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ARTISTIC TEAM
JASMINE CHEN*Playwright/Performer
DEREK CHANDirector
KATIE VORAVONGAssistant Director
JOHNNY WUMovement/Mandarin Consultant
JULIA KIMSet/Props/Costume Designer
DANIEL O’SHEAVideo Designer
JONATHAN KIMLighting Designer
JESSICA CHENVisual Artist
KAREN CHIANGStage Manager
JAMIE SWEENEYProduction Manager
LIAM HUNTTechnical Director
BRIANNA BERNARDTechnical Director Assistant
AYSHA DULONGCo-Sound Designer (Sapphire Haze)
CINDY KAOCo-Sound Designer (Sapphire Haze)

*The participation of this Artist is arranged by permission of the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association under the provisions of the Dance•Opera•Theatre Policy.

FROM GATEWAY THEATRE


-The Gateway Theatre Team

 

PLAYWRIGHT’S NOTES

My grandmother was a storyteller.

She was always singing
Her voice filling the sunlit apartment.
I never realized how little I knew of her story until she was gone.

I hadn’t considered that the language barrier between us had kept me from learning her life’s path;
the choices that shaped my mother’s life, and in turn, mine.

This piece is a love letter to anyone who has felt this loss of language

The grasping one feels when trying to reach across a dark chasm of time and missed opportunities

For anyone who is trying to find their way back
For anyone who has felt guilt or shame
At not being able to speak their mother tongue.

Jade Circle is a meditation and an offering.
I hope that some part of this story brings you deeper into your own.
Thank you for being part of the circle.

DIRECTOR’S NOTES

Me joining this project’s journey…
It must have been 4 or 5 years ago, because I remember we shared a family meal, carefree, in the common area where we workshopped.

(And I think we got yelled at for being too loud.
We probably were. But we were celebrating connectedness and possibilities. And damn good food.)

I remember being so honoured to be entrusted with this packet of love.
I remember getting to know Jasmine better and better over the subsequent years.
I remember Jasmine starting one of the design workshop residencies asking us who we came from.
I remember the way this project has grown, shifted, and transformed. Not just the project itself, but all of us too, along the way.
I remmeber feeling weird Asian uncle joy to witness Jasmine’s immensely inspiring linguistic journey.
(We’re, like, the same age. So maybe just friend joy would’ve sufficed?)
I remember the warmth from the prospect of being back at rice & beans for this one.

Everything feels so long ago. I hope that it’s because there is so much left to look forward to.

What — or rather, who — do you remember?

ABOUT rice & beans theatre

rice & beans theatre is a Vancouver-based theatre company founded in 2010 by Pedro Chamale and Derek Chan. We provide a platform for the creation, development and production of boundary-pushing theatre by artists of colour or otherwise marginalized theatre-makers, as well as support to fellow artists by providing dramaturgy, direction, and mentorship. We are dedicated to facilitating original Canadian work that is accessible, honest, uncompromising and personal. Learn more at www.riceandbeanstheatre.com

Artistic Director: Pedro Chamale
General Manager: Heather Barr
Communications Manager: Karla Comanda

Board of Directors: Stevie Benisch, Douglas Ennenberg, Beverly Cheung, Drew Redman, Blossom (Yeonyoung) Koh, Tess Conrad, Jessica Waters

Funders: The Canada Council for the Arts, Canadian Heritage, the BC Arts Council, the Province of BC, the City of Vancouver, the Y.P. Heung Foundation and the Deux Mille Foundation.

Donors: Ian Hood, Tess Conrad, Daniela Guerrero-Rodriguez, Carmela Sison, Norman Yeung, Kathleen Flaherty, Evelyn Chew, Estelle Shook, Stuart Barr, Daniel Borzillo, Clayton Baraniuk and Jason Dubois, Davey Calderon, Janice Chmelyk, Marisa Smith, DD Kugler, George Plawski, Jay Dodge, Derek Chan, Johnny, Valeria Ascolese, Heidi Taylor, Laura Schoen, Niko Mellino, Arthi Chandra, Rebeca Menini, Jasmine Chen, Christine Quintana, Lauren Kresowaty, Rachelle Miguel, Carmen Aguirre, Alen Dominguez, Keltie Forsyth, Anonymous

ARTISTIC CREW

Jasmine Chen

Playwright/Performer

Bio

Jasmine Chen

Playwright/Performer

Jasmine is an award-winning multidisciplinary artist working across theatre, film/TV, audio, and media. She was the Artistic and Community Producer at Gateway Theatre (2020-2022) and former Resident Artist (18/19). Jasmine would like to thank her grandmother for her love of storytelling and singing, which has carried her throughout her entire life.

