Reviews are rolling out for Julia Izumi's Regretfully, So the Birds Are, currently making its world premiere at Off-Broadway's Playwrights Horizons where it opened April 11. Presented by WP Theater and Playwrights Horizons, the farcical play began previews March 22 and will continue in the Peter Jay Sharp Theater through April 30.
Regretfully, So the Birds Are follows three adopted Asian American siblings—Mora, Neel, and Illy—on fantastical journeys to discover "who they are." As the Whistler siblings navigate the unhinged reality of contemporary American life, they face a host of problems including arson, affairs, incest, and murder.
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Playbill will continue to update this list as reviews come in.
Sasha Diamond (Significant Other, Peerless), Shannon Tyo (The Far Country, peerless), Sky Smith (The Lucky Star) star as the leading sibling trio of Illy, Mora, and Neel, respectively. They are joined by Gibson Frazier (Mr. Burns, Tumacho) as Cam the Snowman, Kristine Nielsen (Gary, Vanya and Sonya and Masha and Spike) as Elinore, and Pearl Sun (Come From Away, If/Then) as Srey.
Izumi said in a statement, “I was feeling like a lot of plays being produced were positing, ‘what if the consequence of being a marginalized voice or body in this country is the worst thing that happens to you?’ I wanted to write characters for whom that’s not the worst thing that happens—what if there are also other things on top of that, as often many people have? What if, yes, you live in this body, but also your mom killed your dad and your siblings are in love with each other and your dad is kind of a gross person? I wanted to give my characters room to be messy—which I don’t think is often granted particularly to Asian American women characters—as well as charismatic, strange, funny.”
Jenny Koons (Oedipus, Hurricane Diane) serves as director for the production which features scenic design by You-Shin Chen (The KILL ONE Race), costume design by Alicia J. Austin (You Will Get Sick), lighting design by Stacey Derosier (Fat Ham), and sound design by Megumi Katayama (Tambo & Bones).