Asian American Mixfest Features Lab Member Plays Aug 9-17

Co-Producers of MIXFEST, Qui Nguyen and Lloyd Suh

Co-Producers of MIXFEST, Qui Nguyen and Lloyd Suh

Ma-Yi Lab Members Lloyd Suh and Qui Nguyen have co produced and written a a series of free readings of full-length plays along side Carla Ching, Lab co-director, A. Rey Pamatmat, and Madhuri Shekar to be presented in August 2017 at Atlantic Theater Company. “Mixfest” will also include the production of short play readings commissioned by Lab Members, Leah Nanako Winkler and Jiehae Park, along with playwrights Jessica Huang and Rajiv Joseph

Co-producer of the festival Lloyd Suh says, “We are in such an exciting time for Asian American playwriting, with an extraordinary community of writers doing varied, adventurous and important new work. I’m looking forward to spending this Mixfest in conversation with Atlantic and this eclectic group of playwrights and extended collaborative teams.” (from Broadway World)

The following productions are free to the public
and you can obtain tickets by emailing

“MEET THE WRITERS” PANEL Moderated by Lloyd Suh /
Wednesday, August 9 | 5pm

HOUSE OF JOY by Madhuri Shekar directed by Saheem Ali /
Thursday, August 10 | 3pm

Madhuri Shekar

ONE ACTS by Jessica Huang, Rajiv Joseph, Jiehae Park and Leah Nanako Winkler, directed by Seonjae Kim and David Mendizábal /
Friday, August 11 | 3pm

Jiehae Park

Jiehae Park

Ma-Yi Writers Lab Playwright

Leah Nanako Winkler

NOMAD MOTEL by Carla Ching, directed by Ed Sylvanus Iskandar,
Monday, August 14 | 7pm

FRANKLINLAND by Lloyd Suh, directed by Ralph B. Peña (Ma–Yi’s Producing Artistic Director) /
Tuesday, August 15 | 7pm

WAR IS F**KING AWESOME by Qui Nguyen, directed by Robert Ross Parker /
Wednesday, August 16 | 7pm

A POWER PLAY; OR, WHATS-ITS-NAME by A. Rey Pamatmat, directed by May Adrales /
Thursday, August 17 | 7pm


A. Rey Pamatmat

Lab Members Diana Oh and Mashuq Deen’s plays mainstage at Rattlestick this season.


Diana Oh

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater has announced its complete 2017/18 which will kick off with Writers Lab Member Diana Oh‘s {my lingerie play} 2017: Installation #9: THE CONCERT AND CALL TO ARMS! The mainstage season will continue in January 2018 with Dael Orlandersmith‘s UNTIL THE FLOOD and Labbie Mashuq Mushtaq Deen’s DRAW THE CIRCLE will be presented in repertory.

{my lingerie play} 2017: Installation #9: THE CONCERT AND CALL TO ARMS!
Over the course of 4 months, 8 street installations of work connected to {my lingerie play} have taken place in Times Square, Washington, D.C. and New Orleans, which will culminate in Rattlestick’s production hrough this entertaining concert/play, Diana and her band explore mainstream culture’s relationship to the female and gender-queer body and the deep and complex dynamics that exist regarding sexuality and gender politics. This is a culminating 80 minute genre-bending soulful rock and R&B concert-play and final installation of {my lingerie play} 2017.

Mashuk Mushtaq Deen

Mashuk Mushtaq Deen

Deen’s play, (author and lead role) will also be produced by Mosaic Theater Company of DC In rep with The Real Americans. Directed by Chay Yew, At the Atlas Performing Arts Center, Lab II, December 1-24, 2017.

“Gender transition can be a test for any household-but when Mashuq Deen comes out to his conservative Muslim family, traditional values and Western ideals collide in an hilarious and moving immigration journey unlike any other. Told entirely from the point of view of family and friends, yet performed by Deen himself, Draw the Circle is a moving story about survival, transition, and unconditional love.”

Writers Lab Members Fill Kilroys List 2017

Nine Ma-Yi Writer’s Lab Member’s new plays received a record 11 Kilroys this year. Each year, The Kilroys compiles a list of the most recommended un- and underproduced new plays by female and trans authors of color. This year, each Kilroy play received between 6 and 28 nominations. The Kilroys List is a tool for producers committed to ending the systemic underrepresentation of female and trans playwrights in the American theater. 273 influential new play leaders — Artistic Directors, Literary Managers, Professors, Producers, Directors, and Dramaturgs — who had read or seen at least 40 new plays in the past year, recommended 3 to 5 plays each, identifying a total of 403 plays as among the best un- and underproduced work by female and trans writers of color they had encountered in the past year.




