Partying with the cast of NAATCO’s HENRY VI; Performances through September 8

The cast includes David Shih, Mahira Kakkar, Ron Domingo, Kim Wong, Wai Ching Ho, Sophia Skiles, James Seol, Rajesh Bose, Mia Katigbak, Jon Norman Schneider, Associate Producer Peter Kim, Vanessa Kai, David Huynh, Paul Junh, John D. Haggerty, Anna Ishida, Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo by Lia Chang
David Shih, Sophia Skiles, Vanessa Kai, Mia Katigbak, Mahira Kakkar, Wai Ching Ho, Ron Domingo and Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo by Lia Chang
David Shih, Sophia Skiles, Vanessa Kai, Mia Katigbak, Mahira Kakkar, Wai Ching Ho, Ron Domingo and Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo by Lia Chang

Last night, the All-Asian American cast of The National Asian American Theatre Company (NAATCO)’s production of Stephen Brown-Fried’s new adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry VI  opened at the Mezzanine Theatre at A.R.T./New York Theaters (502 West 53rd Street at Tenth Avenue), with Part 2 opening tonight. The limited run of performances continue through September 8th. Check out all of the festivities below at The Distillery.

John D. Haggerty, James Seol, Paul Juhn, Rajesh Bose, Jon Norman Schneider, Kim Wong, David Huynh and Anna Ishida. Photo by Lia Chang
John D. Haggerty, James Seol, Paul Juhn, Rajesh Bose, Jon Norman Schneider, Kim Wong, David Huynh and Anna Ishida. Photo by Lia Chang

Brown-Fried helms a cast that features Rajesh Bose (Indian Ink, Disgraced), Ron Domingo (OBIE Award-winner for The Romance of Magno Rubio); John D. Haggerty (Les Miserables – Broadway and National Tour); Wai Ching Ho (Madame Gao in the Marvel Cinematic Universe/Netflix series “Daredevil,” “Iron Fist” and “The Defenders”); David Huynh (No-No Boy – Pan Asian Rep, The Cherry Orchard – Moscow Art Theatre); Michelangelo Hyeon (NYC debut); Anna Ishida (Beowulf -A Thousand Years of Baggage by Jason Craig/Dave Malloy – featured in The New Yorker‘s “Top 12 Best Off-Broadway Shows”); Paul Juhn (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt;” The Good Person of Szechwan -The Public Theater/The Foundry Theatre; White Chocolate -The Culture Project); Vanessa Kai (2018 Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres), Mahira Kakkar (TFNA’s Winter’s Tale), Mia Katigbak (Obie Award – Awake & Sing!; Lucille Lortel Award and Lee Reynolds Award from League of Professional Theatre Women; Actors Equity’s Rosetta LeNoire Award); Jon Norman Schneider (House Rules – Ma-Yi, Awake and Sing! – NAATCO at Walkerspace and The Public Theater, The Oldest Boy – Lincoln Center Theater, Durango – Public Theater/NYSF), James Seol (2018 Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres), David Shih (“Blindspot” – NBC, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres, Somebody’s Daughter – Second Stage, Awake and Sing! – NAATCO at Walkerspace and The Public Theater); Sophia Skiles (A Dream Play, The Seagull, The House of Bernarda Alba – NAATCO); and Kim Wong (The Public’s Henry V).

The cast includes David Shih, Mahira Kakkar, Ron Domingo, Kim Wong, Wai Ching Ho, Sophia Skiles, James Seol, Rajesh Bose, Mia Katigbak, Jon Norman Schneider, Associate Producer Peter Kim, Vanessa Kai, David Huynh, Paul Junh, John D. Haggerty, Anna Ishida, Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo by Lia Chang
The cast includes David Shih, Mahira Kakkar, Ron Domingo, Kim Wong, Wai Ching Ho, Sophia Skiles, James Seol, Rajesh Bose, Mia Katigbak, Jon Norman Schneider, Associate Producer Peter Kim, Vanessa Kai, David Huynh, Paul Junh, John D. Haggerty, Anna Ishida, Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo by Lia Chang

The creative team includes scenic design by Kimie Nishikawa, costume design by Nicole Slaven, lighting design by Reza Behjat, sound design by Toby Algya, and prop design by Ryo Tatsumi. Orlando Pabotoy and Kimiye Corwin are the movement directors. Peter Kim is Associate Producer for NAATCO.

Kim Wong, Kimie Nishikawa, Reza Bejhat, Toby Algya, Ysabel Jasa, Rajesh Bose and Vanessa Kai. Photo by Lia Chang
Kim Wong, Kimie Nishikawa, Reza Bejhat, Toby Algya, Ysabel Jasa, Rajesh Bose and Vanessa Kai. Photo by Lia Chang
Paul Juhn, Mia Katigbak and Stephen Brown-Fried. Photo by Lia Chang
Paul Juhn, Mia Katigbak and Stephen Brown-Fried. Photo by Lia Chang

Performances for Part 1 will be Tuesday and Thursday at 7:00 pm, and Saturday & Sunday matinees at 2:00; Part 2 will be performed Wednesday Friday, Saturday & Sunday evenings at 7:00. Tickets for all seats for all performances are $45, with special packages for both parts, and may be purchased at www.naatco.org or by calling 866-811-4111.

Kim Wong, Mia Katigbak and Anna Ishida. Photo by Lia Chang
Kim Wong, Mia Katigbak and Anna Ishida. Photo by Lia Chang
Vanessa Kai, Mahira Kakkar, Wai Ching Ho and Sophia Skiles. Photo by Lia Chang
Vanessa Kai, Mahira Kakkar, Wai Ching Ho and Sophia Skiles. Photo by Lia Chang
John D. Haggerty, Michelangelo Hyeon, Jon Norman Schneider, Paul Juhn, Ron Domingo, Rajesh Bose, David Huynh, Stephen Brown-Fried, James Seol and David Shih. Photo by Lia Chang
John D. Haggerty, Michelangelo Hyeon, Jon Norman Schneider, Paul Juhn, Ron Domingo, Rajesh Bose, David Huynh, Stephen Brown-Fried, James Seol and David Shih. Photo by Lia Chang
James Seol, Marc de la Cruz, Lia Chang, Olivia Oguma and Daniel Velasco. Photo by Lia Chang
James Seol, Marc delaCruz, Lia Chang, Olivia Oguma and Daniel Velasco. Photo by Lia Chang
Kim Wong, David Shih, Rajesh Bose, David Huynh and Paul Juhn. Photo by Lia Chang
Kim Wong, David Shih, Rajesh Bose, David Huynh and Paul Juhn. Photo by Lia Chang
HENRY VI cast, creative and designers. Photo by Lia Chang
HENRY VI cast, creative and designers. Photo by Lia Chang

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

Save

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

Advertisements

First Look: NAATCO’s HENRY VI

John D. Haggerty, Vanessa Kai, Ron Domingo, James Seol, David Huynh, David Shih. Photo Credit: William P. Steele

The National Asian American Theatre Company, kicks off their 28th season with Stephen Brown-Fried’s new adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry VI. This Off-Broadway limited engagement at the Mezzanine Theatre at A.R.T./New York Theaters (502 West 53rd Street at Tenth Avenue) opens on Tuesday August 21st (Part 1) and Wednesday August 22nd (Part 2). Performances continue through September 8th only.

Photo Flash: First Look at NAATCO's HENRY VI
John D. Haggerty, Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo Credit: William P. Steele

Brown-Fried helms a cast that features Rajesh Bose (Indian Ink, Disgraced), Ron Domingo (OBIE Award-winner for The Romance of Magno Rubio); John D. Haggerty (Les Miserables – Broadway and National Tour); Wai Ching Ho (Madame Gao in the Marvel Cinematic Universe/Netflix series “Daredevil,” “Iron Fist” and “The Defenders”); David Huynh (No-No Boy – Pan Asian Rep, The Cherry Orchard – Moscow Art Theatre); Michelangelo Hyeon (NYC debut); Anna Ishida (Beowulf -A Thousand Years of Baggage by Jason Craig/Dave Malloy – featured in The New Yorker‘s “Top 12 Best Off-Broadway Shows”); Paul Juhn (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt;” The Good Person of Szechwan -The Public Theater/The Foundry Theatre; White Chocolate -The Culture Project); Vanessa Kai (2018 Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres), Mahira Kakkar (TFNA’s Winter’s Tale), Mia Katigbak (Obie Award – Awake & Sing!; Lucille Lortel Award and Lee Reynolds Award from League of Professional Theatre Women; Actors Equity’s Rosetta LeNoire Award); Jon Norman Schneider (House Rules – Ma-Yi, Awake and Sing! – NAATCO at Walkerspace and The Public Theater, The Oldest Boy – Lincoln Center Theater, Durango – Public Theater/NYSF), James Seol (2018 Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres), David Shih (“Blindspot” – NBC, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres, Somebody’s Daughter – Second Stage, Awake and Sing! – NAATCO at Walkerspace and The Public Theater); Sophia Skiles (A Dream Play, The Seagull, The House of Bernarda Alba – NAATCO); and Kim Wong (The Public’s Henry V).

