Summer Update: Ma-Yi Lab Members In the News

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Stephenie Soohyun Park and Francis Jue in Lauren Yee’s play “King of the Yees” at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. (Liz Lauren)

Lauren Yee’s KING OF THE YEES  follows her father’s history and family name (well sort of)

Labbie, Lauren Yee’s, KING OF THE YEES  had a World Premiere at Center Theatre Group‘s Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City recently. The (semi-autobiographical/fantastical)

“In the play — and in real life — Larry is a proud member of the Yee Fung Toy Family Assn., a Chinese American men’s club formed 150 years ago. As a public-minded booster with a strong attachment to his proud Yee lineage, Larry refuses to acknowledge that his club is on the rocks — as is the financially beleaguered Chinatown of San Francisco, where the Yees had prospered for generations. In the play and in life, Lauren uses “King of the Yees” to explore Chinese American identity as filtered through the microcosm of Chinatown — a community she views as socially backward and derelict. Purposefully clueless about Chinese culture, she has married a non-Asian and is moving for her husband’s job to Germany — as far from her ethnic roots as she can get.” more from LA TIMES

“…cheeky playwright with a highly developed sense of the improbable, Lauren Yee brings her fable full circle with a touching coda about family heritage that may provoke unanticipated tears…she boldly wields her distinctively offbeat humor to connect us to our better selves.”

See photos here, Photo Flash: “George Takei and More Celebrate KING OF THE YEES Opening at the Douglas”.  The premiere is followed by a production at ACT Theatre

King of the Yees (Directed by Desdemona Chiang) will also be produced at A Contemporary Theatre (Seattle) in September and (Directed by Sherry Yoon) National Arts Centre and Gateway Theatre (Ottawa, Canada) in October and November of this year.

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Lauren Yee

THE GREAT LEAP: Also inspired by events from her own father’s life involving his short-lived basketball career, the co-world premiere will be at Denver Center in February of 2018 and March at Seattle Rep Directed by Eric Ting.

Yee’s in a word, Directed by Jocelyn Brown, will be produced at Chance Theatre (Anaheim, CA) in September 2017 after a recent run at Lesser America (New York City) (Directed by Tyne Rafaeli).

Two of Yee’s plays were at or near the top of the Kilroy’s List this year.

Lauren Yee: “You never quite know what you have until you see it in front of an audience. Plays are meant to be experienced live, collectively, and in real time. That experience is valuable. As for an audience member during a workshop, they get to be in on the ground floor. You get to see a living, breathing play as it changes and adapts. Is every play going to go on to a long and healthy life? No, but that’s part of the fun. You get to see the path towards plays becoming what they’re supposed to be. It’s the ultimate R&D lab experience.” from an interview  http://dorsettheatrefestival.org/meet-the-artists/


 

Writers Lab member Dipika Guha joined the Core Writer Program at the Playwrights’ Center. The program provides play development workshops and professional support to 25 to 30 playwrights from across the country over a three-year term.

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Dipika Guha

Earlier this year, Guha was commissioned among seven playwrights to write a short play to be presented with the 2017 launch of the Princeton and Slavery Project with McCarter Theatre Center in partnership with Princeton University.

Next year, Mosaic Theater Company Special Event Series will feature Guha’s Yoga Play, a satire of corporations and fitness trends directed by Mosaic Theater Associate Artist Jennifer L. Nelson on January 29, 2018. “YOGA PLAY is a wicked satire about finding enlightenment in a world determined to sell it, one pair of yoga pants at a time”

Guha is also currently translating Shakespeare’s The Merry Wives of Windsor for Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Play on! project, along with Labbies, Lloyd Suh (Henry V), and Hansol Jung (Romeo and Juliet).


 

Hansol Jung

Hansol Jung

Ml-Yi patrons will remember Hansol Jung as author of Ma-Yi’s mainstage production of Among The Dead last year.

Hansol Jung‘s play, Cardboard Piano, opens in early 2018, at DiversionaryTheatre stage as part of the University Heights company’s recently announced season. Her Wild Goose Dreams (Kilroys 2016) recently played at Public’s Shiva Theater in NYC and premieres on the West Coat at La Jolla Playhouse in September 2017.

