The festival announces the production of the West Valley City – Utah Shakespeare Festival

“This incredible new musical instrument tells the story of Chinese workers on the Transcontinental Railway. It’s part of a Utah history, a love story, with an amazing score – and all served by a great team of professional artists, ”said Frank Mack, the festival’s executive producer. “This production is part of the 125th anniversary of the state of Utah’s 125th anniversary, and I’m excited to see it take place in West Valley City. Most of our visitors to the festival are on the Wasch Front, and it’s a great opportunity for them to see the festival produce in their own neighborhood.

The production festival represents a strengthening and expansion of the partnership between the West Valley city. “We are thrilled with our partner, the Utah Shakespeare Festival, here in this beautiful new play, Mountain of goldWayne Pyle, West Valley City’s city manager and chief executive officer, said. “It’s a great story, and we hope the community will join us on the show.”

“This production is one of many future collaborations with festival visitors to the West Valley City Performing Arts Center and the Wasch Front,” added Brian Vaughn, the festival’s art director. “I am incredibly eager to share this beautiful new music that celebrates and honors the thousands of Chinese workers who played a key role in building one of the country’s largest industrial wonders. It celebrates Utah heritage as it enhances the humanity, grace and resilience of thousands of immigrants.

The play is a natural fit for a Utah company to produce. Set in 1866 through the construction of the Transcontinental Railway by thousands of Chinese men in Sierra Nevada, it sheds light on the inhumane conditions of these people. Yet, it is also a love story and highlights the resilient attitude of these immigrants as they live their lives dreaming of love, freedom, family and community.

Playwright Jason Ma believes Utah is the perfect home for a world premiere Mountain of gold, Since the family-based culture that exists in Utah is consistent with the community of people in the story and a strong sense of family values. “Utah has a deep appreciation for art that seems to be part of the DNA of its citizens, as well as a deep connection to history that is missing in many parts of America today,” Ma said.

He is thrilled for the premiere of the play: “The Utah Shakespeare Festival has a reputation as one of the best theater producers in the country,” he said, “and we are extremely fortunate to have their luck and artistic resources.”

The mother is deeply acquainted with the play because she is the son of an immigrant family who “persevered, overcame, and succeeded in becoming Americans.”

“This part resonates very precisely with our current times, when we ask ourselves who we are as a nation, as well as who and what an American is,” Ma said. “It is important to remind us of the contribution that immigrants have made to this country and to respect the sacrifices of mankind and these fellow human beings who have come to our shores throughout the history of our nation to this day.”

This production has been made possible, in part, with the support of the Utah Department of Cultural and Community Engagement, the prosperous 125th celebration of the 125th anniversary of the State of Utah, and the Jeffrey R. and Katie C. Nelson Foundation.

For more information about the product, visit www.bard.org/gold-mountain. For questions about tickets, seats or accessibility, contact Melissa Salguero at melissa.salguero@wvc-ut.gov or 801-965-5140

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