Musical (2015)

Musique: Jay Kuo
Paroles: Jay Kuo
Livret: Marc Acito
Production à la création:

Allegiance is inspired by George Takei's true childhood experiences. Traversing the lush California heartland, the windswept prairies of Wyoming and the battlefields of war-torn Europe, Allegiance tells the epic multi-generational tale of deep family loyalty, romance, humor, optimism and unparalleled heroism in the face of fear and prejudice against Japanese-Americans during World War II and beyond.

Act I
An aged World War II veteran, Sam Kimura, has been estranged from his family for 60 years. Sam's older sister, Kei, has died. A woman brings a mysterious envelope to him.
In 1941, Sammy is a newly elected class president who dreams of "Going Places", like college and high political office. His father, Tatsuo, and wise old grandfather, Ojii-san, own a farm in Salinas, California. Sammy adores his older sister Kei, who has postponed her own dreams to help the family. After the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor in December, the US government fears that peaceful Japanese-Americans might be loyal to the Japanese. Nearly all of the Japanese-Americans in the Western US are incarcerated in internment camps. Sammy's family is forced to sell their beautiful farm for a small price and sent to the bleak Heart Mountain Relocation Center in Wyoming.
While in this camp, and against his father's wishes, Sammy joins with Mike Masaoka, head of the Japanese American Citizens League, which cooperates with the authorities to identify "disloyal" Japanese. When his grandfather, Ojii-chan, becomes sick, Sammy goes to see the white Quaker volunteer nurse at the camp, Hannah, for some cough syrup. She tells him it is only for the staff, but Sammy is persuasive, and she gives him the medication. The two begin a relationship that causes additional tensions, because interracial marriage with Hannah would be illegal. Sammy's father is not inclined to cooperate. He is sent to a brutal prison for refusing to swear his allegiance by answering "yes" on an unjustly-worded loyalty questionnaire. Sammy's sister Kei falls in love with a draft resistance leader, Frankie Suzuki, and she also joins the resisters advocating for the rights of her people.

Act II
The loving family is torn apart by the tragedy of the internment, and each member is profoundly changed by living with the consequences. Masaoka manages to obtain Washington's permission for the Japanese-Americans to enlist in US armed forces, but only if they take on the most dangerous assignments in the war in Italy. Eager to prove his loyalty, Sammy enlists in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, a US Army unit consisting of American-born sons of Japanese immigrants, and he fights bravely in Europe. He leads fellow Nisei on a suicide mission, in which the majority of the soldiers are killed.
Meanwhile, Kei and Frankie, who are still in love, help lead the resistance. Eventually, Frankie's scuffles with a military policeman lead to Hannah's accidental and fatal shooting. Hearing of this, Sammy is enraged at Kei and Frankie, blaming them for Hannah's death. Grandpa Ojii-chan, who has managed to grow a crop of vegetables in the mountain's rough terrain, dies peacefully while in his garden. After the war, Sammy and Kei attempt to reconcile, but their actions and the hurtful words that followed from their differing responses to the internment and loyalty questionnaire cause them to separate for many decades.
In the present day, old Sam learns that the woman who brought him the envelope is his niece – the daughter of Kei and Frankie. Sam opens the envelope and finds a posthumous bequest from Kei, together with a Life magazine article that tells about Sam’s heroics during World War II. He realizes that he has a chance to forgive and to share in the love and compassion of his family.

In the fall of 2008, George Takei and his husband, Brad, were seated by complete coincidence next to Jay Kuo and Lorenzo Thione at an Off-Broadway show, where a brief conversation revealed a mutual love of theater. The very next day, the four were once again seated together at a Broadway show, In the Heights. At intermission, Kuo and Thione approached Takei, curious as to why he had been so emotionally affected by the father's song ("Useless") in which he laments his inability to help his family. Over the course of that intermission, Takei recounted his personal experience as a child in a Japanese internment camp, during World War II, and his own father's sense of helplessness at his inability to protect his family that was mirrored in the song. Kuo and Thione felt that Takei's family's experience would make a great show. Although previous major Broadway musicals have involved Asian and Asian-American topics or settings, including three of Rodgers and Hammerstein's shows, Pacific Overtures and Miss Saigon, Allegiance is "the first [Broadway] musical created by Asian Americans, directed by an Asian American ... with a predominantly Asian cast ... [and] an Asian-American viewpoint informing the work".

The story of the musical takes some liberties with history. According to Frank Abe, the creator of the documentary film Conscience and the Constitution, the musical "conflate[s] Heart Mountain with the worst of the segregation center at Tule Lake and invent[s] military rule at Heart Mountain." The processing of new arrivals is embellished for dramatic effect, as handcuffs and physical abuse by military police did not occur in the internment camps. Abe comments that the resistance by the Heart Mountain Fair Play Committee was a studied act of civil disobedience, not a gang of "fists-raised revolutionaries". He notes: "No firearms were used inside the [camps'] perimeter. The resistance was open and above-board, its meetings open to the public. No one had to run or hide; leaders of the Fair Play Committee were quietly taken into custody at their family barracks. ... The resisters knew they risked five years in prison for bucking the draft, but violating the Selective Service Act was never a capital crime, never treason. No resistance leader at Heart Mountain was beaten bloody or hunted by guards", draft cards were not burned, and no newspaper articles affected the internment; notably Frankie would not have been taken to the infirmary by military police, which causes the key conflict in the show.[5] Abe objects to the portrayal of the activities and treatment of the resisters, and to the "relentless optimism" of the score, concluding that the show distorts the historical lesson, diminishes the real impact of "the anger and suppressed rage" that the internees carried from the internment camps, and "risks supplanting the truth of the resistance and the Japanese American experience in the popular mind [and] cheapens the fabric of basic reality to achieve [commercial] ends."

