Jimmy Feng (left) as David Chin chats with his son, Vincent Chin, played by Wilson Tan, in the GENseng and Department of Theatre and Dance production "Carry the Tiger to the Mountain." Performances are scheduled through Sunday.
GENESEO, N.Y. – GENseng, Geneseo’s Asian American Performance Ensemble, is joining the Department of Theatre and Dance in the revival of Cherylene Lee’s play, “Carry the Tiger to the Mountain,” Nov. 8-12 in Alice Austin Theatre in Brodie Hall. The Wednesday through Saturday performances begin at 7:30 p.m. and the Sunday matinee begins at 2:00 p.m.
The play, originally produced on campus in 2008, is inspired and based on true historical events depicting the life and death of Vincent Chin, a Chinese American citizen whose life was cut short by a heinous hate crime the night before his wedding. Two bat-wielding unemployed Detroit autoworkers bludgeoned him to death after confusing Chin for being Japanese and accusing him of stealing their jobs at Chrysler.
Using the Chinese martial art of tai chi chuan, pop music and dance of the 1940s-80s, “Carry the Tiger to the Mountain” tells the story of Chin’s life and barbaric murder, a crime that has gone unpunished.
“This injustice galvanized the Asian American community to unite politically and continues to resonate 33 years later in our prevailing socio-political climate that is fraught with hateful speech that all too often escalates into hateful actions,” said Randy Barbara Kaplan, professor of theatre, who is directing and choreographing the play.
Several students are assisting Kaplan including Lila Klatz as dance captain and Rachel Appell and Lily Codera as student tai chi coaches. Steven Stubblefield, associate professor of theatre, designed the sets and Bonita Stubblefield, theatre department lecturer, designed costumes. Johnnie Ferrell, associate professor of theatre, designed the lighting and sound for the production. Student Randall Lombardi is the stage manager, supported by Rachel Appell and Carrie White as assistant stage managers.
The cast of 16 includes Wilson Tan (Vincent Chin); Kea Corey (Lily Chin); Jimmy Feng (David Chin/Fortuneteller Wong/Sifu); Lily Codera (Hannah Hsu); Aram Peers (Car Dealer/Judge); Leeann Bruetsch and Sandra Kralik (Show Girls); Jack Swanger (Evans); Griffin Netti (Stetz); Matt Tyler (Attorney Katz); Kyle Johnson (Tommy); Emily Cohen (Attorney Louie); Arisa Tanai (Patti Lin); Sean McPhillips (Doctor/Federal Judge); Aidan Procopio (Car Customer/Court Clerk); and Class of 2016 alumna Michelle Cooman (Hua Mulan).
Dramaturg Lila Klatz has assembled a Brodie Hall lobby display about hate crimes in America and focuses especially on hate crimes committed against Asian Americans, who all too often go overlooked in current American conversations about race.
Tickets for the production are $10 and are available online and at the Student Association Box Office in the College Union. The Brodie Box Office will be open for cash only ticket sales Nov. 6 – Nov. 11 from 4 to 6 p.m. and Nov. 12 from noon to 2 p.m.
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