Marc delaCruz Makes History as First Asian American Alexander Hamilton on Broadway

Marc delaCruz (Instagram)

Congratulations to Marc delaCruz who made history on Friday, January 18, 2019, when he became the first Asian American to star as Alexander Hamilton on Broadway.

Marc delaCruz backstage at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York. Photo courtesy of Marc delaCruz (Instagram)
Marc delaCruz backstage at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York. Photo courtesy of Marc delaCruz (Instagram)

Marc joined the Broadway cast onstage at the Richard Rodgers Theatre as an ensemble member last December. In addition to the title role, he is the understudy for Philip Hamilton, John Laurens and King George, and covers the roles of Philip Schuyler/Doctor/James Reynolds.

In the house to document this historic turn on January 18th was good pal Olivia Oguma, who toured with Marc in Disney’s High School Musical, and expressed her excitement on Facebook in celebrating the first Japanese-Filipino Hamilton.

January 18, 2019- Photos courtesy of Olivia Oguma (Facebook)
(January 18, 2019) Photos courtesy of Olivia Oguma (Facebook)

Olivia returned with her mother, Karen Piperata-Oguma, Marc’s parents Roy delaCruz and Rochelle delaCruz (who made the trek from Hawaii), Laura Brandel, Timothy Huang, Jaygee Macapugay and David McQueen on January 20, 2019.

Marc delaCruz, Olivia Oguma and Karen Piperata-Oguma at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York on January 20, 2019. (Facebook)
Marc delaCruz, Olivia Oguma and Karen Piperata-Oguma at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York on January 20, 2019. (Facebook)
January 20, 2019 Marc delaCruz with his parents Roy delaCruz and Rochelle delaCruz at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York. Photos courtesy of Olivia Oguma
(January 20, 2019) Marc delaCruz with his parents Roy delaCruz and Rochelle delaCruz at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York. Photos courtesy of Olivia Oguma
January 20, 2019 - Laura Brandel, HAMILTON castmate Eddy Lee, Timothy Huang, Olivia Oguma, Jaygee Macapugay, Marc delaCruz, Karen Piperata-Oguma, Roy delaCruz, Rochelle delaCruz, David McQueen at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York. (Instagram)
(January 20, 2019) Laura Brandel, HAMILTON castmate Eddy Lee, Timothy Huang, Olivia Oguma, Jaygee Macapugay, Marc delaCruz, Karen Piperata-Oguma, Roy delaCruz, Rochelle delaCruz, David McQueen at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York. (Instagram)

Hamilton is the story of the unlikely Founding Father determined to make his mark on the new nation as hungry and ambitious as he is. From bastard orphan to Washington’s right-hand man, rebel to war hero, a loving husband caught in the country’s first sex scandal, to the Treasury head who made an untrusting world believe in the American economy. George Washington, Eliza Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson and Hamilton’s lifelong friend/foil Aaron Burr all make their mark in this astonishing new musical exploration of a political mastermind.

Photo courtesy of Broadway Diversity Project
Photo courtesy of Broadway Diversity Project

The Broadway Diversity Project writes, ” While Marc is the first Asian American man to play Hamilton on Broadway, we want to shout out to Jin Ha who has played Hamilton in the Chicago production, and Joseph Morales currently playing Hamilton on tour, who is mixed race and of partial Japanese descent.”

Marc delaCruz, Lia Chang and Jason Ma. Photo by Garth Kravits
Marc delaCruz, Lia Chang and Jason Ma. Photo by Garth Kravits

I had the good fortune to experience Marc’s leading man status opposite Whitney Bashor Off-Broadway in Keen Company’s revival of the fan favorite musical Ordinary Days by Adam Gwon in November.

Marc delaCruz, Kyle Sherman, Sarah Lynn Marion and Whitney Bashor in "Ordinary Days". Photo by Carol Rosegg
Marc delaCruz, Kyle Sherman, Sarah Lynn Marion and Whitney Bashor in “Ordinary Days”. Photo by Carol Rosegg

Last year, Marc had the opportunity to shine in leading roles in Qui Nguyen’s Vietgone as Quang at Studio Theatre in Washington D.C., and in Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey’s Next to Normal as Dan at Tantrum Theater in Dublin, Ohio.

VIETGONE

Eileen Rivera, Joe Ngo, Marc Delacruz, and Jacob Yeh in Vietgone. Photo: Teresa Wood.
Eileen Rivera, Joe Ngo, Marc Delacruz, and Jacob Yeh in “Vietgone” at Studio Theatre in Washington D.C. Photo: Teresa Wood.

DC Theatre Scene theater critic writes, “Marc delaCruz as Quang and Regina Aquino as Tong have a playful chemistry that erupts into eroticism over the course of the play. It certainly helps that delaCruz is one of the most beautiful men I’ve ever seen in my life.

He’s got a great singing voice, too, unsurprising for a Broadway actor.”

Regina Aquino and Marc Delacruz in Vietgone. Photo: Teresa Wood
Regina Aquino and Marc Delacruz in “Vietgone”. Photo: Teresa Wood

Theatermania‘s Barbara Mackay writes, “DelaCruz offers a sensational performance as Quang, whose superpowers are his sensitivity, his dedication to his family, and his intelligence, which allows him to realize that, even if he could get back to Vietnam, there would be nothing for him there but prison.”

NEXT TO NORMAL

From left, Kelsey Venter, Marc delaCruz, Riley McFarland and Bradley McKelvey-Askin in Tantrum Theater’s production of “Next to Normal”. Photo by Daniel Winters.
From left, Kelsey Venter, Marc delaCruz, Riley McFarland and Bradley McKelvey-Askin in Tantrum Theater’s production of “Next to Normal”. Photo by Daniel Winters.

Columbus Underground theater critic Richard Sandford writes, “Diana’s husband, Dan (Marc de la Cruz), is white-knuckling, trying to hold everything together and watching his life increasingly slip through his fingers. It’s not uncommon for the Dan character to disappear into the background, surrounded by these flashier, more intense personalities. It’s a tribute to de la Cruz’s performance that this is the rare production of Next to Normal where I had no hesitation in buying the marriage. This Dan lives in a way I’m not quite used to seeing.”

Anthony Rapp, left, and Marc delaCruz in "If/Then." Photo by Joan Marcus
(2015) Anthony Rapp, left, and Marc delaCruz in “If/Then.” Photo by Joan Marcus

In 2014-15, Marc made his Broadway debut in If/Then by Brian Yorkey and Tom Kitt, directed by Michael Greif. He played David in the National tour opposite Idina Menzel and Anthony Rapp.

Off-Broadway credits include Ordinary Days (Keen Company), Three Days to See (Transport Group) and Pacific Overtures (Classic Stage Company). Tour/International: If/ThenDisney’s High School MusicalThe Wedding Banquet and Where Elephants Weep (Cambodia). Regional work includesVietgone (Studio Theatre), Brian Yorkey’s Asian American rock musical Making Tracks and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee as Chip Tolentino (San Jose Rep), and various works with North Carolina Theatre, ReAct, the Northwest Asian American Theatre, the 5th Avenue Theatre and Village Theatre.

Telly Leung as Sammy Kimura (center) with (from left) Jon Jon Briones, Scott Watanabe, Karl Josef Co and Marc de la Cruz in the World Premiere of Allegiance - A New American Musical, with music and lyrics by Jay Kuo and book by Marc Acito, Kuo and Lorenzo Thione, directed by Stafford Arima, Sept. 7 - Oct. 21, 2012 at The Old Globe. Photo by Henry DiRocco.
(September, 2012) Telly Leung as Sammy Kimura (center) with (from left) Jon Jon Briones, Scott Watanabe, Karl Josef Co and Marc delaCruz in the World Premiere of “Allegiance – A New American Musical,” with music and lyrics by Jay Kuo and book by Marc Acito, Kuo and Lorenzo Thione, directed by Stafford Arima at The Old Globe. Photo by Henry DiRocco.

He was part of the world premier cast of Allegiance at San Diego’s Old Globe Theatre alongside George Takei and Lea Salonga.

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 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: © 2000-2019 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

Jon Hoche, Olivia Oguma, Jeffrey Omura, Dana Berger and Kaaron Briscoe in The Playwrights Realm’s Production of Don Nguyen’s HELLO, FROM THE CHILDREN OF PLANET EARTH through March 24

Director Jade King Carroll, Jon Hoche, Dana Berger, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe, Olivia Oguma and Playwright Don Nguyen at Bowlmor Lanes. Photo courtesy of Playwrights Realm/Facebook
Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

The Playwrights Realm is presenting the world premiere of Don Nguyen’s Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, at The Duke on 42nd Street, 229 W 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036, through Saturday, March 24th.

Director Jade King Carroll, Jon Hoche, Dana Berger, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe, Olivia Oguma and Playwright Don Nguyen at Bowlmor Lanes. Photo courtesy of Playwrights Realm/Facebook
Director Jade King Carroll, Jon Hoche, Dana Berger, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe, Olivia Oguma and Playwright Don Nguyen at Bowlmor Lanes. Photo courtesy of Playwrights Realm/Facebook

The cast features Jon Hoche, Olivia Oguma, Jeffrey Omura, Dana Berger and Kaaron Briscoe. Jade King Carroll directs.

Dana Berger, Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Dana Berger, Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

The Playwrights Realm (Katherine Kovner, Founding Artistic Director; Roberta Pereira, Producing Director) continues its 2017-2018 season this Spring with Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, a quirky, philosophical, and tender comedy from Queens-based playwright Don Nguyen. Split between the perspectives of a lesbian couple trying to conceive, and their potential-sperm-donor/aerospace engineer friend, Nguyen’s characters are stretched to contemplate the unknowns of their future.

Dana Berger, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Dana Berger, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

Betsy (Kaaron Briscoe) and Shoshana (Dana Berger) are looking for a sperm donor to participate in this emotionally confusing and intimate process. They contact a friend from Betsy’s past, William (Jeffrey Omura), an aerospace engineer tasked with tracking Voyager 1 as it journeys to the edge of our solar system. The idea of being responsible for a fragile object millions of miles away is dizzying-but it turns out, so is being asked to create an individual, and to wait, uncertain as to whether it will even work at all. Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth finds mystery and depth by juxtaposing the microscopic intimacies of creating life against the vastness of space. The highly unpredictable journeys of space exploration and conception provoke a raw whirlwind of emotion for all.

Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth sets its own precedent at The Playwrights Realm: it’s their first production by a former fellow that did not originate in the program-another opportunity for the organization to help actualize Nguyen’s work and be a continued champion of his exciting career. Nguyen’s play features characters brought forward in time from another of his works: William and Betsy’s high school friendship is explored in his earlier play The Commencement of William Tan (which premiered at Yale Cabaret in 2015). As he did with that work, about an Asian American high schooler in Nebraska in the ’80s (Nguyen was born in Vietnam, and moved to Nebraska with his family as refugees of the Vietnam War when he was three), Nguyen likewise laces Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth with questions from his own life. Nguyen was himself presented with the very adult experience of being asked by two friends to be a sperm donor, and he decided to evolve these characters along with him to get a more lucid understanding of his own situation -tracking their lives as career and family threaten to become mutually exclusive, as idealism starts giving way to realism. “I had to take stock of my entire life and ask myself questions I didn’t think I was ready to ask. What I found is artificial insemination is not an easy thing-there are complications involved that you really have to discuss,” says Nguyen.

Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

The creative team includes Kimie Nishikawa (Set Designer), Nicole Pearce (Lighting Designer), Elisheba Ittoop (Sound Designer), and Ari Fulton (Costume Designer). Kara Kaufman is Production Stage Manager, and Lily Perlmutter is Assistant Stage Manager.

General tickets will be priced at $30-$60; tickets for students with valid ID are $15, and group tickets are $25 per seat for groups of six or more. To purchase, please visit http://dukeon42.org/ or call 646-223-3010. For more details, please visit playwrightsrealm.org.

 

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Production Photos: Jon Hoche, Olivia Oguma, Jeffrey Omura, Dana Berger and Kaaron Briscoe in The Playwrights Realm’s Production of Don Nguyen’s HELLO, FROM THE CHILDREN OF PLANET EARTH; Opens March 7

Dana Berger, Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

The Playwrights Realm is presenting the world premiere of Don Nguyen’s Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, at The Duke on 42nd Street, 229 W 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036, through Saturday, March 24th. Opening night is March 7th.

Dana Berger, Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Dana Berger, Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

The cast features Jon Hoche, Olivia Oguma, Jeffrey Omura, Dana Berger and Kaaron Briscoe. Jade King Carroll directs.

Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Jon Hoche, Jeffrey Omura. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

The Playwrights Realm (Katherine Kovner, Founding Artistic Director; Roberta Pereira, Producing Director) continues its 2017-2018 season this Spring with Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, a quirky, philosophical, and tender comedy from Queens-based playwright Don Nguyen. Split between the perspectives of a lesbian couple trying to conceive, and their potential-sperm-donor/aerospace engineer friend, Nguyen’s characters are stretched to contemplate the unknowns of their future. Nguyen was part of The Playwrights Realm’s Writing Fellowship in the 2012-13 Season, and the organization is thrilled to welcome him back in this fresh capacity, pairing him with director Jade King Carroll, who will bring Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth to life in her Playwrights Realm debut.

Dana Berger, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Dana Berger, Kaaron Briscoe. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

Betsy (Kaaron Briscoe) and Shoshana (Dana Berger) are looking for a sperm donor to participate in this emotionally confusing and intimate process. They contact a friend from Betsy’s past, William (Jeffrey Omura), an aerospace engineer tasked with tracking Voyager 1 as it journeys to the edge of our solar system. The idea of being responsible for a fragile object millions of miles away is dizzying-but it turns out, so is being asked to create an individual, and to wait, uncertain as to whether it will even work at all. Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth finds mystery and depth by juxtaposing the microscopic intimacies of creating life against the vastness of space. The highly unpredictable journeys of space exploration and conception provoke a raw whirlwind of emotion for all.

Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez
Olivia Oguma. Photo by Daniel Vasquez

Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth sets its own precedent at The Playwrights Realm: it’s their first production by a former fellow that did not originate in the program-another opportunity for the organization to help actualize Nguyen’s work and be a continued champion of his exciting career. Nguyen’s play features characters brought forward in time from another of his works: William and Betsy’s high school friendship is explored in his earlier play The Commencement of William Tan (which premiered at Yale Cabaret in 2015). As he did with that work, about an Asian American high schooler in Nebraska in the ’80s (Nguyen was born in Vietnam, and moved to Nebraska with his family as refugees of the Vietnam War when he was three), Nguyen likewise laces Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth with questions from his own life. Nguyen was himself presented with the very adult experience of being asked by two friends to be a sperm donor, and he decided to evolve these characters along with him to get a more lucid understanding of his own situation -tracking their lives as career and family threaten to become mutually exclusive, as idealism starts giving way to realism. “I had to take stock of my entire life and ask myself questions I didn’t think I was ready to ask. What I found is artificial insemination is not an easy thing-there are complications involved that you really have to discuss,” says Nguyen.

From childhood to adulthood, Nguyen has consistently been a “space geek.” When he was young, he kept a scrapbook documenting the journeys of every Space Shuttle, until the explosion of the Challenger-then took to more fictional versions of space travel with Star Wars and Star Trek obsessions. Referencing the backdrop of space here, Nguyen adds, “I always like to take two disparate ideas and find connections between them – a lot of my plays are like that. I like the challenge of it. So the play became about surrogacy and space.”

Nguyen has channeled the sense of wonder children affiliate with space travel into this play, in a manner that’s sneakily philosophical, by setting it a few years back, when the Voyager I was on the cusp of reaching interstellar space. Nguyen wrote his character William as the person in charge of the spacecraft’s tracking software, which essentially gives Voyager 1 a “heartbeat,” evocative of an ultrasound, proving to people back on earth that this isolated object in the dark is still alive. Says Nguyen, “It’s fascinating to think of humans in 1977, when the Voyager I was launched, visualizing how, 40 years later, their space probe could survive and send back this signal.”

The creative team includes Kimie Nishikawa (Set Designer), Nicole Pearce (Lighting Designer), Elisheba Ittoop (Sound Designer), and Ari Fulton (Costume Designer). Kara Kaufman is Production Stage Manager, and Lily Perlmutter is Assistant Stage Manager.

Previews remaining: March 5 & 6 at 8pm
Opening: March 7 at 7:30pm
Performances: March 8 – 10, 12 – 17, 19 – 24 at 7:30pm

Click here for more information and tickets.

Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth will run from February 24 to March 24 (see above schedule) at The Duke on 42nd Street (229 W 42nd Street, Manhattan). General tickets will be priced at $30-$60; tickets for students with valid ID are $15, and group tickets are $25 per seat for groups of six or more. To purchase, please visit http://dukeon42.org/ or call 646-223-3010. For more details, please visit playwrightsrealm.org.

Don Nguyen’s full length plays include: Sound (Azeotrope/ACT Seattle), Red Flamboyant (Firebone Theatre Company), The Commencement of William Tan (Yale Cabaret), The Man From Saigon (ACT New Strands Festival), The Supreme Leader (Roundabout Underground Reading Series). Don is the recipient of the 2015 GAP Prize from the Aurora Theatre, a New York Stage & Film Founder’s award and has been a finalist for The O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, The Princess Grace Award, and The Woodward International Playwriting Prize. Don is a member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab, an alumni of the Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group and The Civilians R&D Group, and a co-founder of Mission to (dit)Mars, a Queens based theatre arts collective. More info at: thenuge.com

The daughter of the trumpeter and composer Baikida Carroll, Jade King Carroll accompanied her father to the Public Theater in Manhattan as a child, where he scored Lois Elaine Griffith’s White Sirens at the request of Joseph Papp, and to the McCarter Theater in Princeton, N.J., where he wrote, with Emily Mann and Ntozake Shange, and scored the musical Betsey Brown. After graduating from SUNY-New Paltz, where she majored in theater directing, she moved to New York City and quickly won an internship with the Women’s Project. Since then, she has compiled credits with the McCarter, New Dramatists, Primary Stages, Playwrights Realm, 24 Hour Plays, and New Jersey Rep. In 2010, she served as artistic associate at Second Stage Theater. Jade recently directed Emily Mann’s Having Our Say at the Long Wharf Theatre, and will be directing the development of Running on Fire by Aurin Squire at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Conference prior to her work with BAPF.

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Jon Hoche, Olivia Oguma, Jeffrey Omura, Dana Berger and Kaaron Briscoe Set for The Playwrights Realm’s Production of Don Nguyen’s HELLO, FROM THE CHILDREN OF PLANET EARTH, February 24 – March 24

The Playwrights Realm is presenting the world premiere of Don Nguyen’s Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, at The Duke on 42nd Street, 229 W 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036, from Saturday, February 24 – Saturday, March 24.

The cast features Jon Hoche, Olivia Oguma, Jeffrey Omura, Dana Berger and Kaaron Briscoe. Jade King Carroll directs.

The Playwrights Realm (Katherine Kovner, Founding Artistic Director; Roberta Pereira, Producing Director) continues its 2017-2018 season this Spring with Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, a quirky, philosophical, and tender comedy from Queens-based playwright Don Nguyen. Split between the perspectives of a lesbian couple trying to conceive, and their potential-sperm-donor/aerospace engineer friend, Nguyen’s characters are stretched to contemplate the unknowns of their future. Nguyen was part of The Playwrights Realm’s Writing Fellowship in the 2012-13 Season, and the organization is thrilled to welcome him back in this fresh capacity, pairing him with director Jade King Carroll, who will bring Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth to life in her Playwrights Realm debut.

Betsy (Kaaron Briscoe) and Shoshana (Dana Berger) are looking for a sperm donor to participate in this emotionally confusing and intimate process. They contact a friend from Betsy’s past, William (Jeffrey Omura), an aerospace engineer tasked with tracking Voyager 1 as it journeys to the edge of our solar system. The idea of being responsible for a fragile object millions of miles away is dizzying-but it turns out, so is being asked to create an individual, and to wait, uncertain as to whether it will even work at all. Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth finds mystery and depth by juxtaposing the microscopic intimacies of creating life against the vastness of space. The highly unpredictable journeys of space exploration and conception provoke a raw whirlwind of emotion for all.

Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth sets its own precedent at The Playwrights Realm: it’s their first production by a former fellow that did not originate in the program-another opportunity for the organization to help actualize Nguyen’s work and be a continued champion of his exciting career. Nguyen’s play features characters brought forward in time from another of his works: William and Betsy’s high school friendship is explored in his earlier play The Commencement of William Tan (which premiered at Yale Cabaret in 2015). As he did with that work, about an Asian American high schooler in Nebraska in the ’80s (Nguyen was born in Vietnam, and moved to Nebraska with his family as refugees of the Vietnam War when he was three), Nguyen likewise laces Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth with questions from his own life. Nguyen was himself presented with the very adult experience of being asked by two friends to be a sperm donor, and he decided to evolve these characters along with him to get a more lucid understanding of his own situation -tracking their lives as career and family threaten to become mutually exclusive, as idealism starts giving way to realism. “I had to take stock of my entire life and ask myself questions I didn’t think I was ready to ask. What I found is artificial insemination is not an easy thing-there are complications involved that you really have to discuss,” says Nguyen.

From childhood to adulthood, Nguyen has consistently been a “space geek.” When he was young, he kept a scrapbook documenting the journeys of every Space Shuttle, until the explosion of the Challenger-then took to more fictional versions of space travel with Star Wars and Star Trek obsessions. Referencing the backdrop of space here, Nguyen adds, “I always like to take two disparate ideas and find connections between them – a lot of my plays are like that. I like the challenge of it. So the play became about surrogacy and space.”

Nguyen has channeled the sense of wonder children affiliate with space travel into this play, in a manner that’s sneakily philosophical, by setting it a few years back, when the Voyager I was on the cusp of reaching interstellar space. Nguyen wrote his character William as the person in charge of the spacecraft’s tracking software, which essentially gives Voyager 1 a “heartbeat,” evocative of an ultrasound, proving to people back on earth that this isolated object in the dark is still alive. Says Nguyen, “It’s fascinating to think of humans in 1977, when the Voyager I was launched, visualizing how, 40 years later, their space probe could survive and send back this signal.”

The creative team includes Kimie Nishikawa (Set Designer), Nicole Pearce (Lighting Designer), Elisheba Ittoop (Sound Designer), and Ari Fulton (Costume Designer). Kara Kaufman is Production Stage Manager, and Lily Perlmutter is Assistant Stage Manager.

Previews: February 24, 26, 27, 28 & March 1, 2, 3, 5 & 6 at 8pm
$1to5 drive: February 24, 26, 27, 28, March 1
Opening: March 7 at 7:30pm
Performances: March 8 – 10, 12 – 17, 19 – 24 at 7:30pm

Click here for more information and tickets.

Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth will run from February 24 to March 24 (see above schedule) at The Duke on 42nd Street (229 W 42nd Street, Manhattan). Critics are welcome as of March 5 at 8pm for an official opening on March 7 at 7:30pm. Donor pre-sale tickets priced from $1-$5 will be on sale from January 25. The $1to5 drive, where tickets for previews run between $1 and $5, applies to preview performances February 24-March 1. General tickets will be priced at $30-$60 and go on sale January 30; tickets for students with valid ID are $15, and group tickets are $25 per seat for groups of six or more. To purchase, please visit http://dukeon42.org/ or call 646-223-3010. For more details, please visit playwrightsrealm.org.

Don Nguyen’s full length plays include: Sound (Azeotrope/ACT Seattle), Red Flamboyant (Firebone Theatre Company), The Commencement of William Tan (Yale Cabaret), The Man From Saigon (ACT New Strands Festival), The Supreme Leader (Roundabout Underground Reading Series). Don is the recipient of the 2015 GAP Prize from the Aurora Theatre, a New York Stage & Film Founder’s award and has been a finalist for The O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, The Princess Grace Award, and The Woodward International Playwriting Prize. Don is a member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab, an alumni of the Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group and The Civilians R&D Group, and a co-founder of Mission to (dit)Mars, a Queens based theatre arts collective. More info at: thenuge.com

The daughter of the trumpeter and composer Baikida Carroll, Jade King Carroll accompanied her father to the Public Theater in Manhattan as a child, where he scored Lois Elaine Griffith’s White Sirens at the request of Joseph Papp, and to the McCarter Theater in Princeton, N.J., where he wrote, with Emily Mann and Ntozake Shange, and scored the musical Betsey Brown. After graduating from SUNY-New Paltz, where she majored in theater directing, she moved to New York City and quickly won an internship with the Women’s Project. Since then, she has compiled credits with the McCarter, New Dramatists, Primary Stages, Playwrights Realm, 24 Hour Plays, and New Jersey Rep. In 2010, she served as artistic associate at Second Stage Theater. Jade recently directed Emily Mann’s Having Our Say at the Long Wharf Theatre, and will be directing the development of Running on Fire by Aurin Squire at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Conference prior to her work with BAPF.

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