In addition to the Touchstone 2013-14 performing company, Journey: Dream of the Red Pavilion features three performers chosen from our experience story-gathering in the community. Get to know a little more about this intrepid trio who’ll be joining us onstage:
Dong-Ning Wang hails from Beijing, China and has been an invaluable project partner for all of this season. She has a PhD in Engineering from Lehigh and currently teaches there in Asian Studies, Language, and Literature. One of Dong-Ning’s most substantial dramaturgical contributions to the project is her research into the history of the Chinese community in the Lehigh Valley and at the university, which she’s been studying since 2007. She’s also a principal investigator in Lehigh University’s Chinese Bridge Project. “Nowadays,” she says, “with globalization, it’s really important to be part of this project, really bringing people together – bridging cultures, bridging people. I think this is part of the reason I first came to Lehigh.”
Liana Irvine was adopted from Anhui, China when she was sixteen months old; she’s currently a junior at Liberty High School, where she participates in chorus, the school newspaper, and Young Writers. She’s a familiar face onstage in Liberty’s shows, as well as at Pennsylvania Youth Theatre; and if you saw last summer’s Touchstone Teen Ensemble show, you’ll remember her performance a feisty little old lady. “I really love this show,” she says. “It’s an interesting perspective to take; instead of America being a melting pot full of soup, all melted together, it’s a stew, with bits and pieces that aren’t all combined. But it’s all tasty. Who doesn’t love stew?”
Qiyi Zhu-Stoffey is originally from Wuhan, China; she’s another Lehigh graduate with a PhD in Electrical Engineering. Qiyi has been working at AT&T Bell Laboratory since 1995, where she’s worked on critical projects in changing the telecommunication industry. Outside of work, she’s a proud mother of two, has a strong interest in health and wellness, and loves to sing. Qiyi describes being able to work on a project like this as “a dream come true.” She adds, “I think that it’s very important to be proud of, share, and represent my heritage whenever I can.”
Come see these three, and the rest of the Touchstone company, in Journey: Dream of the Red Pavilion, April 3-13, Thursdays through Saturdays at 8pm, Sundays at 2pm.