Jung’s Wolf Play, was part of Victory Gardens 2017 IGNITION Festival of New Plays this month. “An American father un-adopts a Korean boy but just before he leaves the new house, the ex-father finds out that the new couple to whom he has “re-homed” his ex-son, is lesbian. This doesn’t sit well with ex-father at all. The boy is actually not a real boy. He is a puppet. And his puppeteer is the Emcee of the evening, and spinner of the night’s tale: a lone wolf.” 


 

Clarence Coo

Clarence Coo

The Birds of Empathy by Labbie, Clarence Coo, about a socially awkward gay man who is obsessed with birds, was presented at Playwrights Foundation‘s (a new-play incubator) 40th annual Bay Area Playwrights Festival in July. Coo is one of ten recipients of the 2017 Whiting Awards and a $50,000 cash prize intended to provide writers with the opportunity to develop new work on a full time basis.


 

Michael Lew and Rehana Lew Mirza are “BHANGIN’ IT!”

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Michael Lew – Co-director, Ma-Yi Writers Lab and Ma-Yi Resident Playwright

Rhinebeck Writers Retreat presented the first reading of the new musical, BHANGIN’ IT, book by Rehana Lew Mirza and Mike Lew and music and lyrics by Sam Willmott, on May 1 in New York City for an invited industry audience. BHANGIN’ IT was selected for Rhinebeck Writers Retreat’s Triple R program, which gives musical theatre writers 2 readings and a residency to do extensive development in a compressed time frame, culminating in the May 1 staged reading.

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Rehana Lew Mirza – Ma-Yi Resident Playwright

Inspired by the high-stakes world of intercollegiate bhangra (Indian folk dance) competitions, BHANGIN’ IT follows a biracial girl named Mary who gets kicked off her bhangra team, the unstoppable Michigan State Bengal Tigers. Haunted by an accusation of not being “Indian enough,” Mary grabs her best friend and cheerleading drop-out Sunita, and together they form a rag-tag multicultural bhangra team of their own. Along the way, BHANGIN’ IT wrestles with love, betrayal, and the cultural traditions we inherit versus those we create.

Mirza and Lew are Ma-Yi’s Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Resident Playwrights, and Micheal Lew is co-Director of The Ma-Yi Writers Lab, along with A Rey Pamatmat. The three Labbies will also serve as Panelists on  The 24 Hour Plays – a rigorous professional experience for artists 25 and under. Over the course of a weekend, artists engage in intensive workshops, panel discussions, and finally, their own production of The 24 Hour Plays.

A Rey Pamatmat

A Rey Pamatmat Co-director of Ma-Yi Writers Lab

Rey Pamatmat‘s play, A POWER PLAY; OR, WHATS-ITS-NAMEdirected by May Adrales, was recently part of Atlantic Theater Company’s Asian American Mixfest along with plays by Carla Ching, Qui Nguyen (co producer), A. Rey Pamatmat, Madhuri Shekar and Lloyd Suh (also co-producer). In addition to the full length readings Atlantic Theater Company commissioned Labbies Leah Nanako Winkler and Jiehae Park to create short one-acts for the event.


 

Dustin Chinn Headshot

Dustin Chinn

Dustin Chinn recently completed Berkeley Rep’s Ground Floor Awards Residency. The Ground Floor: Berkeley Rep’s Center for the Creation and Development of New Work included 18 projects accepted into its sixth annual Summer Residency Lab. The projects were chosen from almost 600 submitted applications, the most the program has ever received. Over an intense four-week period, residents shared ideas, broke bread, and created new plays. Dozens more local and out-of-town actors and directors joined the Summer Residency Lab as part of these projects, bringing the number of participating artists close to 100. Chinn worked on his play, Colonialism is Terrible, But Pho is Delicious, a triptych that spans the evolution of Vietnamese noodles, which, in his words, are ‘indisputably better on the West Coast than in New York.’


 

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Mia Chung is a recent recipient of The Jerome Fellowship

Playwright Mia Chung, whose “You For Me For You” had a successful Mu Performing Arts production at the Guthrie Theater a year ago, has won a Jerome Foundation fellowship. The fellowship comes with an $18,000 stipend and $1,725 in play development funds. The Chicago-area premiere of Mia Chung’s You for Me for You,” about two sisters who escape from North Korea only to be separated at the border, will open Sideshow Theatre Company’s 2017-2018 season on March 4, 2018.

