Chinoiserie is a music theatre work organized along an historic arc, beginning with the first encounter between Qianlong, the Celestial Emperor of China and Lord George MacCartney, the trade emissary from King George III of England in 1793. From there, Chinoiserie is collaged from the detritus of East-West relations including the events leading up to the Opium War, the European obsession/addiction to tea, the history of Chinese settlers in America, the murder of Vincent Chin in Detroit in 1983 and the continuing trade disputes between China and America. Chinoiserie features spoken text, live music, movement, Chinese opera movement, projections, and contemporary and traditional western and Chinese costumes.
Chinoiserie is the second work in Ping Chong’s East-West Quartet.
Director: Ping Chong
Producer: Ping Chong and Company
Text and Lyrics: Ping Chong, in collaboration with Michael Matthews, Regine Anna Seckinger and Ric Oquita
Composer: Guy Klucevsek
Choreography: Shi-Zheng Chen
Musicians: Guy Klucevsek, Steve Elson and Bill Ruyle
Lighting Design: Thomas Hase
Costume Design: Byron Lars
Set/Projection Design: Jan Hartley
Sound Design: David Meschter
Dramaturg: Regine Anna Seckinger
Stage Manager: Courtney Golden
Ping Chong, Shi-Zheng Chen, Aleta Hayes, Michael Edo Keane, Ric Oquita
Yellow Springs Institute, Chester, PA (1994) and at the Center for the Arts, SUNY Buffalo, Buffalo, NY (September 1995)
Lied Center at University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE (September 1995)
Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN (November 1995); Williams Center for the Arts, Lafayette College, Easton, PA (November 1995); and the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival, Harvey Theater, Brooklyn, NY (November 1995)
Collisions Of East And West, New York Times, Nov. 16. 1995
Histories Bump Pleasingly In Chong's `Chinoiserie,' LeHigh Valley News, Nov. 16 1995
Cultures inCollision, Asian American Arts Alliance, Nov. 1995
Ping Chong Inside out 1, Brooklyn bridge, 1995
Ping Chong Inside out 2, Brooklyn bridge, 1995
Commissioned by the Lied Center of the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, the Fine Arts Center at SUNY Buffalo, the Yellow Springs Institute, Lafayette College, the Walker Arts Center and the Brooklyn Academy of Music.
The Lied Center presentation of Chinoiserie was made possible in part by AT&T. The performance was made possible in part by public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts Opera-Musical Theater Program and Presenting and Commissioning Program. Support has been provided by AT&T, Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, The Rockefeller Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. The commissioning of Chinoiserie was made possible by a grant from the Meet the Composer/Reader's Digest Commissioning Program, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund.