Review Roundup: THE FAR COUNTRY Opens At Atlantic Theater Company

An intimate epic that follows an unlikely family's journey from rural Taishan to the wild west of California in the wake of the Chinese Exclusion Act.

By: Dec. 05, 2022
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Atlantic Theater Company just celebrated opening night of the world premiere production of The Far Country, an Atlantic commissioned play by Guggenheim fellow Lloyd Suh, directed by Obie Award winner Eric Ting. The Far Country is a limited engagement running through Sunday, January 1st, 2023 Off-Broadway at the Linda Gross Theater (336 West 20th Street).

The Far Country features Ben Chase (Mondo Tragic), Jinn S. Kim (Race, Religion & Politics), Whit K. Lee (Assassins), Christopher Liam Moore (All The Way), Shannon Tyo (The Chinese Lady), Amy Kim Waschke (Off-Broadway debut), and Eric Yang (Legacy).

An intimate epic that follows an unlikely family's journey from rural Taishan to the wild west of California in the wake of the Chinese Exclusion Act.

Read the reviews!

Alexis Soloski, The New York Times: “The Far Country” ends in 1930. That ending isn’t necessarily abrupt. But it does feel somewhat arbitrary. Why not 1950? Or 1970? There is so much more history to recover. More love. More promise. More pain. Moon Gyet claims that the strenuous physical labor required of an immigrant is nothing compared with the work of being Chinese in America. This takes patience and focus, he says. A serious mind and a necessary grace. Suh possesses these qualities in full. He has more work to do, more stories to tell.

Robert Hofler, The Wrap: Eric Ting’s direction is effective when the play is on track. When “The Far Country” goes awry, he leaves his audience lost in the San Francisco fog.

Joe Dziemianowicz, New York Theatre Guide: One of Suh’s strengths is his ability to mix realism and poetic elements. He uses that here as he shines a light on a dark slice of American history and builds a play around it. The timeline could be clearer, along with an indication of why these Chinese men and women risked so much to be in the U.S. They faced so many hardships there. In this Atlantic Theater Company presentation, director Eric Ting guides a uniformly excellent cast. Tyo, seen previously in Suh's The Chinese Lady, about a different fraught journey from Asia to America, arrives well into the play and shifts the story into high gear. There’s fine work by the design team, including Clint Ramos, whose spare but striking set reveals some surprise elements the director employs. So why were actors suddenly standing up to their ankles in water? I have no idea, and that’s no lie.

Melissa Rose Bernardo, Time Out New York: In his 2018 play The Chinese Lady, Lloyd Suh introduced us to Afong Moy, reportedly the first Chinese woman to set foot in the U.S., who was displayed like a curio for paying audiences. In The Far Country, whose premiere at the Atlantic is directed by Eric Ting, he digs into a later period of Asian-American history: the aftermath of 1882’s Chinese Exclusion Act. But this is no staid history class. In just over two hours, Suh succinctly and humorously covers 21 years, two continents, two interrogations and two obscenely expensive trans-Pacific crossings from Taishan to San Francisco.

To read more reviews, click here!

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