Allegiance, Musical About Japanese American Camps, Will Get Old Globe Workshop in NYC; Lea Salonga Stars

News   Allegiance, Musical About Japanese American Camps, Will Get Old Globe Workshop in NYC; Lea Salonga Stars
The Old Globe in San Diego will present a private Manhattan workshop of Allegiance – A New American Musical, the original musical about a Japanese-American family forced into an internment camp on American soil during World War II. Lea Salonga is among participants.

Lea Salonga
Lea Salonga

The show, created by Jay Kuo (music, lyrics and book) and Lorenzo Thione (book), has been seen in developmental regional presentations. Old Globe is looking to produce the work in a full production in 2012.

Directed by Stafford Arima (Altar Boyz, and an Olivier Award nominee for the West End premiere of Ragtime) with musical direction and arrangements by Lynne Shankel (Cry-Baby) and choreography by Christopher Gattelli (South Pacific, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown), the workshop will lead to industry-only New York City presentations July 27-28.

Tony Award-winning actress Lea Salonga (Miss Saigon, Les Misérables), television and film icon George Takei ("Star Trek," "Heroes") and Telly Leung ("Glee," Rent) have all participated in past workshops and are expected to return to their roles in July.

The creative team includes Donyale Werle (scenic design) and David Zinn (costume design).

Old Globe executive director Lou Spisto said in a statement, "I am particularly excited to be working with this talented creative team as we join forces to continue the process of developing this important musical. This is certainly a story that should be seen in San Diego and will have special resonance with our audiences and all Californians. We are aiming for a production in the 2012 season." Here's how Old Globe characterizes the show: "Allegiance – A New American Musical is an epic story of love, war and heroism set during the Japanese-American internment of World War II. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Omura family is relocated from their home in Salinas, California to the Heart Mountain internment camp in the wastelands of Wyoming. Their story reflects a conflicted nation and people divided. Father Tatsuo, a successful store owner, resists their internment; mother Kimiko fears for their future, resigned to their fate; older son James volunteers in an all-Japanese army regiment; and younger son Sam yearns for acceptance in America. Allegiance sheds new light upon a dark chapter of American history. With its moving score, Allegiance connects the audience with universal themes of love, family and redemption."

Allegiance – A New American Musical is produced by special arrangement with Sing Out, Louise! Productions. For more information about Allegiance, visit

Allegiance is Jay Kuo's fourth musical. His composing career began at Stanford, where he wrote and produced Upwardly Mobile, a story of five friends coming of age. His second musical, Insignificant Others, played from 2006-2008 in San Francisco at New Conservatory Theatre Center, Zeum and Theatre 39 and won a Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award for Best Original Script. His third work, Worlds Apart, about star-crossed lovers in a cultural divide, performed in concert at San Francisco's Magic Theatre in late 2006 and in New York City at New World Stages in 2008.

Allegiance held its first staged reading in Los Angeles in July 2009, followed by two readings in New York City in 2010.

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