Playwrights of the Chinese World: Beijing, Hong Kong, New York, Shanghai, Taipei
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Part of the Contemporary Chinese Playwright Series: Signature's Residency One Playwright David Henry Hwang will be joined by Chi Wei-jan, Meng Jinghui, Candace Chong and Nick Yu — playwrights from across the Chinese world — for a panel discussion on the state of contemporary Chinese theater scene and the artistic process.
Presented with Signature Theatre and the Lark Play Development Center. Don't miss The Contemporary Chinese Playwriting Series hosted by Signature Theatre and Lark Play Development Center this spring!
This program is part of China Close Up, Asia Society’s yearlong programmatic focus on China. This series is part of Citi Series of Asian Arts and Culture.
Can't make it to this program? Tune in to AsiaSociety.org/Live at 6:30 pm ET for a free live webcast.
BIOGRAPHIES FOR PARTICIPATING PLAYWRIGHTS
Wei-Jan Chi is a Taiwanese writer whose body of work spans two decades and includes screenplays, plays, essays, and a novel. His plays include MIT: Mad in Taiwan (2008), The Mahjong Game Trilogy (1997-2007), and One Bed, Four Players (1999). Most recently, Professor Chi wrote his first novel, Private Eyes, which won the 2012 Taipei International Book Exhibition (TIPE) Book Prize, and his new play Playing the Violin premiered in Taiwan in November 2012. Professor Chi holds a PhD in English Literature from the University of Iowa, and currently teaches in the Department of Drama and Theatre at National Taiwan University.
Candace Chong is a recipient of the Best Artist Award (Drama) by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council, and the winner of four Hong Kong Drama Awards (Best Script) for Alive in the Mortuary (2003), Shall We Go to Mars (2004), The French Kiss (2006) and Murder in San Jose (2009). Her plays have been translated and presented in Seoul, Tokyo, Macao, Singapore, and Shanghai. Her first commission as librettist, for the opera Dr. Sun Yat-sen, was selected as part of New York City Opera’s VOX: Contemporary American Opera Lab in May and will receive its world premiere this fall in Beijing and Hong Kong. In 2004, Ms. Chong was selected as an Asian Cultural Council Fellow and spent a year in the United States. She is a prolific translator of stage work, and her translations include Titus Andronicus, Betrayal and The Shape of Things, among many others. Most recently, Ms. Chong collaborated with David Henry Hwang to provide Mandarin Chinese translations for his play Chinglish, and Ms. Chong’s play, Wild Boar, premiered at the 2012 Hong Kong Arts Festival.
David Henry Hwang's plays include M. Butterfly (1988 Tony Award, 1989 Pulitzer Finalist), Golden Child (1996 Obie Award, 1998 Tony Nomination), Yellow Face (2008 Obie Award and Pulitzer Finalist), and FOB (1981 Obie Award). His Broadway musicals include the books for Elton John & Tim Rice’s Aida (co-author), Flower Drum Song (revival, 2002 Tony Nomination), and Disney’s Tarzan. As America's most-produced living opera librettist, he has written four works with composer Philip Glass, as well as Osvaldo Golijov's Ainadamar (two 2007 Grammy Awards), Unsuk Chin's Alice in Wonderland, and Bright Sheng's The Silver River. He penned the feature films M. Butterfly, Golden Gate, and Possession (co-writer), and co-wrote the song "Solo" with pop star Prince. Hwang attended Stanford University and the Yale School of Drama, and sits on the boards of the Dramatists Guild, the American Theatre Wing, and the Lark Play Development Center. From 1994-2000, he served by appointment of President Clinton on the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. His newest play, Chinglish, opened at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, winning a Jeff Award for Best New Play, before moving to Broadway in 2011.
Meng Jinghui is a leading Chinese playwright and director whose avant-garde, experimental works have brought him widespread popularity in theatres across Beijing. Early in his career, Meng was recognized for his performance in Eugene Ionesco’s The Rhinoceros in 1987 and his direction of Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett in 1991. To date, Meng has created over ten plays with his wife Liao Yimei, who he met while pursuing a Masters in Acting and Directing at the Central Academy of Drama. His plays include the acclaimed Si Si Fan (1993), I Love XXX (1994), and Bootleg Faust (1999). Meng’s first film, Chicken Poets, debuted in September 2002. Meng has participated in arts delegations to Avignon and Vienna among others, and runs a performance studio at the National Theatre Company of China.
Nick Yu is the most produced living playwright in mainland China and the Deputy General Manager for Shanghai’s only state-run theater company, the Shanghai Dramatic Arts Centre (SDAC). Since 2000, Mr. Yu has authored more than forty works for stage and screen with performances in other countries as well as in China. He received Asian Cultural Council Fellowships in 2004 & 2007 to conduct research on cultural exchange programs in the USA and participated in the International Residency program at the Royal Court Theatre in 2008. He has also translated works from other lands, which have been performed in China and other countries. His plays have been presented in English and Japanese as well as other languages and dialects with performances in the United States, Canada, Japan, Singapore, Egypt, Austria, Romania, Italy, Turkey, Germany, Hong Kong, Taipei, and Macao. His works were published in Chinese, Japanese, English, and Turkish. As the manager of the Arts Theatre, Drama Salon, and D6 Studio of the Shanghai Dramatic Arts Center, Mr. Yu has hosted more than four hundred projects on three stages in Shanghai, including Chinese and international productions, and has facilitated international tours for SDAC productions. Since 2003 as a dramaturg and producer of the SDAC, he also has co-produced several productions with theatre companies from abroad. Since 2005, he has been the Chief Director of the Shanghai International Contemporary Theatre Festival, which is an annual festival for theatre companies from all over the world.