Pork Filled Productions celebrates playwrights of color with Unleashed! New Pulp Stories for the 21st Century, a staged reading festival of seven new plays, produced in association with the Theatre Off Jackson, October 30 to November 4, 2017 at the Theatre Off Jackson (409 7th Ave. S. in Seattle’s International District).
From steamy nightclub noir, to sword and sorcery on the high seas, to imaginative science fiction exploring DNA technology and implanted memories, Unleashed helps give a voice to playwrights of color who want to break through the rigid norms and expectations of mainstream theater. With a diverse selection of Korean American, Chinese American, Chinese Canadian, and African American playwrights, Unleashed will showcase the wildly creative and outside-the-box stories that often get overlooked from writers of color.
“Playwrights of colors, like actors get typecast”, says Roger Tang, executive director of PFP. “They’re expected, almost demanded, to write about identity, oppression, and social issues. Many mainsream theatres confine them to the ethnic slot in their season.
“We have more stories in us than that. We want to have fun and tell crackling good tales. That’s the point of PFP doing Unleashed. We don’t avoid race if it comes up, but we want to give our writers free rein to let their full storytelling potential loose on stage. And while they’re staged readings now, we want to guide them to full productions eventually.”
The line up of plays for Unleashed include:
- Mirror-Mirror, by Seattle actor/writer Lamar Legend: “”No one suspects a woman with a vacuum!” in this zany fractured fairy tale. Directed by Aaron Jin, presented on Monday, October 30, at 7:30 pm (along with teaser scenes from the rest of the festival as a part of our Opening Night Gala).
- My Samurai, by Seattle’s Celeste Mari Williams, dramaturgy by Sonja Lowe, directed by Shana Bestock: Finding romance is hilarious and frustrating when watched over by a ghostly Samurai ancestor. Presented on Wednesday, November 1, at 7:30 pm.
- Repossessed by Boston-based writer Greg Lam, dramaturgy by Daniel Rector, directed by David Gassner: Rich and Gretchen believe they have the perfect marriage, until they learn that it must be repossessed by the company that manufactured it. Presented on Thursday, November 2, at 7:30 pm.
- Reparations, by Wisconsin writer Darren Canady: This innovative science fiction tale asks the question: if our histories are indelibly imprinted in our DNA, can reparations ever be enough to forget the ghosts of black history? Directed by Jay O’Leary, and presented on Friday, November 3, at 7:30 pm.
- Blood Makes Noise, by Canadian writer Kuan Foo (performer/writer for the Vancouver sketch comedy group Assaulted Fish): An agitated patient is quarantined in a hospital room, while her flesh may or may not be turning undead. Directed by May Nguyen Lee, and presented on Saturday, November 4, at 2 pm.
- Dawn of the She-Devil of the China Seas, by Roger Tang, dramaturgy by Kate Swenson, spins thetrue (we swear!) origin of China’s pirate queen, who commanded the world’s largest fleet, buckling her swash against the dark forces opposing her. Directed by Linnea Ingalls, and also presented on Saturday, November 4, at 2 pm.
- Persimmon Nights, by Seattle writer Seayoung Yim (Do It For Umma), dramaturgy by Maggie Lee: A brash young Korean immigrant rises to great heights to risks it all, while balancing two lovers and many debts in the 1960s/70s. Directed by Sara Porkalob, and presented on Saturday, November 4, at 7:30 pm.
Individual tickets are $6 for General Admission. All-Festival Passes to see all readings are $20. Both are available at the door and in advance online at Brown Paper Tickets, at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/press/3061231. For more info, email PFP at email@example.com.
Spinning off from the long running sketch comedy group the Pork Filled Player, Pork Filled Productions stretches the boundaries of Asian American theatre. Reflecting the imagination and creativity of modern Asian American artists, Pork Filled Products redesigns traditional Asian American theatre to embrace the full spectrum of genres, from steampunk (The Clockwork Professor and The Tumbleweed Zephyr by Maggie Lee), to supernatural comedy (Big Hunk o’ Burnin’ Love by Prince Gomolvilas), to racial identity farce (Yellow Face by David Henry Hwang), to even Kung-fu zombie Shakespeare (Living Dead in Denmark by Qui Nguyen).
Unleashed is supported by 4Culture and the Office of Arts & Culture Seattle and is an Associated Project of Shunpike. Shunpike is the 501(c)(3) non-profit agency that provides independent arts groups in Washington with the services, resources and opportunities they need to forge their own paths to sustainable success.