Theatre Company of Lafayette & Theatre Esprit Asia Proudly Present
Three generations of Chinese westernized women, brilliant musicians, of whom two are world class virtuosos and one who gave up a music career to only become a neurosurgeon. They gather to celebrate Grandma’s 80th birthday, in Gandolfo, Italy, the Pope’s summer home, because Grandma wants to see the Pope before she kicks!
Cellist Grandma shows signs of dementia while doggedly smoking, practicing tai ji chuan and maintaining her dragon lady fierceness towards her progeny. Then there are her two step-daughters: genius conductor Da Jieh, ever haunted by her conductor father’s non-support, hasn’t conducted for two years; and Shiow May, who mourns her violin prodigy past which she gave up for the good life and a philandering conductor husband. Granddaughter Sabrina struggles with her mother Shiow May’s disappointment that she chose medicine over a concert pianist career – being a top-notch neurosurgeon isn’t good enough!
Secrets, jealousies, lost dreams and future hopes collide as the action unfolds with humor and grace in a lush villa, underscored by strains of Bach, Beethoven, Mahler, Johann Strauss, Tchaikovsky, Chinese folk and milonga – music of the barrios of Buenos Aires, the Pope’s favorite music. What is Grandma’s secret? Can Da Jieh overcome her ghosts? Will Shiow May face the consequences of her own choices? Can Sabrina forgive her mother’s disapproval?
This is playwright Maria Cheng’s sixth full-length play, in which she finally forays into a life-long passion, western classical music. While Cheng explores the burden of virtuosity, the politics of art making and the ‘purpose’ of music, the underlying theme of this dramedy is what price one pays when one does or doesn’t follow one’s authentic self.
Cecilia Pang, professor of theater at CU Boulder, directs, with Lori Hansen as Grandma, Munam Goodwyn as Shiow May, Maria Cheng as Da Jieh and Samantha Saunders as Sabrina. TCL & TEA also welcomes Biz Schaugaard as set designer, Brian Miller as lighting designer and Joaquin Avina as stage manager.
Jan 12 – 28, 2018; Fri & Sat 7:30pm, Sun 2pm; reduced price on Sunday, January 21
Theatre Company of Lafayette, 300 E Simpson St., Lafayette, CO 80026
Tickets: 1-800-838-3006 or online at Brown Paper Tickets
$16 general, $13 students/seniors 55+, $10 children 12 and under, + fee for credit card charge