An American Dream, commissioned by Seattle Opera, receives its world premiere with that company at McCaw Hall on August 21, 2015. Peter Kazaras directs this amazing cast, which includes D’Ana Lombard, Morgan Smith, Adam Lau, Nina Yoshida-Nelsen and HaeJi Chaeng. Judith Yan is our musical director. I’m in good hands!
An American Dream began as a personal storytelling project hosted by Seattle Opera and the Seattle Film Festival, asking this question: If you had to leave you home today and couldn’t return, what would you take with you, and why is that object – that connection to your past – so important?
What evolved from this inquiry was a taut, finely-woven tale based on the personal experiences of several Puget Sound residents: A Japanese-American family burns their precious belongings from Japan in an attempt to avoid arrest during World War II. The daughter, Setsuko, manages to hide her beloved Hina Matsuri doll before they’re forced to leave their home. A new couple, Jim and Eva, move into the home. Eva, a German Jewish immigrant who is preoccupied by her family’s situation in Germany, doesn’t know the circumstances by which her husband acquired the home. She slowly discovers the truth, both about the family who left and her own.