John D. Haggerty, Anna Ishida, Jon Norman Schneider. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
John D. Haggerty, Anna Ishida, Jon Norman Schneider. Photo Credit: William P. Steele

Henry VI will have scenic design by Kimie Nishikawa, costume design by Nicole Slaven, lighting design by Reza Behjat, sound design by Toby Algya, and prop design by Ryo Tatsumi. Orlando Pabotoy and Kimiye Corwin will serve as movement directors. Peter Kim is Associate Producer for NAATCO.

James Seol, John D. Haggerty, Rajesh Bose, Mahira Kakkar. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
James Seol, John D. Haggerty, Rajesh Bose, Mahira Kakkar. Photo Credit: William P. Steele

Performances for Part 1 will be Tuesday and Thursday at 7:00 pm, and Saturday & Sunday matinees at 2:00; Part 2 will be performed Wednesday Friday, Saturday & Sunday evenings at 7:00. Tickets for all seats for all performances are $45, with special packages for both parts, and may be purchased at www.naatco.org or by calling 866-811-4111.

Jon Norman Schneider. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
Jon Norman Schneider. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
 David Huynh, David Shih, James Seol. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
David Huynh, David Shih, James Seol. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
John D. Haggerty, Vanessa Kai, Ron Domingo, James Seol, David Huynh, David Shih. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
John D. Haggerty, Vanessa Kai, Ron Domingo, James Seol, David Huynh, David Shih. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
Paul Juhn and Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo Credit: William P. Steele
Paul Juhn and Michelangelo Hyeon. Photo Credit: William P. Steele

NAATCO Presents HENRY VI, Shakespeare’s Trilogy In Two Parts, August 11 – September 8

The OBIE Award-winning NAATCO, National Asian American Theatre Company, kicks off their 28th season with Stephen Brown-Fried’s new adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry VI.

Brown-Fried directs a cast that will include Rajesh Bose (Indian Ink, Disgraced), Ron Domingo (OBIE Award-winner for The Romance of Magno Rubio); John D. Haggerty (Les Miserables – Broadway and National Tour); Wai Ching Ho (Madame Gao in the Marvel Cinematic Universe/Netflix series “Daredevil,” “Iron Fist” and “The Defenders”); David Huynh (No-No Boy – Pan Asian Rep, The Cherry Orchard – Moscow Art Theatre); Michelangelo Hyeon (NYC debut); Anna Ishida (Beowulf -A Thousand Years of Baggage by Jason Craig/Dave Malloy – featured in The New Yorker’s “Top 12 Best Off-Broadway Shows”); Paul Juhn (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt;” The Good Person of Szechwan -The Public Theater/The Foundry Theatre; White Chocolate -The Culture Project); Vanessa Kai (2018 Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres), Mahira Kakkar (TFNA’s Winter’s Tale), Mia Katigbak (Obie Award – Awake & Sing!; Lucille Lortel Award and Lee Reynolds Award from League of Professional Theatre Women; Actors Equity’s Rosetta LeNoire Award); Jon Norman Schneider (House Rules – Ma-Yi, Awake and Sing! – NAATCO at Walkerspace and The Public Theater, The Oldest Boy – Lincoln Center Theater, Durango – Public Theater/NYSF), James Seol (2018 Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres), David Shih (“Blindspot” – NBC, KPop – A.R.T./NY Theatres, Somebody’s Daughter – Second Stage, Awake and Sing! – NAATCO at Walkerspace and The Public Theater); Sophia Skiles (A Dream Play, The Seagull, The House of Bernarda Alba – NAATCO); and Kim Wong (The Public’s Henry V).

This Off-Broadway limited engagement at the Mezzanine Theatre at A.R.T./New York Theatres (502 West 53rd Street at Tenth Avenue) will begin August 11th, with Opening Nights set for August 21st (Part 1) and 22nd (Part 2). Performances continue through September 8th only.

Order tickets for any performance by June 30

for a great discount.

CODE: EarlyH6

$25 – single ticket

$40 – both parts

(Regularly $45 for a single ticket, $80 for both parts)

CLICK HERE FOR COMBO PACKAGE

“Shakespeare’s Henry VI is the story of a great nation’s decent into barbarism and cruelty. It is a study of how the experience of a problematic foreign war erodes civil discourse at home, and how that erosion allows political self-interests to take hold and send a country hurtling into civil war. The play’s resonances with our world today are terrifying; it serves as a cautionary fable on the fragility of empire, and on the horrors that human beings are capable of enacting. The fact that this story will be told by NAATCO with an entirely Asian American cast vastly expands the project’s significance. A story can be made to resonate and radiate with new power when it’s told by actors who don’t look the way the audience may have expected the characters to look. It contributes to an ongoing nationwide examination of who we, as theatre-makers, endow with the right to speak for all of America,” said Mr. Brown-Fried.

Stephen Brown-Fried directed NAATCO’s award-winning production of Awake and Sing! (Walkerspace/The Public Theatre, Drama League Nomination: Outstanding Revival of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play), as well as Macbeth (Northern Stage), Misalliance, All’s Well That Ends Well and Comedy of Errors (Shakespeare Theatre of NJ), Richard III, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Julius Caesar, Merchant of Venice, and Much Ado About Nothing (Trinity Shakespeare) and other productions at Ensemble Studio Theatre, NY Theatre Workshop’s 4th Street Theater, Sundance Theatre Lab, Milwaukee Shakespeare, Illinois Shakespeare and at The Shakespeare Theatre Company, as well as at training programs including The Yale School of Drama, NYU/Tisch Graduate Acting, SMU/Meadows School of the Arts, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, The University of Miami, and Virginia Commonwealth University. He is the Associate Director of Gingold Theatrical Group, where he created and leads the company’s Speakers’ Corner New Works Lab as well as the company’s education initiatives. He holds a BA in History and Drama from Stanford University, an MFA in Directing from the Yale School of Drama, is Head of Directing at The New School College of Performing Arts, School of Drama, and is a Lecturer in Directing at The Yale School of Drama.

Henry VI will have scenic design by Kimie Nishikawa, costume design by Nicole Slaven, lighting design by Reza Behjat, sound design by Toby Algya, and prop design by Brittany Coyne. Orlando Pabotoy and Kimiye Corwin will serve as movement directors. Peter Kim is Associate Producer for NAATCO.

Under the leadership of Founding Artistic Producing Director Mia Katigbak and co-founder Richard Eng, NAATCO was founded in 1989 to assert the presence and significance of Asian American theatre in the United States, demonstrating its vital contributions to the fabric of American culture by offering European and American classics as written with all Asian American casts; adaptations of these classics by Asian American Playwrights; and new plays – preferably world premieres – written by non-Asian Americans, not for or about Asian Americans, but realized by all-Asian American casts. NAATCO puts into service its total commitment to Asian American theatre artists to more accurately represent onstage the multi- and inter-cultural dynamics of our society. By doing so, they demonstrate a rich tapestry of cultural difference bound by the American experience. The enrichment accrues to each different culture as well as to America as a whole. NAATCO performs this chosen repertory as written, with no forced Asian cultural associations. The repertory’s importance comes not only through the valuable training it provides for theatrical craft, but also from its ability to reach across ethnic boundaries to illuminate abiding characteristics of human nature. The superimposition of Asian faces on a non-Asian repertory, interpreted by artists using diverse and truly universal references to serve the text very faithfully, reflects and emphasizes the kinship among disparate cultures. “We do not say we are all the same, we say that we have quite large areas of understanding. We also say that affirmations of timeless values and new insights about old works can come from unexpected faces.” NAATCO was the recipient of the Obies’ Ross Wetzsteon Award, the Lucille Lortel Award from the League of Professional Theatre Women for their work “highlighting the multi- and intercultural dynamics of our society” and the Rosetta LeNoire Award from Actors’ Equity Association in recognition of its contribution toward increasing diversity and non-traditional casting in American theatre. For more information, visit www.naatco.org.