Mia is the recent recipient of a week long residency at Page 73, home for the development and production of new work by early-career playwrights. Mia will be using her residency to collaborate with director Ken Rus Schmoll on Catch As Catch Can.


 

Mashuk Mushtaq Deen

Mashuk Mushtaq Deen

Labbie, Mashuq Mushtaq Deen also received the Page 73 summer residency (only 4 per year), and will be using his residency to collaborate on The Betterment Society with director Jessi Hill and composer Nell Shaw Cohen.

As part of Mosaic Theater Company’s series “Transformational Journeys: Inspired Singular Explorations” in rep with The Real Americans, Deen’s DRAW THE CIRCLE  performed by Mashuq Deen as well, will play at Atlas Performing Arts Center, Lab II this December, directed by Chay Yew. “Gender transition can be a test for any household—but when Mashuq Mushtaq Deen comes out to his conservative Muslim family, traditional values and Western ideals collide in an hilarious and moving immigration journey unlike any other.”


 

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater will also feature Deen’s DRAW THE CIRCLE presented in repertory and in its upcoming season and  will kick off their season with Writers Lab Member Diana Oh‘s {my lingerie play} 2017: Installation #9: THE CONCERT AND CALL TO ARMS!

Diana Oh

Over the course of 4 months, 8 street installations of work connected to Diana Oh‘s {my lingerie play} have taken place in Times Square, Washington, D.C. and New Orleans, which will culminate in Rattlestick’s production through this entertaining concert/play which explores mainstream culture’s relationship to the female and gender-queer body and the deep and complex dynamics that exist regarding sexuality and gender politics.


 

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Susan Soon He Stanton

Labbie Susan Soon He Stanton is one of Six Filmmakers Making ‘Bushwick Beats’ Brooklyn Drama. Susan recently won the eighth annual prize from Leah Ryan’s Fund for Emerging Women Writers for her play We, The Invisibleschosen from over 400 entries. We, the Invisibles is based on the real-life sexual assault case, New York v. Strauss-Kahn in 2011, in which a hotel maid, Nafissatou Diallo, accused Dominique Strauss-Kahn, director of the International Monetary Fund, of assault and attempted rape and was on this year’s Kilroy’s List, along with the plays of many other Labbies.


WORLD PREMIERE OF KPOP – SEP 5 – OCT 7

FB_CoverNew York, NY, July 12, 2017Due to popular demand, Ars Nova “one of NYC’s most adventurous Off Broadway companies” (New York Times), in association with “the foremost incubator of new Asian American theater in the country” (Obie awardMa-Yi Theater and Woodshed Collective, “the exceptional theater company” that turns “spaces into intimate vortexes of wonder” (Gothamist) has released a new block of tickets and has added performances (September 16 & 30 at 3pm) to the world premiere of KPOP, a high-octane immersive event that gives you a backstage pass to a K-pop music factory.

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KPOP is here and America will never be the same. Claim your exclusive, all-access pass and immerse yourself in the Korean Pop music factory where stars are made… or broken.

Deborah S. Craig (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee) and Vanessa Kai have joined and complete the cast of predominantly Asian and Asian American performers, who now number 18, and also include Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang, Katie Lee Hill (Nerds), Joomin Hwang, Jinwoo Jung, Jiho Kang, Deborah Kim, Susannah Kim, Ashley Park (Sunday in the Park with George, The King and I), Sun Hye Park, James Saito, James Seol (A Naked Girl on the Appian Way, Small Mouth Sounds), David Shih, Jason Tam (If/Then, Lysistrata Jones), John Yi and Ebony Williams (Beyoncé’s Formation World Tour).

 

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KPOP was conceived by Woodshed Collective and Ma-Yi Writers Lab Member Jason Kim (The Model American, HBO’s “Girls”) and features a book by Kim, music & lyrics by Helen Park and Max Vernon (The View UpStairs), an immersive design by Woodshed Collective, choreography by Bessie-nominee Jennifer Weber (The Hip Hop Nutcracker, TruTV’s “Face Off”) and is directed by Teddy Bergman (Empire Travel Agency).

