The Wicked One

The Wicked One is the story of a mother faced with a brutal decision. Based on a true story out
of Rosemead, California, a terminal cancer diagnosis forces a first-generation Laotian immigrant
to confront her son's schizophrenia. The Wicked One explores the piercing isolation
experienced by single mothers, the shame around mental illness that often plagues Asian
families, and...
The Wicked One is the story of a mother faced with a brutal decision. Based on a true story out
of Rosemead, California, a terminal cancer diagnosis forces a first-generation Laotian immigrant
to confront her son's schizophrenia. The Wicked One explores the piercing isolation
experienced by single mothers, the shame around mental illness that often plagues Asian
families, and the heft of having to carry your culture with you in a foreign land.

Finalist for the Relentless Award, semi-finalist for the O'Neill Playwrights' Conference. Developed with The New Group and Circle X Theatre Co. Initially written as a part of The Vagrancy's Blossoming Series.
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The Wicked One

Recommended by

  • Playwrights Foundation:
    24 Apr. 2020
    Playwrights Foundation congratulates THE WICKED ONE as a Finalist for BAPF 2020. This play rose to the top 35 out of 735 plays submitted, and was discussed at length by our Bay Area Literary Council for consideration in our season. We loved how this play uses the language of theater to illuminate challenging perspectives and compelling intersectional questions. This play ultimately moved & inspired us and spoke to the core mission of PF. We hope that once we’re allowed to return to our theaters again, it will be considered for production to reach new audiences.
  • Nick Malakhow:
    30 Nov. 2019
    Wow! This beautiful and haunting piece took my breath away! Melancholy and lyrical narration punctuates impeccably-observed scenes of nuanced naturalism. Lee Kit and Sam's relationship provides a devastating exploration of family, mental illness, trauma, and outsidership. The playwright also provides for us a uniquely theatrical representation of schizophrenia, as well as an overall theatrical world that would be visually rich in production. This play begs to be put on its feet, and I hope to see a production sometime soon!
  • Sam Hamashima:
    26 Nov. 2019
    You have to read this show. I don't say that very often, but The Wicked One came across my desk and I immediately was drawn into Lisa Sanaye Dring's story. The stakes are high from the beginning and Lisa gives us the amazing opportunity to learn *with* the characters as opposed to watching from above. It has made me think about how my family discusses mental illness and how someone's length of stay in this country impacts their knowledge and trust of medical professionals. What will a mother do to help their son succeed? I urge you to find out.

Development History

Awards

Finalist
,
Seven Devils Playwrights Conference
,
id Theater
,
2020
Finalist
,
Relentless Award
,
American Playwriting Foundation
,
2018