San Francisco, CA
Joan Osato has played a pivotal role in local and national theater for over two decades and is a committed local and national community organizer. A core member of Youth Speaks since 2001, where she produces live performance events including the annual Brave New Voices festival in rotating cities around the country, she is also Producer for the Living Word Project and the critically acclaimed theater group Campo Santo. She works on behalf of national networks and sits on the boards of the National Performance Network and the Consortium of Asian American Theaters & Artists. She produces the Life is Living Festival in Oakland with a broad range of artists and partners, and has produced Life is Living in nine distinct cities over the past 15 years. She is an awardee of prestigious grants from the MAP Fund, the Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation, the San Francisco Arts Commission’s Individual Artist Commission, and the Creative Work Fund. She was the inaugural recipient of SFAC’s Artist Communities Grant, and received the 2014 Theater Bay Area Award for Outstanding Video Design and an Artists Engaged in Social Change grant from the Surdna Foundation in 2015. She has been recognized for her work as a photographer from the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the 2014 Prix de Photographie Paris, and the 2017 Arte Laguna Prize, and she has exhibited throughout the San Francisco Bay Area since 2009. In 2019, she received a Cal Shakes Luminary Award for community engagement and was named a YBCA 100 honoree. Current projects include We the Peoples Before, directed by Roberta Uno, Rashomon by Sean San José, and Last Days at Pu’unene Mill with Tanya Orellana.
Sunhui Chang grew up on the island of Guam, where he discovered his love of storytelling through the food at his mother’s Korean restaurant and double features at the local cinema.Artist Bio
Joan Osato is an artist and producer from San Francisco, where she works with local and national collaborators including Campo Santo, the Living Word Project, and Youth Speaks.Artist Bio
“the boiling” tells the story of a Korean American adoptee virologist from the Midwest and a Black woman and former homicide detective who are paired up to chase down a nihilistic carrier of a deadly virus. The chase ultimately reveals a search for home, identity, and redemption in America amidst our history and tradition of violence upon each other. Joan Osato was drawn to Sunhui Chang’s writing as a genre-defying script: reading like a novel with images reminiscent of a manga, and having dialogue that is suited for the stage, “the boiling” is organically conducive to the challenges of a hybrid staging. Film will be incorporated as a medium that allows the looping and tracking of times past and moving visuals of the natural world via overhead projections to create a planetarium-like effect and sliding screens for shifting locations; live video, for a jumbotron effect for delicate facial close-ups in intimate dialogue that can be lost within the staging for a live audience; and mounted, small closed-circuit monitors, for scenes representing surveillance, random violence, quarantine, and isolation. “the boiling” will incorporate various styles of acting/performance that best correlate with the media/technology used, without sacrificing what is golden about live performance, which is its immediate, present relationship with the living audience in the seats. It is the live performance elements that enhance the media elements, as this story reminds us that the organic must inform the use of the “machine” systems.
Sunhui Chang was born in Korea and grew up on the island of Guam, and he started writing while studying sociology at the University of California, Berkeley. His love of food translated into the award-winning restaurant FuseBOX in Oakland, CA, along with artistic collaborations beginning in 2009 with The People’s Cook Project with Robert Karimi; in 2013, he participated in The Making of… by the Kitchen Sisters/KQED, presented at SFMOMA, and in 2015, in Kimchi Diplomacy. In 2019, Catharine Clark Gallery commissioned the hybrid installation of How to Fall in Love in a Brothel based upon his script of the same name. The short film from the installation and his directorial debut has been selected in over 30 film festivals, winning awards for Best Short Film, Best Love Story, Best Drama, Best Cinematography, and Best Lighting.