 

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The creative team includes Gabriel Hainer Evansohn (Production Design), Tricia Barsamian (Costume Design), Jeanette Oi-Suk Yew (Lighting Design), Will Pickens (Sound Design), Phillip Gulley (Projection and Video Design), Sujin Kim-Ramsey (Music Director), Helen Park & Max Vernon (Orchestration, Vocal Arrangements, Music Production) and Lizzy Lee (Production Stage Manager).

 

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Performances of KPOP will take place September 5–October 7 (see above schedule) at the A.R.T./New York Theatres, located at 502 West 53rd Street in Manhattan. Critics are welcome as of Tuesday, September 19 for an official opening on Friday, September 22 at 8pm. Tickets, priced at $45 general/$75 premium, can be purchased by visiting arsnovanyc.com or by calling 212-352-3101.

RELATED PRESS RELEASES:

Playbill

http://www.playbill.com/article/kpop-finds-its-complete-cast-and-announces-new-performances

Theatermania

http://www.theatermania.com/off-broadway/news/ars-nova-adds-cast-members-performances-kpop_82000.html

Broadway World

http://www.broadwayworld.com/off-broadway/article/New-Block-of-Tickets-Released-for-Immersive-KPOP-Run-This-Fall-20170809

Resident Ma-Yi Playwrights including the baby in all endeavors-Howlround

Mike Lew and Rehana Lew Mirza are the Playwrights-in-Residence at Ma-Yi Theater Company through the National Playwright Residency Program, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

In the interview article by HOWLROUND the parents summarize:

We end our year of including the baby on all of our adventures and endeavors, happy that we’re still playwrights, happy that we’re still married, happy that the baby is still alive, happy for all the opportunities and open doors and kindness bestowed upon us, but also even more aware of the need to find balance within the juggling act.”


Read the full article here.

 

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In order for us to shift gendered perceptions around parenthood, theatres have to be confronted with actual children. Which means that taking your baby to work is as much a political act as it is a practical one.”

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Mike: Once we find a rhythm, the baby completely changes. But we’re artists; our lives have never been stable and within this fellowship (and having a home at Ma-Yi) we’re actually the most stable we’ve ever been.

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Rehana: That’s what being an artist is—being able to adapt and find stability even in the most tenuous of circumstances.

Mike: One thing that isn’t even included in this timeline (because it wasn’t a “public event”) is the fact that throughout the year we were writing and meeting up at Ma-Yi the whole time—a luxury of an artistic home we’re acutely aware is a rarified privilege.

Rehana: And we’ll keep meeting up and writing at that home for as long as they’ll let us.

Mike: So as for the progress of this ongoing experiment in playwright-parenting, check back with us again in a year.

Read the full article here.

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40th Asian American International Film Festival thru August 5, 2017

Ma-Yi Theater Company is pleased to be a co-presenter of three featured films at the The 40th Asian American International Film Festival (AAIFF), presented by Asian CineVision. AAIFF is the first and longest running festival in the country devoted to films by and about Asians and Asian Americans and runs through August 5th.

The following films will be presented at ASIA SOCIETY on 725 Park Avenue. As a co-presenter of the FILMS below, Ma-Yi is able to offer our subscribers a 25% discount for ANY general admissions for ANY AAIFF program with the CODE: MYTCaaiff40

icaniwillididAAIFF

New York City film premiere, July 30, 2017 /  7:00 pm

I CAN I WILL I DID

Directed by Nadine Truong, with a beautiful score and cinematography, I CAN I WILL I DID tugs at the heart strings as themes of inner darkness, love, resurgence, and forgiveness are explored. Presented in association with Ma-Yi Theater.

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New York City film premiere, August 3, 2017 /  7:00 pm
 

ABSURD ACCIDENT

Directed by Li Yuhe, nail-biting suspense and ingenious humor, ensue in ABSURD ACCIDENT involving a puzzling crime that happens in a small, rural town, where greed, lust and wit battle it out in one night. Presented in association with Ma-Yi Theater.

 

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New York City premier, August 5, 2017, 7:00pm, Closing Night
 

FREE AND EASY

Directed by Geng Jun, FREE AND EASY involves a crook with poisonous soap, a fake monk, 2 cops without clues, a tree theif, a murder. Free and Easy is a farce in which crime is the new normal. Presented in association with Ma-Yi Theater.

