2014 Season

The Crazed

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Written by Sally Dawidoff
Directed by Gary Graves
Produced in: 2014

From the Central Works Writers Workshop

World Premiere #43

A new play by Sally Dawidoff based on the acclaimed novel by National Book Award winner Ha Jin, about a young scholar coming of age in Communist China on the eve of the Tiananmen Square massacre.

When the venerable Professor Yang suffers a stroke his student Jian Wan is assigned to care for him.  But when the professor begins to rave like a madman, the student is thrown into a quandary:  are these the outpourings of a crazed mind, or is Yang speaking the truth – about his past, about art, about how to live a meaningful life?

This spring marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of Tiananmen Square. The Crazed joins commemorations around the globe.

“A work of enormous intelligence.  Piercing, critical, but leavened by Jin’s understated prose, The Crazed is a substantial addition to the corpus of a great author.”—San Francisco Chronicle


O sacred public square, belonging to us all—
You are vast and wide open, like the future.
—by Sally Dawidoff, The Crazed



This production is made possible with the support of the Zellerbach Family Foundation.

This play is available for licensing! Please contact us for details.

Perry Aliado
Jeannie Barroga
Will Dao
Wes Gabrillo
Randall Nakano (member AEA)
Carina Lastimosa Salazar
Louel Senores


Costume design: Tammy Berlin
Lighting design: Gary Graves
Prop design: Debbie Shelley
Sound design: Gregory Scharpen
Stage manager: Vanessa Ramos
Asst. stage manager: Alandra Hileman
Dramaturg: John Patrick Moore

Jian Wan (Will Dao) encounters Hao (Louel Señores)
at a remote mountain village in The Crazed.

Photo by Jim Norrena

Randall Nakano* as Professor Yang, being forced
by the Red Guards to wear a dunce cap in The Crazed.

*member AEA

Photo by Jim Norrena

Will Dao as Jian Wan and Carina Lastimosa Salazar
as Meimei, his recently estranged fiancée  in The Crazed.

Photo by Jim Norrena

Will Dao as Jian Wan, a young scholar
coming of age in Communist China
on the eve of the Tiananmen Square massacre.

Photo by Jim Norrena

5 Stars! “…with The Crazed the company has happened on a compelling combination of script, cast, direction and content that makes for a memorable and inspiring performance.” C. Kruger, TheatreStorm

Watch the trailer:

A brief film about the events at Tiananmen Square in the Spring of 1989: Tiananmen Square Massacre

“The Tank Man” – CNN footage from June 5, 1989: Man vs. Chinese Tanks at Tiananmen Square

From the Frontline documentary, “The Tank Man:” Introduction to PBS Frontline The Tank Man

Op Ed by Ha Jin in the New York Time: Exiled to English

NPR article, Feb. 2, 2014: Chinese Red Guards Apologize, Reopening A Dark Chapter

Tiananmen Square, 1966

Tiananmen Square, 1966

Tiananmen Square 1989

Tiananmen Square 1989