants to practice a little English. From this seemingly innocent chance encounter, these two young womenone Chinese, the other Chinese-Americanembark on a charming, poignant 10-year correspondence, cut abruptly and tragically short by the June 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre. This bittersweet tale seeks to make sense of history, how we participate in it and how we are overwhelmed by it. By focusing on the loves and losses, desires and disappointments of Bibi and Karen, the play explores ideas of capitalism and communism, and ultimately becomes a clarion call to remember the price of democracy. Bare stage w/props.
- Kimchee & Chitlins (West Coast Ensemble, 1994)
This two-act satire -- part Roshomon-style mystery, part Luigi Pirandello farce -- keeps the Audience guessing about what really happened between an immigrant Korean bodega owner and his Haitian customer. What moved a community to outrage and riot? An intrepid television reporter Suzie Seeto tries to sort it all out for you.
- China Doll (NWAAT, 1996)
A Chinatown girl dreams about making it big in Hollywood during the halycon days of the movie power brokers Samuel Goldwyn and LB Mayer. This award-winning sensual tragedy takes its inspiration from the passionate life of America's first Chinese-American actress icon, Anna May Wong -- also known as the dragon lady or the woman who died a thousand deaths.
- Let the Big Dog Eat (Humana Festival, 1998)
- Amazing Adventures of the Marvelous Monkey King
- The Happy Prince
This play is a beautifully lyrical and faithful adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s classic fairy tale. Commissioned by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, this spiritually compelling play tells the story of a migrating swallow who befriends a prince made of stone. The prince, once a selfish human being, has been transformed into a statue bedecked with dazzling jewels and placed high above a squalid city. Together, the bird and the prince both learn the lessons of friendship and sacrifice. A chorus of townspeople help tell this heartfelt morality tale that teaches young audiences the true meaning of charity, social responsibility and self sacrifice. Suitable for touring. Area staging. Approximate running time: 45minutes.
- Boid & Oskar (Cincinatti Playhouse in the Park)
Prince Oskar is the spirit of a shiny red classic Corvette convertiblewithout a care in the world. But, placed as a monument high above the city, he alone sees the suffering belowa young girl conflicted by feelings of inferiority, a young boy without a home living in the streets, a writer who has lost the desire to write. With the help of a wise-cracking sparrow named Boid, the prince makes it his mission to help the townspeople. A chorus of swallows and townspeople, even a hungry band of alley cats, help the prince and Boid understand the meaning of charity and unselfishness. Inspired by Oscar Wilde's classic, "The Happy Prince," Boid & Oskar is a hip, humorous and heartwarming parable about sacrifice and the lessons of true friendship. Area staging. Approximate running time 45 minutes.
- Aftermath of a Chinese Banquet
- Alice Downsized
- Dating & Mating in Modern Times (Emory University, 2003)
A series of monologues performed by seven actresses on the joys and pitfalls of today's fast, frenzied and sometimes frustrating world of sex and relationships, covering topics such as cybersex, speed dating, hookups and penis envy.
- The Concubine Spy
- Badass of the RIP Eternal
- Bu and Bun
- Inside the Red Envelope
- Killer Grandma
- Punk Girls
- Reveries of an Amorous Woman
- Love Life of a Chinese Eunuch (2004)
This new original two-act play was recently named as a 2004 Princess Grace Playwriting Award semi-finalist. THE LOVE LIFE OF A EUNUCH takes the Audience on a dark journey to a world inhabited by concubines, eunuchs and ghostly apparitions. The story begins when a pig farmer named TIGER LEAPING FROM THE EVERGREEN FOREST disguises himself as a eunuch to gain entry into the Imperial Palace. The lovelorn boy, 18, is desperate to rescue his beloved MEI MEI, 16, from life in sexual servitude as an Imperial consort. His plan fails when Tiger, unmasked by a blind NO NAME EUNUCH, 60s, becomes a pawn in a Eunuch plot to overthrow the Emperor. In a blend of styles from Shakespearean and Chinese Opera, this play plunges the Audience into the avaricious, superstitious, lusty, and bloody world of the Chinese Eunuch.
- Ibong Adarna: Fabulous Filipino Folktale (full-length children's play) (Mu Performing Arts, 2006)
Awildly fun romp, this children’s tale follows three brothers in theirquest to save their father, the king from craziness and death. Theirmission: find the magical singing Adarna bird and bring her back before her poop turns them to stone.