Lauren Yee



Part comedy, part mystery, part rock concert, this thrilling story toggles back and forth in time, as father and daughter face the music of the past. Neary, a young Cambodian American has found evidence that could finally put away the Khmer Rouge’s chief henchman. But her work is far from done. When Dad shows up unannounced—his first return to Cambodia since fleeing 30 years ago—it’s clear this isn’t just a pleasure trip.


Lauren Yee


When an American college basketball team travels to Beijing for an exhibition game in 1989, the drama on the court goes deeper than the strain between their countries. For two men with a past and one teen with a future, it’s a chance to stake their moment in history and claim personal victories off the scoreboard. American coach Saul grapples with his relevance to the sport, Chinese coach Wen Chang must decide his role in his rapidly-changing country and Chinese American player Manford seeks a lost connection. Tensions rise right up to the final buzzer as history collides with the action in the stadium. Inspired by events in the life of the playwright’s own father.




Dipika Guha



Just when newly hired CEO Joan is about to launch a new brand of women’s yoga pants, yoga apparel giant Jojomon is hit by a terrible scandal. Desperate to win back the company’s reputation (and her own), Joan stakes everything on a plan so crazy it just might work. YOGA PLAY is a journey towards enlightenment in a world determined to sell it.



 Dipika Guha


Gretchen is a lawyer. Yusuf is her client. Yusuf is being held indefinitely without trial for terrorism. Hattie is Gretchen’s mother. Only, Hattie thinks Gretchen is a secretary, Gretchen thinks Hattie is sick and Yusuf believes he’s been framed. In a world of competing narratives, facts no longer exist. UNRELIABLE investigates the consequences of living only in a story of your choosing.




Susan Soon He Stanton


In 2011, the director of the International Monetary Fund was accused of sexual assault by a hotel maid, Nafissatou Diallo, but all charges were dismissed. we, the invisibles shares the rarely-heard stories of people like Diallo, people from all over the globe working at New York’s luxury hotels. Funny, poignant, and brutally honest by turns, the play is an investigation of the complicated relationship between movers and shakers and the people who change their sheets.







Leah Nanako Winkler


When the Donnelly’s gather for a weekend in the country to gather their belongings for their recently sold estate—both an internal storm and a literal storm brews (uh oh!). As this brood of famous, longing-to-be-famous and kind of a mess but totally Caucasian family comes together with their non-white personal assistant, Charlotte, some really really really really really complicated and totally unique secrets are revealed over white wine…








Madhuri Shekar


At the very last minute, a scientist realizes that her groundbreaking environmental paper – co-authored with her best friend – is based on flawed data. Should she risk her friendship, her career, the fate of the world… for the truth?








Sam Chanse



Taking refuge from a twitterstorm and other assorted upheaval on a last-minute camping trip, Mel and Arjun meet Georgia, a solitary young woman studying the impact of climate change on the imperiled Joshua tree. 







Kimber Lee


Paris and Provence. A failing artist in desperate pursuit of a new way of seeing, haunted by his past, and hoping to remake his future in the color and light of the south. At what point in an endless cycle of failures does faith and persistence become delusion and foolishness? A meditation on love, art, and not being popular.







Rehana Lew Mirza


A local Michigan literary professor seeks out a famous Muslim-American novelist to find out if he’s a self-hating Islamophobe or a really good lay. But they find that getting under each other’s skin can easily become a habit, for better or worse.

ALSO HONORABLE MENTION FOR – A People’s Guide to History In the Time of Here and Now 







Carla Ching


Alix lives in a tiny motel room with her mother and two brothers, scrabbling to make weekly rent. Mason lives comfortably in a grand, empty house while his father runs jobs for the Hong Kong Triad. Until the day his father disappears and Mason has to figure out how to come up with grocery money and dodge Child Services and the INS. Mason and Alex develop an unlikely friendship, struggling to survive, and trying to outrun the mistakes of their parents. Will they make it out or fall through the cracks? A play about Motel Kids and Parachute Kids raising themselves and living at the poverty line in a land of plenty.




2017 Honorable Mentions:



– The Shaking Earth


In the autumn of 1984, during the three days of Sikh massacres following the assassination of the Indian prime ministe, an estranged husband and wife both secretly hide a Sikh neighbor while their brother participates in the violence outside. In the present, a mother and daughter try to reconcile what it means to survive.








– A Valentine



Set in a blighted American city, two ex-lovers meet up on Valentine’s night. What starts out as a casual reunion becomes a night where the past and present collide —exposing old truths and revealing new lies.







