Pan Asian Repertory Theatre

Pan Asian Repertory Theatre announces 42nd season at Theatre Row

Pan Asian Rep's season includes the New York premiere of Damon Chua's The Emperor's Nightingale and the world premiere of Prince Gomolvilas' The Brothers Paranormal.

Tom Millward
Tom Millward

Pan Asian Repertory Theatre has now announced details for its forthcoming 42nd season at off-Broadway's Theatre Row, which includes the New York premiere of Damon Chua's The Emperor's Nightingale this fall and the world premiere of Prince Gomolvilas' The Brothers Paranormal next spring.

The Emperor's Nightingale, directed by Chongren Fan, begins previews at Theatre Row on November 26, 2018, ahead of an official opening on December 2 and a limited engagement through to December 16, 2018.

Synopsis: "The Emperor's Nightingale is an adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's story "The Nightingale," set in 18th-century China, bringing to light the youthful exploits of the future Emperor Qianlong who befriends a magical bird who helps him learn what he must do to be King. The play employs traditional Chinese lion dance, puppetry, and a pair of tigers and pandas to tell this fun, thrilling tale."

Playwright Damon Chua commented: "I'm delighted to work with Pan Asian Rep for the New York premiere of this play. The Emperor's Nightingale began its life three years ago when I was commissioned by DC-based Adventure Theater to create a TYA play that marries Hans Christian Andersen's "The Nightingale" with Chinese history. For me, this was an opportunity to create a play with an all-Asian cast to showcase traditional Chinese art forms. The play has been produced in Minneapolis and will have its California premiere next year. Theaters and audiences have been embracing this small window into Chinese culture. Whether young or old, I hope you will be entertained as we explore the issue of what makes a good leader."

The Brothers Paranormal will be directed by Jeff Liu and will run at Theatre Row from April 27 through to May 19, 2019, with an official opening set for May 1.

Synopsis: "The Brothers Paranormal follows two Thai-American brothers who specialize in domestic hauntings. When the siblings investigate the home of an African-American couple displaced by Hurricane Katrina, everyone's notions of reality, fantasy, and sanity clash against the shocking truth."

Playwright Prince Gomolvila released this statement: "The play's intersection of genre and race, as well as the exploration of the spirit realm in a country that's doing some deep soul-searching, is what drives my passion for this project. While I interviewed and shadowed actual paranormal investigators, I also talked to one of the world's leading experts on dying, death, and grief—all in an effort to explore the play's disparate themes: the trauma of displacement (from one's country of origin, from post-Katrina New Orleans, from the corporeal world); the high incidence of mental health issues among Asian immigrants; and the different ways in which people cope with incredible loss."

Pan Asian Rep's season will also include the staged reading series Two Faces of Chinese America, featuring Citizen Wong by Richard Chang on Sunday, September 23, 2018 at 2pm at Flushing Town Hall and One Day in Old Chinatown by Marcus Yi on Friday, September 28, 2018 at 7pm in the Bruce Mitchell Room at A.R.T. NY.

The company will also host the 2018 Golden Unicorn Gala Dinner on Thursday, October 18, 2018 at The Golden Unicorn in Chinatown.

Originally published on

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