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Greater Boston Stage Company Presents EMPRESS MEI LI LOTUS BLOSSOM Directed by Christine Toy Johnson

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25-minute Zoom performances run September 25 - 29, 2020.

Greater Boston Stage Company Presents EMPRESS MEI LI LOTUS BLOSSOM Directed by Christine Toy Johnson

Greater Boston Stage Company will present Empress Mei Li Lotus Blossom, written by the Obie Award winning Christine Toy Johnson, this will be a five day only virtual event. Directed by Christine Toy Johnson and assisted by Associate Artistic Director Ilyse Robbins, these 25-minute Zoom performances run September 25 - 29, 2020. The livestream opening will air, Friday, September 25, 2020 at 8:00pm. It will be followed by a short question and answer with the creative team.

Empress Mei Li Lotus Blossom is a story about "Lo-An Li", an ambitious Hong Kong film star looking to make her splash on Broadway. Taking place during a high-powered Zoom meeting, Ashley Sanders, 3-time Tony award winning and 8-time BroadwayWorld award nominated producer, pitches her the "play that America needs to see," hoping that they will both hit pay dirt and take Broadway by storm. When the playwright Billy Ellis's assistant enters the picture, all assumptions are off.

"This play was inspired by my decades of experience as an Asian American actor often asked to surf the various stereotypes and assumptions of what a person who looks like me "should" embody - and my observation that a perturbing number of Asian female characters on film and TV were named "Mei Li," says playwright and director Christine Toy Johnson. "I started wondering what would happen if we went on the ride and played along with show biz's most commonly held expectations of us - and laughing at the absurdity of it all made me feel a whole lot better. I truly believe that the arts (in all its old and new forms) have the unique power to shift perceptions of who we are and what we can do, and I'm so happy to get to share my perspective with the Greater Boston Stage Company audience."

"Empress Mei Li Lotus Blossom does exactly what I want theatre to do," says Producing Artistic Director Weylin Symes. "It speaks directly to the world around us today. And the fact that it does so in such a smart, funny and thoroughly entertaining way totally hooked me. This play explores commercialism, racial and gender stereotypes and how much we may (or may not) be willing to play the game to get ahead all in only 25 minutes."

The entire process from auditions through rehearsals to performance has been conducted via Zoom, a new experience for GBSC. Not only is this in-line with the premise of the play, it also ensures the safety of our artists and staff during this time of COVID-19. In addition, $5 of every donation is going to the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund. https://www.aaldef.org

The cast features Michelle Liu Coughlin, Lily Kaufman, and EJ Zimmerman.

Single Tickets for Empress Mei Li Lotus Blossom: A donation may be made to attend either the live performance and Q&A on Friday, September 25, 2020 at 8:00pm or to watch the recorded performance anytime between Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 10:00am through Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at midnight. A donation of $15 may be made on the Greater Boston Stage Company website at www.greaterbostonstage.org.


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