Performances for Part 1 will be Tuesday and Thursday at 7:00 pm, and Saturday & Sunday matinees at 2:00; Part 2 will be performed Wednesday Friday, Saturday & Sunday evenings at 7:00. Tickets for all seats for all performances are $45, with special packages for both parts, and may be purchased at http://www.naatco.org or by calling 866-811-4111.

Click here  for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2018 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

SaveSave

SaveSave

KPOP’s James Seol, Ashley Park, Jason Tam, Vanessa Kai Among 9 2018 Lucille Lortel Nods, including Outstanding Musical

The cast of KPOP (© Ben Arons)

KPOP presented by Ars Nova, in association with Ma-Yi Theater and Woodshed Collective, has scored 9 nominations for 2018 Lucille Lortel Awards.

The cast of KPOP (© Ben Arons)
The cast of KPOP (© Ben Arons)

KPOP, an immersive musical set in a Korean pop music factory where stars are made—or broken, recently received the 2018 Richard Rodgers Award for Musical Theater, a Studio Production Award from The American Academy of Arts and Letters.

John Yi, Joomin Hwang, Jason Tam, Jiho Kang, Jinwoo Jung. Photo: Ben Arons.
John Yi, Joomin Hwang, Jason Tam, Jiho Kang, Jinwoo Jung. Photo: Ben Arons.

Nominated for Outstanding Musical, KPOP was conceived by Woodshed Collective and Jason Kim (The Model American, HBO’s “Girls”), features a book by Kim, music & lyrics by Helen Park and Max Vernon, immersive design by Woodshed Collective, direction by Teddy Bergman, and choreograph by Jennifer Weber, who was also nominated.

Ashley Park in KPOP. Photo: Ben Arons.
Ashley Park in KPOP. Photo: Ben Arons.

KPOP tells the story of solo legend MwE, epic boy band F8, glamorous girl group SpecialK, and the label behind the pop madness, JTM Entertainment.

James Seol plays JTM’s brand manager for its American transition. Photo: Ben Arons/Ars Nova
James Seol plays JTM’s brand manager for its American transition. Photo: Ben Arons/Ars Nova

KPOP received 4 acting nominations including James Seol (Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical), Ashley Park (Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical),  Jason Tam (Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical), and Vanessa Kai (Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical).

Chatting with VIETGONE Star James Seol 

Jason Tam as Epic, the leader of the boy band F8, in KPOP. (© Ben Arons)
Jason Tam as Epic, the leader of the boy band F8, in KPOP. (© Ben Arons)
Vanessa Kai in KPOP. Photo: Ben Arons.
Vanessa Kai in KPOP. Photo: Ben Arons.

The nods in the design categories include Gabriel Hainer Evansohn (Outstanding Scenic Design), Tricia Barsamian (Outstanding Costume Design), and Jeanette Oi-Suk Yew Outstanding Lighting Design).

Katie Lee Hill, Deborah Kim, Sun Hye Park, Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang, Susannah Kim in KPOP. Photo: Ben Arons.
Katie Lee Hill, Deborah Kim, Sun Hye Park, Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang, Susannah Kim in KPOP. Photo: Ben Arons.
KPOP company. Photo: Ben Arons.
KPOP company. Photo: Ben Arons.

The predominantly Asian and Asian American cast of 18 includes Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang, Katie Lee Hill (Nerds), Joomin Hwang, Jinwoo Jung,Vanessa Kai, Jiho Kang, Deborah Kim, Susannah Kim, Amanda Morton, Ashley Park (Sunday in the Park with GeorgeThe King and I), Sun Hye Park ,James Saito, James Seol (A Naked Girl on the Appian WaySmall Mouth Sounds), David Shih, Jason Tam (If/ThenLysistrata Jones), John Yi and Ebony Williams (Beyoncé’s Formation World Tour). Marina Kondo joined the KPOP cast as Mwe during the extension.

KPOP cast members Jinwoo Jung, Deborah Kim, Ashley Park, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang
KPOP cast members Jinwoo Jung, Deborah Kim, Ashley Park, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang
Ma-Yi Theater's Executive Director Jorge Ortoll, Deborah Kim, Jinwoo Jung, Susannah Kim, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang
Ma-Yi Theater’s Executive Director Jorge Ortoll, Deborah Kim, Jinwoo Jung, Susannah Kim, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang

Laura Benanti and Jason Jones, who appear together on TBS’s The Detour, will host the 33rd Annual Lucille Lortel Awards on Sunday, May 6, at the NYU Skirball Center.

Click here for all the nominees.

2018 Lucille Lortel Award Nominations Announced including KPOP, “Bella: An American Tall Tale,” “Mary Jane,” “The Lucky Ones,” “Pipeline,” “School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play” and “Pacific Overtures” 

KPOP by Jason Kim, Helen Park, Max Vernon, and Woodshed Collective and GUN & POWDER by Ross Baum and Angelica Chéri Receive 2018 Richard Rodgers Awards for Musical Theater

Photos: KPOP Performance Benefits Ma-Yi Theater Company

James Saito is flanked by Ma-Yi's Producing Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña and Executive Director Jorge Ortoll. Photo by Lia Chang
James Saito is flanked by Ma-Yi’s Producing Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña and Executive Director Jorge Ortoll. Photo by Lia Chang

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

2018 Lucille Lortel Award Nominations Announced including KPOP, “Bella: An American Tall Tale,” “Mary Jane,” “The Lucky Ones,” “Pipeline,” “School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play,” “Pacific Overtures,”  and “Jesus Hopped the A Train”

The cast of KPOP (© Ben Arons)

Laura Benanti and Jeremy Shamos will host the 33rd Annual Lucille Lortel Awards on Sunday, May 6, at the NYU Skirball Center.

The 2018 Lucille Lortel Awards, will posthumously elect composer Michael Friedman onto the Playwrights’ Sidewalk in front of the Lucille Lortel Theatre. Friedman was a Lucille Lortel Award winner for Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. Friedman died September 9, 2017, at the age of 41 following complications due to HIV/AIDS. His other works include This Beautiful City, Saved, The Fortress of Solitude, and Pretty Filthy.

The evening will also honor Tony-winning playwright and performer Eve Ensler (The Vagina Monologues) with a Lifetime Achievement Award, and longstanding Off-Broadway company WP Theater for their Outstanding Body of Work.

Ensler recently performed at Manhattan Theatre Club Off-Broadway in an adaptation of her memoir, In the Body of the World. The monologue play, written and performed by Ensler, details her experiences working with women in the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo and being diagnosed with uterine cancer.

MaameYaa Boafo and Zainab Jah. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus
MaameYaa Boafo and Zainab Jah. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

Outstanding Play
Cost of Living
Produced by Manhattan Theatre Club in association with Williamstown Theatre Festival
Written by Martyna Majok

Miles for Mary
Produced by Playwrights Horizons
Written by Marc Bovino, Joe Curnutte, Michael Dalto, Lila Neugebauer, and Stephanie Wright Thompson

Karen Pittman (foreground) and Namir Smallwood (background). Photo Credit: Jeremy Daniel
Karen Pittman (foreground) and Namir Smallwood (background). Photo Credit: Jeremy Daniel

Pipeline
Produced by Lincoln Center Theater
Written by Dominique Morisseau

Dominique Morisseau’s PIPELINE at Lincoln Center Theater 

School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play
Produced by MCC Theater
Written by Jocelyn Bioh

MCC’s SCHOOL GIRLS; OR, THE AFRICAN MEAN GIRLS PLAY by Jocelyn Bioh at The Lucille Lortel Theatre

Jocelyn Bioh’s “School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play” Receives 2018 Drama Desk Ensemble Award and Lortel, Outer Critics Circle, Drama League and Off Broadway Alliance Nominations 

The Treasurer
Produced by Playwrights Horizons
Written by Max Posner

The company of BELLA: AN AMERICAN TALL TALE. Photo by Joan Marcus
The company of BELLA: AN AMERICAN TALL TALE. Photo by Joan Marcus

Outstanding Musical
Bella: An American Tall Tale
Produced by Playwrights Horizons
Book, music, and lyrics by Kirsten Childs

Ashley D. Kelley, Paolo Montalban, Kenita R. Miller, Britton Smith, Yurel Echezarreta and More in BELLA: AN AMERICAN TALL TALE at Playwright’s Horizons 

Kirsten Childs’ BELLA Nominated for Drama League Award, Drama Desk Award, Chita Rivera Award and 6 Lortel Awards 

Desperate Measures
Produced by The York Theatre Company in association with Cecilia Lin and Hu Guo
Book and lyrics by Peter Kellogg, music by David Friedman

Hundred Days
Produced by New York Theatre Workshop
By the Bengsons and Sarah Gancher

Jerry Springer – The Opera
Produced by The New Group
Music and lyrics by Richard Thomas, book and additional lyrics by Stewart Lee and Richard Thomas

The cast of KPOP (© Ben Arons)
The cast of KPOP (© Ben Arons)

KPOP
Produced by Ars Nova in association with Ma-Yi Theater Company and Woodshed Collective
Conceived by Woodshed Collective and Jason Kim, book by Jason Kim, music and lyrics by Helen Park and Max Vernon, immersive design by Woodshed Collective

KPOP’s James Seol, Ashley Park, Jason Tam, Vanessa Kai Among 9 2018 Lucille Lortel Nods, including Outstanding Musical 

KPOP by Jason Kim, Helen Park, Max Vernon, and Woodshed Collective and GUN & POWDER by Ross Baum and Angelica Chéri Receive 2018 Richard Rodgers Awards for Musical Theater

Photos: KPOP Performance Benefits Ma-Yi Theater Company

Outstanding Revival
Fucking A
Produced by Signature Theatre
Written by Suzan-Lori Parks

In The Blood
Produced by Signature Theatre
Written by Suzan-Lori Parks

Jesus Hopped The ‘A’ Train
Produced by Signature Theatre
Written by Stephen Adly Guirgis

The Government Inspector
Produced by Red Bull Theater
Adapted by Jeffrey Hatcher from Revizor by Nikolai Gogol

Torch Song
Produced by Second Stage Theater in association with Richie Jackson
Written by Harvey Fierstein

Sean Carvajal, Ricardo Chavira and Edi Gathegi. Photo: Joan Marcus
Sean Carvajal, Ricardo Chavira and Edi Gathegi. Photo: Joan Marcus

Outstanding Solo Show
Harry Clarke
Produced by Vineyard Theatre in association with Audible
Written by David Cale, performed by Billy Crudup

Who’s Holiday!
Produced by Whoville Theatrical, Scott and Jenny Beck, Jason Shaw, Ken Fakler, Drew Desky/Dane Levens, Darren Bagert
Written by Matthew Lombardo, performed by Lesli Margherita

Outstanding Director
Lileana Blain-Cruz, Pipeline
Michael Greif, The Low Road
Anne Kauffman, Mary Jane
Lila Neugebauer, Miles for Mary
Leigh Silverman, Harry Clarke

Outstanding Choreographer
Camille A. Brown, Bella: An American Tall Tale
Bill Castellino, Desperate Measures
Byron Easley, X: Or, Betty Shabazz v. The Nation
Sonya Tayeh, The Lucky Ones
Jennifer Weber, KPOP

Chukwudi Iwuji and Crystal A. Dickinson. © Joan Marcus
Chukwudi Iwuji and Crystal A. Dickinson. © Joan Marcus

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play
Sean Carvajal, Jesus Hopped The ‘A’ Train
Peter Friedman, The Treasurer
Chukwudi Iwuji, The Low Road
Namir Smallwood, Pipeline
Michael Urie, Torch Song

Sean Carvajal, Edi Gathegi, Ricardo Chavira, Stephanie DiMaggio, Erick Betancourt End Extended Run in Stephen Adly Guirgis’ JESUS HOPPED THE A TRAIN 

Quincy Tyler Bernstine. Photo by Lia Chang
Quincy Tyler Bernstine. Photo by Lia Chang

 

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play
Quincy Tyler Bernstine, The Amateurs
MaameYaa Boafo, School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play
Carrie Coon, Mary Jane
Cristin Milioti, After the Blast
Karen Pittman, Pipeline

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Marc Bovino, Miles for Mary
Edi Gathegi, Jesus Hopped The ‘A’ Train
Gregg Mozgala, Cost of Living
Paul Sparks, Edward Albee’s At Home at the Zoo: Homelife and The Zoo Story
John Tufts, Pride and Prejudice

Carrie Coon, Liza Colón-Zayas, Danaya Esperanza, Susan Pourfar, Brenda Wehle Set for Amy Herzog’s MARY JANE at New York Theatre Workshop

From left: Abena Mensah-Bonsu, Mirirai Sithole and Paige Gilbert in 'School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play' Photo: Joan Marcus
From left: Abena Mensah-Bonsu, Mirirai Sithole and Paige Gilbert in ‘School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play’ Photo: Joan Marcus

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Vanessa Aspillaga, Amy and the Orphans
Quincy Tyler Bernstine, As You Like It
Liza Colón-Zayas, Mary Jane
Mirirai Sithole, School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play
Katy Sullivan, Cost of Living

Chatting with VIETGONE Star James Seol 

Chatting with Steven Eng – 2018 Lucille Lortel Award Nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical for “Pacific Overtures”

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical
Abigail Bengson, Hundred Days
Ashley D. Kelley, Bella: An American Tall Tale
Julia Knitel, A Letter to Harvey Milk
Lauren Molina, Desperate Measures
Ashley Park, KPOP

Kelvin Moon Loh, Austin Ku, George Takei, Marc Oka, and Thom Sesma in “Pacific Overtures” at Classic Stage Company. Photo by Joan Marcus
Kelvin Moon Loh, Austin Ku, George Takei, Marc Oka, and Thom Sesma in “Pacific Overtures” at Classic Stage Company. Photo by Joan Marcus

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Sean Patrick Doyle, Jerry Springer – The Opera
Brandon Gill, Bella: An American Tall Tale
Paolo Montalban, Bella: An American Tall Tale
Thom Sesma, Pacific Overtures
Jason Tam, KPOP

Jason Tam as Epic, the leader of the boy band F8, in KPOP. (© Ben Arons)
Jason Tam as Epic, the leader of the boy band F8, in KPOP. (© Ben Arons)

Lucille Lortel Nominee Thom Sesma Talks Asian American Representation in the Performing Arts and all things Sondheim 

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Vanessa Kai, KPOP
Tiffany Mann, Jerry Springer – The OperaQuincy Tyler Bernstine
Maryann Plunkett, The Lucky Ones
Myra Lucretia Taylor, The Lucky Ones
Adina Verson, The Lucky Ones

Outstanding Scenic Design
Gabriel Hainer Evansohn, KPOP
Anna Fleischle, Hangmen
Laura Jellinek, Mary Jane
Amy Rubin, Miles for Mary
Louisa Thompson, In The Blood

Outstanding Costume Design
Dede M. Ayite, Bella: An American Tall Tale
Dede M. Ayite, School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play
Tricia Barsamian, KPOP
Tilly Grimes, The Government Inspector
Emily Rebholz, The Low Road

Outstanding Lighting Design
Alan C. Edwards, Harry Clarke
Bradley King, The Treasurer
Ben Stanton, The Low Road
Japhy Weideman, Mary Jane
Jeanette Oi-Suk Yew, KPOP

Outstanding Sound Design
Mikhail Fiksel, The Treasurer
Leah Gelpe, Mary Jane
Bray Poor, The Last Match
Bray Poor, Office Hour
Brandon Wolcott, After the Blast

