Uncle Gunjiro’s Girlfriend

San Francisco International Arts Festival

Through May 22nd

Virtuoso performance artist and writer Brenda Wong Aoki joins Emmy Award-winning contra-bass composer and player Mark Isu for a haunting tale of the controversial marriage of a Japanese samurai to the daughter of an archdeacon in 1906 earthquake-era San Francisco. Koto artist Shoko Hikage accompanies the production as well.

Aoki tells the story of her ancestor, and samurai noble, Gunjiro Aoki, who sought to wed Helen Emery, daughter of the Archdeacon of San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral. The alliance sparked public outrage in San Francisco, generating death threats, offensive “yellow peril” journalism, and the revoking of Emery’s citizenship.

After the May 19 performance, join the Festival Opening Night Post Show Reception at 9:30 p.m. in the Cowell lobby. Admission is free with an opening night ticket. Meet and greet artists participating in this year’s Festival and raise a toast to celebrate the opening of the 2016 program.

These performances by Brenda Wong Aoki, Mark Isu, and Shoko Hikage are hosted by Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture (FMCAC) as part of the San Francisco International Arts Festival, which runs from May 19 – June 5 exclusively at FMCAC. The Festival features more than 100 performances by 50 different ensembles, as well as an expansive arts exhibition celebrating 100 years of the Dada Movement. Get discounts on tickets to see multiple shows at the Festival by buying a Festival pass. More details here.

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