Derek Chan

Director

Bio

Derek Chan

Director

Derek Chan (陳嘉昊) grew up in colonial Hong Kong and currently lives and works on the unceded, stolen, and ancestral lands of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations, colonially known as Vancouver. An award-winning multilingual playwright, director, translator, and performer, he is the Managing Artistic Director of Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre. Derek was an artist in residence at the National Arts Centre English Theatre Department in the 2019/20 season. Derek previously worked at Gateway on Sik Zeon Tin Haa/食盡天下, Yoga Play, and A Year of Blessings. He was the co-recipient of the 2021 Simon Fraser University FCAT Young Alumni Award for his work at Rice & Beans Theatre.

Katie Voravong

Assistant Director

Bio

Katie Voravong

Assistant Director

Katie Voravong is a “Vancouver” based theatre artist, a Studio 58 grad, and presently works in direction, performance, and writing. Recently, Katie spent the past 7 months in Laos, where their parents are from, learning their mother tongue, and feels immensely grateful to be part of Jade Circle as the Assistant Director. They are currently the Associate Artistic Producer with vAct.

Thank you to Gateway Theatre, rice & beans, vAct, and the entire Jade Circle team for all of your hard work and heart. It is so fulfilling to create art, share space, and be with all of you.

www.katievoravong.com

Johnny Wu

Movement/Mandarin Consultant

Bio

Johnny Wu

Movement/Mandarin Consultant

Johnny Wu is a bilingual Taiwanese-Canadian interdisciplinary artist. Having graduated from Simon Fraser University with a double major in Theatre Performance and Criminology, his work seeks to investigate humanity through storytelling with social consciousness. Johnny’s credits include For Now (2023) presented by Green Thumb Theatre and Lionsgate’s Joy Ride directed by Adele Lim and written by Teresa Hsiao and Cherry Chevapravatdumrong. The film stars Ashley Park, Stephanie Hsu, Sherry Cola and Sabrina Wu. Johnny believes that compassion and understanding is the key to social change and storytelling, on stage or screen, is the hand that turns the key.

Julia Kim

Set/Props/Costume Designer

Bio

Julia Kim

Set/Props/Costume Designer

Julia Kim is a set, costume, and projection designer, new to the Vancouver theatre scene. She started her theatre training at SFU, then graduated from Toronto Metropolitan University with a BFA (Hons.) in Performance Production in 2015. Since then, she’s been working mostly in Southern Ontario, designing for independent theatre and dance productions, and working as an assistant designer at Stratford Festival and Shaw Festival. She’s excited to return to her home and finally design a show on the lower mainland. She enjoys the collaborative process of theatre-making the most and it’s been such a fun journey on this production.

Daniel O’Shea

Video Designer

Bio

Daniel O’Shea

Video Designer

Daniel O’Shea makes theatre, designs projection, and creates films, using technology and design as a keystone to support narrative and deepen dramaturgy. Daniel employs a low-fi DYI aesthetic, in parallel to convoluting the ideas of phenomenological discourses. Currently, his work focuses on states of presence and unbalancing audiences. Daniel’s artistic research has explored the ephemeral nature of a ‘self’, interruptions of technology on human processes, and the results of cognitive dissonance.

Daniel is a founding member of A Wake Of Vultures and has been presented by Performance Studies international (PSi), Festival Of Recorded Movement, and Shooting Gallery and elsewhere. Daniel’s work has been seen in Canada and internationally.

Jonathan Kim

Lighting Designer

Bio

Jonathan Kim

Lighting Designer

Jonathan, also known as Jono, is a lighting designer with ten years of experience in the local performing arts scene. Jonathan is a graduate of SFU’s Theatre Production and Design program. This is his Gateway Theatre debut. He truly values the process and has a passion to be there from day one. Absorbing anything and everything in the rehearsal room like a sponge, which greatly helps with his work in better supporting and synchronizing with the true cohesive vision of the production.

