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East West Players
Announces 45th Anniversary Season Shake It Up
East West Players (EWP), the nation’s premiere Asian American theater,
announces its 45th Anniversary Season which include works about
two boys who share a dark secret, eccentric sisters navigating through life,
an elderly porn star trying to make it big, and a hip-hop dance battle for
respect, honor, and love. This season, themed Shake It Up includes
MYSTERIOUS SKIN by Prince Gomolvilas based on the novel by Scott Heim,
CRIMES OF THE HEART by Beth Henley, WRINKLES by Paul Kikuchi,
and KRUNK FU BATTLE BATTLE with book by Qui Nguyen, lyrics by Beau
Sia and vocal music by Marc Macalintal.
“East West Players is entering its 45th year, a milestone
achievement for any arts organization. As the nation’s longest running
professional theatre of color in operation today, we want to let the
community know we’re relevant, contemporary and vital. So we want to
Shake It Up,” says Tim Dang, EWP Producing Artistic Director. “And we
can still do it with style, artistic integrity and the production quality
that EWP has been known for all these years. The plays we have chosen for
this season will capture an audience that is looking for an experience with
a bit more adventure, edge, and power. We tackle many issues in this
season’s line up and are proud to present a season of thought-provoking,
entertaining, and provocative plays.”
This searing drama follows the story of a boy who believes he was once
abducted by aliens. All roads lead back to a childhood classmate, now a
hustler, who holds the key to the terrifying and heart-breaking truth.
(Mature audiences only.) Written by Prince Gomolvilas, based on the novel by
Scott Heim, directed by Tim Dang. MYSTERIOUS SKIN will run September 9 –
October 10, 2010. Los Angeles Premiere.
Prince Gomolvilas's plays include BIG HUNK O' BURNIN' LOVE and THE THEORY OF
EVERYTHING, which received their world premieres at East West Players. He
received the PEN Center USA Literary Award for Drama; Julie Harris/Janet and
Maxwell Salter Playwright Award; International Herald Tribune/SRT
Playwriting Award; EWP's Made in America Award for Outstanding Artistic
Achievement for the Asian Pacific Islander
Community; grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and Wallace
Alexander Gerbode Foundation; and a screenwriting fellowship from The
Chesterfield Writer's Film Project, a program sponsored by Paramount
Pictures. He teaches in the Master of Professional Writing Program at the
University of Southern California and in the David Henry Hwang Writers
Institute at EWP.
CRIMES OF THE HEART:
Meet three delightfully dysfunctional sisters: Babe has just shot her
husband, Meg is fresh from the loony bin, and Lenny celebrates her birthday
alone by sticking a candle in a cookie. This Southern classic gets a unique
Asian American twist in an unforgettable night of laughter and tears.
(Rights Pending.) Written by Beth Henley, directed by Leslie Ishii. CRIMES
OF THE HEART will run November 4 – December 5, 2010. Pulitzer prize winning
Beth Henley was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Drama and the New York Drama
Critics Circle Award for Best American Play for
CRIMES OF THE
HEART. Smith and Kraus published a two volume collection of 12
of her plays including THE MISS FIRECRACKER CONTEST, THE WAKE OF JAMEY
BALL, THE LUCKY
ABUNDANCE, SIGNATURE, CONTROL FREAKS and IMPOSSIBLE MARRIAGE.
Beth wrote the screenplay for the film version of
CRIMES OF THE
HEART, for which she was nominated for an Academy Award. She
also wrote the screenplays for
THE MISS FIRECRACKER CONTEST,
FOOL, TRYING TIMES and
Ms. Henley is the Presidential Professor of Theatre Arts at LMU/LA.
WRINKLES: Unbeknownst to
his daughter and grandson, 73 year-old Nisei Harry Fukutani is an internet
sensation! But to view his work, you’d have to turn off the parental filter
and have a valid credit card. A sticky comedy about sex, lies, and Tiger
Balm. Written by Paul Kikuchi, directed by Jeff Liu. WRINKLES will run
February 10 – March 13, 2011. World Premiere play developed in the EWP David
Henry Hwang Writers Institute. Generous support for this production is
provided by the S. Mark Taper Foundation Endowment for East West Players.
Born and raised in
Pasadena, California, playwright/screenwriter/substitute teacher Paul
Kikuchi is a third generation Japanese American. He attended UC Santa
Barbara where he received a BA in English literature. Paul has written six
screenplays which have landed him three different agents, two options and a
cup of Winchell’s coffee. Paul’s first play, IXNAY, had its world premiere
at East West Players in 2009. Paul lives with his wife, two daughters and
dog in their cluttered house in South Pasadena.
KRUNK FU BATTLE BATTLE:
Under the guidance of Sir Master Cert, young Norman Lee battles the baddest
b-boy crew at Sunset Park High for respect, honor, and the heart of sweet
Cindy Chang. A hip-hop musical extravaganza! Book by Qui Nguyen, lyrics by
Beau Sia, vocal music by Marc Macalintal, directed by Tim Dang. KRUNK FU
BATTLE BATTLE will run May 12 – June 26, 2011. World Premiere Musical.
Generous support for this production is provided by the S. Mark Taper
Foundation Endowment for East West Players.
Originally from Arkansas, Qui Nguyen is a Brooklyn-based Writer and Fight
Director. As Co-Artistic Director/Co-founder of Vampire Cowboys productions
in NY, his scripts include the critically acclaimed SOUL SAMURAI; FIGHT GIRL
WORLD BATTLE (nominated for Best Full Length Script by the 2008 NY
Innovative Theatre Awards); MEN OF STEEL (Cited as 2007's Best Adaptation of
Comics into Other Media by ComicCritique.com). Qui is a member of New
Dramatists, a co-director of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab, an alumnus of
Youngblood, and the stage combat instructor for Columbia University.
Beau Sia is a Chinese-American poet from Oklahoma City. Beau has been
featured in the award-winning film Slam and the documentary Slam
Nation. As an author, Beau wrote the poetry book, A Night Without
Armor II: The Revenge. A few of the anthologies his work appears in,
include, Def Poetry Jam on Broadway... and more, Why Freedom
Matters, and Spoken Word Revolution. Beau has two spoken word
CD's, Attack! Attack! Go! and Dope and Wack. His one man show,
Fish Out of Water won the 2004 Jury Prize for Best Alternative Show
at the HBO Comedy Festival in Aspen, Colorado.
Marc Macalintal’s musical direction credits
include: GUYS AND DOLLS, YOU’RE A GOOD MAN CHARLIE BROWN, HMS
PINAFORE, A JIVE BOMBERS CHRISTMAS, and East West Players' PIPPIN. Marc is
the artistic director of Room To Improv, an Asian American improv
group in Studio City, California.
Additional funding is provided by the California Community Foundation, the
James Irvine Foundation, the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, the Shubert
Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Los Angeles County
Board of Supervisors through the LA County Arts Commission and the City of
Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.
All performances will be staged at the David Henry Hwang Theater at the
Union Center for the Arts at 120 Judge John Aiso St., Los Angeles, CA 90012.
Season Subscriptions are available with General Subscriptions starting at
$125. Wednesday, Thursday, Student, and Senior Subscriptions are discounted
to $110. Preview Subscriptions are $85. Opening Night subscriptions include
pre-show cocktails and a post-show reception and are $200. Season
Subscription purchases and additional information can be found at
www.EastWestPlayers.org or by calling 213-625-7000. All plays and dates
subject to change.