At Playwrights Horizons: BFE (Long Wharf Theatre co-production). Her other plays include Office Hour, The Language Archive, The Piano Teacher, Durango, The Winchester House, The Architecture of Loss and 99 Histories. Her work has been produced in New York at Roundabout Theatre Company, The Public Theater, The Vineyard Theatre and New York Theatre Workshop, and regionally at theaters such as Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Long Wharf Theatre, South Coast Repertory and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Honors include the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, the Barrie Stavis Award, the Claire Tow Award for Emerging Artists and the L. Arnold Weissberger Award for Playwriting. She has also been the recipient of a New York Foundation for The Arts grant, a Van Lier Fellowship from New York Theatre Workshop and residences at Hedgebrook, the O’Neill Playwrights Conference, Ojai Playwrights Conference, Sundance Theatre Lab and the MacDowell Colony. Julia is an alumna of Amherst College, New York University, The Juilliard School and New Dramatists.
(as of 08/23/16)
Photo by Zack DeZon
A rich stew imbued with gentle humor and quiet simplicity, served with a tender side dish of unspoken love spiced with subtle comic seasoning.
—Jennifer Farrar, Associated Press
A sensitive, cleareyed drama with excellent acting.
Julia Cho: I reached a point where I felt, “This is ridiculous that I haven’t written a play in so long.” And what I did on just the most practical level was, I wrote out a contract that said, “I promise I will write every single day until I have a play.” And then I signed it and I dated it. And I kept the promise.
There are two dishes, above all, that I associate with my father. The first is ramen. And by “ramen” I mean instant ramen, not the artisanal, simmered-for-40-hours kind of Japanese ramen so popular right now. The latter is undoubtedly more delicious but was entirely unavailable to me in my youth.
When Sah-Jin, the widowed immigrant mother in Julia Cho’s stirring, melancholic ‘99 Histories,’ describes a traumatic parting with the sister she last saw as a teenager in Korea, her story forms around the memory of food.
The connection between taste and memory is a well-documented mystery. We’ve all had the experience, whether at some truck-stop diner or otherwise dull dinner party, in which the taste, smell, and texture of food unexpectedly fuse mid-bite to trigger some long-forgotten, surprisingly detailed memory of another time and place in our lives: the quality of the light, the song on the radio, the stain on the carpet, and the sense of well-being (or lack thereof) these created in us.