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San Diego REP Announces Cast & Creative of HOLD THESE TRUTHS

San Diego REP Announces Cast & Creative of HOLD THESE TRUTHS

San Diego Repertory Theatre (San Diego REP) announced today the cast and creative team for Hold These Truths, the inspiring true story of Gordon Hirabayashi. The production, written by Jeanne Sakata and directed by Jessica Kubzansky, will run November 14 - December 8, 2019, in San Diego REP's Lyceum Space Theatre, with previews November 14 - 19, and press opening on Wednesday, November 20 at 7:00 p.m.

Shocked by the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, and driven by fear and prejudice, America shipped its own citizens of Japanese ancestry off to internment camps for forced detention. Hold These Truths tells the inspiring true story of American hero Gordon Hirabayashi, a young man who defied President Roosevelt's order to report to a WWII internment camp. Join Gordon on a 50-year quest to avenge an injustice to his community, restore his faith in the U.S. Constitution and reconcile America's greatness with its shortcomings. Hold These Truths has played to sold-out audiences all over the country and features a tour-de-force performance by stage and screen actor Ryun Yu, who plays Gordon and 37 other characters.

"The Presidential order to put American citizens in forced detention in 1942 is a profound scar upon our country's history," says San Diego REP Artistic Director Sam Woodhouse. "The passion for and commitment to justice that Gordon Hirabayashi brought to his quest to right this wrong makes him an American to be honored and treasured. His story is an extraordinary one."

Hold These Truths is playwright Jeanne Sakata's lone foray off stage and screen, having made a highly successful career as an actor. Her inspiring solo play has been widely produced across the nation, including sold-out performances with the Guthrie Theatre, Pasadena Playhouse, Portland Center Stage and more. In addition to critical and audience acclaim, Hold These Truths is also on display at the Library of Congress Playwrights Archive in the Asian American Pacific Islander Collection in Washington D.C., where the Jeanne Sakata Collection was established in July 2011.

Starring as Gordon Hirabayashi (and 37 other characters) is renowned actor of stage and screen Ryun Yu. Yu was the first Korean-American to train at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, and holds the first theatre degree ever awarded by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Yu has worked closely with award-winning playwright David Henry Hwang, having appeared in film adaptations of Hwang's plays Bondage and Yellow Face. Other film credits include The Last Tour (which he also directed), Only the Brave, The Brothers Solomon and The Mikado Project. On stage, he played George in the Los Angeles premiere of Julia Cho's The Language Archive and David in the world premiere of Lloyd Suh's American Hwangap at the Magic Theatre in San Francisco. He also performed in the west coast premiere of Richard Greenberg's Tony Award-winning Take Me Out at The Geffen Playhouse.

San Diego REP's production of Hold These Truths is supported in part by a grant as part of the California Civil Liberties Public Education program at theCalifornia State Library. The grant, one of 30 awarded in 2019, will provide free tickets to students through San Diego REP's Project Discovery program, facilitate 11 audience and community engagement events and support the creation of a comprehensive guide for audiences to explore the historical context and themes of the play. Created in 1998, the California Civil Liberty program's purpose is to "sponsor public educational activities and development of educational materials to ensure that the events surrounding the exclusion, forced removal and internment of civilians and permanent resident aliens of Japanese ancestry will be remembered so that the causes and circumstance of this and similar events may be illuminated and understood."

The creative team features the award-winning Ben Zamora (Scenic & Lighting Design), John Zalewski (Sound Design), Alyssa Escalante (Stage Manager), Chelsea Smith (Production Manager) and Kim Heil (Casting Director).

Tickets to Hold TheseTruths are on sale now. Tickets range from $25.00 to $72.00 and are available for purchase in-person at the San Diego REP Box Office, by calling 619-544-1000 or online at Prices subject to change.

Photo Credit: Chris Bennion

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