Family, Art and Politics Collide in Red, Unfurling March 23 at MTC

News   Family, Art and Politics Collide in Red, Unfurling March 23 at MTC
 
Chay Yew's Red, depicting one woman's return to her native communist China, opens March 23 at Manhattan Theatre Club's Stage II following previews and a previous resident staging in New Haven.

Chay Yew's Red, depicting one woman's return to her native communist China, opens March 23 at Manhattan Theatre Club's Stage II following previews and a previous resident staging in New Haven.

New York audiences began seeing Red, a drama about family, politics, art and China’s Cultural Revolution, March 2 in previews at MTC.

The new work made its East Coast premiere at New Haven’s Long Wharf Theatre Jan. 8-Feb. 7 and retains the same cast and creative team at MTC.

The Long Wharf-MTC Red is directed by David Petrarca and tells of a best-selling author of Asian romance novels, who returns to her native communist China to research a new book on a famed Chinese Opera star. Reconnecting with her long neglected past, she is transported to the world of the Beijing Opera during the Cultural Revolution, a time when old art forms were suppressed and traditional artists censored or killed -- and a time closer to her experience than she cares to recall.

The cast for Red includes Jamie Guan, Jodi Long, Liana Pai, and Ric Young. The production team includes Michael Yeargan (sets), Anita Yavich (costumes), James F. Ingalls (lighting), and Jeff Carlson and Rob Milburn (sound). Original music is by Rob Milburn. Yew is the author of Wonderland, Porcelain, The Courage to Stand Alone (based on letters of Chinese dissident Wei Jingsheng) and A Language of Their Own, which had a run at the Public Theater a few seasons back. A member of New Dramatists, New York Theatre Workshop’s "Usual Suspects," and the Dramatists Guild, Yew is working on commissions from the New York Shakespeare Festival (Glitter) and the Cornerstone Theatre Company (Beautiful Country). Yew is also the director of the Asian Theatre Workshop at the Mark Taper Forum and the resident director at East West Players.

Red had its world premiere Aug. 28-Sept. 26, 1998, at Seattle’s Intiman Theatre under Lisa Peterson’s direction, with a different cast.

Manhattan Theatre Club’s Stage II is at 131 W. 55th St. (On Stage I, the musical, Captains Courageous, continues to April 4.) Tickets for Red are $36. For information, call (212) 581-1212.

-- By Kenneth Jones
and Sean McGrath

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