Students Learn about Japanese Internment

Enrichment Works presented a new play, “Shizzy’s Story, for New Horizon students and school community and the members of the Pasadena Village on April 25.  Inspired by the real-life story of Shizuko Akasaki, the play makes a connection between the war-time experience of Japanese Americans with that of contemporary Muslims.  


Shizuko Akasaki attended the performance and conducted a Q & A, along with playwright and actor, Alison Minami,  and actor Ricky Pak, who play multiple roles in the play, will also participate. In addition to the fourth through eighth graders, over 40 people from the school community and the Pasadena Village attended.  Students asked thoughtful questions and enjoyed listening to Ms. Akasaki share more details on her life story during those trying years. The school held a reception for attendees after the Q & A.


About Shizzy's Story:

Shizzy's Story, an original 45-minute drama written by Alison Minami, connects the wartime experience of Japanese Americans with that of contemporary Muslims. When one of her students bullies a Muslim classmate during a school assembly, the principal uses the incident as an opportunity to share her family's story of loyalty, loss and resilience, teaching her students an important lesson about racism and what it means to be an American.


About Enrichment Works:

Enrichment Works, a nonprofit, arts education organization based in Valley Glen, produced Shizzy's Story with support from the California State Library Civil Liberties Education Program and Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs. The show is currently touring 40 LAUSD schools as part of the after-school Youth Development Program, part of LAUSD's Beyond the Bell branch. Written by Alison Minami, directed by Michael Hagiwara, with set and sound design by Ricky Pak, the play uses alternating casts. 

This information was also available on Pasadena Now, an online newspaper. 1 2 3 4

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