The Chinese Lady

'The Chinese Lady' sets Off-Broadway cast at The Public Theater

The show begins performances on February 23.

Gillian Russo
Gillian Russo

The Public Theater has announced casting for The Chinese Lady, the next show in its Off-Broadway season. Lloyd Suh's play begins performances February 23 ahead of a March 8 opening, and will run through March 27.

Shannon Tyo will play the titular character, Afong Moy, and Daniel K. Isaac will play the translator Atung. Both are reprising their roles from the last New York production of The Chinese Lady, a 2018 engagement at Theatre Row. In addition, Cindy Im will play Afong Moy and Jon Norman Schneider will play Atung at certain performances.

The Chinese Lady is inspired by the true story of Afong Moy, who is known as the first Chinese woman to live in America. She was brought over in 1834 at 16 years old, and she spent much of her life as a traveling spectacle, put on display for Americans who paid to gawk at her "exotic" Chinese looks and culture. Afong and her translator, Atung, tell her story, which contains their impressions of the then-young United States as well as challenges to how international cultures are seen under the white American gaze.

Ralph B. Peña, who has directed The Chinese Lady across the country, returns to helm The Public's production. The show features scenic design by Junghyun Georgia Lee, costume design by Linda Cho, lighting design by Jiyoun Chang and Elizabeth Mak, sound design and original music by Fabian Obispo, and projection design by Shawn Duan.

The Public Theater currently requires all audiences to be fully vaccinated and have received a booster dose in order to attend shows at its venues. Learn more about booster shot policies at New York theatres.

Get The Chinese Lady tickets now.

Originally published on

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