Yohen: Theatre Esprit Asia
Theatre Esprit Asia offers a unique perspective during Black History Month: a story melding and shaping the intricacies of interracial marriage, culture, and Japanese art.
Set in California in 1986, Yohen is about James, an African American ex-GI, and Sumi,his Japanese wife. After 30 years of marriage, Sumi re-evaluates the relationship and separates from James. In her words, she wishes for him to court her again.
"Yohen" is a Japanese pottery term that refers to an accident in the kiln firing that results in transformation of the pot. The outcomes are as unpredictable as the evolution of a marriage. In the end, it is up to the observer to decide its beauty.
Veteran actors and Denver favorites, Maria Cheng and Don Randle, bring their talents to this compelling story, directed by Tony Garcia, Executive Artistic Director of Su Teatro. Cheng plays Sumi, a Japanese woman trying to define herself, after 30 years
under the label of being James wife. She takes pottery classes, hoping to ignite a spark of passion within herself. James, played by Randle, visits Sumi regularly, per her requests. At first, James has a difficult time being away from Sumi. He is unsure how time apart is supposed to bring them closer together, but he abides.
Yohen delves deeply into the marriage of this mixed-race couple. It is obvious these two characters still love each other, and, after 30 years, they are both willing to reconnect and find if there is anything left to salvage. What is not as obvious, are the baseline cultural differences that sit at the crux of their marital problems. Marriage is not perfect and neither are humans. Playwright Philip Kan Gotanda presents a marriage for artistic observance, allowing for the perception of beauty to truly lie within the eyes of the beholder; just as one would observe in a piece of malformed pottery.
ACAD Gallery Theatre (Aurora Cultural Arts District)
1400 Dallas St
Aurora, CO 80010
|Kid Friendly: No|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|