Tisa Chang
Tisa Chang
Tisa Chang is a Chinese American actress and theatre director from Chongqing. Her father was a diplomat and the family moved to New York City when she was a child. Chang was interested in theatre and and decided to study acting at the High School of Performing Arts and at Barnard College. Soon afterwards she started her career as an actor performing in Broadway plays and musicals, including Lovely Ladies, Kind Gentlemen and The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel.
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Pan Asian Rep Presents SHANGHAI LIL'S - Broadway World
Google News - over 5 years
Tisa Chang who directed and created the dances in 1997 has re-envisioned a new production to introduce Chinese musical history of the 40's for a new generation of audiences. Pan Asian Rep commissioned Shanghai Lil's with book and lyrics by Lilah Kan,
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Google News article
Pan Asian Rep Announces 2011-2012 Season - TheaterMania.com
Google News - over 5 years
Tisa Chang will direct the production, which will feature choreography by Susan Ancheta. The company will also produce Mayank Keshaviah's Rangoon, which centers on a family that emigrates to the rural American south to run a 7-11 store, after they've
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Google News article
NEW YORK WORLD; On Names and Religion
NYTimes - almost 7 years
Besides covering broader stories like immigration policy and the 2010 census, New York's ethnic newspapers also run items more particular to their individual readership. In the past month, a Chinese newspaper looked at a debate swirling around the name of a play, a Mexican newspaper reported on the confusion caused when illegal immigrants give fake
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NYTimes article
THEATER; The Geisha-and-Houseboy-Liberation Theater
NYTimes - almost 10 years
NEW YORK is a graveyard of bankrupt theater companies and broken dreams. But Tisa Chang's Pan Asian Repertory Theater, with an annual budget of less than $1 million, is improbably celebrating its 30th anniversary. The company's latest production, ''Tea,'' by Velina Hasu Houston, is to start previews Sunday at the West End Theater, and the first
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NYTimes article
Arts, Briefly
NYTimes - almost 12 years
Plans for Carson's Childhood House The new owner of Johnny Carson's childhood home, left, in Nebraska wants to turn it into a memorial, The Associated Press reported. Historic Properties Inc., based in Norcross, Ga., bought the five-bedroom house in Norfolk, Neb., for an undisclosed price in a deal completed on Friday, a spokesman said. Carson, who
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NYTimes article
THEATER IN REVIEW; A Coma Becomes the Real World, With a History of Modern Tibet
NYTimes - almost 13 years
'Kwatz! The Tibetan Project: The Sound of a Hammer Hitting the Head' West End Theater Coleridge's principle applies directly to anyone going to to see Ernest Abuba's ''Kwatz! The Tibetan Project: The Sound of a Hammer Hitting the Head,'' Leave skepticism and logic outside and just float with the play. Its mystical visions, music, song, dance and
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NYTimes article
THEATER REVIEW; Drama's Lines Evoke Yesterday's Headlines
NYTimes - over 13 years
Cherylene Lee's ambitious drama ''The Legacy Codes'' was inspired by the case of Dr. Wen Ho Lee, the physicist who was accused of passing American nuclear secrets to China. The now notorious investigation of Dr. Lee, in which an overzealous Justice Department attributed sudden leaps in the sophistication of China's nuclear program to its access to
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NYTimes article
IN PERFORMANCE: THEATER; Worse Than Marie Antoinette: Let Them Eat Maggots
NYTimes - almost 14 years
''Empress of China'' West End Theater If you saw ''The Last Emperor,'' Bernardo Bertolucci's Oscar-winning film, and wondered where cute little Pu Yi, the toddler ruler of China, got his enormous sense of entitlement, Pan Asian Repertory Theater's ''Empress of China'' will make it clear: you should have seen his aunt. This graceful, intelligent
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NYTimes article
THEATER REVIEW; Any Way You Look at It, The Story Is Not Pleasant
NYTimes - almost 16 years
Few works of fiction have explored the relative and elusive nature of truth with such force as ''Rashomon,'' a tale of sex and death first told in stories by Ryunosuke Akutagawa, made into a classic film by Akira Kurosawa in 1950 and turned into a Broadway play in 1959 by Fay and Michael Kanin. Under the taut direction of Tisa Chang, the Pan Asian
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NYTimes article
THEATER REVIEW; Book Learning, Important; Sip Tea at Sunset, Sublime
NYTimes - about 17 years
''The Teahouse of the August Moon,'' set in 1946, is about a poor United States Army slob who has never been able to do any job right. His latest assignment is to Americanize a small village on occupied Okinawa, but he is talked into building a teahouse instead of a schoolhouse, and into selling particularly potent sweet-potato brandy for profit.
