My Mom Friend Nathalie gets annoyed when I blog too much on Asian American fashion designers and other frivolous topics. She dragged me and a couple of other friends to a play by Asian American Playwright, Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro who wrote, for the first time, about life where she lives in Harvard Square, Cambridge. Before I Leave You is a bittersweet comedy about relationships, simultaneously both loving and dysfunctional. Interestingly, Alfaro’s play, which is getting a lot of attention, is putting her on the map late in her career: she’s nearly 70-years-old! I find that inspirational!
What are the elements of Before I Leave You without ruining the plot for you?
There’s Tiger dad Koji, who also is a narcissist. The plot turns around his shortcomings as a father, husband, and friend.
Emily is the sweetly vulnerable Caucasian artist wife of Koji. She’s not a Tiger Parent, yet shouldn’t she have some responsibility for the decisions for their only child’s education? She is the mom, after all!
Peter is the boomerang son who’s now just leaving the nest. He has a secret and his job as a bagger at the supermarket is not impressing his father.
Koji’s best friend Jeremy is a Jewish American professor and author. He’s suffering from a decline in health and unrequited love. Or is it? “Uncle Jeremy” is also the father that Peter wished he had.
Jeremy’s sister Trish is living with him temporarily until she finds a new job. She’s Koji’s biggest fan and the comic relief.
The show’s over in Boston, but I wonder if it will start up again someplace else. Stay tuned…