MARCH 31: AAPI representation in popular culture will be explored in this timely conversation titled DISMANTLING ORIENTALISM. The panel will be followed by an excerpt of Artists at Play’s next mainstage production, THIS IS NOT A TRUE STORY. In addition, a pop-up exhibit featuring the history of AAP (alongside other examples that fall under the event’s theme) will be available for viewing.

MAY 1: Staged reading of THE BUTTERFLY OF CHULA VISTA by Giovanni Ortega, dir. Jesca Prudencio, as part of AAP’s New Play Development. At Divina’s BaranGay & Grill in Chula Vista, Libertad discovers freedom and belonging in a new drag persona … which conflicts with nursing school. With karaoke hits (in English, Spanish, Tagalog!) and themes of family, identity, acceptance.

MAY 19-22: In David Henry Hwang’s THE DANCE AND THE RAILROAD, set during the 1867 Chinese American railroad workers’ strike, the idealistic Ma and the independent Lone grapple with the hard labor of working on the railroad and the dream of practicing traditional Chinese opera. AAP’s Katherine Chou directs this Asian American classic for A Noise Within’s “Noise Now” program.

JUNE: It’s the return of ARTISTS AT PLAY … AT PLAY! Join us at LATC, our new artistic home, as the producing team once again steps out from behind the curtain with original short plays created from absolute honesty—this time with AAP Intern Sandy Nguyễn!

OCTOBER: AAP’s next mainstage is the world premiere of THIS IS NOT A TRUE STORY by Preston Choi, dir. Reena Dutt. CioCio from Puccini’s opera “Madame Butterfly” completes her suicide—only to wake up realizing she is trapped in a never-ending loop of her story. Then “Miss Saigon”’s Kim joins the void … THIS IS NOT A TRUE STORY unravels the history of Orientalist art and theatre, and looks at what happens when the tragic Asian heroine takes control of her own story.