Pan Asian Repertory and Poetic Theater Productions will host a conversation with veteran armed service poets after the matinee performance of Memorial, by Livian Yeh, on Sunday, January 29, 2023 at 2:30 p.m. The event will feature poetry readings by three veteran poets – Jan Barry, Dahlia Damoiselle and Jenny Pacanowski – and a commemoration of Vietnam Peace Day (January 27) which recognizes the signing of the Paris Peace Accords. For more information, please visit www.panasianrep.com.
“We at Poetic Theater Productions are honored to find opportunities to collaborate on projects as important as Memorial,” says Jeremy Karafin, Poetic Theater, Artistic Director. “Too often, our country eagerly sends our young adults to war, providing very little in terms of trauma treatment, healing and reintegration into civilian life. Programs like ours in partnership with the legendary Pan-Asian Representative, fuel a higher purpose for the theater to serve as a place to have empowering conversations within a larger space of support for community connection, growth and healing.”
Launching its 46th Milestone season, the Pan Asian Repertory Theater presents the world premiere of Memorial, a new play by Livian Yeh, directed by Jeff Liu, which is supported, in part, by a prestigious award from the National Endowment for the Arts. The cast includes Glenn Kubota as Hideo Sasaki, Angel Lin as Maya Lin, Rachel Lu as Julia Lin, Robert Meksin as Wolf von Eckardt, and James Patrick Nelson as Colonel James Becker.
The world premiere of the new Memorial piece written by Livian Yeh surrounds Maya Lin, the 21-year-old architect who is forced to defend herself with veterans and the United States Congress when her “untraditional” memorial design was selected for commemorating Vietnam veterans on the National Mall in Washington, DC Is democracy a matter of compromise and collaboration?
The creative team includes sets by Sheryl Liu, costumes by Karen Boyer, lighting by Victor En Yu Tan, sound by Da Xu, projection by Gregory Casparian and graphics by Brit Godish. The production manager is Kristine Schlachter with assistant manager Ingrid Pierson.
The world premiere engagement began Thursday, January 19, 2023 for a limited engagement through Sunday afternoon, February 19, 2023 at the Mezzanine Theater at ART/New York Theaters (502 West 53rd Street, West of 10th Avenue). The show had an official opening on Sunday, January 22 (Lunar New Year).
Memorial plays the following performance schedule: Tuesday through Saturday at 7:00 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
HOW TO BUY TICKETS:
Tickets for Memorial are priced at $60. Senior/Military/Student discounts available. $30 Rush tickets are available at the box office 1 hour before the show. Tickets can be purchased by visiting the Pan Asian Repertory Theater website at www.panasianrep.org.
For more information, please visit the Pan Asian Repertory Theater website at www.panasianrep.org, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOUT VETERAN POETS
Jan Barry is an award-winning journalist and poet whose books include A Citizen’s Guide to Grassroots Campaigns, Life after War & Other Poems, and (co-editor) Winning Hearts & Minds: War Poems by Vietnam Veterans, among other works. A veteran of the U.S. Army in Vietnam, his poetry presentations range from New York Public Theater to high school and elementary school classrooms and as a featured artist in Poetic Theater Productions’ Veteran Voices program. A participant and poetry reading coordinator at the Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival at the NJ Performing Arts Center and the New York City Poetry Festival, he coordinates Warrior Writers workshops for veterans and their family members in the New Jersey area and New York.
Dahlia Damoiselle is a queer and transgender writer of Vietnamese origin. A child of war refugees, his work focuses on the aftermath of violence in times of conflict. She has published in Blunderbuss Magazine, McSweeny’s, Slice Magazine, Foreign Policy, Time Magazine, The Daily Beast, and Columbia Journal, among others. She lives with her two cats in Brooklyn, NY, and she is an English adjunct instructor at CUNY Brooklyn College. Dahlia Damoiselle is a member of the Poetic Theater Productions Veteran Voices Advisory Board.
Jenny Pacanowski is Director of the Voices of the Veterans program at Poetic Theater Productions. She is also the founder and director of Women Veterans Empowered & Thriving, a reintegration program using writing and performance to empower experiences and facilitate skills needed to thrive in daily life. In the military while deployed to Iraq, Jenny was a combat medic and provided convoy medical support with the Marines, Air Force and Army. She also worked shifts at the Navy Medical Hospital. She is a professional poet, performer, speaker and playwright. Jenny has been featured on WFMZ, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Turner Classic Movies, Thriver Thursday’s with Robin Roberts, and “The Chew” on ABC. She has spoken at Ithaca College, Syracuse University, NYU, Drake University, Haverford College, and other institutions across the country. Jenny has collaborated with several organizations including Poetic Theater Productions, Lucid Body House Impact Theater, Decruit, Aquila Theater and other veteran artist organizations. As a playwright, his play, Dionysus in America, premiered at the Vortex Theater in Austin, Texas and received an excellent review from Broadway World. Jenny Pacanowski is passionate about raising awareness, educating and sharing the experience of veterans with society. Reconnecting military culture to civilian culture is essential to the health and well-being of our veterans. She believes successful reintegration programs such as Women Veterans Empowered & Thriving are key to reducing the scourge of suicide, substance abuse and homelessness in the veteran community.
The Pan Asian Repertory Theatre, celebrating its landmark 46th season, is the most experienced Asian American theater company on the East Coast. Tisa Chang founded Pan Asian Rep in 1977 at Ellen Stewart’s La Mama ETC with a vision to promote equity and access that Asian American artists can also follow, focusing on investigative stories on social justice issues with Off-Broadway productions, tours, national outreach, and community service. Mel Gussow of The New York Times described it as “A stage for everyone Asian Americans” and wrote that “Before the Pan-Asian Rep, Asian Americans had very limited opportunities in theatre. …” The company has nurtured thousands of performers and is a “who-is-who” in Asian American theater history, with notable alumni: Ako, Ernest Abuba, Tina Chen, Philip Gotanda, Wai Ching Ho, David Henry Hwang, Daniel Dae Kim, Lucy Liu, Ron Nakahara, RA Shiomi, Lauren Yee and Henry Yuk.
Pan-Asian performance programs are made possible, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council on the Arts, with support from Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature; the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; and major support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Howard Gilman Foundation, Mary Li Hsu Charitable Trust, NY Community Trust, Shubert Foundation, Fan Fox & Leslie R. Samuels, Lucille Lortel Foundations; and many generous people.
Poetic Theater Productions Veteran Voices Program
Amplifying the voices of American veterans and their families through theater performances, showcases and workshops, Veteran Voices builds bridges between veterans and civilians, storytellers and audiences, professional artists and those discovering their voices for the first time. The program recognizes that veterans’ stories have fundamentally shaped the landscape of theater in the past and thus aims to revitalize their essential inclusion in today’s poetic theater genre.
Poetic Theater Productions (Artistic Director, Jeremy Karafin) has worked with poets of all kinds writing poetry plays, chorepoems, hip-hop theatre, theatrical poetry and performance poetry of all kinds, producing hundreds of productions , festivals, showcases, workshops and readings since its inception in 2010. Poetic Theater Productions seeks to define the modern genre of “poetic theatre” by connecting and fostering a community of artists who passionately create relevant and accessible work and invigorate a language-aware theatre. Poetic Theater Productions is also home to the Poetic License festival, Breaking Our Silence and Generation Now programs and presents regular community-focused programming in collaboration with NYTW in addition to its residencies at Judson Memorial and The Wild Project. Poetic Theater Productions is a member of ARTNY and The Field.