– A Deal


Zhu Yi's Headshot1


A young Chinese actress in America invents a background of political oppression to get a part in a new play – but it could all be undone when her parents show up from China to claim their piece of the American Dream.









Cambodian Rock Band by Lauren Yee

The Great Leap by Lauren Yee

Yoga Play by Dipika Guha

Unreliable by Dipika Guha

We, the Invisibles by Susan Soon He Stanton

Queen by Madhuri Shekar

The Opportunities of Extinction by Sam Chans

Two Mile Hollow by Leah Nanako Winkler

To the Yellow House by Kimber Lee

Hatefuck by Rehana Lew Mirza

Nomad Motel by Carla Ching




The Other Instinct by Sam Chanse

The Shaking Earth by Mashuq Mushtag Deen

A People’s Guide to History In the Time of Here and Now by Rehana Lew Mirza

A Valentine by Deepa Purohit

Thirty-Six by Leah Nanako Winkler

A Deal by Zhu Yi

Jason Kim’s “The Model American” Premieres at Williamstown Theatre Fest


@Williamstown Theatre Festival
by Lab Member, Jason Kim
Directed by Danny Sharron


In 2017, what does it take for an immigrant to achieve the American Dream? With humor and humanity, playwright Jason Kim (HBO’s “Girls”) explores this question in his timely world premiere play directed by Danny Sharron. Young, Latino, gay and unapologetically ambitious, Gabriel (Hiram Delgado) arrives in New York seeking work, friendship, love and mentorship. But, before he can move forward, he must honestly determine if he is running toward success or away from what he left behind. Developed at WTF under the auspices of the Bill Foeller Fellowship Program in 2016, The Model American asks: what is the price we are willing to pay for a new life?

Jason Kim is the author( book) of KPOP, the immersive musical produced by ARS NOVA in association with Ma-Yi and Woodshed Collective slated for Fall, 2017.

Ma-Yi Theater Fellowships Initiative with University of Washington Thrives

Ma-Yi Theater is honored to be in partnership with the University of Washington’s Meany Center. Three of our Lab Writers have completed their residencies through the Mellon Creative Fellowships. Deepa Purohit, Kyoung H. Park, and Dustin Chinn. 


 Ma-Yi sends a changing contingent of playwrights from their Writers Lab to participate in 1-week teaching residencies, 2-week developmental residencies, and/or month-long writing residencies. In 2017, UW hosted Kyoung Park and Deepa Purohit for teaching residencies and Dustin Chinn for a one-month writing  and research residency.Ma-Yi Theater is participating in the Creative Fellowships Initiative in partnership with School of Drama. The next group of Ma-Yi playwrights will be announced soon.

“CastAndLoose Live” benefits AAPAC July 17th

Contributing writers include Dustin Chinn, Naveen Choudhury, Mrinalini Kamath, Mike Lew & Timothy Huang, Diana Oh, Deepa Purohit, Nandita Shenoy, and Lloyd Suh.

This Benefit for Asian American Performers Action Coalition (AAPAC) is returning for its 6th installment at Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater is an online collection of the worst, most offensive, real casting breakdowns the internet has to offer. CastAndLoose Live! brings those breakdowns to life with dramatic readings by stars of the stage and screen. 

Join us on Monday, July 17th, 2017, at 7:00 PM for whitewashing, exoticism, invisibility and everything these breakdowns have to say (or not say) about Asian characters and performers. Plus the world premiere of short plays and original music written by writers from the Ma-Yi Theater Company Writer’s Lab, in response to the breakdowns.  Tickets, available HERE,  $20

Contributing Ma-Yi Lab playwrights include Dustin ChinnNaveen ChoudhuryMrinalini KamathMike Lew & Timothy Huang, Diana OhDeepa PurohitNandita Shenoy, and Lloyd Suh.


CastAndLoose will donate net proceeds to the Asian American Performers Action Coalition.

Written and hosted by Lynne Marie Rosenberg (High Maintenance), directed by Jenn Haltman (Summertime), and featuring*: Pun Bandhu (Plenty), Cindy Cheung (House of Cards), Diana Oh ({my lingerie play}), Aneesh Sheth (Southern Comfort), David Shih (Somebody’s Daughter) and more to be announced!



The Public Theater / 425 Lafayette Street / New York, NY 10003 / Tickets by phone: 212.967.7555

Ma-Yi’s June 19 Bowl-a-Thon a Success!

A special thank you to all the bowlers and sponsors of this event!


