East West Players (EWP), the nation’s longest-running professional theater of color in the country and the largest producing organization of Asian American artistic work, presents “Politics in Play,” a series of staged play readings tackling the nation’s current state of affairs, as part of a new initiative to showcase diverse, political voices in the theater.
“Politics in Play” will commence with “After Orlando,” followed by Mike Daisey’s “The Trump Card” and Christopher Chen’s “Mutt: Let’s All Talk About Race!”
EWP Artistic Director Snehal Desai says, “This groundbreaking, political play series represents East West Players at its best: bold, daring, and edgy. The artists involved represent the work and voices we want to champion, and highlight issues of race, diversity, equity, and social justice as we raise questions about the world we live in. ‘Politics in Play’ also seeks to uplift and move audiences through fearless storytelling that gets to the heart of racism, homophobia, gun violence, and economic inequality.”
“After Orlando” (Monday, Oct. 17, at 7 p.m. at the David Henry Hwang Theater, 120 Judge John Aiso St. in Little Tokyo) is presented in partnership with Missing Bolts Productions (Blair Baker and Zac Kline, artistic directors), NoPassport Theatre Alliance and Press (Caridad Svich, founder), the Los Angeles LGBT Center, and the UCLA LGBT Center as an international theater action with playwrights throughout the U.S., the U.K., Africa, and Australia responding to the mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Fla. on June 12, 2016.
EWP will present an evening of five-minute plays written by Mia Chung, Leah Nanako Winkler, Dipika Guha, Giovanni Ortega, Riti Sachdeva, Nathan Alan Davis, Caridad Svich, Rohina Malik, Chiori Miyagawa, Amina Henry, Andrea Lepcio, J. Julian Christopher, Brian Quijada, Monica Palacios, Oladipo Agboluaje, Michael Dinwiddie, Erik Ehn, and more.
“The Trump Card” (Sunday, Oct. 23, at 7 p.m. at David Henry Hwang Theater) is a monologue about Donald Trump and all he contains in this particular American moment. The New York Times praised it as “a critically comedic probe of what makes the presumptive Republican presidential nominee tick.”
Directed by Diana Wyenn, whose work as a director and choreographer has appeared onstage at REDCAT in Los Angeles and Central Park SummerStage in New York City, “The Trump Card” will feature a variety of solo artists performing Daisey’s monologue.
In “Mutt: Let’s All Talk About Race!” (Tuesday, Nov. 1, at 7:30 p.m. at Tateuchi Democracy Forum, National Center for the Preservation of Democracy, 111 Central Ave. in Little Tokyo), the Republican Party finally realizes it has a problem with race, so it decides its best chance for success in the 2016 presidential election is to back a candidate who is a mixture of every race on Earth.
Directed by Rodney To, an actor and director known for his work on “The American Mall” and “Stonerville,” “Mutt” is a wild and surreal sketch-comedy-infused satire that skewers all political parties and burns down the entire racial house of cards.
Chen’s play “Caught” recently concluded a sold-out run at La Mama in New York City and was hailed by The New York Times as an “intricately constructed, unrelentingly destabilizing puzzle of a play about the anatomy of truth and the provocative power of illusion.”
All events are free to the public. RSVP at http://tinyurl.com/PoliticsInPlayEWP.
As the nation’s premier Asian American theatre organization, EWP (www.eastwestplayers.org) produces artistic work and educational programs that foster dialogue exploring Asian Pacific Islander (API) experiences. Founded in 1965, at a time when APIs faced limited or no opportunities to see their experiences reflected outside of stereotypical and demeaning caricatures in the American landscape, EWP not only ensures that API stories are told, but works to increase access, inclusion, and representation in the economy.