Aladdin's Telly Leung to Direct David Henry Hwang's Yellow Face for Theatre Raleigh | Playbill

Regional News Aladdin's Telly Leung to Direct David Henry Hwang's Yellow Face for Theatre Raleigh

Performances of the 2007 work, inspired by the Miss Saigon casting controversy, will begin June 22 at the North Carolina venue.

Telly Leung Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Aladdin star Telly Leung is directing Theatre Raleigh's production of Tony winner David Henry Hwang's Yellow Face, which will play the TR Studio Theatre June 22-July 3.

The cast will feature Hansel Tan (Ping Pong) as DHH, Pascal Pastrana (Mean Girls) as Marcus, Alan Ariano (M. Butterfly) as HYH and Others, Liam Yates as Announcer and Others, Brook North as Stuart Ostro and Others, Ali Evarts as Jane and Others, and Kylie Robinson as Leah Anne Cho and Others, with standbys Tedd Szeto, Ada Chang, and Gus Allen.

Yellow Face blurs the lines between truth and fiction as Asian-American playwright Hwang leads a protest against the casting of a white performer, Jonathan Pryce, as the lead in the original Broadway production of Miss Saigon, condemning the practice as “yellow face.” His position comes back to haunt him when he mistakes a Caucasian actor for mixed-race, and casts him in the lead Asian role of his own Broadway-bound comedy, Face Value.

"I want audiences to laugh, cry, feel intensely, and have a good time," says Leung. "It is always my hope that audiences leave one of my shows and they continue to discuss the play at home or at drinks after the show, or maybe they think about it the next morning on their drive to work. Perhaps it changes the way they react to current events. Perhaps it broadens their understanding of what it means to be 'American.' Perhaps it changes the way they interact with others in their community, especially those who are marginalized."

Assistant Director and Dramaturg Sam Hamashima adds, "This production offers a whole new perspective of David Henry Hwang's work and just how far we've come since Hwang wrote this 14 years ago. As an Asian American born and raised in our Raleigh community, I am most excited for a show that I've deeply connected with for years to be introduced to our patrons and audiences."

The production also has set design by Miyuki Su, costume design by Kishara McKnight, lighting and projection design by Charlie Raschke, properties design by Timothy Domack, and sound design by Eric Alexander Collins.

Leigh Silverman directed the 2007 Public Theater world premiere, with a cast comprising Noah Bean, Francis Jue, Julienne Hanzelka Kim, Kathryn Layng, Hoon Lee, Lucas Caleb Rooney, and Anthony Torn.

For tickets click here.

From Wicked to Aladdin: Look Back at Telly Leung's Theatre Highlights


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