Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Play a Day: The Paper Dreams of Harry Chin

Jessica Huang
Reading a play a day for a month has been exciting, exhilarating, inspiring, all the good things. It also means getting up early most days, even weekends, to read the play, ruminate and then blog about it. It's kind of messing with my sleep schedule. Also, exercise.

Now that I have gotten in the good habit of reading so many plays by so many different people, I hope to continue, maybe on a weekly basis, if not more often. We are in the homestretch now, after today there only four more days/plays in April.

For Wednesday I read The Paper Dreams of Harry Chin by Jessica Huang, and available for download from New Play Exchange.

The only child of a Chinese immigrant father and American mother struggles to cope with his needs following her mother's death. The plot gets more involved than that, mysterious and magical, and yes, there is a mystery to be solved. But the premise, coping with the ghosts (literal, imagined) of the country left behind, are universal, and have a particular resonance in this country.

Once we speculated if it would be more challenging had mother passed before father. My brothers and I never discussed it, until that time when he had passed and we agreed that would have been much more challenging. The men need the women, it does not go the other way.

Which reminds me, I need to call my mom.

Harry Chin would prefer to leave his past behind, his daughter Sheila insists upon knowing her heritage. Only recently I learned a little about my own father's past. He was adopted, but chose never to search for his birth mother. He claimed he did not want to know. But I wanted to know. I did not even know his ethnicity. Caucasian, sure. But from where?

Luxembourg. Huh. Really? That's weird.

The parent wants to abandon their culture, the younger to embrace that which has been abandoned. Who get to choose?

No comments:

Post a Comment