This exciting playwright and composer, Min Kahng, is our next featured member. Min's original musical The Song of the Nightingale turned a lot of heads when it premiered at Altarena Playhouse in 2013, and Bay Area Children's Theatre's production of his musical Where the Mountain Meets the Moon earned the "TBA Awards Recommended" nod from awards adjudicators. Min is very involved with us at Theatre Bay Area, and was one of the Titan Award recipients in the inaugural round for playwrights.TBA Featured Member Min Kahng.
Update: Min was recently featured in "9 Musical Theatre Writers You Should Know" in the July 2014 issue of American Theatre magazine! Go, Min!
Tell us a little about your theatre work.
I primarily identify as a writer for musical theatre, a composer/lyricist and a playwright. I have had the fortune to see the world premieres of three of my shows here in the Bay Area: Tales of Olympus: A Greek Myth Musical, The Song of the Nightingale and Where the Mountain Meets the Moon: A Musical Adaptation. I also work as the marketing manager for Bay Area Children's Theatre.
Do you have a favorite play, or a favorite production you've seen?
In the past year, the production that had the biggest impact on me was Hundred Days at Z Space. It was a brilliant piece of new musical theatre, combining elements of a rock concert with traditional Broadway-esque storytelling and using the stage in simple yet evocative ways. Through it all, there was such a deep and lively spirit in the work. I love it when a show can feel so fresh and new, and yet touch your heart in the most basic human ways.
What do you like about the theatre scene here in the Bay?
I love the open and collaborative spirit of the Bay Area theatre scene. More often than not, I have found that folks are willing to share thoughts or have a conversation over a cup of coffee. I think that's how the bulk of the creative work gets started—making a connection. There is also a broad range of theatre pieces being produced, running the gamut of classical to contemporary, commercial to avant-garde and everything else in between—and all of this within a 50-mile radius. I'm very lucky to have this breadth of live theatre just beyond my doorstep.
Do you have a resource or piece of advice you'd like to share?
I have benefited greatly from reading Anna Deveare Smith's Letters to a Young Artist. It's like having Smith as your arts mentor, just in book form.
Anything coming up soon that you're excited about?
I just participated in the TheatreWorks Writers Retreat, where I began development of a musical based on an obscure comic book titled The Four Immigrants Manga. I'm excited to dive back into research and writing mode after ruminating on some insights that came from the retreat. Oh, and the TBA Awards! I am an adjudicator for the program, so I'm excited to see how the process plays out in the ceremony later this year.
Theatre Bay Area members: Creative. Committed. Community.