Outstanding Projection Design
Lucy Mackinnon, After the Blast
Alexander V. Nichols, Ernest Shackleton Loves Me
Brad Peterson, The Stone Witch
Hannah Wasileski, Pipeline
Jeanette Oi-Suk Yew, Relevance

Productions with multiple nominations
KPOP (9)
Bella: An American Tall Tale (6)
Mary Jane (6)
The Lucky Ones (5)
Pipeline (5)
Jerry Springer – The Opera (4)
The Low Road (4)
Miles for Mary (4)
School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play (4)
The Treasurer (4)
After the Blast (3)
Cost of Living (3)
Desperate Measures (3)
Harry Clarke (3)
Jesus Hopped The “A” Train (3)
Ernest Shackleton Loves Me (2)
The Government Inspector (2)
Hundred Days (2)
In the Blood (2)
Pacific Overtures (2)
Torch Song (2)

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSaveSaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSaveSaveSave

A.C.T. Extends Qui Nguyen’s VIETGONE through April 29

Quang (James Seol, front) and friend Nhan (Stephen Hu, back) embark on a motorcycle trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) is extending Qui Nguyen’s critically acclaimed play, Vietgone, by one week due to popular demand and sold-out houses. Tickets are now on sale through Sunday, April 29, 2018. Hailed as “one of the most rollicking Culture Clash comedies ever” (Bay Area News Group) and a “miraculous fairy tale of love” (San Francisco Chronicle), Vietgone is a contemporary twist on the classic story of boy meets girl.

Photo Flash: A.C.T. Stages VIETGONE
Tong (Jenelle Chu, left) and her mother Huong (Cindy Im, right) arrive at Fort Chaffee, Arkansas. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

In this irreverent new comedy, three young Vietnamese immigrants leave their war-torn country for an eye-opening road trip across the bewildering and foreign landscape of 1970s America. A vibrant mash-up of audacious language, pop-culture references, and kick-ass romance, Vietgone is an action-packed road trip that shifts gears instantaneously from hilarity to heart-wrenching drama. Performances of Vietgone take place at A.C.T.’s Strand Theater (1127 Market St., San Francisco). Tickets for all remaining performances are available at the A.C.T. Box Office at 415.749.2228 or online at www.act-sf.org. Ticket prices are subject to change without notice.

Helicopter pilot Quang (James Seol, right) promises his wife Thu (Cindy Im, left) that if the Viet Cong invade Saigon he will fly her and their two children to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Helicopter pilot Quang (James Seol, right) promises his wife Thu (Cindy Im, left) that if the Viet Cong invade Saigon he will fly her and their two children to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

The performance schedule for the added week is as follows: Tuesday, April 24 at 7:30 p.m.; Wednesday, April 25 at 7:30 p.m.; Thursday, April 26 at 7:30 p.m.; Friday, April 27 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, April 28 at 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.; Sunday, April 29 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Nhan (Stephen Hu, left) and Quang (James Seol, right) fly a helicopter full of people to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Nhan (Stephen Hu, left) and Quang (James Seol, right) fly a helicopter full of people to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Says A.C.T. Artistic Director Carey Perloff: “The response to Vietgone from audiences young and old has been incredible. We’re so delighted that this wildly imaginative and bold play has found such a receptive home in the Bay Area and are thrilled it is getting a longer life at The Strand.”

Huong (Cindy Im, left) walks in on Quang (James Seol, center) and Tong (Jenelle Chu, right) in bed. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Huong (Cindy Im, left) walks in on Quang (James Seol, center) and Tong (Jenelle Chu, right) in bed. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Under the direction of Jaime Castañeda (Associate Artistic Director at La Jolla Playhouse), the Vietgone company features (in alphabetical order) Jenelle Chu, Stephen Hu, Cindy Im, James Seol, Jomar Tagatac, and understudies Steven Ho and Christine Jamlig.

Quang (James Seol, left) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, right) share a joint during their trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, left) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, right) share a joint during their trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

The creative team for Vietgone includes Brian Sidney Bembridge (Scenic Designer), Jessie Amoroso (Costume Designer), Wen-Ling Liao (Lighting Designer), Jake Rodriguez (Sound Designer), Chris Lundahl (Projection Designer), Shammy Dee (Original Music), and Natalia Duong (Assistant Director).

Tong (Jenelle Chu, left) whispers an invitation to Quang (James Seol, right). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Tong (Jenelle Chu, left) whispers an invitation to Quang (James Seol, right). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne.
Quang (James Seol, front) and friend Nhan (Stephen Hu, back) embark on a motorcycle trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, front) and friend Nhan (Stephen Hu, back) embark on a motorcycle trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, right) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, center) get into an altercation with a redneck American biker (Jomar Tagatac, left). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, right) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, center) get into an altercation with a redneck American biker (Jomar Tagatac, left). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, left) is informed by Captain Chambers (Jomar Tagatac, center) of the USS Midway and his translator (Cindy Im, right) that he cannot return to Saigon. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, left) is informed by Captain Chambers (Jomar Tagatac, center) of the USS Midway and his translator (Cindy Im, right) that he cannot return to Saigon. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Chatting with VIETGONE Star James Seol 

Lia Chang. Photo by Lori Tan Chinn
Lia Chang. Photo by Lori Tan Chinn

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com

Chatting with VIETGONE Star James Seol

Quang (James Seol, front) and friend Nhan (Stephen Hu, back) embark on a motorcycle trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
James Seol
James Seol

American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) production of Qui Nguyen’s critically acclaimed play, Vietgone, helmed by Jaime Castañeda (Associate Artistic Director at La Jolla Playhouse) and starring Jenelle Chu, Stephen Hu, Cindy Im, James Seol, and Jomar Tagatac, opens tonight at The Strand Theater, 1127 Market Street, SF, CA. Vietgone began previews on February 21st, and is scheduled to run through Sunday, April 22, 2018.

Photo Flash: A.C.T. Stages VIETGONE
Tong (Jenelle Chu, left) and her mother Huong (Cindy Im, right) arrive at Fort Chaffee, Arkansas. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Hailed as a “raucous, immensely moving comedy” by the New York Times, Vietgone is a modern twist on the classic story of boy meets girl. In this irreverent new comedy, three young Vietnamese immigrants leave a war-torn country for an eye-opening road trip across the bewildering and foreign landscape of 1970s America.

Helicopter pilot Quang (James Seol, right) promises his wife Thu (Cindy Im, left) that if the Viet Cong invade Saigon he will fly her and their two children to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Helicopter pilot Quang (James Seol, right) promises his wife Thu (Cindy Im, left) that if the Viet Cong invade Saigon he will fly her and their two children to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

A vibrant mash-up of audacious language, pop-culture references, and kick-ass romance, Vietgone is an action-packed road trip that shifts gears instantaneously from hilarity to heart-wrenching drama. Following sold-out houses at Oregon Shakespeare Festival and New York’s Manhattan Theatre Club, this sexy, sassy, freewheeling ride, backed by original hip-hop and Motown rhythms, will roll into The Strand in an all-new production this February.

Nhan (Stephen Hu, left) and Quang (James Seol, right) fly a helicopter full of people to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Nhan (Stephen Hu, left) and Quang (James Seol, right) fly a helicopter full of people to safety. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Below is my chat with James Seol, who plays Quang.

Lia: You are appearing in one of my favorite shows. How are rehearsals going?
James: We open tonight!! Previews have been ongoing for about two weeks now; my favorite part of the process. I love working on things during the day, getting notes and then seeing if I can fully incorporate those changes into the evening’s performance.

Huong (Cindy Im, left) walks in on Quang (James Seol, center) and Tong (Jenelle Chu, right) in bed. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Huong (Cindy Im, left) walks in on Quang (James Seol, center) and Tong (Jenelle Chu, right) in bed. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

This particular preview period has been pretty eventful. Lots of refining. Lighting adjustments. Quick change practice. Addition of Sex Montage. It’s a super challenging show because of all the moving parts that need to align. All that said, it’s been a THRILL to work on, and every day the goal is to be as rich, textured and playful as the text itself.