- The World At Your Feet (EWP: Paper or Plastic, 2000)
- French Twist (EWP: Paper or Plastic, 1999)
Asian Canadian playwright
- Siu Yeh - A Midnight Snack (Go For Broke Festival, 1996)
examines the relationship between a father and son about to be evicted from their Chinatown tailor shop in the 1950s.
A graduate of Yale Drama and Princeton University, Alex has been a staff writer on the Fox Drama Wonderfalls.
- Post-Coitals, Pre-Nuptials (SF Stage & Film, 1999)
In the romantic comedy, Daniel and Marie, two friends from childhood, generate enormous phone bills as they call each other from opposite coasts to discuss their impending marriages. As they engage in a series of affairs with individuals ranging from Chinese delivery people to Catholic priests, the two struggle with their concerns about the stereotypical identities that wedlock might bring.
- Forbidden City Blues (Bay Area International Playwrights Festival, 1999) (Pan Asian Repertory Theatre, 2002)
A comedy about race, culture, and...genitals. An ABC (Americn Born Chinese) and his caucasian girlfriend vacation in China and discover there's more than what meets the eye when he is kidnapped and forced to undergo an operation. With live sizzling, electric blues music.
- In the Sherman Family Wax Museum (Circle X, 1999)
An Asian-American exchange student moves in with a white Midwestern family, and is told "not to look in the closet." The result is a frenetic tale of aliens, ovaltine, and talking porkchops. Discover the skeletons in the closet of a typical Milwaukee dynasty.
- Debunked (Triad Stage, 2004)
A theatrical confection filled with hilarious surprise, witty wordplay and outrageous costume changes. Debunked set in Wilkesboro, North Carolina tells the story of an unusual pair of sisters, a domineering mother, two kidnapped men and a deliriously demented doctor. Don’t miss it. You’ll laugh your head off.
- Paris in April (East West, 2006)
When her live-in boyfriend walks out on her, April undergoes a slut makeover and returns as her own twin, the sexy Paris, to win back Mr. Right.
- Laid Off (East West, 2013)
A new musical that tells the story of how one man found love at the bottom of the corporate food chain.
- A.J Blues American Japanese Blues (AATC, CATS, 2009)
The story of a band of Japanese American jazz musicians trapped in Japan during World War II.
Yamashita, Karen Tei
- Godzilla Comes to Little Tokyo (NWAAT, 1992)
An original musical that entails a homeless eccentric, a runaway teen-ager, horrendous traffic, pollution, Japanese developers intent on building a vast real estate project over a freeway and avant-garde performers bent on turning the whole festering mess into art. This basic situation is complicated by a visit from Godzilla.
BIO: Wakako Yamauchi's And the Soul Shall Dance is among the most celebrated works of Asian American drama. Following its long evolution from a short story that appeared in Aiiieeeee!, it became one of the "biggest hits ever in the history of East West Players," earned the LA Critics' Circle Award in 1977, and was produced for television. In light of her 1994 Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Award and her recent collection, Songs My Mother Taught Me, it's astonishing to think that Yamauchi once wondered if she was "good enough" to write for the LA-based newspaper,Rafu Shimpo. She was good enough-and formed a long-term relationship with Japanese American readers in the Rafu's pages, both as a writer and illustrator, that has continued until this day.
- And the Soul Shall Dance (1973, TEA/NWAAT)
A touching story of two immigrant families during the Depression, And the Soul Shall Dance is an early and important landmark of Asian-American drama. Set in an Imperial Valley farming community in 1935, And the Soul Shall Dance focuses on the two Japanese-American families as they struggle to exist in their new country. The Murata family is strong and spirited despite their adversities, and they clearly love each other. Papa Murata is an optimistic man who enjoys his sake. His wife, Hana, is practical and wise. She tells their young daughter Masako: "one has to know when to bend...like the bamboo. When the winds blow, bamboo bends. You bend or crack." In contrast, the tormented marriage of the Okas is not as adaptable to the winds of change. Emiko, trained to dance and perform tea ceremony wearing silken kimonos, had been forced to marry the farmer Oka, leaving behind the man she loves. Their miserable, loveless marriage of ten years becomes more complicated when Oka's daughter by his first wife arrives from Japan. As Emiko withdraws into dreams of returning to Japan, Oka dotes lavishly on his daughter Kiyoko to transform her into an all-American girl. The title of this play comes from a song that provides a brief comfort for the unhappy wife. Unable to adjust, Emiko dances as if transported from the alien California desert back to her beloved Japan.
