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After the War Blues at PSU Lincoln Hall Studio Theatre, June 4 & 5, 2016

ATWB2-cool300dpiMediaRites‘ Theatre Diaspora presents the Oregon premiere of After the War Blues by award-winning playwright Philip Kan Gotanda, co-directed by notable Portland actors and directors Bobby Bermea and Jamie Rea.

Two staged reading performances will be at 1:30pm on Saturday, June 4, 2016, and at 1:30pm on Sunday, June 5, 2016. Both at Portland State University’s Lincoln Hall Studio Theatre (1620 SW Park Avenue, Portland, OR 97201).

Tickets are $10 each for general seating and $5 each for students and Oregon Trail cardholders. Tickets available for purchase now at Brown Paper Tickets. Seating is limited to 90 per performance.

In addition to visiting Portland to attend both performances and post-show audience talkbacks, playwright Philip Kan Gotanda will teach a playwriting master class funded by The Dramatists Guild Fund on Friday, June 3, 2016, at Portland Center Stage. To register for the class, visit https://www.pcs.org/blog/playwriting-masterclass-with-philip-kan-gotanda. Attendance is limited to 80 people.

unspecified-3After the War Blues takes place in the aftermath of World War II in San Francisco’s Western Addition District where some Japanese Americans returned from internment camps. African Americans, white Southern migrants, and Russian Jews were also arriving to start new lives. All the characters struggle to get along with limited resources while trying to find their place in this mix of cultures.

Chet Monkawa, the play’s central character, is a jazz trumpeter who returned to his family’s rooming house after the internment, but his old neighborhood isn’t the same. The rooming house is filled with new transplants, and Chet and his boarders must find a new harmony in uncertain times.

The cast comprises Wynee Hu and Larry Toda, bunspecified-1oth core ensemble members of Theatre Diaspora, and local actors: Leo Lin, James Dixon, Ken Yoshikawa, Ashley Williams, Caitlin Fisher Draeger, Colin Kane, Adrian Baxter, Brooke Calcagno, and Isaiah Sims. Natasha Stockem is the stage manager for this production.

This Portland production is co-produced by Dmae Roberts, Samson Syharath, and Alex Haslett of Theatre Diaspora.

Following the performance on June 5th, the post-show talkback will include community members : Kara Carmosino (APANO), Michael Grice (Nothing But Quality education leader,) and Kimberly Moreland (author of African Americans in Portland.)

About the Directors

Bobby Bermea is the producing artistic director of The Beirut Wedding World Theatre Project, artistic director of BaseRoots Theatre, a founding member of Badass Theatre Company, and a long-standing member of Sojourn Theatre. He received a Drammy nomination for Outstanding Director for his work on unspecifiedWait Until Dark with Northwest Classical and recently directed The Blue Door f0r Profile Theatre Project. 

Jamie M. Rea, award-winning director, designer, and performer, has worked internationally, and is the executive artistic director for The Beirut Wedding World Theatre Project. Some of her local productions include The Devil and Billy Markham, Songs for a New World with Staged! and the Miracle Theatre Group, and The 1940’s Radio Hour with Enlightened Theatrics.

First read-through photos by Alex Haslett

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After the War Blues and Philip Kan Gotanda Master Class

ATWB2-cool300dpiMediaRites‘ Theatre Diaspora presents the Oregon premiere of After the War Blues by award-winning playwright Philip Kan Gotanda, directed by Bobby Bermea and Jamie Rea.

Two staged-reading performances will be at 1:30pm on Saturday, June 4, 2016, and at 1:30pm on Sunday, June 5, 2016. Both at Portland State University’s Lincoln Hall Studio Theatre (1620 SW Park Avenue, Portland, OR 97201) with the playwright attending the performances and post-show audience talkbacks.

Tickets are $10 each for general seating and $5 each for students and Oregon Trail cardholders. Tickets will be available for purchase beginning May 1, 2016, at www.theatrediaspora.org and Brown Paper Tickets.

After the War Blues takes place in the aftermath of World War II in San Francisco’s Western Addition District where some Japanese Americans returned from internment camps. African Americans who came to San Francisco were seeking work, white Southern migrants were looking for economic opportunity, and Russian Jews were arriving to start new lives. All the characters struggle to get along with limited resources while trying to find their place in this mix of cultures. Central character Chet Monkawa is a jazz trumpeter who returns to his family’s rooming house after the internment, but his old neighborhood isn’t the same. The rooming house is now filled with new transplants, and Chet and his fellow boarders must find a new harmony amidst uncertain times.

