To open its 26th Season, Ma-Yi Theater presents two exciting and provocative works that respond to our prevailing assumptions about colorblind casting, the much sought after proposition of equality in the arts, the eccentricities of Imelda Marcos, and the laundering and remixing of a dictator’s legacy into an innocuous disco party.
Han Ong’s terrific new play “Chairs and A Long Table,” will make you consider how American Theater wrestles with the ideals of equality and representation. “Livin’ La Vida Imelda” began as a walking tour devised by Carlos Celdran that takes you through the vast cultural complex built by Imelda Marcos in Manila. This tour gave Mr. Celdran the map he needed to take a deep dive into Imelda’s history, and tell her story using architecture. Now Mr. Celdran is working with Ma-Yi Theater on a reimagined, fun-filled theatrical tour de force.
Each play is unique, animated by different events, peopled by distinct characters telling different stories. But together, they represent for me a collective stab at breaking the myths we all create. Myths about post-racial America. Myths about shoes and jewelry. Myths about historical and cultural authenticity. And the myth that we know all about the myths.
CHARIS AND A LONG TABLE
BY HAN ONG
World Premiere Production
directed by Linsay Firman
October 28 – November 22, 2014
Han Ong's Chairs and a Long Table follows a group of Asian American actors as they prepare to attend a conference in Los Angeles addressing racial discrimination in the casting of a classic Chinese play.
LIVIN' LA VIDA IMELDA
BY CARLOS CELDRAN
U.S. Premiere Production
directed by Ralph B. Pena
October 31 – November 23, 2014
Join the internationally celebrated artists, activist raconteur, Sherpa of Itramuros and recent jailbird Carlos Celdran, as he takes a scalpel to the interwoven pathologies of Imelda Marcos and Philippine history, to get to the bottom of the dirt! Is there a better specimen to dissect? There are lies. There are rumors. Truth is beauty, and all beauty is God. Therefore, if you lie and spread rumors, you are Godless and you are ugly. That's the truth. Praise be to Ferdie.