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Mary Magdalene, Daughter, Boatperson a play by Diana Khong (IDA Fellow)

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Event Details:

Mary Magdalene, Daughter, Boatperson is a two-act experimental play; is a Vietnamese ghost story; is a grief poem that asks: when a light goes out, what words still linger?

Following the death of their mother, three siblings—Mercy, Jimmy, and Joy—spend considerable time indexing their grief. Mercy finds refuge in take-out containers, late-night suicide hotline calls, and foul-mouthed grandmothers quick to take her under their wing. Jimmy comes to terms with his sexuality, now freed from the constraints of his traditional upbringing. And Joy—well, Joy’s never been good at forgetting. While Mercy and Jimmy ascend—more or less—out of their grief, Joy becomes obsessed with the idea of following her mother through life and into death after an encounter with a goblin (in the form of an Asian grandmother) who informs her that her mother has gone to hell. So she follows her down.

An exploration of generational memory, queer futurity, and what it means to imagine a decarceral future (both in this world and the next), this work will debut for the first time onstage as the Asian American Theater Project’s Spring 2022 Mainstage Production.

Content warning: This show includes mentions of death, suicidal ideation, homophobia, abuse, and smoking.