Jessica Chen

Visual Artist

Bio

Jessica Chen

Visual Artist

Jessica is a Chinese-Canadian visual artist currently based in Chiang Mai, Thailand. She has been developing her creative practice for over 10 years, currently with a focus on abstract watercolour works on paper. Much of her inspiration comes from observing patterns and ecosystems in the natural world, which has led her to spend time exploring tropical rainforests in Southeast Asia and more recently Oaxaca, Mexico, where she learned about natural plant dyeing techniques and native plant fibre processing for papermaking. As a painter, Jessica is interested in creating a visual language and space of patterning that speaks to her relationality between human, animal, and plant worlds, some kind of alchemy on paper of things seen and felt throughout her travels and encounters.

Karen Chiang

Stage Manager

Bio

Karen Chiang

Stage Manager

Karen Chiang 蔣家寧 is an emerging producer, stage manager, theatre artist, and event coordinator. Some of her recent credits include Lights of Hope (Eos Lightmedia, St. Paul’s Hospital); I Swallowed a Moon made of Iron (Music Picnic); Deep Fried: a Pinoy Musical Workshop (Playwright Theatre Company); Dil Ka Workshop(Ruby Slipper Theatre); 90 Days (Western Gold Theatre); buto/buto: bones are seeds, (National Pilipino Canadian Cultural Centre and Southeast Asian Cultural Heritage Society).

As a strong believer in the therapeutic power of the Arts, Karen is passionate about spreading the healing and joy she experiences through the creation of and engagement in artistic activities. Karen is especially interested in creating art that surrounds the themes of culture, identity, and justice.

Jamie Sweeney

Production Manager

Bio

Jamie Sweeney

Production Manager

Jamie Sweeney is a Canadian, Vancouver-based, theatre collaborator. She is a lighting designer, a technical director, a performer, a deviser, a creator, and an artist. She has a BFA in theatre production and design from Simon Fraser University. Some companies she has worked with include Ballet BC, Bard on the Beach, Vancouver Opera, Arts Club, rice & beans theatre, vAct, and Neworld Theatre. Further credits can be found on her website: www.jamiesweeney.ca

Liam Hunt

Technical Director

Bio

Liam Hunt

Technical Director

Liam is a Technical Director and Sound Engineer who has been in the industry for about 8 years. After graduating from Capilano University he is now working full-time at the Massey Theatre as their SAD (Senior Audio Development) Technician and is grateful to be a continued part of rice and beans theatre productions. Liam’s philosophy as the TD is to strive and fulfill the artistic concepts created by the designers to the best of his abilities.

Liam is a Technical Director and Sound Engineer who has been in the industry for about 8 years. After graduating from Capilano University he is now working full-time at the Massey Theatre as their SAD (Senior Audio Development) Technician and is grateful to be a continued part of rice and beans theatre productions. Liam’s philosophy as the TD is to strive and fulfill the artistic concepts created by the designers to the best of his abilities.

BRIANNA BERNARD

Technical Director Assistant

Bio

BRIANNA BERNARD

Technical Director Assistant

Brianna Bernard is a theatre artist and technical director with 3 years of experience in the Vancouver live performance scene. She holds a BFA in Theatre Production & Design from Simon Fraser University. Brianna has worked on many events including rEvolver Festival, Tremors Festival, and The Array 2022. Brianna takes an interest in both the creative and practical aspects of art.

Aysha Dulong

Co-Sound Designer (Sapphire Haze)

Bio

Aysha Dulong

Co-Sound Designer (Sapphire Haze)

Aysha is a sound artist and performer, and is thrilled to be sound designing again at Gateway Theatre. Aysha holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Music Composition from Simon Fraser University. For Gateway Theatre, Aysha previously sound designed for the Lunar New Year Installation Into the Light in 2022. Aysha aims to explore how sound can embody lived experiences, and be utilized to explore and express oneself.

Cindy Kao

Co-Sound Designer (Sapphire Haze)

Bio

Cindy Kao

Co-Sound Designer (Sapphire Haze)

Cindy is a Taiwanese actor/sound artist, (Ketegalan and Siraya Nations) based in Vancouver (Squamish, Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh Nations). She received a BFA in Theatre Performance at Simon Fraser University, with a classical violin background certified by the Royal Conservatory of Music.

Cindy’s interdisciplinary works include starring in A Family Act presented by Whistler Film Festival (Jury Award Winner), award recipient for Reel 2 Real Film Festival (Best Actor Award), Music on Main feature, New York Electroacoustic Music Festival with Sapphire Haze duo partner Aysha Dulong, music composition and instrumentalist for Happy Valley-馬照跑 舞照跳 by Derek Chan , and sound design for Peace Country by Pedro Chamale.

SPECIAL THANKS

A platform for the community to contribute to – and benefit from – the performing arts.