Event Date: 

Wednesday, May 19, 2021 - 7:00pm
Friday, May 21, 2021 - 7:00pm
Saturday, May 22, 2021 - 7:00pm
Sunday, May 23, 2021 - 1:00pm

Event Date Details: 

Q & A followed Friday and Saturday performances.

Event Location: 

  • Performances were available for online live viewing

Event Price: 

Spring 2021 Preview Production

poster for Shanghai production

About the Play

Between 1937 and 1947, twenty thousand European Jews were refused entry to the United States, Canada, South America, Europe, and Australia. Only Shanghai, the colorful and corrupt international city teeming with displaced persons from around the world, accepted them without visas. Although originally allowed anywhere in the city, the Jewish refugees were eventually forced into a square mile impoverished ghetto, which they shared with 100,000 Chinese. 

Shanghai follows Eva Broder, an adolescent girl who grows to maturity in one of the most crowded and battle worn places on the planet. During her journey to adulthood, Eva discovers how her life is interwoven with that of her Chinese neighbors, and what kind of responsibilities, even under extreme adversity, she has the courage to embrace. The play is part coming-of-age and part exploration of a nearly forgotten piece of history. 

Click here for our Photo Gallery.

The Broder Family, cast from SHANGHAI
Julie Fishell, Lana Spring, and Jason Glick as the Broder family.


About the playwright

headshot of playwright Linda Alper










Linda Alper has co-written adaptations and translations of Great Expectations, The Three Musketeers, William Saroyan’s Tracy’s Tiger, Eduardo De Filippo’s Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Napoli Milionaria!, all produced at The Oregon Shakespeare Festival, with additional productions at A.C.T. (San Francisco,) The Denver Center, The Acting Company, Virginia Rep, plus Santa Cruz, Colorado, Stamford (UK) and many other Shakespeare Festivals, smaller theatres and universities. A Fulbright Senior Scholar in Taiwan, Ms. Alper wrote Talk/No Talk, a play about cultural misunderstanding, which also earned a Visiting Science and Artist Grant. Ms. Alper's project was awarded a $350,000 U.S. Cultural Affairs Grant, for which she devised a theatre piece about terrorism and public space with Islamabad’s Theatre Wallay.  She brought fourteen Pakistani artists to perform the piece at OSF and Artists Rep, serving as co-producer for their American tour. A leading actress at OSF for 24 seasons, Ms. Alper performed in over 50 plays there. She has also performed many leading roles at Artists’ Rep, where she is a Resident Artist. Roles include Nora in A Doll’s House Part 2, Ranevskaya in The Cherry Orchard, Jeanette in The Quality of Life, Esther in The Price, Dorine in Tartuffe, Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest and Lynn Fontanne in Ten Chimneys. Shanghai was commissioned by Artists Rep, as part of their Creative Heights Grant and Table/Room/Stage. It will be produced by Artists Rep in 2021. 

About the director

photo of Sara Rademacher, guest director for summer series












Sara Rademacher is a co-intentional theatre director and mother, currently residing in Santa Barbara. She is the Co-Founder and former Artistic Director of Elements Theatre Collective, an organization committed to making theatre more accessible, and is the co-creator of The Outlet Project, a virtual arena of catharsis and connection for creatives in response to the social distancing of Covid-19. She is the Producing Director of OTV Reads SB and The Home Project (which has developed work by 6 local artists and is opening February 14, 2021! As a director, Sara has worked throughout the country and abroad; her work has spanned theatrical genres, from directing classic to contemporary theatre, musical theatre and opera, and experimental theatre and new plays. New work development and directing credits include: Caught Dreaming by Ryan Dancho (NY Summerfest), Three Sisters by Carolyn Dunn (Anishinaabe Theatre Exchange, MI), Suzy Storck by Magali Mougel (PEN World Voices Int’l Fest, NY), Ybor City, The Musical by Anita Gonzalez and Dan Furman (PUNTO Space, NY), The Long Walk by Fabrizio Sinisi (Segal Center, NY), A Notebook for Winter by Armondo Pirozzi Segal (Segal Center, NY), The Snow Maiden of Appalachia by Andrew Austin (Tidewater Opera Initiative, VA), Training: The Musical by Joe Schermann (Elements Theatre Collective, CA), Yet UnNamed by Devising Collective (Columbia University, NY), These Mistakes by Samantha Cooper (Schapiro Theatre, NY), Ngizobona by Devising Collective (UKZN, Durban, South Africa), and Propaganda by DETEXT (Museum of Art and Design, NY). Sara holds an MFA in Theatre Directing from Columbia University.


Jason Glick as Leo Julie Fishell as Helene Lana Spring as Eva Harry Davis as Ben

Nav Singh Kahlon as Max Ethan Kim as Dr. Zhao Lucas Cheng as Song Li Lucy Ma as Mei

Jason Glick, Julie Fishell, Lana Spring, Harry Davis
Navnoor Singh Kahlon, Ethan Kim, Lucas Cheng, Lucy Ma


Production Team                                  

  • Written by Linda Alper
  • Director: Sara Rademacher
  • Scenic Designer: Greg Mitchell
  • Projections Designer: Yee Eun Nam
  • Costume Designer: Ann Bruice
  • Lighting Designer: Vickie Scott
  • Sound Designer: Melanie Chen Cole
  • Dramaturg: Janine Leano
  • Stage Manager: Trinity Wicklund
  • Assistant Director: Frances Sun
  • Chinese Culture Consultant: Martin Wong
  • Dialect Coach: Nicole Cowans
  • Intimacy Staging Consultant: Heath Pennington


  • Lucas Cheng
  • Harry Davis
  • Julie Fishell
  • Jason Glick
  • Navnoor Singh Kahlon
  • Ethan Kim
  • Lucy Ma
  • Lana Spring

Harry Davis as Ben; Lana Spring as Eva from SHANGHAI
Harry Davis as Ben and Lana Spring as Eva


Shanghai is a full production... on Zoom!
(May 17, 2021 by Charles Donelan)

Jim Logan writes about "Life in Wartime" in The UCSB Current
(May 18, 2021) 

Noozhawk covers Shanghai news release!
(May 18, 2021)

"Life in Wartime" in the Santa Barbara Newspress
(May 19, 2021 by Marilyn McMahon)

Read about Shanghai on