By Lloyd Suh The Barrington Stage Company and Ma-Yi Theater Company Production
Directed by Ralph B. Peña
Presented by The Public Theater
Featuring Cindy Im, Daniel K. Isaac, Jon Norman Schneider, and Shannon Tyo
Ma-Yi Theater Company and The Public Theater have announced complete casting for the upcoming presentation of THE CHINESE LADY, written by Lloyd Suh and directed by Obie Award winning Ralph B. Peña. THE CHINESE LADY will begin performances in The Public’s Shiva Theater with a Joe Papp Free Preview Performance on Wednesday, February 23 and will run through Sunday, March 27. The official press opening is on Tuesday, March 8.
The full cast includes Daniel K. Isaac (Atung) and Shannon Tyo (Afong Moy). Both are reprising their roles from the 2018 Ma-Yi Theater Company production at Beckett Theater (Theater Row). During select performances, Cindy Im will play Afong Moy and Jon Norman Schneider will play Atung. Visit publictheater.org for the performance calendar and more details.
Inspired by the true story of the first Chinese woman to step foot in America, Lloyd Suh’s critically acclaimed play, THE CHINESE LADY, is a tale of dark poetic whimsy and a unique portrait of the United States as seen through the eyes of a young Chinese girl. In 1834, 16-year-old Afong Moy sailed into New York Harbor and was immediately put on display for a paying public who were mesmerized by her exotic ways and horrified by her tiny bound feet. As audiences follow Moy’s travels through America as a living exhibit for decades, THE CHINESE LADY shares her impressions of a young country struggling with how to define itself.
THE CHINESE LADY will feature scenic design by Junghyun Georgia Lee, costume design by Linda Cho, lighting design by Jiyoun Chang and Elizabeth Mak, sound design and original music by Fabian Obispo, and projection design by Shawn Duan. Maggie Manzano will serve as the production stage manager and Brody Thrash as the stage manager.
This production marks the second collaborative production between Ma-Yi Theater Company and The Public Theater following a successful run of Teenage Dick by Mike Lew in 2018. The Public is proud to be presenting this important story onstage and continues to honor and celebrate Ma-Yi’s important mission of providing a home for Asian American artists, while producing theater that breaks boundaries.
Effective January 21, 2022, until further notice, The Public will require proof of a complete COVID-19 vaccination, including proof of a booster dose (for those eligible in accordance with CDC guidelines) by the date of attendance for access to the facility, theaters, and restaurant. Approved face masks will be required at all times, including while watching a performance, with exceptions for attendees in Joe’s Pub and The Library at The Public, who are actively eating and drinking. For complete health and safety protocols, visit Safe At The Public.
The Library at The Public will reopen on January 22, serving food and drink Tuesday through Sunday beginning at 5:00 p.m. and closing at midnight. The Library will be closed on Mondays. For more information, visit publictheater.org.
RALPH B. PEÑA he/him (Director) is the Artistic Director of Ma-Yi Theater Company in New York. Recent directing projects include The Chinese Lady, Felix Starro, Among The Dead, Once Upon a (korean) Time, and the short film Vancouver. His work has been seen on the stages of The Public Theater, Long Wharf Theater, Ensemble Studio Theater, Victory Gardens, La Jolla Playhouse, Laguna Playhouse, and The Children’s Theater Company, among others. He is the recipient of an Obie Award for his work on The Romance of Magno Rubio.
LLOYD SUH he/him (Playwright) is also the author of Bina’s Six Apples (premiering at Children’s Theatre Co. and Alliance Theater this season), Charles Francis Chan Jr.’s Exotic Oriental Murder Mystery, American Hwangap, The Wong Kids in the Secret of the Space Chupacabra Go!, Jesus in India, and others, produced with Ma-Yi, Magic, EST, NAATCO, Milwaukee Rep, and more, including internationally at the Cultural Center of the Philippines and with PCPA in Seoul, South Korea. He has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, and the Horton Foote Prize. He was elected in 2016 to the Dramatists Guild Council.
