Two of Miss Saigon's principals, Lea Salonga and Luoyong Wang, were honored with the Better Chinatown Association's Asian American Heritage Award May 11. First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, on hand for some senatorial campaign fundraising, presented the award.
In 1999, Salonga returned to the Broadway role that made her famous, Kim in Miss Saigon. She first played the part in both London and in New York and for her efforts, won a Laurence Olivier Award and a Tony Award. Since her Broadway debut in Saigon, she has returned to New York to play Eponine in Les Miserables. Disney fans know her for lending her singing voice to Princess Jasmine in "Aladdin" and Mulan in "Mulan."
Given annually to an Asian American or Asian Americans of prominence, the Asian American Hertitage Award is given during May, Asian American Heritage Month. Last year's winner was international painter Mohan Samant.
Miss Saigon, the story of the doomed passion between a young Vietnamese girl and her American G.I. at the time of the fall of Saigon, began performances nearly 10 years ago at the Broadway Theatre. The smash megamusical written by the Les Miserables songwriters, will end its Broadway run Dec. 31, having racked up 4,063 performances.