The Village

History can be really boring. “In 1949, Chiang Kai-shek blah-blah, thousands of Chinese, blah-blah, forced to immigrate, blah-blah, Taiwan, blah-blah.” Make those events personal and suddenly a wave of refugees isn’t just a faceless mob; it’s someone’s life. It was Wang Wei-Chung’s life. His recollections form the basis for The Village, a stage drama with liberal splashes of comedy that has toured the Chinese-speaking world and is now making its way to Houston.

Wang Wei-Chung’s family, like the three families in the play, was among the thousands of Chinese who left their homeland, by then under Mao Tse-tung’s domination, and immigrated to Taiwan. They settled in hundreds of temporary villages hastily constructed to house the refugees. They assumed their stay in Taiwan would be temporary; they were wrong. The play chronicles the families’ daily lives (listening to neighbors through the paper-thin walls, struggling to maintain Chinese traditions while assimilating to Taiwan) and reflects on the larger questions of home and family.

Performed in Mandarin Chinese with English surtitles, The Village has a two-day Houston run. 7 p.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Hobby Center for the Performing Arts, 800 Bagby. For information, call 713‑315‑2525 or visit thehobbycenter.org. $48 to $168.
Sat., July 12, 7 p.m.; Sun., July 13, 2 p.m., 2014

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