BD Wong Stars in THE ORPHAN OF ZHAO, Beginning Tonight at A.C.T.

American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) presents the U.S. premiere of James Fenton's acclaimed adaptation of The Orphan of Zhao, a classic Chinese legend that has its roots in the fourth century BCE.

Directed by Carey Perloff, The Orphan of Zhao is an epic story of self-sacrifice and revenge. In the aftermath of a political coup, a country doctor is forced to sacrifice his own son in order to save the last heir of a noble and massacred clan. Often described as the Chinese Hamlet, this enduring tale was the first Chinese play to be translated in the West nearly 300 years ago and has inspired countless operas, plays, and movies.

The Orphan of Zhao is a co-production with La Jolla Playhouse and will perform at A.C.T.'s Geary Theater tonight, June 4 through June 29, 2014. Press night is Wednesday, June 11, 2014. Tickets ($20-$120) are on sale now and may be purchased online at or by calling 415.749.2228.

The cast for The Orphan of Zhao includes Marie-France Arcilla (Stuck Elevator at A.C.T.; Working at Prospect Theater Company), Stan Egi (Golden Child off Broadway), Philip Estrera (third-year A.C.T. Master of Fine Arts student; A Christmas Carol at A.C.T.), Nick Gabriel (A.C.T. Resident Artist; Napoli! at A.C.T.), Cindy Im (Stuck Elevator and 4000 Miles at A.C.T.; The Snow Queen at San Jose Repertory Theatre), Orville Mendoza (Peter and the Starcatcher on Broadway; Miss Saigon National tour), Paolo Montalban (Pacific Overtures and The King and I on Broadway), Brian Rivera (Yellowjackets at Berkeley Repertory Theatre; Macbeth at Sacramento Shakespeare Festival), Sab Shimono (Pacific Overtures on Broadway; original cast member of Mame on Broadway), Julyana Soelistyo (Tony Award-nominee for Golden Child on Broadway), Daisuke Tsuji (King Lear at Oregon Shakespeare Festival; Dralion by Cirque du Soleil), and BD Wong (M. Butterfly; Law & Order: Special Victims Unit).

The creative team for The Orphan of Zhao includes scenic designer Daniel Ostling (Major Barbara and Stuck Elevator at A.C.T.), costume designer Linda Cho (Two Gentlemen of Verona at The Old Globe; The Light in the Piazza at Arena Stage), lighting designer Lap Chi Chu (Romeo and Juliet at California Shakespeare Theater; Other Desert Cities at the Mark Taper Forum), sound designer Jake Rodriguez (Rock 'N' Roll and Blackbird at A.C.T.), composer Byron Au Yong (Stuck Elevator at A.C.T.), with movement by Stephen Buescher (Head of Movement and Physical Theater at A.C.T.'s M.F.A. Program).

BD Wong received the Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, Theater World, Clarence Derwent, and Tony Awards for his Broadway debut in M. Butterfly-an unprecedented achievement. His television credits include Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, All-American Girl, Oz, And the Band Played On, and Awake. On film, Wong can be seen in Jurassic Park, The Freshman, Father of the Bride, Seven Years in Tibet, Executive Decision, The Salton Sea, Stay, and Mulan. On Broadway, Wong has performed in You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown and Pacific Overtures. Regional theater credits include, Herringbone (Williamstown Theatre Festival, McCarter Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse). Upcoming projects include Focus (Warner Bros.), The Normal Heart (HBO), and Jurassic World (Universal). He is also the author of the critically acclaimed memoir "Following Foo..." (Harper Entertainment). Wong is a San Francisco native.

A.C.T. will offer numerous InterACT events-many of which are presented free of charge-in association with The Suit that will give patrons opportunities to get closer to the action while making a whole night out of their evening at the theater. Visit to learn more about subscribing to these events throughout the season:

• Bike to the Theater Night
Wed., June 4

Providing a greener alternative to theater transportation, A.C.T. and the San Francisco Bike Coalition offer free valet bike parking, as well as a special discount on tickets, for these select performances.

• Prologue:

Tue., June 10, 5:30 p.m.

Get inside the artistic process at this lively preshow discussion with A.C.T. artistic staff.

• Theater on the Couch:
Fri., June 13, following the 8 p.m. performance
Led by Dr. Mason Turner, chief of psychiatry at San Francisco's Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, this exciting postshow discussion series explores the minds, motives, and behaviors of the characters and addresses audience questions.

• Audience Exchanges:
Tue., June 17, 7 p.m. | Sun., June 22, 2 p.m. | Wed., June 25, 2 p.m.
After the show, stick around for a lively Q&A session with the actors and artists who create the work onstage.

• OUT with A.C.T.:
Wed., June 18, following the 8 p.m. performance
The best LGBT night in town! Mingle with the cast and enjoy free drinks and treats at this popular afterparty.

• Symposium:
Saturday, June 21, 2 p.m.

You're invited to join us after the show for a lively discussion! A.C.T. invites you to join us in the theater immediately following your performance for a discussion and Q&A with a local expert. The discussion will be moderated by A.C.T. dramaturg Michael Paller. Can't make it to the event? We'll be streaming it live online!

• Wine Series:
Tue., June 24, 7 p.m.
Before the show, raise a glass at this wine tasting event featuring leading sommeliers from the Bay Area's hottest local wineries.

• PlayTime:
Sat., June 28, 12:30 p.m.
Before this matinee performance, get hands-on with theater with the artists who make it happen at this interactive workshop.

A.C.T. subscribers enjoy incredible savings, unparalleled access, exclusive benefits, and personalized customer service. Subscribers save as much as 33 percent off single-ticket prices. Full-time students, educators, and administrators with valid ID save up to 50 percent off select packages. Senior discounts are available for certain series. A.C.T.'s competitive subscriber benefits include free ticket exchanges up to the day of scheduled tickets, priority seating, ticket insurance, access to convenient prepaid parking one block away from the theater, and discounts for neighborhood restaurants. To order a subscription, visit or call 415.749.2250.

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