Ma-Yi  Theater Company held its first ever Bowl-A-Thon Fundraiser for our upcoming season to support the bold new productions  our brilliant Writers Lab. Many Lab Members, actors, patrons and board members helped plan or participated in the event held July 19, 2017.


Sponsors were asked to pledge a dollar amount per pin scored by the Ma-Yi bowlers who participated, to to donate a specific dollar amount to sponsor their bowler.


Our upcoming 2017-2018 season showcases the work of Jason Kim in KPOP and other large scale projects. Events like this help support our artists and continue bringing you great new work from The Ma-Yi Writers Lab.


Monday, June 19th, 2017 from 7-9 pm


Frames New York City, 550 9th Avenue, NYC

More info at or reach out to































Hate Bowling? Don’t like to Gamble? Ok, then. If you’d just like to make a regular donation we are grateful for your support. Click HERE!

Lauren Yee’s plays can be seen across the map – Spotlight


To call Lab Member, Lauren Yee, a popular playwright this season might be an understatement. With several plays in rotation and new works in development, Yee is a bright light among women and asian writers creating innovative and thought provoking pieces that challenge traditional theater and bring cultural and human understanding to the stage.

inaword “in a word” 

Her play “in a word” opens at CHERRY LANE THEATRE at 38 Commerce Street in Manhattan on June 16 through July 8, 2017. Lesser America’s production is directed by Tyne Rafaeli. 

The play, which recently won the Francesca Primus Prize, begins on the “two-year anniversary of Fiona’s son’s disappearance, and still, nothing makes sense to the grieving mother. Not her blasé husband, the incompetent detective, or the neighborhood kidnapper who keeps introducing himself in the checkout line. As Fiona delves back into her memories of that fateful day, to uncover that crucial missing piece, grief and comedy collide, and ordinary turns of phrase take on dangerous new meanings. ”

The Chance Theater in Anaheim, Calif., will also be producing in a word (Sept. 8-Oct. 8).



 King of The Yees 

One of Yee’s most well known works, this “semi autobiographical” play is described by The Goodman Theater, where it just completed an April-May production in Chicago:

“Growing up just outside of San Francisco’s Chinatown, Lauren Yee has always felt like an outsider, especially compared to her father Larry, the unofficial king of the Chinese community. But when her father disappears, she must embrace her heritage for the first time in order to find him. Explore America’s largest Chinatown through the eyes of a new generation in this hilarious and heartfelt comedy.”

In association with the Goodman and incorporating the Chicago cast, King of the Yees begins previews July 9, opens July 16 and continues through August 6, 2017, at the Kirk Douglas Theatre and then at ACT Theatre in Seattle, Sep. 8-Oct. 1, 2017.

“In researching the play, both father and daughter traveled to Taishan, China, the purported birthplace of the Yee ancestral line. “In order to learn about my father, I had to write a play about him,” she admits. Not that King of the Yees is a documentary play. In it, the fictional Lawrence disappears, and Lauren must find him via a fantastical journey through Chinatown, complete with a Matrix-style gunfight and a lion dance. In one memorable scene, she talks to the ghost of her ancestors, who closes their conversation with: “Go Yees! And fuck those Wongs.”  More from From

The play will also be presented at The Dorsett (Vermont) Theater New Play Reading in August.

The Great Leap

In May, Yee compled a residency in the American Conservatory Theater’s New Strands Festival in San Francisco in May with a reading of her play The Great Leap  In 2018, Denver Center Theatre will produce the world premiere of The Great Leap, also inspired by Yee’s father, about the interaction between a Chinese and an American basketball coach during the cultural revolution.


San Francisco: Former Ma-Yi Executive Director and Board Member, Jorge Ortoll, with playwright Lauren Yee at The New Strands Festival presenting “The Great Leap” following a residency at American Conservatory Theater with Ma-Yi serving as inaugural partner for the program.

Cambodian Rock Band

Recently Yee was at South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa presenting her play Cambodian Rock Band at the Pacific Playwrights Festival (April 21-23). The world premiere of Cambodian Rock Band  (March 4-25, 2018) will employ the music of real-life rock band Dengue Fever, to tell the story of the fallout from the Khmer Rouge. Synopsis: “In 1978, Chum fled Cambodia and narrowly escaped the murderous Khmer Rouge regime. Thirty years later, he returns in search of his wayward daughter and is forced to finally face the music”.

The Voice Of

Perry-Mansfield’s 20th Annual New Works Festival will develop Yee’s The Voice Of  presenting on June 16 and 17 in Steamboat Springs, CO in partnership with Seattle Repertory Theatre, directed by Joshua Kahan Brody.

“Throughout the 20th century, the Voice of America radio broadcast served as the United States’ propaganda tool in the fight against Communism, blaring news and music to our frenemies around the world. But who was listening and what might they beam back to us, if given the chance? An exploration of family, music, and memory across time and space.”

Executive producer Jim Steinberg said, “Over the course of its 20 years the Perry-Mansfield New Works Festival has become a significant generator of new American plays that consistently go on to multiple productions. Working in a beautiful mountain environment, playwrights, directors and actors flock to Steamboat Springs for the open, welcoming atmosphere where creativity rules.”


From Susan Fairbooks, Play by Play

See Lauren Yee’s bio here.

Hansol Jung and “Wild Goose Dreams” — Labbie Spotlight


Hansol Jung: 

After a gratifying run and positive reviews  of her premiere of Among The Dead at Ma-Yi late last year, Jung’s work, Wild Goose Dreams won a Kilroy and a run at The Public, and will be staged at La Jolla Playhouse this fall.

WILD GOOSE DREAMS: “Nanhee is a North Korean defector whose family was left behind in North Korea. Minsung is a South Korean goose father whose family has left him behind in South Korea. Nanhee and Minsung find each other on the internet. A story about modern aspirations and its betrayals, Wild Goose Dreams explores the miracle of quiet intimacy among the noise of the contemporary world.”

CARDBOARD PIANO: New to the West Coast, Jung’s Cardboard Piano focuses on the daughter of an American missionary who forms a relationship with a Ugandan girl amid civil war and social upheaval. “Confronting the religious and cultural roots of intolerance, this modern-day parable explores America’s relationship with Africa, and the human capacity for forgiveness.”Jung’s Cardboard Piano will be produced at the nation’s third-oldest LGBT-centered company (Diversionary Theatre stage as part of the University Heights company ) in early 2018.

WOLF PLAY: Artists Repertory Theatre has extended a play commission to Jung, as part of the company’s ambitious new play development program Table|Room|Stage (T|R|S).  Described by Jung, the play begins when “a Korean boy is ushered into a new house by his adopted American father. This new house belongs to an American boxer and her wife. The American father un-adopts boy by a single signature on a piece of paper. But just before he leaves the new house, ex-father finds out that the new couple, to whom he has “re-homed” his ex-son to, is a lesbian couple. American ex-father spends the rest of the play trying to get the boy back. Wolf Play is a messy, funny disturbing theatrical experience grappling with a wolf, a puppet, and a very prickly problem of “what is a family, and what do we need from them, today?” More


What’s Happening in Labbieworld?— Focus on Lloyd Suh

As a member of The Ma-Yi Writers Lab for twelve years, Lloyd Suh continues to focus on challenging audiences with his original and often comedic productions, while directing artistic programs at The Lark Theater.

Lloyd Suh Headshot


Ma-Yi patrons know Lloyd Suh for the productions of Jesus in India, The Wong Kids in the Secret of the Space Chupacabra Go! (Children’s Theatre Company, Ma-Yi with La Mama, ArtsEmerson, Cultural Center of the Philippines) and American Hwangap.

Coming in early 2018 to Jackalope Theatre Company, Lloyd Suh’s FRANKLINLAND, examines Benjamin Franklin’s lesser-known invention: his only son. Directed by Chika Ike, the younger Franklin’s coming-of-age story runs Jan. 9-Feb. 17, 2018. In this moving new play, Franklinland asks what it’s like to make your way in life knowing your father’s greatest invention wasn’t you.

Suh’s Charles Francis Chan Jr.’s Exotic Oriental Murder Mystery recently played at Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis. According to Chris Hewitt at Pioneer Press “Suh is able to sneak up on us with scenes that cut right to the heart of its critique of soul-damaging stereotypes: When an actor is asked to list the ways white and Asian people are different, for instance, the result is not pretty. And the poignancy of a scene where the detective, in Seifert’s nuanced performance, morphs into Frank’s dad is both earned and wholly unexpected. ”

DISNEY & FUJIKAWA  is a one-act that involves  a meeting of two very different cartoonists, Gyo Fujikawa and Walt Disney, in 1942. An uncomfortable conversation on power, personal responsibility, and the art of animation at a time of great uncertainty and national crisis. Currently playing in the Ensemble Studio Theatre’s 36th Marathon of One-Act Plays: Series B.

So you might ask, What are you working on next? (Broadway World Q&A) “A new play for young audiences with Children’s Theatre Company, a couple of plays examining key moments in Asian American history, and one of those Oregon Shakespeare Festival Play On! Shakespeare “translations” of Henry V.”

more about Lloyd Suh


On Stage
The Labbies
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