- 12-1-A ( East West, 1982)
Set in a Japanese internment camp in Arizona, 12-1-A” follows members of the Tanaka family as they are uprooted from their home and sent to an internment camp during World War II.
- Face Box (Pan Asian Rep, 1984); revised as The Momento
- The Music Lessons (Public Theatre, 1980)
- The Chairman's Wife (East West, 1990)
- Not A Through Street (East West, 1991)
- Shirley Hot-Cha-Cha (Mark Taper, 1991)
- Songs that Made the Hit Parade (East West)
- A Fine Day ()
- The Trip ()
- Stereoscope ()
- Her Back(Bone) (Mu Performing Arts, 2011)
Her Back(Bone) is a new performance that explores the flesh of memories, the disquiet with which we bury and unearth them, and the questions surrounding forced migration and displacement. Inspired by two stories woven together: the journeys of grandmothers during post Cultural Revolution and the protests against loss of home and land caused by the Three Gorges Dam Project, Her Back(Bone) explores through movement and text how women and their communities often dig up bones and lay down our stories to rest.
- the villainess (EWP, 2000)
- Venice (EWP: Paper or Plastic, 2000)
Welly founded Second Generation (www.2g.org) in 1997 to bring Asian American stories to the national and international stage. Under his leadership, the company has exploded onto the world's cultural stage, with productions that have been embraced by critics as well as hundreds of thousands of people across the US and Asia. In recognition of his artistic work, Welly received a commendation from the National Arts Club in 1997, was named one of A. Magazine's "Ten Hot Asian American Entrepreneurs Under 30" in 1998, and was honored with CBS Television's Fulfilling the Dream Award in 2000. He is a frequent speaker at universities and colleges throughout the US and Asia. As an actor, Welly made his Broadway debut at the age of twenty as the lead role of Thuy in Miss Saigon.
- Making Tracks (Second Generation Productions, 1998)
Making Tracks incorporates dance, original songs, music and multimedia to tell the story of the sometimes uncompromising assimilation of Asians into American culture and the plight of generations of Asian immigrants to find their way to and in a new land. From the building of the railroads, the grueling experience of Angel Island, the heart-rending stories of the picture brides, the famed Forbidden City nightclub in San Francisco, the tragedy of World War II internment camps and the critical role of Asian American engineers in building the high-tech backbone of America, the Asian-American experience is captured in a unique and fresh light
- The Wedding Banquet (Village Theatre, 2003)
A musical comedy adaption of Ang Lee's celebrated film.
- Two in L.A.
There are 20,000 Navajos in Southern California. Find out what one of them is doing right now (EWP, 2003).
- Paper Son (1998)
Paper Son is Byron Yee's acclaimed solo show about growing up in Oklahoma, moving to California, becoming a stand-up comedian, then finding his heritage. Asked to audition for a Hollywood movie as a "wacky Chinese restaurant owner", the disastrous result pushes Byron into a journey of his past. He is confronted as a stranger in a strange land while watching a Chinese New Year's Day parade and later has chance encounter with a elderly guide at the infamous Angel Island Immigration Station in the middle of San Francisco Bay. These incidents lead Byron to unravel the mysteries of his immigrant father's past, a story long forgotten but soon uncovered within the National Archives of the United States.
A proud Hapa, of equal Chinese and Scottish heritage, David is a playwright, actor and general arts worker. Most recently he was seen in the Fringe hit "Autoshow". His plays have been produced in Toronto, Ottawa, London, Rochester, Manhattan and, recently, New Zealand. He is a graduate of the Theatre and Drama Studies joint program at U of T Mississauga/Sheridan College. David has been a member of Factory Theatre's Playwright's Lab, and is currently the unofficial playright-in-residence with fu-GEN. His last play Lady in the Red Dress premiered at Factory Theatre's CrossCurrents Festival in 2006.
- Legends and Legacies (University of Toronto, 1998)
a conceptual drama based on the idea of a person who is stuck in purgatory, trying to recall exactly when his life took a turn for the worse.
- max 40 Two Plays About Life and Loss (Toronto Summerworks, 1999)
Dave has written two short plays about life, loss and Michael Landon.
- Half Life (1998)
A look at the struggles between two brothers -- one white and one half Chinese.
- Acquiesce (fu-GEn, 2005)
A dying wish brings a young man to Hong Kong to bury a man he never knew. In the days leading up to the funeral, he has to learn about his life, his death, his family ... and himself. A diachronic puzzle, developed within the Playwright's Lab at Factory Theatre.
