'Lewd Asian Women' Take Over Salvage Vanguard Theater
L.A.W. Lewd Asian Women, a new play from Lucky Chaos Theater Projects, opens on Febuary 28 at Salvage Vangaurd Theater. It's written and performed by Christine Hoang, Alice Liu Cook, Lilan Ren, and Leng Wong, who, with the exception of Wong, are all working lawyers in our community.
It’s based in part on the lives of Wong, Cook, and Hoang, three Asian women living in Austin today (Ren portrays the Voice of the Law), and inspired by an 1875 court case involving 22 Chinese immigrants. That case, Chy Lung v Freeman, began when 22 Chinese women were barred from entering San Francisco harbor after being declared "lewd and debauched" by the California commissioner of immigration. The evidence for their lewdness included the fact that they traveled without husbands or children and their flowery garments.
The 22 women were each ordered to pay a $500 bond; they refused to pay or to return to China, and were subsequently held as prisoners. The case eventually reached the Supreme Court, and returned to the public eye recently thanks to a story on NPR. It was that story that prompted Lucky Chaos to create this stage show inspired by the case.
L.A.W. Lewd Asian Women Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 pm February 28 - March 8 At Salvage Vanguard Theater, 2803 Manor Road