Monday, October 12, 2015

"Vietgone" Opens to Laughter, Tears and Praise

At South Coast Repertory on Friday, Oct. 9, murmurs of surprise were followed by stunned silence, followed by peals of laughter, a few tears and then more laughter—and at the end, a standing ovation. All the emotions a playwright hopes to elicit from an audience were just what Qui Nguyen achieved with Vietgone, his new play that officially opened the season on SCR’s Julianne Argyros Stage.

As theatregoers gathered at the Cast Party, co-hosted by AnQi, there were words of praise for the director, actors and artisans. All were well deserved, it was agreed. But the playwright's new work was what everyone talked about.

And the superlatives flew, led by Honorary Producers Marci Maietta Weinberg and William Weinberg, who have been associated with Vietgone since they first saw it in a staged reading at SCR's Pacific Playwrights Festival.

(Emeritus Trustee and First Nighter Olivia Johnson guessed right when she said, "I bet they feel like proud parents.")

"When Marci and I saw the play at PPF, the minute the lights went down, it was like an electric shock," William said. "We knew it was going to be a hit—and tonight it is."

Guests lingered into the night, sampling Asian fusion delicacies in the restaurant’s captivating red setting.

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