Three Midwestern Premieres Make Up Silk Road's 2008-09 Season

By Lindsey Wilson
April 26, 2008

Silk Road Theatre Project in Chicago will stage three Midwestern premieres during its 2008-09 season.

The season, dubbed "Road Trips," will feature Durango by Julia Cho, Yohen by Philip Kan Gotanda, and Pangs of the Messiah by Motti Lerner.

Beginning May 1 and running through June 15, Durango is the destination for a road trip taken by a widowed Korean-American man, Boo-Seng, and his two sons, Isaac and Jimmy. Isaac, who plans to become a doctor, and Jimmy, a champion swimmer with a bright future, aren't prepared for the way the trip will change all their lives. "As tempers flare and secrets break open, the difference between who they are and who they've pretended to be threatens to tear the family apart," according to The Silk Road Theatre Project. Carlos Murillo will direct.

Directed by Steve Scott, Yohen tells of Sumi, a divorced Japanese woman, and James, an African-American GI, who met and married in post-WWII Japan. Now nearly four decades later in a quiet Los Angeles suburb, their marriage, founded on fighting prejudice together, is severely tested when Sumi decides James must move out and begin formally courting her all over again. Yohen will run Sept. 18-Nov. 2.

Pangs of the Messiah is set in 2012 amidst the signing of a peace treaty between Israelis and the Palestinians. The play focuses on a family of West Bank Jewish settlers who "find themselves torn between fighting to stay in their settlement and obeying their government's decision to dismantle it." Jennifer Green will direct the production that runs Feb. 19-April 12, 2009.

Silk Road Theatre Project was formed as a creative response to the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Its mission is to "showcase playwrights of Asian, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean backgrounds, whose works address themes relevant to the peoples of the Silk Road and their Diaspora communities." They aim to promote discourse and dialogue among multi-cultural audiences in Chicago through the creation and presentation of outstanding theatre.

Tickets ($18-$32) and are available online at www.srtp.org or by phoning TheatreMania at (866) 811-4111.

All performances will be at Pierce Hall at The Historic Chicago Temple Building, 77 W. Washington St in Chicago.