David Henry Hwang Opera An American Soldier Finds Full Cast | Playbill

Classic Arts News David Henry Hwang Opera An American Soldier Finds Full Cast

The opera with music by Huang Ruo will be directed by Chay Yew at Perelman Performing Arts Center.

David Henry Hwang and Huang Ruo Matthew Murphy

Casting for the New York premiere of An American Soldier has been announced. Huang Ruo's opera, with a libretto by David Henry Hwang, will play at the Perelman Performing Arts Center May 12-19 in a production directed by Chay Yew. Carolyn Kuan will conduct.

An American Soldier is based on the true story of Private Danny Chen, whose death in 2011 was followed by an investigation and subsequent court-martial of his fellow soldiers.

The PAC NYC cast includes tenor Brian Vu as Danny Chen, mezzo-soprano Nina Yoshida Nelsen as his mother, soprano Hannah Cho as his school friend Josephine Young, and baritone Alex DeSocio as Sgt. Aaron Marcum, one of the soldiers charged in the investigation. They are joined by Ben Brady, Cierra Byrd, James C Harris, Shelén Hughes, Joshua Sanders, Christian Simmons, Misoon Ghim, Luke Harnish, and Angela Yam.

An American Soldier will include scenic design by Daniel Ostling, costume design by Linda Cho, lighting design by Jeanette Yew, and multi-media design by Nick Hussong.

Best known for his plays, including M. Butterfly and Yellow Face, David Henry Hwang is also a prolific opera librettist, having written several operas with composers such as Philip Glass, Bright Sheng, and Unsuk Chin. His opera with Osvaldo Golijov, Ainadamar, will have its Metropolitan Opera premiere next seasonAn American Soldier was Hwang's first collaboration with Huang Ruo, and the pair have since reunited, including on an operatic adaptation of M. Butterfly. The duo have been commissioned by San Francisco Opera to write an opera, The Monkey King, based on an episode from the 16th-century Chinese novel Journey to the West, set to premiere in 2025. Additionally, Huang Ruo has been commissioned by the Met to compose an opera based on the 1993 film The Wedding Banquet, with a libretto by James Schamus.

For more information, visit PACNYC.org.

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