Quang (James Seol, left) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, right) share a joint during their trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, left) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, right) share a joint during their trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Working on this play is a huge gift. Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea that artists need practical experience to get better. Working and learning in an acting class is one thing. But, to actually learn and improve on the job, where the stakes can sometimes be high, is absolutely vital. How does an actor learn to sustain imaginatively, physically and vocally when there’s an audience, when there are critics, when the President of Broadway is watching, unless she or he is able to do so in the marathon situation of an actual production? Artists need opportunities to run those marathons over and over. Unfortunately, for many actors of color, we don’t get to practice running marathons; we get a 50 yard dash and maybe the occasional 5K. (I could run with this running metaphor for forever.). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Tong (Jenelle Chu, left) whispers an invitation to Quang (James Seol, right). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Tong (Jenelle Chu, left) whispers an invitation to Quang (James Seol, right). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Vietgone is a fucking marathon. 5 (plus) meaty, dense, fantastic roles that dare actors to bring EVERYTHING they have to bring the text (spoken and rapped) to life.

Quang (James Seol, front) and friend Nhan (Stephen Hu, back) embark on a motorcycle trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, front) and friend Nhan (Stephen Hu, back) embark on a motorcycle trip from Arkansas to California. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Lia:  Who do you play?
James: I play Quang. The motorcycle-riding, weed-smoking, ninja-fighting, helicopter-flying, superhero version of the playwright’s dad.

Quang (James Seol, right) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, center) get into an altercation with a redneck American biker (Jomar Tagatac, left). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, right) and Nhan (Stephen Hu, center) get into an altercation with a redneck American biker (Jomar Tagatac, left). Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

As reference, I’ve been thinking a lot about my own dad. Like Quang, he was in the military (Korean and American). He’s got that Korean, older-generation, stoic exterior AND a soft, warm, loving, gooey, clowny center. Good inspiration for this character.

Quang (James Seol, left) is informed by Captain Chambers (Jomar Tagatac, center) of the USS Midway and his translator (Cindy Im, right) that he cannot return to Saigon. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Quang (James Seol, left) is informed by Captain Chambers (Jomar Tagatac, center) of the USS Midway and his translator (Cindy Im, right) that he cannot return to Saigon. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

James: The Four Immigrants was a joy from beginning to end. Our director, Leslie Martinson, and composer/lyricist/book writer/overachiever, Min Kahng, were exceptionally collaborative and inspiring from the start. It’s a really earnest, beautiful piece about a little known chunk of American history, so all the more reason to tell the story.

From left, Phil Wong, James Seol, Hansel Tan and Sean Fenton star in “The Four Immigrants: An American Musical Manga.” Kevin Berne/TheatreWorks Silicone Valley
From left, Phil Wong, James Seol, Hansel Tan and Sean Fenton star in “The Four Immigrants: An American Musical Manga.” Kevin Berne/TheatreWorks Silicone Valley

I had done Kimber Lee’s Tokyo Fish Story at TheatreWorks the season prior. After the closing performance of Immigrants, I told Leslie that both experiences at TheatreWorks cumulatively taught me how to act. And it’s true. Everything I mentioned earlier about getting opportunities to grow in full production settings, I got in Palo Alto. Working on new shows, especially, requires such a specific skill set. Navigating conversations with creative teams, performing while maintaining a dramaturgical eye, trusting gut instincts.

Sushi protege Takashi (James Seol), sushi master (Francis Jue) and newcomers Ama (Nicole Javier) and Nobu (Linden Tailor) in “Tokyo Fish Story.” Photo by Kevin Berne
Sushi protege Takashi (James Seol), sushi master (Francis Jue) and newcomers Ama (Nicole Javier) and Nobu (Linden Tailor) in “Tokyo Fish Story.” Photo by Kevin Berne

KPOP
KPOP was epic. The folks at Ars Nova, Ma-Yi and Woodshed Collective are forces to be reckoned with. They will do EVERYTHING for their art. I was lucky to be a part of it all.

The members of girl group Special K (from left: Katie Lee Hill, Deborah Kim, Sun Hye Park, Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang and Susannah Kim). Photographs by Ben Arons.
The members of girl group Special K (from left: Katie Lee Hill, Deborah Kim, Sun Hye Park, Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang and Susannah Kim). Photographs by Ben Arons.
The rehearsal process, especially the tech portion, was understandably challenging. So many pieces needed to come together in very precise ways. Our final dress was almost four hours long. (Caffeine.) And the first week of previews was riddled with fire alarms going off. (Nerve-wracking.) Through it all, the creatives, cast, and crew hunkered down; the dedication was inspiring. Stage managers slept at Ars Nova to be able to start work early the next day. Our book writer fine-tuned scenes into the early morning. Crew members worked throughout the night to put the finishing touches on the expansive space.

Thankfully, the show attracted a really passionate audience. But it’s a testament to the exquisite abilities of everyone involved that it came together in such a meaningful, powerful way.

Oh, and I got to share a dressing room with James Saito and Dave Shih. The equivalent of being in a room with Al Pacino (Saito) and John C. Reilly (Shih).

Also, Tina Fey came; I held it together as best I could.

ALSO, Lin-Manuel Miranda came. It was like meeting the Queen.

James Seol plays JTM’s brand manager for its American transition. Photo: Ben Arons/Ars Nova
James Seol plays JTM’s brand manager for its American transition. Photo: Ben Arons/Ars Nova

Lia: I understand KPOP was a very personal experience. Please elaborate.
James: Around the time I graduated from acting school, there was this one week where I had three appointments (which was an anomaly in the first place; sometimes I went months without an audition.) No joke, all THREE auditions were for “the gay, Asian hairdresser.” Something about the repetition of that specific character stereotype strikes me as symptomatic of the time. If you had asked me then if a musical about KPOP, about Koreans and Korean-Americans getting to be human beings on a stage would succeed in NYC, I would have done a spit take.

This show was in so many ways a response to the years of misrepresentation and under-representation. As in, here was an exciting new musical created by and starring a LOT of Asians/Asian-Americans that followed the lives of Asians/Asian-Americans and offered as complete a portrait as any theater piece can.

The cast of KPOP  (© Ben Arons)
The cast of KPOP  (© Ben Arons)

Lia: What kinds of responses and feedback did you have from your audiences towards the show, the concept and your character?
James: The show developed a following. This is a little silly, but there was fan art. Fan art for an off-Broadway musical! Audiences were, by and large, super enthusiastic. Houses were diverse, responsive and accepting. The music and the immersive nature of the show were huge draws.

My character, Jerry, was… complicated. He dealt with a lot personal challenges related to assimilation and identity. As a result, his perspectives and treatment of some of the other characters could be uncomfortable to witness. Because we were all acting, basically, right up in audience members’ faces, the lines of reality/artifice could sometimes get blurred. Audience reactions were instinctive, unguarded, and, therefore, blunt. Some nights, I could feel an entire room of people turning on me. The looks of shock and disgust were hard to ignore (but, of course, I had to pretend not to notice.) I suppose it’s a good thing that people would come up to me after the show and exclaim what an asshole I was. I dunno if I ever got used to that.

Lia:  What you do find most challenging about being an actor?
James: I get in my own way a lot. Self-doubt is a consistent challenge. I’m pretty effusive when it comes to the work of my friends; I love witnessing their success. It can be super inspiring and motivating. But offering myself that level of support isn’t always so forthcoming. Thankfully, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to manage and counterbalance the negative thoughts. Having a solid support network of fellow actors helps. My family has also been really great about providing encouragement.

Also, money. I want more money.

Lia: Are there any other projects that you are involved with this year?
James: Once Vietgone ends, I’ll be heading back to NYC. Day-jobbery and auditioning.

About a month ago, the entire original cast and creative team recorded the Four Immigrants. The show was very well-received, and as a result, TheatreWorks Silicon Valley managed to raise the funds for us to assemble and record in Oakland. It was a hectic 48 hours, but I just heard a few of the tracks. They sound great!! I think the release date is sometime in June.

Lia:  Any directors, writers or plays that are on your wish list?
James: I should be more practical and keep an ongoing wish list of names and titles. I do keep a mental tally of work that inspires me. John Doyle’s recent Pacific Overtures, at Classic Stage. Ivo Van Hove’s The Crucible. Leigh Silverman’s staging of Violet.

Hmmm, I recently reread The Glass Menagerie; definitely on my bucket list.