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NYTimes article
THEATER REVIEW; For These Bonded Souls, Some Luck but Little Joy
NYTimes - almost 18 years
There are amusing moments in Susan Kim's sprawling, even unwieldy play, ''The Joy Luck Club,'' based on Amy Tan's novel and presented by the Pan Asian Repertory Theater. But at the end one leaves with a deep feeling of melancholy. The conflicts between four young Chinese-American women and their mothers and the understanding finally reached across
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NYTimes article
NYTimes - over 18 years
An article in Weekend on Friday about ethnic theater in the New York region misspelled the given name of the founder of the Pan Asian Repertory. She is Tisa Chang, not Tisha. The article also misspelled the surname of a Detroit resident who was beaten to death by two unemployed auto workers in 1982 and whose story is being told in ''Carry the Tiger
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NYTimes article
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Tisa Chang
  • 2009
    Age 67
    As of 2009, it is the world's largest producer of Asian American theatre.
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  • 2002
    Age 60
    Other awards Chang has won during her career include the 2002 Lifetime Achievement Award from Organization of Chinese Americans, the 2001 Lee Reynolds Award from the League of Professional Theatre Women, the 1993 Chinese American Cultural Pioneer Tribute from New York City Council Andrew Stein, and the 1991 Barnard Medal of Distinction. She is currently a part of the executive board of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. Chang married Ernest Abuba on 25 January 1976 at the La MaMa Annex.
    More Details Hide Details He worked as an actor, playwright and director at Pan Asian. The couple broke up and divorced in the beginning of the 1990s, although they remained friends. They had one son together, named Auric Kang.
  • 1997
    Age 55
    In addition to her work as artistic director at Pan Asian Repertory Theatre, Chang has also directed some own plays and musicals for the group. For example, she directed the world premiere of Shanghai Lil's at the Pan Asian Repertory Theatre in 1997, returns to direct this new production for November 2011 at the West End Theatre in NYC.
    More Details Hide Details In 1988 she was awarded a Theatre World Special Award for her directing work and the establishment of Pan Asian.
  • 1990
    Age 48
    Daniel Dae Kim, a Korean American actor who first worked with Pan Asian in 1990, told the newspaper that "whereas it’s gotten better for ethnic minorities in terms of general representation, what hasn’t really improved is the complexity of the roles that we’ve been given to play.
    More Details Hide Details Many of the parts I see Asians playing onstage, as well as on screen, are smaller supporting roles whose function is to provide exposition or support to the leads." Kim is famous for TV show appearances in Lost and the new Hawaii Five-O.
  • 1981
    Age 39
    TV Times wrote in 1981 that Pan Asian was "the most respected experimental theatre group in New York City."
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  • 1977
    Age 35
    Chang is currently the Producing Artistic Director of Pan Asian Repertory Theatre, a theatre group that she established in 1977 to help the emergence of Asian American theater.
    More Details Hide Details She has said that "the extraordinary talent and dedication of the actors Stewart's Chinese Theatre Group inspired me to formalize the group into Pan Asian Repertory Theatre." The money she earned from The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel, which she starred in that year, was used to fund the establishment. Chang's main principle with Pan Asian has always been to "promote opportunities for Asian-American actors to be seen in context of who we really are and what we are capable of achieving as artists." According to Chang, Asian Americans had difficulties finding roles in New York City before she established Pan Asian. They were usually limited to playing stereotypical Asian characters such as geisha girls and houseboys. It was easier to get roles in Los Angeles, where the East West Players theatre group had been founded in 1965. Many people in the theatre business doubted that Pan Asian would be successful and wondered if anyone would pay to come and see their plays. Chang has said that "because we were considered a curiosity or something very new and unique, people did come."
  • 1973
    Age 31
    Her first work was the Peking opera The Return of the Phoenix, which was released in 1973 during the Independence Day weekend.
    More Details Hide Details Chang described this date as "the death slot" when it comes to theatre visitors, but "fortunately, Richard Shepard of The New York Times came down to East 4th Street and loved the show, praised it."
    Chang began her directing career in 1973 at the La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club, where she directed for Ellen Stewart's Chinese Theatre Group.
    More Details Hide Details She produced bi-lingual versions of classical Asian and western plays, such as A Midsummer Night's Dream in which both Mandarin and English were used, and Servant of Two Masters in which all the asides were spoken in the characters' native language. Chang was working as an actress and dancer at La MaMa when she decided to ask Stewart for the opportunity to direct her own play.
  • 1946
    Age 4
    Her father, a Taiwanese diplomat named Ping-Hsun Chang, was appointed as the Republic of China's consul general to the city in 1946. He moved back to the Republic of China in 1957 to serve within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
    More Details Hide Details According to TV Times, "for 11 years, Tisa Chang was steeped in the subtleties and protocol of diplomacy. Her deep diplomatic connections extended as far as Ottawa where the ambassador from the Republic of China, Liu Chieh, was a friend of her father's and she called the Canadian-based diplomat uncle." Chang chose to stay in New York with her three siblings instead of following her father to the Republic of China. Chang became interested in theatre at a young age, and was taken by her mother to see operas and plays. She even performed her own rendition of Cinderella for her nanny in the family's kitchen when she was ten years old. Her father was also interested in acting and performed in school plays when he was younger at Nankai University together with Zhou Enlai, who went on to become the leader of China. Chang studied acting at the High School of Performing Arts in New York and then at Barnard College.
  • 1941
    Born in 1941.
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