At a production meeting recently, longtime-friends Andrew Chapman and EJ Gong talked about the origin of 99 Tropes.
Why this piece, why now?
EJ is an accomplished local actor with a desire for challenge. “I was looking for a play to do with an Asian lead, and simply couldn’t find one.”
Andrew works in television in a time of greatly increased interest in marginal story tellers. “I said, No problem. I’ll just write one.”
They both laughed.
“Who does that?” EJ smiled. “Of course it’s much more than just a story with an Asian man in the lead.”
“I jumped at the chance to write a play,” Andrew said. “I’ve always been interested in identity in America. People talk about it a lot. But what does sharing the storytelling platform really look like? Can it work, in reality?”
The show opens November 24.