- Lady in the Red Dress (Factory Theatre, 2006)
Set against the backdrop of the Chinese-Canadian redress lawsuit, lady in the red dress is the story of a lawyer without a conscience, a woman without a past, and vengeance for a cause that had been ignored too long. A darkly comic revenge story about the skeletons in our closets, and the consequences of our (in)actions.
- Are You My Girlfriend (1999)
- Remembering the Zodiac (AATC, 2001)
Twelve Minute play
- Over the Asian Airwaves (Young Playwrights, 2005)
Over the Asian Airwaves focuses on an young Asian American woman in 1949 who must handle the chaos of her struggling radio station, dealing with clashing egos, painful dialogue, and her persistent long-time boyfriend. Can assistant station manager Natalie Ng put everything together in time for the biggest broadcast of her life?
- Escaping Chinatown (Blank Theatre, 2005)
It's 1963 in San Francisco's Chinatown. When their ambitious daughter Anna Eleanor returns home from her second year at Berkeley, Donald and Irene must learn to deal with their daughter's new world view as they grapple with their own past.
- Ching Chong Chinaman (Bathwater Productions, 2007)
A privileged life. A stable home. Indentured servitude in the name of galactic conquest. Upton Wong has it all. But when his Chinese slave starts romancing his mother, will the Wongs ever learn how to be Asian American? A dysfunctional, madcap comedy that redefines what it takes to grow up Asian in America. CHING CHONG CHINAMAN is an incisive, no-holds-barred comedy that turns the question of Asian-American identity on its head.
- Samsara (Exit Theatre, 2009)
When American couple Katie and Craig vow to make a last-ditch effort to create a baby of their own, their quest leads them to India, where a thriving commercial surrogacy industry offers them one final chance at parenthood. But will their decision to "rent out" a surrogate unite or divide them?
- Our Peculiar Institution (Bay Area Playwrights, 2009)
Through the lens of minstrelsy, the institution of slavery and concepts of ownership are tilted into comic relief in this style play in which a newly married man returns the family's long-abandoned ancestral plantation, ready to start a new life. What they encounter there threatens the nascent marriage, and the very ground he treads.
- A Man, His Wife and His Hat (UC San Diego, 2011)
Hetchman loves his hat. Oh, and his wife, too. But when both go missing, the retired hatmaker vows to stop at nothing to find them. if he can ever muster the strength to leave his armchair. But the arrival of a talking wall and a hungry golem threatens to derail his endeavor. A klezmer-inspired love triangle between a man, his wife, and his hat.
- Crevice (Impact Theatre, 2012)
Unemployed, overambitious, and verging on 30, siblings Liz and Rob vow to build themselves brighter futures. Now if they only knew what that meant. But late one night, they discover something that may just give them the direction they need to finally grow up.
- The Tiger Among Us (Mu Performing Arts, 2013)
The play looks at the cultural disconnect felt by an isolated Hmong American family living in rural Minnesota as two siblings seek to blend traditional Hmong family values with modern life.
Yep has won several awards for his novels for young adults. His books often deal with alienation, drawing on his own experiences as an outsider. Yep was born and raised in a black neighborhood and educated in San Francisco's Chinatown, although he didn't speak Chinese. He didn't truly experience American culture until high school. As a high school student Yep began writing science fiction. He published his first short story in a science fiction magazine at age 18, and his first novel, Sweetwater, at age 23. He is best known for Dragonwings, (1975) about a boy who leaves China to live with his father in San Francisco. The novel was selected as a 1976 Newbery Honor book and won the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for Fiction. It remains one of the most acclaimed books in children's literature. His other works include Child of the Owl (1977), which also won the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for Fiction, the fantasy tale The Imp That Ate My Homework (1998), and Dragon's Gate (1993), which was also named a Newbery Honor Book. Yep graduated from the University of California at Santa Cruz in 1970 and earned his PhD in English from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1975.
- Dragonwings ()
An adaption of his book.
- Ages of Wonders (AATC, 1993)
A pair of one acts exploring the Chinese in 19th Century America. Pay the Chinaman takes the archetypical American figure of the roving swindler and reworks him as a wily symbol of immigrant Chinese survival. The play imagines a 19th Century encounter between two Chinese flim-flammers: an old-timer in California and a young recent arrival. FairyBones, captures another cross-generational contest rife with duplicity. This time the mutual conning is done by a manipulative old shaman-woman and her resentful daughter-in-law.
- Pu-Erh (fu-GEN, 2005)
Hours before Raymond leaves his family to move to another city, he has a conversation with his father. Despite the son not being able to speak Cantonese, and the father not being able to speak English, the two reconcile their conflicts: regrets, ambitions, and years of silence.