Acte I
"Prologue" – Kei and Company
"Wishes on the Wind" – Kei, Sammy and Company
"Do Not Fight the Storm" – Company
"Gaman" – Kei, Tatsuo and Company
"What Makes a Man" – Sammy
"I Oughta Go" – Hannah and Sammy
"Get in the Game" – Sammy, Kei and Company
"Should I" – Hannah and Kei
"Allegiance" – Tatsuo, Sammy, Kei and Company
"Ishi Kara Ishi" – Ojii-chan and Kei
"Paradise" – Frankie and Company
"Higher" – Kei
"With You" – Big Band Singer, Sammy and Hannah
"Our Time Now" – Sammy, Frankie, Kei, Hannah and Company

Act II
"Resist" – Frankie and Company
"Allegiance" (reprise) – Tatsuo
"This Is Not Over" – Kei and Frankie
"Higher/Resist" (reprises) – Kei and Company
"Stronger Than Before" – Kei and Hannah
"With You" (reprise) – Sammy and Hannah
"Nothing in Our Way" – Frankie and Kei
"Itetsuita" – Company
"442 Victory Swing" – USO Pilots and Company
"Higher/Ishi Kara Ishi" (reprises) – Kei and Tatsuo
"How Can You Go?" – Kei and Sammy
"What Makes a Man" (reprise) – Sammy, Kei, Tatsuo and Company
"Wishes on the Wind" (reprise) – Sammy, Kei, Tatsuo and Company

Aucun dossier informatif complémentaire concernant Allegiance

Aucun dossier informatif complémentaire concernant Allegiance

Version 1

Allegiance (2015-11-Longacre Theatre-Broadway)

Type de série: Original
Théâtre: Longacre Theatre (Broadway - Etats-Unis)
Durée : 3 mois 1 semaine
Nombre :
Première Preview : 06 October 2015
Première: 08 November 2015
Dernière: 14 February 2016
Mise en scène : Stafford Arima
Chorégraphie : Andrew Palermo
Producteur :
Star(s) : Lea Salonga
Avec: George Takei (Sam Otsuka), Lea Salonga (Kei Kimura), Telly Leung (Sammy Kimura), Katie Rose Clarke (Hannah Campbell), Michael K. Lee (Frankie Suzuki), Christopheren Nomura (Tatsuo Kimura), Greg Watanabe (Mike Masaoka), Aaron J. Albano, Belinda Allyn, Marcus Choi, Janelle Dote, Dan Horn, Owen Johnston, Darren Lee, Manna Nichols, Autumn Ogawa, Rumi Oyama, Momoko Sugai, Cary Tedder, Elena Wang , Scott Watanabe et Scott Wise
Presse : Les critiques sont très bonnes:

"The first requirement of any Broadway musical is to entertain. While well-intentioned and polished, "Allegiance" struggles to balance both ambitions, and doesn't always find an equilibrium." Charles Isherwood for New York Times

"The show is stuck on impulse power...Allegiance also wants to make a significant statement. But it's too tangled to say very much." Joe Dziemianowicz for New York Daily News

"The heavy-handed, cliche-driven "Allegiance" tries to take on all three - but does so unsuccessfully in a bombastic and generic Broadway musical. It has an ambitious agenda - touching on pride, citizenship, degradation, interracial romance, bravery and honor - and it's too much." Mark Kennedy for Associated Press

"But the powerful sentiments involved are too often flattened by the pedestrian lyrics and unmemorable melodies of Jay Kuo's score, making an unconvincing case for this material's suitability to be a musical." David Rooney for Hollywood Reporter

"The strength of "Allegiance" is in the story. Not the musical's book, which is no more than serviceable, but the disturbing real-life events behind it." Marilyn Stasio for Variety

Version 2

Allegiance (2023-01-Charing Cross Theatre-London)

Type de série: Revival
Théâtre: Charing Cross Theatre (Londres - Angleterre)
Durée : 2 mois 2 semaines
Nombre :
Première Preview : 07 January 2023
Première: 17 January 2023
Dernière: 08 April 2023
Mise en scène : Tara Overfield-Wilkinson
Chorégraphie : Tara Overfield-Wilkinson
Producteur :
Star(s) :
Avec: George Takei, Telly Leung, Aynrand Ferrer, Iroy Abesamis, Mark Anderson, Masashi Fujimoto, Megan Gardiner, Raiko Gohara, Eu Jin Hwang, Hana Ichijo, Misa Koide, Patrick Munday, Rachel Jayne Picar, Sario Solomon, Joy Tan, Iverson Yabut.


Allegiance (2015-11-Longacre Theatre-Broadway)

Qualité: ***** Intérêt: ***
Anglais Durée: 0:03:00