One of the highlights of my summer was attending a series of three plays written by David Henry Hwang. My husband and I kicked off the series in July with Chinglish.
This play told the story of an American businessman who travels to Guiyang, China to drum up some clients for his sign business back in Ohio. I laughed so much, tears gushed from my eyes, although I also walked away feeling sad. Chinglish has left Chicago, but will debut in New York next month. If you’re in New York, read this blog, and wish to see one show there, you won’t go wrong with Chinglish!
In August I took my son to Yellow Face. We met some good friends there and enjoyed this semi-autobiographical play about David Henry Hwang’s stance during the Miss Saigon casting fiasco. My son, friends, and I loved Yellow Face so much, we bought tickets to Family Devotions, the last play in this series.
And that’s what we saw tonight.
Family Devotions is even darker than Chinglish. Tonight was the final showing, so the stellar all-Asian cast stuck around afterwards to chat with the audience, one on one. I spoke to an actress who played one of the grannies (she was quite a bit younger than me in real life). We discussed Chinese dialects, English accents, and Chinese geography. My friends’ daughter recognized an actress from Yellow Face, so talked to her for a while.
Then the cast had to strike the set, so we bid them farewell and headed two doors down to a Vietnamese restaurant. About 30 minutes after we sat down, who should walk into the restaurant but the entire cast, along with their partners and friends. They even sat next to us. So on our way out, we asked for a group photo and they all too kindly obliged.
What a delightful way to end the David Henry Hwang series in Chicago!