DEAR YOKO Opens At Whitefire Theatre On February 2
Following successful 2019 engagements at the Whitefire Theatre and Santa Monica Playhouse, the acclaimed show Dear Yoko returns to the Whitefire Theatre for a single performance as part of the Whitefire's Solofest 2020. Anzu Lawson (who plays Ashley Kim on NBC's Chicago Med) is an Asian-American actress who grew up in Southern California in a broken family.
Based on Lawson's own life, DEAR YOKO unveils the personal history of multi-generational racism and non-acceptance as a young Asian girl growing up in white-washed America and patriarchal Japan. This emotionally-charged intimate story reveals how the iconic Japanese-American artist, singer and peace activist, Yoko Ono, lead Lawson to discover how to finally live her life authentically. In a child custody battle, Anzu was kidnapped by her tiger mom at 15 years old to Japan.
Soon thereafter, Anzu worked from being a teen model to garnering her first #1 hit on the Japanese Billboard Charts as a J-POP singer-songwriter. After a dark family secret was revealed, Anzu fled to America, alone and soon discovers her fame in Japan does not follow her here. She pursues acting and lands a leading role opposite Viggo Mortensen in the film American Yakuza. But this was a time when Asian-American roles for Asian-American actresses, were few and far between, so she sustains herself with a succession of jobs: waitress gigs, then as a personal assistant to martial arts film star Steven Seagal. She exits after he attempts to take liberties with her. She inadvertently becomes a masseuse to the stars, literally rubbing the shoulders of Hollywood's biggest and brightest. And then, upon appearing in a television episode with Brad Garrett, he inspires her to try her hand at stand-up comedy. In 2011, Anzu's dramaturge suggests that she portray Yoko Ono.
Unbeknownst to Anzu, Ono would become a source of incredible inspiration & life teachings for her. This show seamlessly weaves together belly laughs with poignant and often tearful reminders of the many transgressions in history that should never be forgotten or repeated. To this day, Yoko is still accused of being the "woman who broke up The Beatles" but in this piece, Anzu shines an unprecedented light on Yoko Ono's side of the story and lets us in on the real reason why John Lennon started a Peace revolution with the forward thinking underground artist turned humanitarian for the world. Jessica Lynn Johnson directs Dear Yoko.. Acclaimed both as a solo performer and as a director of solo artists, she is the founder of the company Soaring Solo. Her directing credits include Unemployed Finally, The Mermaid Who Learned How to Fly, 365 Days of Crazy, Triangles Are My Favorite Shape, Bully-mia, Not My Show, Answers Outta The Blue, and more. If you missed Dear Yoko in 2019, you now have another chance to catch Anzu Lawson's extraordinary performance.
A limited number of discount tickets are available at this link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/dear-yoko-one-woman-show-by-anzu-lawson-tickets-81684738251?aff=ebdssbdestsearch