 

LABBIES PLAYS HIGHLIGHT “MIXFEST” AUGUST 9-17

 

A Free Reading Series Play Festival

August 9 – 17, 2017
Atlantic Stage 2 | 330 West 16th St.

 
ATLANTIC THEATER IS HOSTING Asian American Mixfest, Featuring works by members of the MA-Yi Writers Lab!Lab members Lloyd Suh and Qui Nguyen are co-producing the festival, that is hosting readings of full-length plays by Carla ChingQui NguyenA. Rey PamatmatMadhuri Shekar and Lloyd Suh. In addition, Atlantic commissioned Jessica HuangLeah Nanako Winkler and Jiehae Park to create short one-acts and present them as readings alongside a short play by Rajiv Joseph!Admission is free, though reservations are required. To RSVP, please email readings@atlantictheater.org 

See below for more information on each show!


 

moderated by Lloyd Suh

Wednesday, August 9 | 5pm

Asian American Mixfest will kick-off with a group panel moderated by Lloyd Suh. Learn more about the writers in the festival, their creative process and what inspires their work.

 

 

RSVP FOR “MEET THE WRITERS” PANEL


 

 

 

by Madhuri Shekar

directed by Saheem Ali

Thursday, August 10 | 3pm

Set some time like the 17th century, in some place like Delhi, India, House of Joy tells the story of Hamida, an elite female bodyguard in the Emperor’s Imperial Harem. Faced with an impossible ethical quandary, Hamida tries to help an abused Queen escape the heavily guarded harem, thus risking her life and going against everything she was raised to believe. A swashbuckling action-adventure romance inspired by the legends of Indian history.

RSVP FOR HOUSE OF JOY

 


 

 

by Jessica HuangRajiv JosephJiehae Park and Leah Nanako Winkler directed by Seonjae Kim and David Mendizábal

Friday, August 11 | 3pm 

Readings of three commissioned one-acts and a short play by Rajiv Joseph.

RSVP FOR ONE ACTS


 

 

by Carla Ching 

directed by Ed Sylvanus Iskandar 

Monday, August 14 | 7pm 

Alex lives in a tiny motel room with her mother and two brothers, scrambling 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 U.S. Immigration. Mason and Alex develop an unlikely friendship, struggling to survive, and trying to outrun their parents’ mistakes. 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.

RSVP FOR NOMAD HOTEL


 

 

by Lloyd Suh 

directed by Ma-Yi Theater Company Producing Artistic Director, Ralph B. Peña 

Tuesday, August 15 | 7pm 

The story of growing up as the only son of Benjamin Franklin: the greatest scientific mind in the world, inventor of the lightning rod and the urinary catheter and the glass harmonica and bifocal glasses, and in his spare time, the United States of America.

RSVP FOR FRANKLINLAND


 

 


by Qui Nguyen 

directed by Robert Ross Parker 

Wednesday, August 16 | 7pm 

A politically incorrect action-comedy following the adventures of Unity Spencer, a young colonial girl who has been imbued with immortality.

RSVP FOR WAR IS F**KING AWESOME


 

 


by A. Rey Pamatmat 

directed by May Adrales


Thursday, August 17 | 7pm 

After State Assemblywoman Alex Hathaway’s district suffers a terrible tragedy, she goes to great lengths to capture a House seat in the next election. She even employs a strange, nameless thing to gain victory over her enemies through supernatural practices. But with all that determination and those ancient powers on her side, how did Alex end up with a community in shambles and a gun pointed at her head?

RSVP FOR A POWER PLAY; OR WHATS-ITS-NAME


 

Don Nguyen and Lauren Yee’s plays are featured as part of Flushing Queen’s “Park Plays”

The Queens Theatre, in partnership with Theatre 167, will produce 10 plays this summer that use the 897-acre park as the backdrop. The production, called Park Plays, will take place from July 28 through Aug. 6 at the venue’s Studio Theater at 14 United Nations Avenue South. Playwrights include Ngozi AnyanwuJenny Lyn Bader, Jess Barbagallo, Gracie Gardner, Richard Hinojosa, MJ KaufmanRex McGregorDon NguyenFrank Paiva and Lauren Yee.

QUEENS-THEATRESix of the plays were commissioned and four were chosen from open submissions. The playwrights either have a personal connection to the park or wrote plays that capture “the spirit of inclusivity and diversity that the park represents,” according to Park Plays Festival Director Brant Russell. Three sisters participate in the annual Dragon Boat Festival in “Race Day” by Don Nguyen, and in “What Once We Were,” which is written by Lauren Yee, three museum curators talk about their memories of the city.

WORLD PREMIERE OF KPOP, SEPTEMBER 5 – OCTOBER 7

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A High-Octane Immersive Event with a Cast of 18 that Gives You an All-Access, Backstage Pass to a K-Pop Music Factory

Tickets:

$45 general, $75 premium, $25, $35 on select dates, details below

New York, NY, July 12, 2017—Ars Nova “one of NYC’s most adventurous Off Broadway companies” (New York Times), in association with “the foremost incubator of new Asian American theater in the country” (Obie award) Ma-Yi Theater and Woodshed Collective, “the exceptional theater company” that turns “spaces into intimate vortexes of wonder” (Gothamist) presents the world premiere of KPOP, a high-octane immersive event that gives you a backstage pass to a K-pop music factory.

KPOP is here and America will never be the same. Claim your exclusive, all-access pass and immerse yourself in the Korean Pop music factory where stars are made… or broken.

KPOP was conceived by Woodshed Collective and Jason Kim (The Model American, HBO’s “Girls”) and features a book by Kim, music & lyrics by Helen Park and Max Vernon (The View UpStairs), an immersive design by Woodshed Collective, choreography by Bessie-nominee Jennifer Weber (The Hip Hop Nutcracker, TruTV’s “Face Off”) and is directed by Teddy Bergman (Empire Travel Agency).

The predominantly Asian and Asian American cast of 18 includes Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang, Katie Lee Hill (Nerds), Joomin Hwang, Jinwoo Jung, Jiho Kang, Deborah Kim, Susannah Kim, Ashley Park (Sunday in the Park with George, The King and I), Sun Hye Park, James Saito, James Seol (A Naked Girl on the Appian Way,

Previews: Sept 5, 6, 11–13, 18–20 at 7pm; Sept 7–9, 14–16, 21 at 8pm; Sept 16 and 21 at 3pm

Opening: Friday, Sept 22 at 8pm

Regular performances: Monday–Wednesday at 7pm; Thursday–Saturday at 8pm; Select matinees at 3pm; No Performance October 2.

A.R.T./New York Theatres (502 West 53rd Street)

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 readings@atlantictheater.org

“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

Rey

A. Rey Pamatmat

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

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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

DRAW THE CIRCLE
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.

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE FOLLOWING LAB MEMBERS:


 

CAMBODIAN ROCK BAND

Lauren Yee

 

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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.

THE GREAT LEAP

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.

 


 

YOGA PLAY

Dipika Guha

 

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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.

 

UNRELIABLE

 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.

 


 

WE, THE INVISIBLES

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.

 

 

 

 


 

TWO MILE HOLLOW

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…

ALSO, HONORABLE MENTION FOR – Thirty-Six

 

 

 

 


 

QUEEN

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?

 

 

 

 

 


 

THE OPPORTUNITIES OF EXTINCTION

Sam Chanse

 

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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. 

ALSO HONORABLE MENTION FOR – The Other Instinct

 

 

 


 

TO THE YELLOW HOUSE

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.

 

 

 

 


 

HATEFUCK

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 

 

 

 

 


 

NOMAD MOTEL

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:

 

MASHUQ MUSHTAG DEEN

– 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.

 

 

 

 

 


 

DEEPA PUROHIT

– A Valentine

 

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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.

 

 

 

 

 


ZHU YI

– A Deal

 

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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.

 

 

 

 


 

A RECAP/THE LIST:

WRITERS LAB MEMBERS WINNING KILROYS:

 

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


WRITERS LAB KILROYS/ HONORABLE MENTIONS:

 

 

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

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On Stage
Ma-Yi Theater Company 520 Eighth Avenue, Suite 309 New York, NY 10018 212.971.4862 info [at] ma-yitheatre.org