Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Dec. 6: Master Class with Broadway Legend Baayork Lee to Benefit National Asian Artists Project, Inc. (NAAP)

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Baayork Lee. Photo by Lia Chang

Baayork Lee. Photo by Lia Chang

Treat yourself to a Master Class with Broadway Legend Baayork Lee on Saturday, December 6, 2014. Lee will be teaching and staging a production number at Pearl Studios NYC, 500 8th Ave, New York, NY.

– All proceeds will benefit the National Asian Artists Project.
– You don’t need to be a professional (or Asian) to join in on the fun!

All levels:
-2 hours from 12-2pm
-Ensemble movement and optional singing
$40 suggested donation, ($35 for early birds)

Advanced intermediate
-4 hours from 10-2
-Advanced intermediate dancing with small ensemble singing
$99 suggested donation, ($75 for early birds)

Reserve your spot now to dance it out for the holidays!!! Dancers should come prepared to dance and warmed up.

Cash will be accepted at the door, but if you want to use a credit card, make your donation via Paypal, with the note: “Master Class” or click here.

www.naaproject.org

Baayork Lee is an Asian American actor, dancer, singer, choreographer, director and author, who recently received the 2014 Paul Robeson Citation Award presented by the Actors’ Equity Foundation.

Baayork Lee joined Christine Toy Johnson onstage at Charles Randolph-Wright’s “Three Voices” concert series at Stage 72 on November 11, 2013, to perform “Turkey Lurkey Time,” from Promises, Promises, with Lee performing for the first time in 37 years. Photo by Lia Chang

Baayork Lee joined Christine Toy Johnson onstage at Charles Randolph-Wright’s “Three Voices” concert series at Stage 72 on November 11, 2013, to perform “Turkey Lurkey Time,” from Promises, Promises, with Lee performing for the first time in 37 years. Photo by Lia Chang

Baayork Lee (playing Miss Wong in this clip from the 1969 Tony Awards) created the role of Connie in A Chorus Line, and in fact has made a career of recreating Bennett's choreography. Photo credit: Martha Swope on Armchair Actorvist

Baayork Lee (playing Miss Wong in this clip from the 1969 Tony Awards) created the role of Connie in A Chorus Line, and in fact has made a career of recreating Bennett’s choreography. Photo credit: Martha Swope on Armchair Actorvist

Lee, born in New York City’s Chinatown to an Indian mother and Chinese father, made her Broadway debut at the age of five as “Princess Ying Yaowalak” in the 1951 original production of The King and I. Her dream was to become a ballerina and she appeared in George Balanchine’s production of The Nutcracker, but this dream was dashed when she achieved her full height of just four feet, ten inches. In 1958, she returned to Broadway in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Flower Drum Song. Other Broadway appearances were in Bravo Giovanni; Mr. President; Here’s Love; Golden Boy; A Joyful Noise; Henry, Sweet Henry; Promises, Promises; Seesaw and Michael Bennett’s groundbreaking production of A Chorus Line, in which she originated the role of “Connie.” She worked with Bennett in several productions and over the years went from being his dance partner, to being his assistant. She would later supervise all major productions of A Chorus Line, choreographing 35 international productions as well as the 2006 Broadway revival. She is the co-author of the book, On the Line: The Creation of A Chorus Line, published in 1990.

Christine Toy Johnson presented Baayork Lee with the 2014 Paul Robeson Citation Award presented by the Actors’ Equity Foundation in the council room of the Actors Equity Association on October 10, 2014. Photo by Lia Chang

Christine Toy Johnson presented Baayork Lee with the 2014 Paul Robeson Citation Award presented by the Actors’ Equity Foundation in the council room of the Actors Equity Association on October 10, 2014. Photo by Lia Chang

Lee also has choreographed and directed scores of national and international tours of, among others, The King and I; Bombay Dreams; Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella; Porgy and Bess; Jesus Christ Superstar; Carmen Jones and Miss Saigon. In addition, she has choreographed several productions for the Washington National Opera at the Kennedy Center, been a talent scout for Tokyo Disneyland and opened a musical theatre school in Seoul, South Korea. She was the recipient of the 2003 Lifetime Achievement Asian Woman Warrior Award from Columbia College in Chicago. Throughout her career, Lee has been committed to promoting a diverse society on American stages and dedicated to fostering opportunities for Asian American performers to play roles for which they might otherwise not be considered.

In 2009, Lee founded (with Steven Eng and Nina Zoie Lam) the National Asian Artists Project, which focuses on providing opportunities for the Asian American artistic community. NAAP’s “Discover New Musicals” program allows writers of all races and ethnicities to have new works showcased annually, utilizing Asian American casts, and its educational programs enable artists to hone their craft and to stay competitive in the workplace.

Nina Zoie Lam, Baayork Lee and Steven Eng, the founders of NAAP onstage before the performance of Oliver!,  at The Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre 
inside The Pershing Square Signature Center in New York on June 7, 2014. Photo by Lia Chang

Nina Zoie Lam, Baayork Lee and Steven Eng, the founders of NAAP, onstage before the performance of Oliver! at The Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre 
inside The Pershing Square Signature Center in New York on June 7, 2014. Photo by Lia Chang

About National Asian Artists Project (NAAP):
National Asian Artists Project (NAAP) exists to be a leader in educating, cultivating, and stimulating audiences and artists—current and future—through showcasing exceptional work by vibrant artists of Asian descent. Art constantly evolves, and NAAP strives to command a place at the fore with a uniquely compelling American voice.

NAAP believes that artists of Asian descent have many vital roles to play in the fostering of American communities.
*Through thoughtful educational programming, we seek to present the richness of theatre arts to underserved children, fostering creative self-discovery and expression.
*Support the artistic growth of theatre artists of Asian descent through professional employment opportunities.
*Build and cultivate new local and national audiences that encourage patronage and participation in the arts, including predominantly Asian communities unaccustomed to playing a role in the local or national arts dialogue.
*Capture and archive stories of prominent artists of Asian descent that they may be made available for future generations from which to learn and inspire.

Related articles
Dec. 1: National Asian Artists Project (NAAP) presents DISCOVER: New Musicals – Marcus Yi’s Lost at Sea, Timothy Huang’s Missing Karma, Christine Toy Johnson and Michael Mott’s Riding Out the Storm and Azusa Fujikua’s Sign
Dec. 8: Tony Winner BD Wong, Raymond J. Lee, Pearl Sun, Marc delaCruz, Thom Sesma, Arielle Jacobs, Cindy Cheung, Daniel J. Edwards, Kamala Sankaram, Mel Sagrado Maghuyop, Christine Toy Johnson & More Set for The Asian American Composers and Lyricists Projects’ “Arriving In Asian America”
Photos: Ali Ewoldt, Arielle Jacobs, Joel Perez, Adam Jacobs, Telly Leung and Alan Muraoka at Christine Toy Johnson and Jason Ma’s Barcelona at The Theatre at CAP21
Photos: Tommy Tune, Bob Avian, Lee Roy Reams, Christine Toy Johnson, Orville Mendoza, Lori Tan Chinn, Raul Aranas, Virginia Wing and More Celebrate 2014 Paul Robeson Citation Award Recipient Baayork Lee
Oct. 10: Baayork Lee to Receive 2014 Paul Robeson Citation Award presented by the Actors’ Equity Foundation
National Asian Artists Project To Present All-Asian Production of OLIVER! Featuring Raul Aranas, Anthea Neri, Bonale Zohn Fambrini, Mel Sagrado Maghuyop, Cindy Cheung, Scott Watanabe, Virginia Wing, David Shih and More
Photos: Christine Toy Johnson, Baayork Lee, Jose Llana, Ann Harada, Dodie Pettit and More at Charles Randolph-Wright’s “Three Voices” concert series at Stage 72
Christine Toy Johnson and Raul Aranas Lead the Cast of the National Asian Artists Project’s (NAAP) Benefit Presentation of Hello Dolly!, at The Pershing Square Signature Center
Photos: Q & A with Mel Sagrado Maghuyop, The King in Harbor Lights’ Production of The King and I

Other articles by Lia Chang:
Q & A with Danny Ramm, Co-writer of Joe Mantegna Helmed ‘Criminal Minds’ Season 10 Episode to Honor the late Meshach Taylor; Airs January 21, 2015
Yellow Sound Label to Release BD Wong’s Debut CD HERRINGBONE on December 2, 2014
The Public Theater Extends Suzan-Lori Parks’s FATHER COMES HOME FROM THE WARS through December 7
Tonya Pinkins, Trezana Beverley and More Set for World Premiere of War by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins at Yale Repertory Theatre through December 13
New York Times Critics’ Pick OUR LADY OF KIBEHO by Katori Hall, extends through December 14
Austin Pendleton, Pete Simpson, James Stanley and Gary Wilmes Star in Young Jean Lee’s Straight White Men at The Public Theater; Extended through December 14
Stephen Adly Guirgis’ BETWEEN RIVERSIDE AND CRAZY at Second Stage Theatre’s Tony Kiser Theatre Beginning January 16, 2015
Photos: BD Wong, Cindy Cheung, Brooke Ishibashi,Thom Sesma, Manna Nichols, Steven Eng, Ariel Estrada and Lori Tan Chinn at Leviathan Lab’s Ghost Stories Apple Video Podcast: New York Post Writer Michael Riedel Interviews David Byrne, Jaygee Macapugay, Jose Llana and Conrad Ricamora of Here Lies Love
Cheryl L. Davis’ Maid’s Door Sweeps AUDELCOs with 7 Wins; Complete List of 2014 AUDELCO Recipients
Ken Watanabe, Kelli O’Hara, Ruthie Ann Miles, Conrad Ricamora, Jon Viktor Corpuz, Paul Nakauchi and More Set for Lincoln Center Theater’s The King and I 
Photos: Ellen Burstyn, Baz Luhrmann, John Leguizamo, Elizabeth Rodriguez, Stephen McKinley Henderson, John Patrick Shanley, David Henry Hwang, Liza Colón-Zayas, Kenneth Lonergan and More Celebrate Stephen Adly Guirgis at The Mimi Awards
NYU Theatrical Production Presents the World Premiere of Rajiv Joseph’s Describe the Night in the Shubert Theatre at Tisch School of the Arts
Q & A with Playwright Camille Darby, 2014-15 Dramatists Guild Playwrighting Fellow
Costume Institute’s Spring 2015 Exhibition at Metropolitan Museum to Focus on Chinese Imagery in Art, Film, and Fashion, May 7–August 16, 2015
Photos: Art Salon with Artist Yang Chihung and Dr. Agnes Hsu-Tang at New-York Historical Society
Photos: Chinese American: Exclusion/Inclusion on View through April 19, 2015 at New York Historical Society
Coming to America through The Angel Island Immigration Station
Photos: Maxine Hong Kingston, Billie Tsien, Bill T. Jones, Linda Ronstadt, John Kander, Julia Alvarez, Jeffrey Katzenberg Receive 2013 National Medal of Arts from President Barack Obama 
Photos: Artist Arlan Huang, One Brush Stroke at a Time
Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

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 journalist. Lia starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the 2013 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman, and made her jazz vocalist debut in Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz “LADY” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York. She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

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 liachangpr@gmail.com

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