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Kennedy Theatre

Media Release

Department of Theatre and Dance
University of Hawai'i at Manoa
1770 East-West Road
Honolulu, HI 96822

Contact: Jessica L. Jacob, Publicity Director
Phone: (808) 956-2598
Fax: (808) 956-4234
Box Office: (808) 956-7655 (v/t)

September 21, 2004



The University of HawaiĎi at M~noaís Department of Theatre & Dance is pleased to welcome Edward Sakamotoís "M~noa Valley" back to the Kennedy Theatre. Twenty-two years after its world premiere at Kennedy, "Manoa Valley" still boasts the original creative team of writer Sakamoto and Director Glenn Cannon and the return of original cast actors Stan Egi, Darryl Tsutsui and Kati Kuroda. "M~noa Valley" provides a nostalgic glimpse at local life just before statehood. Expressed in the rich pidgin of Hawai#i, this play is a warm and gentle look over the back fence into the lives of a local Japanese family. "M~noa Valley" will be performed on the mainstage of UHMís Kennedy Theatre October 29, 30 and November 4, 5, 6 at 8:00 p.m., and November 7 at 2:00 p.m. A free pre-show chat at 7:00 p.m. precedes the Saturday, October 30 and Saturday, November 6, 8:00 p.m. performances.

When asked about the choice of "M~noa Valley," Director Cannon explained that each director of the local Hawaiian pidgin plays scheduled for UHMís Kennedy Theatre this season "independently wanted to remount these specific plays, so we ended up with a local play festival with all pidgin dialogue." Director Cannon had been thinking about remounting "M~noa Valley" for quite some time. His enchantment with the script is due to the "wonderful expression of love, caring, fun, delight, yearning and conflict as well as a story that is representative of Hawai#i and so many families here." "Playwright Sakamoto caught those elements so beautifully," Cannon continues, "Audiences love it and recognize themselves in the characters." Set at the time of statehood, "M~noa Valley" elicits memories for so many of Hawai#i ís people.

Serendipity has allowed UHM alum and professional actor, Stan Egi, to return to Hawai#i in time to act in the production, in the same role of Tosh. Egi moved back to Honolulu in the Fall of 2003 to complete his graduate studies in Directing at the University of Hawai#i at M~noa where he also teaches beginning acting. Egiís twenty year professional acting career has included Broadway, Off Broadway, film - "Paradise Road," "Rising Sun," "Boys on the Side," "Golden Gate," "Come See the Paradise," and "Gung Ho"; television appearances on "Nash Bridges," "JAG," "One Life to Live," "Late Night with David Letterman," "Hawaii" and many more.

Darryl Tsutsui has also continued with theatre since his appearance in the world premiere of "M~noa Valley" as Nobu. He returns to the Kennedy stage as Nobuís father, Aki. Living on Oahu, he has worked with UHMís Kennedy Theatre, Kumu Kahua and the Kauai Community Players. In 1998, Kumu Kahua produced Tsutsuiís first full length play, "Easy Street," which was the winner of the 1995 UHM/Kumu Kahua playwriting contest.

Stage actress Kati Kuroda most recently toured to Singapore, Taiwan, and the mainland with "Wedding Banquet" a new musical based on Ang Leeís movie. Another tour, of her one-woman-show "Sakura," went to Texas, Hawaii, St. Louis, Pittsburgh and Edinburgh. During her twenty years in New York City, Kuroda worked with the Manhattan Theatre Club, Guthrie, Shakespeare in the Park, The Acting Company, Pan Asia Rep (Senior Artist), OíNeill Playwrighting Conference, regional theatres and more. It is a rare opportunity to have these three alums back on the Kennedy Theatre stage.

Tickets go on sale at the Kennedy Theatre Box Office, outlets, and on the internet on October 18. Prices are $15 regular; $12 seniors, military, UH Faculty/staff, $10 Non-UHM students; and $3 for UHM students with validated UHM Fall 2004 I.D. For more information, charge-by-phone or disability access, call the Kennedy Theatre box office at 956-7655 (voice/text) during regular box office hours Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tickets are also available online at or charge-by-outlet phone at 944-2697. A $2.00 per ticket service charge will be applied to all charge-by-phone, outlet and internet sales.


WHAT: "M~noa Valley"

PRESENTED BY: UHM Department of Theatre & Dance

WHEN: October 29, 30* & November 4, 5, 6 at 8pm
November 7 at 2pm
*free pre-show chat at 7pm

WHERE: UHMís Kennedy Theatre Mainstage

TICKET PRICES:$15 regular; $12 seniors, military, UH faculty/staff; $10 non-UHM students; $3 UHM students
with valid Fall 2004 UHM ID

TICKET INFO: 956-7655 (voice/text)

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