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VIDEO: 2nd Graders Sing ALLEGIANCE's 'Gaman' For Stars George Takei, Lea Salonga and Dance Captain Owen Johnston II

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The cast of Broadway's ALLEGIANCE, the new musical drama depicting life in the internment camps where Americans of Japanese descent were imprisoned by the US government during World War II, recently recorded their Original Broadway Cast Recording, scheduled to be released in mid-January.

But at a special visit to Midtown West Elementary School in New York, it was a class of second graders doing the singing for stars Lea Salonga, George Takei and Dance Captain Owen Johnston II. The trio arrived to participate in a reading program, but the kids surprised them with a chorus of "Gaman," the song at the heart of ALLEGIANCE's story. The Japanese word "gaman," means enduring what seems unbearable with patience and dignity.

One of the students' great grandmothers surely must have displayed a great deal of gaman, as she was interned during the war as a teenager.

Broadway's Allegiance, inspired by Takei's true-life story, opened on November 8, 2015 at the Longacre Theatre (220 West 48th Street). Previews began October 6. ALLEGIANCE features a book by Marc Acito and music and lyrics by Jay Kuo. Olivier Award nominee Stafford Arima (London's Ragtime, Off-Broadway's Bare, Carrie, Altar Boyz) directs.

The cast of Allegiance includes: George Takei as Sam Kimura/Ojii San; Lea Salonga as Kei Kimura;Telly Leung as Sammy Kimura; Christopheren Nomura as Tatsuo Kimura; Michael K. Lee as Frankie Suzuki; Katie Rose Clarke as Hannah Campbell and Greg Watanabe as Mike Masaoka. The ensemble features Aaron J. Albano, Belinda Allyn,Marcus Choi, Janelle Dote, Dan Horn, Owen Johnston, Darren Lee, Kevin Munhall, Manna Nichols, Catherine Ricafort, Rumi Oyama, Momoko Sugai, Sam Tanabe, Elena Wang , Scott Watanabe and Scott Wise.

Midtown West Elementary - Gaman

Yesterday, Lea Salonga, George Takei, and Dance Captain Owen Johnston II participated in reading to Second Graders at Midtown West Elementary in New York; the students even surprised the cast with a rendition of "Gaman." One of the students' great grandmothers was interned during the war as a teenager.

Posted by Allegiance - A New Musical on Friday, December 11, 2015

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From This Author Michael Dale