CHICAGO (Oct. 25, 2015) — The ENERI Access Series, a programming arm of ENERI Communications invites the public to attend a meet and greet with playwright Lauren Yee of NY/CA, on Monday, Oct. 26, 2015, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the new Chinatown Branch of the Chicago Public Library, 2100 South Wentworth Avenue, Chicago.
Yee’s latest play, King of the Yees, directed by Joshua K. Brody, is being presented by Chicago’s renowned Goodman Theatre as part of its 2015 New Stages Festival, from Nov. 1-15, 2015. A full-staged developmental production, “King of the Yees” appears in repertory in the 350-seat Owen Theatre, completely free of charge. Reservations are strongly recommended; call 312.443.3800, book via the Goodman Theatre website at www.GoodmanTheatre.org or visit the Goodman Theatre box office at 170 North Dearborn, Chicago, Ill.
Synopsis: “For nearly 20 years, playwright Lauren Yee’s father Larry has been a driving force in the Yee Family Association, a Chinese American men’s club formed a 150 years ago. But when her father goes missing, Lauren must plunge into the rabbit hole of San Francisco’s Chinatown and confront a world both foreign and familiar. Bitingly hilarious and heartbreakingly honest, King of the Yees is an epic joy ride across cultural, national and familial borders that explores what it means to truly be a Yee.” (Source:www.GoodmanTheatre.org )
Lauren Yee was born and raised in San Francisco and currently lives in New York. Her plays include Ching Chong Chinaman (Pan Asian, Mu Performing Arts, SIS Productions and Impact Theatre), The Hatmaker’s Wife (Playwrights Realm, The Hub, Moxie and AlterTheater), Hookman (Encore Theatre and Company One), in a word (rolling world premiere at San Francisco Playhouse, Cleveland Public Theatre, Mo’olelo Performing Arts Company and Strawdog Theatre Company), Samsara (Victory Gardens Theatre, Chance Theatre, Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center’s National Playwright Conference and Bay Area Playwrights Festival) and The Tiger Among Us (MAP Fund and Mu Performing Arts). (See bio long version below.)*
Founded in 2004, the New Stages Festival is a celebration of innovative new plays, and is designed to give playwrights an opportunity to take risks and experiment. Since its inception,New Stages has offered theatergoers a first look at adventurous new plays, many of which have gone on to receive successful full productions at the Goodman and elsewhere—including Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Ruined. (Source: www.GoodmanTheatre.org )
“REMARKABLE GRACE 2015 – PART II”
In addition, ENERI’s previously opened Exhibit, “Remarkable Grace – 2015 Part II” continues on display at the Chinatown Branch of the Chicago Public Library until Saturday, October 31, 2015. The Exhibit is being presented in honor of the 20th Annual Chicago Artists Month (CAM), which celebrates the City of Chicago’s designated 2015 theme, “Chicago, The City as Studio”. (www.chipublib.org)
An A/V Group Music Video produced by ENERI Communications on the City’s theme of “Chicago, The City as Studio” debuted October 8, 2015 at the Chinatown Library. This Video features the Impressionist-style pastel paintings of Susan Cua (Greenleaf Art Center, Rogers Park), including her Chicago “El Stop” series (www.susancua.com); the artwork of modern graffiti and North Lawndale-based artist Traz Juarez, whose work was recently shot for Spike Lee’s upcoming film, Chiraq; “Chicago – Millennial Perspective!” by Bright Young Stars and recent college graduates Michael Nguyen, photographer and Lauren Uchima, photographer and blogger; Chicago “on-site” art featuring some of the City’s famous buildings, sites and scenes by the late and great painter, remarkable Grace Lai; original music by Cleofe Guangko Casambre, M.D., who is also a painter (www.cleofeguangkocasambremd.com); and landscape, architectural, scenic photography and digital art by Rieny G. Cualoping, who is also serving as the project’s creator and curator and the video director.
The video is being released in October 2015 via YouTube on the enericom Channel.
The Oct. 26, 2015 program featuring playwright Lauren Yee is being hosted by the Chinatown Branch of the Chicago Public Library at its newly-opened 16,000 square foot building, at 2100 South Wentworth Avenue, Chicago, Illinois. Wight & Company, in collaboration with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), provided design-build services for the architecturally spectacular new Chinatown Branch Library.