- Jasmine (Summerworks, 2007)
Mother cannot forgive her son for abandoning the family, for his selfishness, for his betrayal. The son returns. On her journey to amends, Mother explores being young and ambitious in China during the Cultural Revolution, young and limited in Canada as an immigrant, and being a mother for the rest of her life. A sequel to Pu-Erh.
His work has been produced by the New York Shakespeare Festival's Public Theater, Royal Court Theatre (London), Long Wharf Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, La Jolla Playhouse, Intiman Theatre, Portland Center Stage, East West Players, Dallas Theater Center, Cornerstone Theatre Company, The Group Theatre, and TheatreWorks (Singapore), to name a few. He is the recipient of the London Fringe Award, George and Elisabeth Marton Playwriting Award, GLAAD Media Award, APGF Community Visibility Award, Drama-Logue Award, and the Robert Chesley Award, among many other honors and grants. Mr. Yew has produced the Mark Taper Forum's Taper, Too season from 2000 to the present. A member of New Dramatists and The Dramatists Guild, he is concurrently the Director of the Asian Theatre Workshop at the Taper and the Artistic Director of Northwest Asian American Theatre/The Black Box in Seattle.
- Porcelain (Etcetera Theatre, 1992)
A crime of passion. John Lee kills his lover Will in a public toilet in Bethnal Green, East London. The story is told in flash backs and the preparation of a Channel Four television documentary.
- A Language of Their Own (Celebration Theatre, 1994)
When he is diagnosed as HIV+, Oscar tells his live in lover of four years Ming to leave, even though they are still in love with each other. Ming meets and moves in with Robert but because of his past ties he tries to sabotage this new relationship by sleeping around and beating Robert - which drives Robert away. It is only with the death of Oscar that things may sort themselves out.
- A Beautiful Country ()
Immigrant to the United States, drag queen Miss Visa Denied tells of Asian-American experiences over the last 160 years. Such as the internment of Japanese-Americans during the Second World War and the plight of Filipino workers now
- Half-Lives ()
Part of the triology on the gay Asian experience (with Porcelain and A Language of Their Own)
- As if He Hears (1999)
His earliest play..banned by the Singapore government in 1988.
- Red (Intiman Theatre, 1999)
When Chairman Mao's Cultural Revolution sweeps through China the Beijing Opera comes under threat.
- The House of Bernarda Alba (NAATCO, 2002)
Five desperate daughters struggle under their mother's domination as an all-Asian cast brings new energy to Frederico Garcia Lorca's The House of Bernarda Alba as adapted by Chay Yew.
- Here and Now (Actors Theatre of Luisville, 2002)
A couple in their twilight years relives an entire relationship, full of youth, possibility, secrets, disappointments, and enduring connection.
- A Winter People (was The Morning People; Singapore, 2002)
An adaptation of The Cherry Orchard that cleverly folds in pieces of Anton Chekhov's other masterworks to tell this ever-timely story. A middle-aged chanteuse, Madam Xia, returns from San Francisco in the spring of 1935 to her family estate in the heartland of China during the last days of the Nationalist Government. A portrait of the challenges of a family in transition, A Winter People is a poetic, haunting play.
- Malaya (Seattle Repertory Theatre, 2003)
In South East Asia's Colonial Malaya during the 1920's three individuals play out their destiny. Fast-forwarding to the present, the same city is now urban and fiercely independent. But will these three new lives repeat the same cycle or break away from it? Fate, love, politics, and culture collide in this new play inspired by Federico Garcia Lorca's Blood Wedding.
- Question 27, Question 28 (AATC, 2003)
A story of the struggles, plights and courage of Japanese American female detainees of the American internment camps of WWII. Chay Yew drew from the special archives of the Japanese American National Museum to create a documentary theater project based on the testimonials, transcripts, documents and interviews with Japanese American female internees living in California during World War II.
- Second Skin (Dad's Garage, 2004)
What does it mean to be Asian American in a post-Sept. 11 America?
- The Long Season (Perserverance Theatre, 2005)
The Long Season begins in 1930’s Seattle, where a young Filipino named Allos has left his love and country behind in order follow his dream of attaining riches in the United States. He has signed a contract with a cannery in Ketchikan, and leaves immediately for Alaska. His vows of love are tested as he finds comfort in the bed and poetry of the foreman’s wife, and as the cannery explodes in conflict, he must decide whether he is willing to put his life on the line for his dreams.
