Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

John Cho, Melody Butiu, Kerri Higuchi and Reggie Lee set for Artists at Play’s DINNER WITH FRIENDS on May 28

john cho, kerri higuchi, melody butiu, reggie lee

Artists at Play is hosting its annual Summer Salon at the Armory Center for the Arts on Saturday, May 28, 2016, with a champagne brunch and a special presentation of DINNER WITH FRIENDS, by Donald Margulies, directed by Artists at Play founding member, Peter J. Kuo. All proceeds from the Summer Salon go towards Artists at Play’s world premiere this fall of The Two Kids that Blow Shit Up by Carla Ching. To make a reservation, contact AAP.BoxOffice@gmail.com.

“The Summer Salon is a perfect opportunity to showcase artists of color in plays that are more times than not, cast primarily with white performers,” said Producing Artistic Leader Stefanie Wong Lau. “With so many recent examples in the media of an unwillingness to highlight diverse talent, it’s imperative to show that it is possible and that these stories are universal.”

The cast includes Melody Butiu, John Cho, Kerri Higuchi and Reggie Lee.

John Cho found success with comedies including the American Pie and Harold and Kumar film franchises, and currently stars in the Star Trek films as Hikaru Sulu. His other credits include “Selfie,” “Flashforward” and “Sleepy Hollow.” Kerri Higuchi’s credits include “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal” and “Parks and Recreation.”

Reggie Lee is a series regular playing Sgt. Drew Wu on NBC’s “Grimm” with other credits including “Prison Break” and “The Division.” Theatre veteran, Melody Butiu, has performed on Broadway in Doctor Zhivago, off-Broadway in the David Byrne and Fatboy Slim musical Here Lies Love and, most recently, at The Geffen Playhouse in Stage Kiss.

In DINNER WITH FRIENDS, ever since Karen (Higuchi) and Gabe (Cho) played matchmaker with their friends Beth (Butiu) and Tom (Lee), the two couples have been inseparable. But when one marriage unexpectedly crumbles, the couples’ lives begin to veer in opposite directions. The Pulitzer Prize-winner for drama in 2000, Donald Margulies’ play is a modern masterpiece about the path you choose, the millions you don’t and the detours that make it worth the ride.

The Summer Salon begins at 11 a.m. with a champagne brunch followed by the special presentation of DINNER WITH FRIENDS at 12 p.m. Reservations are $70 per person and can be made by contacting AAP.BoxOffice@gmail.com. Click here for more information.

Founded in 2011 by Julia Cho, Peter J. Kuo, Stefanie Wong Lau and Marie-Reine Velez, Artists at Play is a collective of Asian American creative professionals who have come together to curate quality theatre in Los Angeles. In 2013, Nicholas Pilapil joined the Artists at Play team as an Associate Producer. Through theatrical productions missing from Los Angeles’ local landscape, Artists at Play tells stories of communities underrepresented in theatre. Past productions include Lauren Yee’s Ching Chong Chinaman, A. Rey Pamatmat’s Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them, Michael Golamco’s Cowboy Versus Samurai, playwright Julia Cho’s 99 Histories and most recently the West Coast premiere of In Love and Warcraft by Madhuri Shekar.

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang. Photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang. Photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers,  musicians and corporations. Lia is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.comJade Magazine and Playbill.com.

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