Playwright David Henry Hwang and composer Jeanine Tesori discuss their latest project, an original musical titled “Soft Power,” at the Curran Theatre June 20-July 8, 2018, with host Richard Wolinsky.
“Soft Power” starts with a play and turns into a musical, about a reverse “King and I” created in China and produced fifty years in the future, concerning the relationship between a Chinese envoy and Hillary Clinton, which brings up questions regarding cultural appropriation and what is called “soft power,” the power of culture to influence society.
David Henry Hwang is a Tony winning playwright, the author of, among other works, “M. Butterfly”, “Chinglish” and “Yellow Face,” along with a recently reworked “Flower Drum Song.” He is also on the writing staff of the Showtime TV show “The Affair.”
Jeanine Tesori is a Tony winning composer. Among her works are “Caroline, or Change,” “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” “Violet” (to be seen in a Bay Area Musicals production next season) and “Fun Home.”
An extended version of this interview can be found as a Bay Area Theater podcast.