Ma-Yi produces their first South Asian-American playwright


The award-winning, nationally-renowned Ma-Yi Theater Company – one of the country’s leading producers of new works for the stage by Asian-American writers – will continue its 2014-15 season this spring with the world premiere of SOLDIER X by Rehana Lew Mirza, with preview performances set to begin March 24 prior to an official opening night on March 31 at HERE (145 Sixth Avenue, enter on Dominick Street, one block south of Spring) in NYC. SOLDIER X is directed by Lucie Tiberghien.

SOLDIER X follows a young biracial social worker, Monica, who falls for a returning veteran, Jay, and the subsequent love triangle that ensues when he decides he is in love with his fallen buddy’s Muslim sister. The play tallies the emotional scars inflicted on our young men and women returning home from Iraq and Afghanistan. How exactly do you rejoin a society that remains as conflicted about its wars as it is with issues of race and gender?

Rehana Lew Mirza first made her mark as the Artistic Director and co-founder of Desipina and Company, an award-winning South Asian theater company that produced seven consecutive seasons of the hit production, SEVEN.11 CONVENIENCE THEATER. Also through Desipina, they produced Mirza’s play BARRIERS, which took a look at the backlash towards South Asians and Muslims following 9/11. BARRIERS went on to be presented by the Asian American Theater Company in SF and LA. Her other plays include LONELY LEELA at LaGuardia Performing Arts Center; A DISTANT RELATION; PARTICLES OF PAKISTAN for Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Sloan Commission; and IF IT’S SAD I DON’T WANT TO SEE IT at Queens Theater in the Park. She is also the writer/director of “Hiding Divya,” a feature film starring Madhur Jaffrey and Pooja Kumar. She is a member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab, having served as its co-director for two years.

Lucie Tiberghien has directed the world premiere of ASHES UNDER THE GAIT CITY for Contemporary American Theater Festival, the world premiere of Charles Randolph Wright’s LOVE IN AFGHANISTAN at Arena Stage, WATER BY THE SPOONFUL at Arden Theater Company and the world premiere of DON’T GO GENTLE by Stephen Belber at MCC. She directed the world premiere of Katori Hall’s HOODOO LOVE at Cherry Lane Theatre and AUGUSTA by Richard Dresser at CATF. She recently joined the team of Stew and Heidi Rodewald’s new musical TWO ZERO ZERO TWO for Studio Theatre in Washington, DC.

Featured in the cast of SOLDIER X are Kaliswa Brewster, Cleo Gray, Jared McNeil, Turna Mete and Carolyn Michelle Smith. Set design is by Daniel Conway; costume design is by Beth Goldenberg; lighting design is by Peter West; and sound design is by Broken Chord.

SOLDIER X will run March 24 through April 19: Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8:30 pm and Sundays at 4 pm. Tickets are $25 during previews; regularly $30; seniors and guaranteed student tickets are $15. For reservations log on to or call 212 352 3101.

SOLDIER X is part of SubletSeries@HERE, HERE’s curated rental program which provides artists with subsidized space and equipment as well as technical support.

MA-YI THEATER COMPANY won the Off-Broadway Alliance Award for its critically-acclaimed production of Lloyd Suh’s THE WONG KIDS IN THE SECRET OF THE SPACE CHUPACABRA GO! last season. Founded in 1989 and now celebrating its 26th anniversary season, MA-YI is a Drama Desk and OBIE Award-winning, Off-Broadway not-for-profit organization whose primary mission is to develop and produce new and innovative plays by Asian American writers. It is currently led by Ralph B. Peña (Artistic Director) and Jorge Z. Ortoll (Executive Director). Ma-Yi Theater Company productions have earned 10 OBIE Awards, numerous Henry Hewes Award nominations, a Drama Desk nomination for Best Play and the Special Drama Desk Award for “more than two decades of excellence and for nurturing Asian-American voices in stylistically varied and engaging theater.”