Photo Flash: CHING CHING CHINAMAN Opening Night At The West End Theatre
Tisa Chang, Artistic Producing Director of Pan Asian Repertory Theatre continues its 33rd season with CHING CHONG CHINAMAN, a satirical new comedy by Lauren Yee directed by May Adrales. The limited engagement plays March 19 - April 11, 2010 at the West End Theatre (263 W. 86th Street between Broadway & West End Avenue in the Church of St. Paul & St. Andrew, 2nd floor). Opening night is Wednesday, March 24, at 7:30 p.m.
CHING CHONG CHINAMAN tells the story of the Wong family. The Wongs are as Chinese-American as apple pie, but once their teenage son imports "Ching Chong," a stranger from China, their lives will never be the same.
The cast of six includes veteran film and television actress Fay Ann Lee (the new film Falling For Grace, Private Lives at Pan Asian Rep), James Chen (Postcards From Earth at The Guthrie), Jennifer Lim (Cinderella at Yale Rep), Angela Lin (Top Girls, Coram Boy), Ron Nakahara (Song For A Nisei Fisherman at Pan Asian Rep), and Jon Norman Schneider (Durango at The Public Theatre). The scenic design is by Gian Marco Lo Forte; costumes by Kate Mincer; lighting design by Ji-Youn Chang; and sound by Robert Murphy.
"CHING CHONG CHINAMAN takes its controversial title from the late 19th century pejorative jingle and uses satire as a means to reverse prejudicial attitudes towards Asian Americans and other outsiders," says Pan Asian Rep's Producing Artistic director, Tisa Chang. "This is a funny and surprising new perspective from a young writer tackling issues of ignorance and that stereotypic assumptions are not relegated to any one race and can be evidenced within our own."
Founded in 1977, Pan Asian Repertory Theatre is the East Coast's largest producer of Asian American theatre. For 33 years, Pan Asian Rep has celebrated the artistic expressiveness of Asian and American theatre artists under the highest standards of professional excellence creating Asian classics and Newworks. Under the direction of Tisa Chang, the company's renown Masterpieces from China, Japan, India, Korea, Cambodia, Tibet, and Asian America, bring under-represented themes to American audiences while deepening their understanding of Asian American cultural heritage.
ABOUT THE CAST AND CREATIVE TEAM
FAY Ann Lee (Grace). Theatre credits include Miss Saigon, Into The Woods, The Comedy of Errors, King Lear, Heading East and four Pan Asian Rep's shows - Joy Luck Club, Forbidden City Blues, Letter to a Student Revolutionary and her favorite theatrical role as Sybil in Noel Coward's Private Lives. She is delighted to collaborate with Pan Asian once again as Grace in Ching Chong Chinaman. Most recently, Lee wrote/directed and starred in the romantic comedy, Falling for Grace featuring Margaret Cho, Gale Harold, Ken Leung, Christine Baranski, Roger Rees, Lewis Black. The film was a sold-out hit at the Tribeca Film Festival. For the last two years, the film been seen in theatres throughout country prior to a DVD release on March 9, 2010.
JAMES CHEN (Chinese Man). NY Theater: Five Kind Of Silence (Boundless Theater); She Plundered Him (INTAR); Joan Of Arc (Gorilla Rep Theater Co.). Regional: Postcards From Earth (Guthrie); Twelfth Night (Chautauqua Theater Co.); The Cherry Orchard (Yale Rep); Take Me Out (Philadelphia Theater Co.) Film: "Watching TV with the Red Chinese," "Boy Wonder." TV: Evan and Gareth pilot for Comedy Central, "Mercy." MFA Yale Drama.
JENNIFER LIM (Desdemona) was born and bred in Hong Kong but now resides, works and dreams out of NYC. After graduating with a BA(Hons) in Drama from Bristol University in the U.K., she attended the Yale School of Drama for her MFA in Acting. She is a "half and half" (half Chinese and half Korean), speaks Cantonese and Mandarin fluently and when the need arises, enough Korean to get by. She loves to travel, to see and taste different countries and cultures, and has been incredibly lucky to have had the opportunity to travel and work in shows that toured extensively abroad these last few years.
Angela Lin (Chinese Woman). Broadway: Coram Boy, Top Girls. Off-Broadway: Sake With The Haiku Geisha, Age of Grace. Regional: World premiere of Lloyd Suh's American Hwangap (Magic Theatre), East Coast premiere of Donald Margulies' Shipwrecked! (Long Wharf Theatre), Twelfth Night, Othello (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), THE JOY LUCK CLUB (TheatreWorks, CA). Film & TV: "Falling Awake," "Miracle Dogs," "Within The Ivory Tower," "The Jury," "As the World Turns," "Pulse." Graduate of Carnegie Mellon Drama.
RON NAKAHARA (Ed) is Artistic Associate with Pan Asian Rep and has directed, and acted in, numerous plays for the company. Notable productions at Pan Asian Rep include: Cambodia Agonistes, Private Lives, The Teahouse of the August Moon, The Poet of Columbus Avenue, Rashomon, Empress of China. He has worked at various NYC theatres including The Second Stage Theatre, NYSF/Public Theatre, La MaMa E.T.C., & Ensemble Studio Theatre. Regional credits: The Shakespeare Theatre & The Studio Theatre (Washington DC), Hartford Stage Co., Fulton Opera House (Lancaster, PA), New York State Theatre Institute, The Guthrie Theatre, ACT (San Francisco), and Actors' Theatre of Louisville.
Jon Norman Schneider (Upton). NY: A Play On War (NAATCo), Thunder Above Deeps Below (2G), Queens Boulevard The Musical (Signature), Durango (Public), Blind Mouth Singing (NAATCo), The First Tree In Antarctica (EST), Life Science (Bulldog Theatrical), among others. Regional: American Hwangap (Magic), Durango (Long Wharf), Citizen 13559: The Journal Of Ben Uchida (Kennedy Center). TV: "The Electric Company" (recurring), "30 Rock," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent." Film: "Last Night," "The Rebound," and HBO's "Angel Rodriguez."
Lauren Yee (Playwright) is the recipient of a 2009 MacDowell Colony residency, a member of the 2009 Public Theater Emerging Writers Group, and a 2008/09 Dramatists Guild fellow. Lauren has received fellowships from the Edward Albee Foundation and commissions from the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, the O'Neill Studio at Yale, and PlayGround.
MAY ADRALES (Director) has directed and developed work at The Public Theater; Second Stage Theatre; New York Theater Workshop; Long Wharf Theatre; and many others. Awards/Fellowships for directing from: SSDC Denham; New York Theatre Workshop, and Drama League. Currently, May is in residence at The Lark Play Development Center as the recipient of the TCG New Generations Grant.
GENERAL LISTING INFORMATION: Pan Asian Rep's CHING CHONG CHINAMAN runs at the West End Theatre (263 W. 86th Street between Broadway & West End Avenue in the Church of St. Paul & St. Andrew, 2nd floor) March 19 - April 11. Opening night is Wednesday, March 24, at 7:30 p.m. Via Subway, take the 1 train to 86th Street. Performances are Tuesday - Saturday at 7:30PM with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 3:00PM (No matinee 3/27 or 4/4). For tickets, which are $45 with discounts available for seniors and students, call OvationTix at 212-352-3101 or visit www.PanAsianRep.org. Group discounts are available by calling Pan Asian Rep, 212-868-4030. SCHOOL MATINEE PERFORMANCES: School matinees are scheduled March 23, 24, 31 and April 8 at 11:00AM. Tickets are available for $12 (middle- and high-school students only). Call Pan Asian Rep for reservations, 212-868-4030. OPENING NIGHT PERFORMANCE, WEDNESDAY MARCH 24 AT 7:30PM: A limited number of tickets for opening night are available to the public $75. Ticket includes post-show reception with the cast. Call Pan Asian Rep for reservations, 212-868-4030.
All photos are by H. E. Yhoman
May Adrales & Tisa Chang
Lauren Yee & James Chen
James Chen, May Adrales
Scenic Designer Gian Marco Lo Forte and Costume Designer Kate Mincer
Jon Norman Schneider & Jennifer Lim
Fay Ann Lee & Ron Nakahara
May Adrales & playwright Lauren Yee
Pan Asian Rep's CHING CHING CHONG CHINAMAN, the company
Pan Asian Rep's CHING CHING CHONG CHINAMAN, curtain call