East West Players has set the cast and creative team for the world premiere of Chungmi Kim's Hanako, the third production of its 33rd anniversary season. The play opens April 7 for a three-week run at EWP's David Henry Hwang Theatre.
During World War II, the Japanese Imperial Forces drafted and abducted more than 200,000 women from Asian countries, the majority from Korea, and forced them to serve as sex slaves known as "comfort women." Directed by Tzi Ma, Hanako is a powerful story of these women who suffered in silence, isolation and shame as their stories remained untold for decades.
The play's cast includes June Angela, Dian Kobayashi, Christina Ma and Haunani Minn. The choreographer is Don Kim, set design by Yuki Nakamura, costume design by Joyce Kim Lee, lighting design by G. Shizuko Herrera, sound and slide design by Miles Ono. Victoria A. Gathe is the production stage manager.
Kim, a Korean American poet and playwright, has had her work published in many anthologies, magazines and newspapers. Her play The Comfort Women was the Grand Prize winner at the 14th Annual USC One-Act Play Festival. Recently, she was picked out by the Los Angeles Times as one of the "Faces to Watch 99."
EWP is at 120 Judge John Also St. in Little Tokyo. Call Telecharge for tickets: (800) 233-3123. -- By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent