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Rickey Allan Shiomi (born May 25, 1947) is an internationally recognized, award-winning Japanese Canadian playwright, stage director, artistic director and taiko artist, and a major player in the Asian American/Canadian theatre movement.
- First there’s often protest by Asian American communities about what they believe are stereotyped depictions; by resetting the opera in Edwardian England, we don’t have to worry about that. Second, because the opera was originally set in Japan, you had all these white actors playing Japanese characters – yellowface actors – and by setting it in Edwardian England we now have white actors playing white characters. To me, that solves the two key concerns that might come up.
- On how he adapted The Mikado in “INTERVIEW: Rick Shiomi On Updating The Mikado, Combatting Yellowface, And Post-Mu Life” in Twin Cities Arts Reader (2019 Mar 5)
- My theater work came out of my community activism, and became an extension of that activism. Being Asian American, there are so many hurdles to get across in terms of creating awareness and recognition of Asian-American theater, wherever you go. Those two are, for me, wedded together completely…
- On how he might view his theater work as community activism in “Art Talk with Playwright & Director Rick Shiomi” in Art Works Blog (2016 Mar 31)
- I think some of the bigger issues in terms of diversity are specifically about Broadway and Hollywood, where it's more about money. There are major controversies going on at those levels…there is always controversy over how Hollywood is casting white actors in what might have been Asian roles, or Asian roles that have been transferred into white roles. So on that level, there are some real challenges.
- On how Broadway and Hollywood may not nurture Asian American artists in “Art Talk with Playwright & Director Rick Shiomi” in Art Works Blog (2016 Mar 31)
- In most Asian-American families, if a son or daughter says they want to be in theater, nobody's embracing them for that. And that's a problem. Because when you're discouraging those people at that age, it reduces the number of participants in the cultural life of the community.
- On the cultural attitudes regarding youth who want to enter the arts in “Art Talk with Playwright & Director Rick Shiomi” in Art Works Blog (2016 Mar 31)