- A Distant Shore (Kirk Douglas Theatre, 2005)
In the stifling jungles of Southeast Asia, two lives are forever entwined, destined to play out life rituals while constrained by culture and colonialism. We first see a pair in the 1920's, a place of rubber plantations and rebel insurgencies, and another 80 years later in the same city, now independent and metropolitan. Are these lovers destined to repeat their histories or will they break the cycle this time around? Love seems to be the only constant. An erotic and poetic play about globalism, fate and passion.
- Fortune of Ys (NWAAT, 2004)
A new script, a new tye of story.
- Iris (Pan Asian, 2010)
A compelling short about Iris Chang, the human rights activist, historian, wife and mother
- Cockadoodledo (Kumu Kahua, 2014)
Expect the unexpected when ordinary life turns extraordinary.
- Throes of Pathos (East West, 2006)
In a hopeless and bleak post-apocalyptic Los Angeles, Dolores finds herself drowning in a sea of orderly and sedated lives who have lost the power to feel. In her journey to find a missing friend, Dolores is led to a secret world where it is revealed that she is the one who carries the burden of freeing the people from captivity. It is she who must make the decision that will change the destiny of those who deserve the chance to hope for better days.
- The Yoko Ono Project (Theatre Passe Muraille, 2000)
The Yoko Ono Project is a multimedia extravaganza that highlights the experience of three Asian Canadian women as filtered through and magnified by the icon of Yoko Ono. A celebration of the art, strength and unbridled imagination of "the most famous undiscovered artist in the world", The Yoko Ono Project is an inventive melding of music, performance and multi-media, and promises to explode myths and challenge perceptions about one of the most controversial of modern artists.
- Browntown (SALAAM, 2003)
These days, every brown actor is wondering, "Should I take that terrorist role for the money or reject it on principle?" What will Omar, Malek, and Vijay do when put to the test? Browntown explores the issue of cultural stereotyping from the point of view of three brown actors at an audition for a less-than-original tv-movie. Their experience at the audition brings to light the ways in which all three actors are both victims and perpetrators of cultural mudslinging.
- Chick Sexors (EWP, 2004)
An estranged, hapa woman attends the funeral of her Nisei father, a famous chick sexor from the Midwest. From the small Iowa town where she lived to the Salt River Valley agricultural community in Arizona during the l940's, Monica discovers secrets that have divided her mixed-race family for generations and in the process discovers her father's love for her--if only from a distance.
- Meet Me in the Nam (EWP, 2005)
When a Viet Nam vet falls in love with a former war protestor, both must work to overcome and accept each others' pasts. Set in the U.S. and Viet Nam, the play deals with the contemporary issue of post traumatic stress disorder with gritty and poetic language. For mature audiences.
- Roxane of Bergerac (2007)
"Roxane of Bergerac" is the tale of Cyrano but from Roxane's more feminine (and feminist!) point-of-view. A romantic action-comedy musical with lots of swash-and-buckle, the music style is a blend of period French court music with contemporary jazzy licks. Paralleling the music is the dialog (intentionally anachronistic) to reflect the disparity between the spoken and the written, the colloquial versus the formal, the young and the young-at-heart, and of course that ever present battle of the sexes. Most of all it is a woman's search for true love in a Modern Paris, France (of 1640) and what happens to her when she finds it.
Cast size = 14 (including ensemble, 4 men and 4 women), doubling involved.
Book and Lyrics: Marie Yuen
Music: Dave Flippo
Demo CD available upon written request.
- Divine Wind (NWAAT, 1993)
- Max and the Revolution (East West, 2011)
Armed with her Doc Martens boots and mixed tapes, an American teenager finds herself in the Philippines months before the 1986 "People Power Revolution".
Zee, Eric Michael
- Exit the Dragon (Highways, 1993)
EXIT THE DRAGON is a reflection of today's theatre, film, and television industry's discriminatory practices. It centres around three struggling actors coming to terms with themselves and their identities as Asian-Canadian males. Through their dialogue and actions, truths are revealed about each of their identities. Dave Woo is ashamed of his Asian heritage and denies the effect of his culture on himself. Vien Vu is a refugee immigrant from Vietnam and considers himself lucky to be in North America. Jun Chow is a militant pro-Asian without really understanding the meaning of being "Asian". Tired of stereotypes and tired of accepting the "given" rules, all three actors accept their perception of themselves rather than have their image dictated to them. With the newfound confidence, all three actors become proactive in building their careers and fulfilling their dreams.