The Oct. 26, 2015 program and reception is underwritten and free and open to the public, but reservations should be made at the eventbrite link http://eneri102615.eventbrite.com . Queries may be sent to email@example.com
Grace Lai (1927-2010) was a colorful Chicago artist who specialized in the historical “on-site” documentation of Chicago’s ever-evolving architecture. Her spectacular paintings captured the dramatic demolition and ongoing transformation of Chicago’s impressive skyline. Her paintings of pen and ink and watercolor wash are a part of BP Amoco’s permanent collection, the Northwestern Hospital art collection, and many private collections. She was also the official artist of the Chicagoland Construction Safety Council in Hillside, Illinois, which housed over 100 originals of her large-scale works. Grace Lai painted views of Chicago specializing in construction projects, in pen and ink and watercolor wash.
She began her career in her late fifties, after her husband Harry Lai, an artist, passed away. While he was alive she worked closely with him in his graphic arts and hand sign-painting business, Acme Studio. After his death in 1985 she attended the same school that he and their son Edward attended, Chicago’s American Academy of Art. Grace Lai made history as the oldest student to ever graduate from the Academy. Her renderings of Chicago’s Trump Tower (in 2007 and 2008) would end up being the last two paintings she created before she passed away in 2010 at the age of 82. She left her legacy in approximately 200 original paintings that she created, featuring every famous Chicago building in the City, as well as many of its beaches, skies and lake.
Lauren Yee is a playwright born and raised in San Francisco. She received her bachelor’s degree from Yale University, and her MFA in playwriting from UCSD, where she studied under Naomi Iizuka.
She was a Dramatists Guild fellow, a MacDowell fellow, a MAP Fund grantee, a member of The Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group, a Time Warner Fellow at the Women’s Project Playwrights Lab, the Shank playwright-in-residence at Second Stage Theatre, and the Page One resident playwright at Playwrights Realm. She has been a finalist for the Jerome Fellowship, the PONY Fellowship, the Princess Grace Award, the Sundance Theatre Lab, and the Wasserstein Prize. Her play Samsara has been a nominee for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and the L. Arnold Weissberger Award. Her work has been published by Samuel French.
Her full-length work has been produced at AlterTheater, Artists at Play, The Chance Theatre, City Lights Theatre Company, Cleveland Public Theatre, Company One, Encore Theatre/Z Space, fu-GEN, the Hub Theatre, Impact Theatre, Moxie Theatre, Mu Performing Arts, Pan Asian Rep, SF Playhouse, SIS Productions, Victory Gardens Theatre, and others.
Yee’s work has also been developed at Lincoln Center Theatre/LCT3, the Goodman Theatre, The Public Theater, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, Playwrights Realm, Second Stage Theatre, Centerstage, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Aurora Theatre, the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, East West Players, the Hangar Theatre, Kitchen Dog Theatre, the Magic Theatre, Orlando Shakespeare Festival, PlayPenn, and the Playwrights’ Center.
Her play The Hatmaker’s Wife was an Outer Critics Circle nominee for the John Gassner Award for best play by a new American playwright. Ching Chong Chinaman was picked as a top 10 play of the year by City Pages and the East Bay Express, and Crevice was a Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle nominee for Best Play. Other honors include three Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival playwriting awards, Kumu Kahua Theatre’s Pacific Rim Prize, and writing fellowships from the American Antiquarian Society, the Byrdcliffe Artist Colony, the Edward F. Albee Foundation, the El Gouna Writers’ Residency, the Hawthornden Castle International Retreat for Writers, and the New York Mills Cultural Center. She has also received funding from the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, Theatre Bay Area, and UCSD’s Institute for International, Comparative, and Area Studies, as well as an award from PlayGround’s New Play Production Fund.
Lauren Yee is a member of the Ma-Yi Theatre Writers Lab and a Playwrights’ Center Core Writer. She is currently under commission from the Denver Center, the Goodman Theatre, Lincoln Center Theatre/LCT3, Mixed Blood Theatre, and South Coast Rep.