CINDY IM she/her (Afong Moy Alternate). Im’s international theater credits include 11 Septembre 2001 (Theatre Dijon Bourgogne/REDCAT Center for New Performance). She has performed Off-Broadway in The World of Extreme Happiness (Manhattan Theatre Club). Im’s regional credits include Hannah and the Dread Gazebo, Julius Caesar, Great Expectations, The Winter’s Tale (Oregon Shakespeare Festival); Vietgone, The Orphan of Zhao, Stuck Elevator, 4000 Miles (American Conservatory Theater); The Orphan of Zhao (La Jolla Playhouse); Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley (Marin Theatre Company); Twelfth Night (California Shakespeare Theater); The Snow Queen (San Jose Repertory Theatre); The World of Extreme Happiness (Goodman Theatre); and Measure for Measure (Seattle Shakespeare Company). She has appeared on television on “Manifest” (NBC) and in the film Tigertail (Netflix).
DANIEL K. ISAAC he/him (Atung). Isaac’s Public Theater credits include La Divina Caricatura (Under the Radar Festival 2013). He has performed Off-Broadway in You Never Touched the Dirt (Clubbed Thumb), The Chinese Lady (Ma-Yi), The Gentleman Caller (Abingdon), Sagittarius Ponderosa (NAATCO), Underland (59E59), La Divina Caricatura (La MaMa & St. Ann’s), and Anna Nicole the Opera (BAM). Isaac’s regional credits include The Chinese Lady (Barrington Stage), The Ballad of Little Jo (Two River), and Miss Electricity (La Jolla Playhouse). His film/TV credits are six seasons as Ben Kim on “Billions” (Showtime); The Drummer (opposite Danny Glover); “The Expecting” (Quibi); “The Deuce;” “Crashing;” Too Big To Fail (HBO); Money Monster (dir. Jodie Foster); “The Jim Gaffigan Show” (TV LAND); “Person of Interest” (CBS); and Jeremy on “The Other Two” (Comedy Central). He is a graduate of USCD and BADA. DanielKIsaac.com
JON NORMAN SCHNEIDER he/him (Atung Alternate). Schneider has previously performed at The Public Theater in Awake & Sing! (with NAATCO) and Durango. Other New York credits include the title role in Henry VI Parts 1-3 (NAATCO), Lunch Bunch (Clubbed Thumb), The Oldest Boy (LCT), Queens Boulevard (the musical) (Signature), A Map of Virtue (13P), among others. Regionally, Schneider has performed at Actors Theatre of Louisville, Alley, Alliance, Barrington Stage Company, Dorset Theatre Festival, the Goodman, the Huntington, Kennedy Center, Long Wharf Theatre, Magic, McCarter, Milwaukee Rep, Mosaic, Northern Stage, and The Old Globe. His film credits include Bitter Melon, Manila Is Full of Men Named Boy, The Normals, and HBO’s Angel Rodriguez. Selected TV credits are “The Endgame,” “Succession,” “Jessica Jones,” “Veep,” “30 Rock,” and “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.”
SHANNON TYO she/her (Afong Moy). Tyo’s Off-Broadway credits include The Chinese Lady (Ma-Yi), Kentucky (EST), and Bikeman (Tribeca PAC). Select regional credits include The Good Book (Berkeley Rep), Fun Home (Baltimore Center Stage), Broadway Bounty Hunter (Barrington Stage), Smart People (Geva Theatre), Bright Half Life (Kitchen Theatre), The White Snake (The Old Globe), Miss Saigon (Pioneer Theatre, Music Theatre Wichita), and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Northern Stage). Tyo has appeared on “30 Rock” (NBC), “The Last O.G.” (TBS), and “Rediscovering Christmas” (Lifetime). Her audio credits include The MS Phoenix Rising (Playwrights Horizons), antarctica (Two River Theater), Half the Sky (5th Avenue Theater), The Girl from the Sea (2021 SOVAS Award, Audiobook Narration), and Vancouver (Ma-Yi). shannon-tyo.com
ABOUT MA-YI THEATER COMPANY:
MA-YI THEATER COMPANY was founded in 1989 for the production and development of new plays and performance work discussing and engaging with the Filipino American experience. In 1998, responding to the growing need for a developmental venue for Pan-Asian American texts, Ma-Yi expanded its mission to include works by Asian American playwrights of all ethnicities and origins. Its numerous acclaimed productions include Haruna Lee’s Suicide Forest, Jessica Hagedorn & Fabian Obispo’s Felix Starro, Mike Lew’s Teenage Dick and Bike America, Qui Nguyen’s The Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G and Soul Samurai (with Vampire Cowboys), Hansol Jung’s Among The Dead, Lloyd Suh’s The Chinese Lady, and Lonnie Carter’s The Romance of Magno Rubio. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ma-Yi pivoted to the creation and production of digital content from Asian American artists to keep members of the community employed – this endeavor was known as Ma-Yi Studios. Productions to come out of Ma Yi Studios include short films like Sophocles in Staten Island and Vancouver (produced in association with Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival); short subjects like Pinoy Street Dancers and A Divergent War: Songs for the Pandemic; and digital readings of plays such as Clippy & Ms. U, Final Boarding Call (in association with WP Theater), ONCE UPON A (korean) TIME, My H8 Letter to the Gr8 American Theatre, Dong Xuan Center, and The House of Billy Paul; and more. Ma-Yi Theater Company’s works have won a total of 10 Obie Awards, 3 Lucille Lortel Awards, an Off-Broadway Alliance Award, a Richard Rodgers Award, a Drama Desk nomination for Best Play, numerous Henry Hewes Design Award nominations, and in May 2010, a special Drama Desk award for “more than two decades of excellence and for nurturing Asian American voices in stylistically varied and engaging theatre.” Ma-Yi Theater Company is currently under the leadership of Producing Artistic Director Ralph B. Peña.
ABOUT THE PUBLIC THEATER:
THE PUBLIC continues the work of its visionary founder Joe Papp as a civic institution engaging, both on-stage and off, with some of the most important ideas and social issues of today. Conceived over 60 years ago as one of the nation’s first nonprofit theaters, The Public has long operated on the principles that theater is an essential cultural force and that art and culture belong to everyone. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Oskar Eustis and Executive Director Patrick Willingham, The Public’s wide breadth of programming includes an annual season of new work at its landmark home at Astor Place, Free Shakespeare in the Park at The Delacorte Theater in Central Park, the Mobile Unit touring throughout New York City’s five boroughs, Public Forum, Under the Radar, Public Lab, Public Works, Public Shakespeare Initiative, and Joe’s Pub. Since premiering HAIR in 1967, The Public continues to create the canon of American Theater and is currently represented on Broadway by the Tony Award winning musical Hamilton by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Girl From the North Country. Their programs and productions can also be seen regionally across the country and around the world. The Public has received 59 Tony Awards, 184 Obie Awards, 55 Drama Desk Awards, 58 Lortel Awards, 34 Outer Critic Circle Awards, 13 New York Drama Critics’ Circle Awards, 58 AUDELCO Awards, 6 Antonyo Awards, and 6 Pulitzer Prizes. publictheater.org
The Public Theater stands in honor of the first inhabitants and our ancestors. We acknowledge the land on which The Public and its theaters stand—the original homeland of the Lenape people. We acknowledge the painful history of genocide and forced removal from this territory. We honor the generations of stewards and we pay our respects to the many diverse indigenous peoples still connected to this land.
The LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust provides leadership support for The Public Theater’s year-round activities.
THE CHINESE LADY begins performances in The Public’s Shiva Theater on Wednesday, February 23 and will run through Sunday, March 27, with an official press opening on Tuesday, March 8.
Public Theater Partner, Supporter, and full-price single tickets can be accessed by visiting publictheater.org, calling 212.967.7555, or in person at the Taub Box Office at The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette Street.
The Public’s Joseph Papp Free Performance initiative will offer free tickets to the performance on Tuesday, February 23 through a digital lottery.
The performance schedule is Tuesday through Sunday at 8:00 p.m., and Saturday at 2:00 p.m. Alternates Jon Norman Schneider and Cindy Im will be performing in the following shows: Saturday, March 12 at 2:00 p.m.; Sunday, March 13 at 8:00 p.m.;Tuesday, March 15 at 8:00 p.m.; and Tuesday, March 22 at 8:00 p.m. Alternate Cindy Im will perform with Daniel K. Isaac on Saturday, March 19 at 8:00 p.m. Alternate Jon Norman Schneider will perform with Shannon Tyo on Saturday, March 26 at 2:00 p.m.
The Open Captioned performance with Chinese translations will be at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 5 and at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 19. There will also be an Open Captioned performance in English at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 12. The Audio Described performance will be at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 19.
For this production of THE CHINESE LADY, The Public will also be offering a Sensory Friendly performance at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 26. This performance will include adjusted technical elements, preparatory materials, sensory supports, flexible and relaxed expectations for audience members, and trained staff. Sensory friendly performances are designed to welcome audience members with autism and intellectual or neurodevelopmental disabilities to the theater. All are welcome at sensory friendly shows, especially those who may benefit from the supports listed above.
The full performance calendar and complete ticket distribution details can be found at publictheater.org.