Feb. 6: Huntington Theatre Company and GBH to Present Mike Lew’s TIGER STYLE! as an Audio Play Featuring Francis Jue, Emily Kuroda, Nate Miller, Rubio Qian and Jon Norman Schneider 

The Huntington Theatre Company in partnership with GBH presents the audio version of the comedy Tiger Style! by Mike Lew and directed by Tony Award nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel (Hand to God on Broadway). The cast features Francis Jue (Tzi Chuan, Melvin and others), Emily Kuroda (Mom, Therapist), Nate Miller (Russ the Bus, Reggie, etc), Rubio Qian (Jennifer) and Jon Norman Schneider (Albert).

GBH will broadcast the audio play on the radio on Saturday, February 6 from 6pm to 8pm on 89.7 FM and stream it on wgbh.org and the GBH News app. The Huntington will also launch the audio production as a podcast in 4 weekly installments, starting Thursday, February 4, along with a companion podcast series “Exploring Tiger Style!” – a bonus content series of insightful conversations with actors, artists, and community members, curated by the Huntington education and artistic departments. Click here to RSVP and for more information.

Francis Jue, Rubio Qian, Jon Norman Schneider and Emily Kuroda in Mike Lew’s Tiger Style! Photo by Greg Mooney

The Huntington previously produced Tiger Style! on stage at the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA in 2016 to great acclaim. The Boston Globe called it “a sharply observed comedy,” and GBH Arts Editor Jared Bowen said it was “uproariously funny.”

“Mike Lew has brilliantly adapted his hit play Tiger Style! for audio, and this production helmed by Moritz von Stuelpnagel highlights all of the play’s wit, insight, and imagination,” says the Huntington’s Director of New Work Charles Haugland. “This smart comedy was an audience favorite on our stages in 2016, and now we can’t wait to share this play with new audiences both on GBH and as a podcast. Mike’s play explores a tension that feels universal to the children and grandchildren of immigrants – what would it mean to break free from racist preconceptions and projections? What does it mean to feel a sense of belonging in America? The way that Tiger Style! echoes these questions will have everyone laughing out loud.”

“In the midst of the pandemic, it is exceedingly challenging to build community and connect with each other in the ways we want to most,” said Pam Johnston, General Manager for News at GBH. “Our hope is that the Tiger Style! radio play will allow listeners to enjoy an entertaining audio experience that invites our community to come together around a shared artistic experience. We are looking forward to this broadcast and to sharing it with our listeners.”

Tiger Style! features squabbling siblings Albert and Jennifer Chen, who reached the pinnacle of academic achievement and graduated from Harvard. But as adults, they’re epic failures: he’s just been passed up for a promotion and she’s been dumped by her loser boyfriend. So, naturally, they confront their parents and launch an Asian Freedom Tour!

Tiger Style! explores what happens when educational achievements and hard work don’t lead to personal or professional success. Travelling from California to China, this hilarious contemporary play examines the immigrant experience, racial stereotypes, parenting, and notions of success with wit and sharp humor.

“I’m honored to come back to this deeply personal play about my Chinese American upbringing,” says playwright Mike Lew. “Americans’ perceptions of the Chinese and of Asian Americans have been evolving so rapidly since I wrote Tiger Style! a few years ago. For this audio production, I had to refresh some aspects of the script and think through how I would integrate COVID and the trade wars. The structure of the play has stayed the same, but the lens is a little different now, and I considered the emergence of COVID, the scapegoating of the Chinese, and how the veneer of civility was wiped away quickly in the pandemic.”

Lew and director Moritz von Stuelpnagel are long-time collaborators – von Stuelpnagel is a Boston University alumnus and the two met over a decade ago as interns at Playwrights Horizons in New York City. “Mike deals with complex social issues like racial bias and the immigrant experience in a way that’s couched in madcap misadventure,” says von Stuelpnagel. “It’s boisterous fun that’s smart. And no one is spared from his satiric wit. Making a podcast recording of a play is a whole new way of making art. While we won’t get the immediate satisfaction of being in the same room as our audience, we can still reach people near, far, and wide. It’s a beautiful and egalitarian way to tell the story.”

The Huntington will also launch a video of an American Sign Language reading of Tiger Style! to be directed by Monique Holt (I Was Most Alive with You at the Huntington) in mid-February. Additional information will be announced shortly.

Lia Chang
Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman. She stars in and served as Executive Producer for the short independent films Hide and Seek, Balancing Act, Rom-Com Gone Wrong, Belongingness and When the World was Young. She is also the Executive Producer for The Cactus, The Language Lesson, The Writer and Cream and 2 Shugahs.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2021 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at liachangpr@gmail.com

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