Basic CMYKWith generous support from Oregon Humanities to bring the playwright to Portland and for the post-show discussions following each performance, featuring the playwright on June 4th and community members on June 5th: Kara Carmosino (APANO), Michael Grice (Nothing But Quality education leader,) and Kimberly Moreland (author of African Americans in Portland.)

Master Class by Philip Kan Gotanda, Renowned Playwright

PhilipKanGotanda-webPhilip Kan Gotanda will teach a playwriting master class at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, June 3, 2016, as part of The Dramatists Guild Fund’s Traveling Masters Program. This prestigious national outreach program brings prominent dramatists into communities across the country to lead master classes, workshops, talkbacks, and other public events. The class will be free to the public and will be at Portland Center Stage (128 NW 11th Avenue, Portland, OR 97209), which donated the space for this event. To register for the class visit https://www.pcs.org/blog/playwriting-masterclass-with-philip-kan-gotanda.

Screen Shot 2016-04-21 at 9.30.13 AMGotanda’s Portland visit and master class are made possible through The Dramatists Guild Fund’s Traveling Masters Program, the official Presenting Sponsor; Portland playwright and Dramatists Guild Regional Rep, Francesa Piantadosi; and Karin Magaldi, Head of the Theatre Program and Associate Director of the School of Theatre and Film, Portland State University. Theatre Diaspora also received venue support from Portland Center Stage for the master class as well as funding from Oregon Humanities to support travel and the two post-show talkbacks with Gotanda and community leaders. And generous support for our season from the Collins Foundation and the Oregon Community Foundation. 

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The Language Archive

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MediaRites’ Theatre Diaspora presents staged readings of The Language Archive, a poignant comedy about dying languages and difficulties of love by award-winning playwright and television writer Julia Cho.

Screen shot 2016-03-27 at 3.38.22 PMDmae Roberts, executive producer of MediaRites, directs the cast: Tonya Jone Miller (previously in Breaking Glass), Leo Lin, Sofia May-Cuxim, Enrique E. Andrade, Wynee Hu (Theatre Diaspora producing ensemble member), and Alex Haslett is stage manager.

In The Language Archive, a language archivist is consumed by preserving and documenting dying languages from far-flung countries. Closer to home, however, he can’t communicate with his frustrated wife, nor deal with the deep feelings his lab assistant has for him.

The performance will open at 2pm on March 26th at Portland Center Stage (128 NW Eleventh Avenue, Portland, OR 97209) and will close at 2pm on April 2nd at the Milagro Theatre (525 SE Stark Street, Portland, OR 97214).

Tickets are $8 each. They can be purchased at http://securesite.pcs.org/single/SelectSeating.aspx?p=10017 for the 2pm March 26th show at Portland Center Stage, and at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2510978 (service charge added) for the 2pm April 2nd show at the Milagro TheatreLA1

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The Sound of a Voice

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MediaRites’ Theatre Diaspora, presents the last play of the 2015 season: The Sound of a Voice by noted playwright, David Henry Hwang at Portland Center Stage.  Directed by Samson Syharath and featuring Chisao Hata and Larry Toda, all Theatre Diaspora core ensemble members. Actor Mariko Kajita provides narration and shakuhachi (Japanese flute) music is performed by Larry Tyrrell, of Moonbridge music, a master shakuhachi player who performed with the Okayama Hogaku Ensemble and now performs in the Northwest. For tickets visit: http://www.pcs.org/blog/item/the-sound-of-a-voice/

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Theatre Diaspora is Oregon’s only professional Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) theatre company, committed to portraying authentic AAPI cultural, historical, and social perspectives to reach broad audiences. By strongly advocating through compelling performances and post-show discussions, we are bridging communities to foster inclusion, social-awareness, and open conversations on race and cultural diversity – celebrating the AAPI experience. Theatre Diaspora is a project of MediaRites, an award-winning non-profit organization focused on cultural diversity by providing voices to the unheard.


 

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Theatre Diaspora, a project of MediaRites is grateful for the support of our donors, sponsors and audiences who help to strengthen our communities by allowing us to offer stories that represent the AAPI experience in our community.


The Theatre Diaspora project

is made possible with generous support from

 

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In collaboration with our artistic partners…

 

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Past funders have included:

 

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Contact Us:

Theatre Diaspora hopes to inspire dialogues and engagement as a platform for the AAPI community.
Please join the group and start the discussion.

Email: theatrediaspora@gmail.com

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