Published : Monday, December 4, 2017 | 3:33 PM
Sierra Madre Playhouse presents “Nothing Is the Same” – A play, written by Y York. Directed by Tim Dang. Produced by Estelle Campbell and Christian Lebano for Sierra Madre Playhouse. Opens Friday, January 19, 2018 and Saturday, January 20 at 8:00 p.m. (Show is double-cast and will have two Opening Nights).
December 7, 1941. Four Hawaiian youngsters (two of Korean extraction, one of Filipino parentage, one of Japanese extraction) are playing marbles in a churchyard in Wahiawa, on Oahu’s North Shore. Japanese bombers buzz the town on their way to attack Pearl Harbor. War arrives, and Nothing Is the Same.
Mits, the Japanese-Hawaiian youth, eventually becomes an object of suspicion after he appears to signal one of the aircraft flying overhead. Could he possibly be a spy for the enemy? How will this effect how the other three youngsters respond to him? Japanese Americans on the mainland are being sent to detention camps far from their homes. Will that happen to Mits on the island?
George, Bobi and Daniel, the other three, though not of Japanese heritage, are Asian Pacific Americans. How will perceptions of how they are seen affect their lives and their relationship with Mits?
Y York is the playwright, the prolific author of 36 plays. Her official bio is brief: “Y York writes all the time.” Nothing Is the Same is fictional, with invented characters, although the playwright was informed by oral histories of those who lived through the turbulent era’s events.
Tim Dang directs. Mr. Dang is Producing Artistic Director Emeritus, of East West Players, guiding that group from 1993 through 2016, making himself and his company among the most highly regarded in the Los Angeles theatrical community. He is the recipient of Ovation Awards for directing Pacific Overtures and for directing and producing Sweeney Todd. He received numerous awards for direction, production and performance from Backstage West and Drama-Logue. He has directed 38 shows in an astonishingly prolific career. He has also been a playwright and lyricist (co-writing Nisei Widows Club, Canton Jazz Club, Beijing Spring). His numerous honors include Tim Dang Day (L.A. City Council); Local Hero of the Year (KCET/Union Bank); Top 100 Asian Americans of the Decade (A. Magazine); Leadership Award (James Irvine Foundation); Zelda Fichandler Award (Society of Directors and Choreographers); many, many more. Tim will continue to initiate and innovate diversity and inclusion across the American theatre.
Nothing Is the Same is double-cast. The young characters are portrayed by adult actors The company includes Cedric “Ikaika” Jonathan, Kurt Kanazawa, Tristen Kim, Chloe Madriaga, Asia Ring, On Shiu and Yeng Kong Thao.
Scenic design: Tesshi Nakagawa. Lighting design: Derek Jones. Sound design: Howard Ho. Costume design: Tanya Apuya. Graphic design: Mary Cox. Hula design/ Dialect consultant: Kelsey Chock.
Special events and lobby exhibits connected to this engagement and curated by Diane Siegel will be the subject of a separate release. Additional midweek performances of the play will be reserved for school groups.
The play premiered at the Honolulu Theatre for Youth after being developed at the Kennedy Center’s New Visions/New Voices Festival. After touring for two seasons in Hawaii, the original production moved to Seattle Children’s Theatre for an additional three months. The play is the recipient of the Hawaii Governor’s Award for Literature.
Nothing Is The Same, opens Friday, January 19, 2018 and Saturday, January 20 at 8:00 p.m. Thereafter, every Sunday at 2:30 p.m. and every Saturday at 2:30 p.m. through March 4. Tickets are $30 general admission, seniors (65+) $27 and youth (20 and under) $20.
For reservations contact (626) 355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.
Sierra Madre Playhouse is located at 87 W. Sierra Madre Blvd. in Sierra Madre.