Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Eric Sharp Makes Playwrighting Debut with Mu Performing Arts’ World Premiere of Middle Brother at The Southern Theater, September 11-28, 2014

10541977_10152293392781149_972767837221691235_nMu Performing Arts is presenting the world premiere of Middle Brother, a new play written by and starring longtime Mu performer Eric Sharp (FOB Tour, Yellow Fever, Into the Woods). This play marks the beginning of Mu’s 23rd season and its 46th world premiere.  Helmed by Robert Rosen, the cast also features Su-Yoon Ko, Sara Ochs, Audrey Park, Sherwin Resurreccion, and Michael Sung-Ho. Performances for Middle Brother are September 11–28, 2014, at The Southern Theater, 1420 Washington Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55454. Click here to purchase tickets.

Artistic Director Randy Reyes recently discussed Mu’s commitment to telling untold stories about the lives of Asian Americans.

“We are very excited to kick off our 23rd season with Middle Brother by Eric Sharp.  This new play, our 46th Asian American world premiere, joins our growing body of work exploring adoption narratives, including Mask Dance, The Walleye Kid: The Musical, and Four Destinies.  It is the first play for us to explore Korean adoptee experiences from a male perspective.  The more I learn about the various issues and perspectives around adoption, the more stories I want to tell.”

– Randy Reyes (Artistic Director, Mu Performing Arts)

Robert Rosen (former co-Artistic Director, Theatre de la Jeune Lune) directs this newest product of the Mu Performing Arts/Jerome New Performance Program.

“When Eric first told me about his idea for the play, it transported me to a world about which I am very familiar, but still have much to learn.  We sat down in a café and he described our hero Billy’s trip to Korea, his decision to look for his birth family and the events that follow.  The story unfolded like a Korean melodrama.  I am honored to help a new dramatist tell a timely and compelling story.”

– Robert Rosen (Director, Middle Brother)


Seoul, South Korea: Only days away from moving back to the Midwest, Billy, a Korean adoptee, is unexpectedly reunited with his Korean birth brother and must somehow reconcile his modern American life with his newfound Korean past.  This imaginative physical theatre piece employs a quirky sense of humor, thrilling movement choreography, and live Korean karaoke to invite audiences into the mind of one adult adoptee on the journey of a lifetime.

Production team includes: Lisa M. Smith (Stage Manager), Karin Olson (Lighting Designer), John Bueche (Set and Props Designer), 2013 IVEY award-winner Michael Croswell (Sound Designer), and Stacey Palmer (Costume Designer).

Eric Sharp (Playwright) is a Twin Cities based actor, writer, and teaching artist.  His playwriting debut, Middle Brother received a reading at New York’s Leviathan Lab, and was named as a finalist for the 2013 National New Play Network Showcase.  As an actor, Mu audiences will remember Eric from recent productions including FOB Tour, Yellow Fever, Into the Woods, and Ching Chong Chinaman.  He has also been seen onstage at the Guthrie Theater, Park Square Theatre, Children’s Theatre Company, Theatre de la Jeune Lune,Walking Shadow Theatre Co., and TigerLion Arts’ Minneapolis and NYC productions of The Buddha Prince.

Robert Rosen (Director) is a director, performer, and educator based in Minneapolis.  He received his training at the Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris and at the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre in Blue Lake, California.  In 1979 he assisted in founding Theatre de la Jeune Lune where he served as co-Artistic Director from 1985 through 2005. Bob has conceived and directed many original theatrical offerings including several works for the Minnesota Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.  He is an affiliate faculty member in the theatre departments of the University of Minnesota and Macalester College and was a 2010-11 Playwrights’ Center McKnight Theatre Artist Fellow.  Bob currently co-directs Studio 206 and is also co-founder of The Gymnasium, a consortium of creative risk-takers who are using the arts as a nexus for connections with science, industry, business and innovation.

Production team includes: Lisa M. Smith (Stage Manager), Karin Olson (Lighting Designer), John Bueche (Set and Props Designer), 2013 IVEY award-winner Michael Croswell (Sound Designer), and Stacey Palmer (Costume Designer).