Two hippies (Cindy Im, left, and Jomar Tagatac) smoke a joint. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne
Two hippies (Cindy Im, left, and Jomar Tagatac) smoke a joint. Photo Credit: Kevin Berne

Single tickets (ranging from $25-$90) are available at the A.C.T. Box Office at 415.749.2228 or online at act-sf.org. Ticket prices are subject to change without notice.

The creative team for Vietgone includes Brian Sidney Bembridge (Scenic Designer), Jessie Amoroso (Costume Designer), Wen-Ling Liao (Lighting Designer), Jake Rodriguez (Sound Designer), Chris Lundahl (Projection Designer), Shammy Dee (Original Music), and Natalia Duong (Assistant Director).

Lia Chang. Photo by Lori Tan Chinn
Lia Chang. Photo by Lori Tan Chinn

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

James Seol, Jenelle Chu, Stephen Hu, Cindy Im, and Jomar Tagatac Set for Qui Nguyen’s Irreverent Road-trip Comedy, VIETGONE at A.C.T.’s The Strand, February 21 – April 22

James Seol
James Seol
James Seol

American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) continues its 2017-18 season with Qui Nguyen’s critically acclaimed play, Vietgone, Wednesday, February 21 – Sunday, April 22, 2018, at The Strand Theater, 1127 Market Street, SF, CA.

Hailed as a “raucous, immensely moving comedy” by the New York Times, Vietgone is a modern twist on the classic story of boy meets girl. In this irreverent new comedy, three young Vietnamese immigrants leave a war-torn country for an eye-opening road trip across the bewildering and foreign landscape of 1970s America.

A vibrant mash-up of audacious language, pop-culture references, and kick-ass romance, Vietgone is an action-packed road trip that shifts gears instantaneously from hilarity to heart-wrenching drama. Following sold-out houses at Oregon Shakespeare Festival and New York’s Manhattan Theatre Club, this sexy, sassy, freewheeling ride, backed by original hip-hop and Motown rhythms, will roll into The Strand in an all-new production this February.

Single tickets (ranging from $25-$90) are available at the A.C.T. Box Office at 415.749.2228 or online at act-sf.org. Ticket prices are subject to change without notice.

Vietgone is a humorous and heartwarming play that reexamines the Vietnam War and tracks the refugee experience in an entirely new way through a mash-up of uniquely unconventional styles-from hip-hop and comedy to martial arts and video,” says A.C.T. Artistic Director Carey Perloff. “We are delighted to introduce San Francisco Bay Area audiences to playwright Qui Nguyen and director Jaime Castañeda and look forward to partnering with the Vietnamese community on a number of cultural events throughout the engagement.”

Under the direction of Jaime Castañeda (Associate Artistic Director at La Jolla Playhouse), Vietgone features (in alphabetical order) Jenelle Chu, Stephen Hu, Cindy Im, James Seol, and Jomar Tagatac.

The creative team for Vietgone includes Brian Sidney Bembridge (Scenic Designer), Jessie Amoroso (Costume Designer), Wen-Ling Liao (Lighting Designer), Jake Rodriguez (Sound Designer), Chris Lundahl (Projection Designer), Shammy Dee (Original Music), and Natalia Duong (Assistant Director).

In connection with Vietgone, A.C.T. will offer numerous InterACT events-many of which are presented free of charge-that will give patrons opportunities to get closer to the action while having an entire night out at the theater. Visit act-sf.org/interact to learn more about subscribing to these events throughout the season.

• Bike to the Theater Night:
Wednesday, February 21, 6:30 p.m.
Providing a greener alternative to theater transportation, A.C.T. and the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition offer free valet bike parking, as well as a special discount on tickets, for these select performances.

• Tech Night:
Thursday, February 22, 5:30 p.m.
Join us at a neighborhood bar for a happy hour with hors d’oeuvres, drinks, and mingling with industry contacts and theatergoers before walking over to A.C.T.’s Geary Theater for the 8 p.m. performance.

• Prologue:
Tuesday, March 6, 5:30 p.m.
Before the curtain goes up, get a sneak peek at the artistic process at this fascinating preshow discussion with the director and artistic staff.

• Audience Exchanges:
Tuesday, March 13, 7 p.m. | Wednesday, March 28, 2 p.m. | Sunday, April 1, 2 p.m.
After the show, stick around for a lively Q&A session with the actors and artists who create the work onstage.

• OUT with A.C.T.:
Wednesday, March 14, following the 7:30 p.m. performance
The best LGBT night in town! Mingle with the cast and enjoy free drinks and treats at this popular after-party.

• Theater on the Couch:
Friday, March 16, following the 7:30 p.m. performance
This exciting postshow discussion series addresses audience questions and explores the minds, motives, and behavior of the characters.

• Community Day:
Saturday, March 17, 4 p.m.
Join us for a celebration of Vietnamese food, music, and culture.

• Wente Vineyards Wine Series:
Tuesday, March 27, 6:30 p.m.
Before the show, raise a glass at this wine-tasting event featuring the Bay Area’s hottest local winery.

• PlayTime:
Saturday, April 14, 12:45 p.m.
Before this matinee performance, get hands-on with the artists who make it happen at this interactive theater workshop. A.C.T.’s production of Vietgone is made possible by executive producers Jerome L. and Thao N. Dodson and Nola Yee; producers Carlotta and Robert Dathe and Anne and Michelle Shonk; and associate producers Dr. and Mrs. Richard E. Geist, Helen M. Marcus, and Rick and Anne Riley.

A.C.T. would also like to acknowledge its 2017-18 season presenters Frannie Fleishhacker; Priscilla and Keith Geeslin; Fred M. Levin and Nancy Livingston, The Shenson Foundation; Burt and Deedee McMurtry; Arthur Rock and Toni Rembe; Mary and Steven L. Swig; Jeffrey W. and Laurie Ubben; season partner PG&E; lead education partner Wells Fargo; Season Airline Sponsor United Airlines; and Official Hotel Sponsor Hotel G.

 

SaveSave

Photos: KPOP Performance Benefits Ma-Yi Theater Company; Extends to October 21

KPOP cast members Jinwoo Jung, Deborah Kim, Ashley Park, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang

In response to overwhelming demand and critical acclaim, 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) extends the world premiere of KPOP until October 21.

James Saito is flanked by Ma-Yi's Producing Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña and Executive Director Jorge Ortoll. Photo by Lia Chang
KPOP cast member James Saito is flanked by Ma-Yi’s Producing Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña and Executive Director Jorge Ortoll. Photo by Lia Chang

On October 3rd, I attended a special performance of KPOP to benefit Ma-Yi Theater. Check out who came out to support Ma-Yi Theater’s Producing Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña,  Executive Director Jorge Ortoll and the Obie Award winning theater company.

KPOP cast members Jinwoo Jung, Deborah Kim, Ashley Park, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang
KPOP cast members Jinwoo Jung, Deborah Kim, Ashley Park, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang
Lia Chang and James Seol. Photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang and KPOP cast member James Seol. Photo by Garth Kravits

KPOP is a high-octane immersive event that gives audiences a backstage pass to a K-pop music factory. A limited number of $25 rush tickets will be available to audiences under 30 years of age (valid ID required). The production, which opened on September 22, must end on October 21.

New York‘s Sara Holdren calls KPOP “A delicious spectacle,” and “expansive, catchy, and cunning,” while Time Out New York’s Adam Feldman “defies you not to enjoy KPOP!” and declares “tiny bubble of pleasure keep floating up and bursting all around us. Pop! Pop! Pop! We’re sold.”

Ma-Yi Theater's Executive Director Jorge Ortoll, Deborah Kim, Jinwoo Jung, Susannah Kim, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang
Ma-Yi Theater’s Executive Director Jorge Ortoll, Deborah Kim, Jinwoo Jung, Susannah Kim, Jiho Kang and Joomin Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang

Ben Brantley in The New York Times highlights “the eye-popping visuals throughout (right down to the ads on the walls). And Ms. Park and Mr. Vernon’s pastiche fusion musical numbers, choreographed with slashing wit by Jennifer Weber, are as synthetically sweet and perversely addictive as the real thing.”