Performance Schedule:

PREVIEW ($18) General Admission

Thursday, September 11 at 7:30 PM

PERFORMANCES ($22) General Admission

Friday, September 12 at 7:30 PM

Saturday, September 13 at 7:30 PM

Sunday, September 14 at 2:00 PM (PSD)

Thursday, September 18 at 7:30 PM

Friday, September 19 at 7:30 PM

Saturday, September 20 at 7:30 PM

Sunday, September 21 at 2:00 PM (ASL/AD/PSD)

Thursday, September 25 at 7:30 PM

Friday, September 26 at 7:30 PM

Saturday, September 27 at 7:30 PM

Sunday, September 28 at 2:00 PM

PSD: Post-show discussion

ASL: American Sign Language interpreted

AD: Audio Described performance

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David Henry Hwang and Lynn Nottage Appointed to the Playwriting Faculty of Columbia University School of the Arts Theatre Program
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Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Other articles on Mu Performing Arts:
July 23-Aug. 10: Randy Reyes Leads Cast of Mu Performing Arts’ Production of A Little Night Music, Helmed by Rick Shiomi at Park Square Theatre
Mu Performing Arts Honors Rick Shiomi at Mu Gala 2013 on April 27, 2013; Randy Reyes to Succeed Shiomi as Artistic Director
Kurt Kwan, Sara Ochs, Eric Sharp and More Set for Mu Performing Arts production of R.A. Shiomi’s Yellow Fever in Guthrie’s Dowling Studio, March 8-24, 2013
Mu Performing Arts Presents World Premiere of Lauren Yee’s The Tiger Among Us at Mixed Blood Theatre, January 24 – February 10, 2013
Mu Daiko Performs at The Cowles Center in Minneapolis, November 8-11, 2012
Photos: Yellow Fever Playwright Rick Shiomi Explores New Territory with An All-Female Cast
Mu’s landmark 21st Season features a brand new Taiko Concert, Lauren Yee’s The Tiger Among Us, and Rick Shiomi’s Award-Winning comedy Yellow Fever
Rick Shiomi helms Mu Performing Arts’ Asian American Cast of Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods at Park Square Theatre in St. Paul, July 17-August 5, 2012
Randy Reyes directs Mu Performing Arts’ production of EDITH CAN SHOOT THINGS AND HIT THEM by A. Rey Pamatmat at Mixed Blood Theatre, March 13-April 1, 2012
Mu Performing Arts’ Little Shop of Horrors on 2 ‘Best of’ Lists; Women in Arts Panel on 1/29, in Conjunction with Mu Daiko’s 15th Anniversary Concert and Tour
Mu Daiko 15th Anniversary Concert and Minnesota Tour, February 9-19, 2012
Photos: Opening Night of Mu Performing Arts’ Katie Hae Leo’s Four Destinies
Photos: Backstage at Mu Performing Arts’ Four Destinies by Katie Hae Leo
Photos: On the town with Rick Shiomi, Co-Editor of “Asian American Plays for a New Generation”, in D.C. & NY
Temple Press: Rick Shiomi recounts his tour for “Asian American Plays for a New Generation”
Mu Blog: Rick Shiomi’s Book Tour Logbook Reading on the road inside the book tour Photo Flash: Library of Congress’ IN REHEARSAL Exhibit
Lia Chang Theater Portfolio at Library of Congress Features Photos of Thom Sesma’s Makeup Transformation as Scar in Disney’s The Lion King Las Vegas, Robert Lee and Leon Ko’s Heading East Starring BD Wong, David Henry Hwang’s Chinglish, and Samrat Chakrabarti and Sanjiv Jhaveri’s Bakwas Bumbug! on View Through August 2
“Asian American Plays for a New Generation”, A New Anthology of Asian American Plays Is Subject of Book Talk

Lia Chang Photo by GK

Lia Chang Photo by GK

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalistLia made her jazz vocalist debut in Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz “LADY” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2014 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at

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