The predominantly Asian and Asian American cast of 18 includes Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang, Katie Lee Hill (Nerds), Joomin Hwang, Jinwoo Jung,Vanessa Kai, Jiho Kang, Deborah Kim, Susannah Kim, Amanda Morton, Ashley Park (Sunday in the Park with GeorgeThe King and I), Sun Hye Park ,James Saito, James Seol (A Naked Girl on the Appian WaySmall Mouth Sounds), David Shih, Jason Tam (If/ThenLysistrata Jones), John Yi and Ebony Williams (Beyoncé’s Formation World Tour). Marina Kondo joins the KPOP cast as Mwe during the extension.

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).

Cindy Cheung, KPOP cast member David Shih and Ed Lin. Photo by Lia Chang
Cindy Cheung, KPOP cast member David Shih and Ed Lin. Photo by Lia Chang

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).

Ma-Yi's Executive Director Jorge Ortoll with Ching Valdes-Aran and guests. Photo by Lia Chang
Ma-Yi’s Executive Director Jorge Ortoll with Ching Valdes-Aran and guests. Photo by Lia Chang

Performances of KPOP will now play through October 21 at the A.R.T./New York Theatres, located at 502 West 53rd Street in Manhattan. Monday–Wednesday at 7pm; Thursday–Saturday at 8pm; Friday and Saturday at 3pm.

Ma-Yi's Executive Director Jorge Ortoll and guests. Photo by Lia Chang
Ma-Yi’s Executive Director Jorge Ortoll and guests. Photo by Lia Chang

Tickets are $75 general/$125 premium and  during the October 9–21 extension period and can be purchased by visiting arsnovanyc.com or by calling 212-352-3101. A limited number of $25 rush tickets will also be available to audiences under 30 years of age (valid ID required) at the box office 30 minutes prior to curtain for each performance, no advance sales.

About Ars Nova
Ars Nova is committed to developing and producing theater, comedy and music artists in the early stages of their professional careers. Our unique development programs are designed to support cross-pollination and outside-the-box thinking to encourage innovative work. Dubbed by The New York Times as a “fertile incubator of offbeat theater,” Ars Nova blurs genres and subverts the status quo. With our feverish bounty of programming, we are the stomping ground and launching pad for visionary, adventurous artists of all stripes. By providing a safe environment where risk-taking and collaboration are paramount, Ars Nova gives voice to a new generation of artists and audiences, pushing the boundaries of live entertainment by nurturing creative ideas into smart, surprising new work.

Ars Nova has been honored with an OBIE Award and a Special Citation from the New York Drama Critics’ Circle for sustained quality and commitment to the development and production of new work. Notable past productions include: “Best New American Theatre Work” OBIE Award-winner & New York Times’ “Best of 2016” Underground Railroad Game by Jennifer Kidwell and Scott R. Sheppard with Lightning Rod Special (now on international tour); Outstanding Musical Lortel Award-winner Futurity, by César Alvarez with The Lisps; the New York Times’ and New York Post’s “Best of 2015” Small Mouth Sounds by Bess Wohl (now touring the US after a return engagement Off Broadway); Time Out New York’s “Best of 2014,” JACUZZI by The Debate Society; the Tony award-winning smash-hit Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 by Dave Malloy (now on Broadway); Jollyship the Whiz-Bang by Nick Jones and Raja Azar; the world premiere of the 2009 season’s most-produced play boom by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb and directed by Alex Timbers; audience favorite Dixie’s Tupperware Partyby Kris Andersson; the show that put Bridget Everett on the map, At Least It’s Pink, by Everett and Kenny Mellman; and Lin-Manuel Miranda’s and Thomas Kail’s first New York production, Freestyle Love Supreme, by Anthony Veneziale and Miranda.

About Ma-Yi Theater Company
Ma-Yi Theater Company recently enjoyed great critical and popular success with Hansol Jung’s Among the Dead, Nandita Shenoy’s Washer/Dryer and A. Rey Pamatmat’s House Rules. The company won the Off-Broadway Alliance Award for its critically-acclaimed production of The Wong Kids in The Secret of the Space Chupacabra GO!, which recently made its international premiere at the Cultural Center of the Philippines in Manila. Founded in 1989 and now celebrating its 28th season, MA-YI is a Drama Desk and OBIE Award-winning, Off-Broadway not-for-profit organization whose primary mission is to develop and produce new and innovative plays by Asian American writers.

Since its founding, Ma-Yi has distinguished itself as one of the country’s leading incubators of new work shaping the national discourse about what it means to be Asian American today. Its numerous acclaimed productions include Mike Lew’s Bike America, Qui Nguyen’s The Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G andSoul Samurai (with Vampire Cowboys), Mike Lew’s Microcrisis and the revival of Ralph B. Peña’s Flipzoids. Other productions include: Rescue Me by Michi Barall, Lloyd Suh’s American Hwangap and The Children of Vonderly and The Romance of Magno Rubio. Through successful programs such as the Writers Lab, Ma-Yi emboldens a new generation of Asian American artists to voice their experiences, while developing a steady stream of quality new works by Asian American playwrights for its own performing repertory. New works developed at the Writers Lab have gone on to successful productions around the country, at such theaters as Victory Gardens, Laguna Playhouse, Long Wharf Theater, Woolly Mammoth and the Actors Theater of Louisville, to name a few. Ma-Yi Theater Company productions have earned 10 OBIE Awards, numerous Henry Hewes Award nominations, a Drama Desk nomination for Best Play and the Special Drama Desk Award for “more than two decades of excellence and for nurturing Asian-American voices in stylistically varied and engaging theater.”

Ma-Yi Theater is under the leadership of Producing Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña.

About Woodshed Collective
Woodshed Collective is one of the country’s premier immersive theater companies. Since 2008, the company has presented large scale theatrical events including: Twelve Ophelias performed in McCarren Park Pool in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, The Confidence Man adapted from Melville’s novel and performed on a decommissioned steamship in the Hudson River and The Tenant adapted from the novel and film and performed in a five story 19th Century Parish House on the Upper West Side.

Most recently, the company presented the critically acclaimed Empire Travel Agency, a grail quest crisscrossing Lower Manhattan, where groups of four audience members at a time hunted for the secret to the essential vibrancy of New York. Driven by the belief in the combined power of stories and architecture to break down the barriers of everyday life, Woodshed’s shows aim to create genuine awe.

About A.R.T./New York
The A.R.T./New York Theatres are a project of the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York (A.R.T./New York), which provide state-of-the-art, accessible venues at subsidized rental rates, plus free access to top-line technical equipment, so that the city’s small and emerging theater companies can continue to experiment, grow and produce new works. Founded in 1972, A.R.T./New York is the leading service and advocacy organization for New York City’s 375+ nonprofit theaters, with a mission to assist member theaters in managing their companies effectively so that they may realize their rich artistic visions and serve their diverse audiences well. We accomplish this through a comprehensive roster of real estate, financial, educational and community-building programs, as well as research, advocacy and field-wide initiatives that seek to improve the long-term health and sustainability of the industry. Over the years, A.R.T./New York has received numerous honors, including an Obie Award, an Innovative Theatre Award, a New York City Mayor’s Award for Arts & Culture and a Tony Honor for Excellence in the Theatre. For more information, please visit art-newyork.org.

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2017 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 lia@liachang.com

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

KPOP at A.R.T./New York Theatres Extends through October 21

The world premiere of KPOP presented by Ars Nova, in association with Ma-Yi Theater and Woodshed Collective opened last night to rave reviews at the A.R.T./New York Theatres, located at 502 West 53rd Street in Manhattan. Due to popular demand, the high-octane immersive event which gives you a backstage pass to a K-pop music factory has been extended through October 22.

Julia Abueva, Cathy Ang, Katie Lee Hill (Nerds), Joomin Hwang, Jinwoo Jung, Vanessa Kai, Jiho Kang, Deborah Kim, Susannah Kim, Ashley Park (Sunday in the Park with George, The King and I), Amanda Morton, 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).

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 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).

Click here to learn more about the artists.

Tickets, priced at $45 general/$75 premium, can be purchased by visiting arsnovanyc.com or by calling 212-352-3101.


Click here  for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits
Lia Chang, Photo by Garth Kravits
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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.comJade Magazine and Playbill.com.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2017 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

SaveSave