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Selected Theater Reviews

For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide / When the Rainbow Is Enuf (2019)

 

Ben Brantley, The New York Times, Oct 22, 2019

… what’s most striking about this incarnation, which is choreographed by Camille A. Brown, is its pervasive sense of women talking to — and being deeply invested in — one another, as if in an eternal support group. It’s a sensibility that starts with its circular stage (Myung Hee Cho did the set…), which seems to exert a centripetal force, repeatedly pulling the performers into a single huddle.

Helen Shaw, New York Magazine, Oct 22, 2019  

… thanks to Gardiner’s intimate staging, it is a revival-as-service, a quasi-religious sharing circle gathered in the Big Tent. The audience is close, some of it even onstage: Set designer Myung Hee Cho turns the room into a backroom club, mirrors on the walls and groovy disco balls above. (In a charming moment just before the show begins, the disco balls swoop up into the ceiling, just as the chandeliers do at the Metropolitan Opera.) Each performer, identified only by the color of her dress, trades position as priestess and congregation; when one speaks, the others mainly stay onstage, sitting and watching, affirming one another…

Black Super Hero Magic Mama (2019)

 

Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times, March 17, 2019

The staging revolves around Tramarion’s bedroom, which is poetically right, though it sets up logistical challenges. Myung Hee Cho’s straightforward set is theatrically enhanced with projections by Yee Eun Nam. A backdrop showing the neighborhood rooftops lends a storybook ambience that is just right for a play that makes critical references to “Harry Potter” and other fantasy adventure fictions.

 

Jordan Riefe, Hollywood Reporter, March 14, 2019

The play's early scenes between Sabrina and Tramarion ring with authenticity as she corrects the boy’s colloquialisms, quizzes him for an upcoming contest on black history and becomes way more engaged than he is in the Harry Potter book she reads him at bedtime. The action plays out with genuine warmth and a routine rapport seemingly established over years on set designer Myung Hee Cho's practical raised bedroom, including a desk, bed and chair downstage from projection designer Yee Eun Nam's dreary backdrop of Chicago’s South Side.  

In The Body of the World (2018)

 

Jesse Green, The New York Times, February 6, 2018

--- Ms. Paulus — who staged the play’s 2016 premiere at the American Repertory Theater — keeps the production spare, with little more than a divan, a chair, some projections (by Finn Ross) and sound effects (by M. L. Dogg and Sam Lerner) to support the monologue. All the more lovely, then, is the scenic coup prepared by the designer Myung Hee Cho, which leaves the audience with a vision of what it can mean not merely to survive but to flourish.

 

Frank Rizzo, Variety, February 6, 2018

It’s a journey that leads not just to a healthy end — this hip earth mother recovers — but an uplifting one. For the finale, there’s a coup de theatre — heightened by Myung Her Cho’s set, Jen Schriever’s lighting, M. L. Dogg and Sam Lerner’s sound and Finn Ross’ projections — that envisions a vibrant, verdant and welcoming life ahead, not only for Ensler but perhaps for the planet too.

 

Trojan Women (2018)

 

Nabilah Said, Exeunt Magazine, June 3, 2018

The production is well-served by the cavernous set, with its golden yellow steps and womb-like centre stage entrance, designed by Myung Hee Cho. It embodies the gradual elevation of the women – they do not cower but rise up against their captors. There are also projections – of galaxies, gushing water, fire – which are designed to bring some settings to life, but with the women themselves embodying the very height of rage, turmoil, madness and vengeance, it’s not entirely convincing that these are necessary.

 

Max Arian, De Groene Amsterdammer, May 9 2018

… Ong Keng Sen a principle cross-border person, not only between countries and continents but also between genres, classical and contemporary, serious and pop, Asian and European, specific and universal. He has made a beautiful performance of his Trojan Women, partly due to the play of the women, the monumental backdrop of Myung Hee Cho.

The Thieving Magpie (2016)

 

Heidi Waleson, The Wall Street Journal, August 16, 2016

Mr. Kazaras and designer Myung Hee Cho created a deliciously bird-themed show, which lightened that sense of impending doom. The larcenous, non-singing Magpie (choreographer Meg Gillentine, with a shock of blue hair and an uncannily birdlike gait) was in evidence throughout, so the audience knew who was responsible, even if the characters didn’t.

With her agile coloratura and white dress, Rachele Gilmore was sweet and dove-like as the put-upon heroine. The lecherous Mayor (Musa Ngqungwana, a powerful bass-baritone), who has designs on Ninetta, strutted and loomed like a vulture in a dark red coat; Ninetta’s friend Pippo (the mellifluous mezzoAllegra De Vita) had the yellow plumage of tropical bird, and the Magistrate and jury who condemn Ninetta resembled a group of owls, shaking their feathers in time to the music. Ms. Cho’s attractive set used Art Nouveau-style patterns of branches to create a nest, a cage, and a jail, prettily lit by Mr. McCullough. 

 

Marriage of Figaro (2016)

 

Anne Midgette, The Washinton Post, September 23, 2016

“It has a young, eager cast and a lighthearted approach, underlined by vividly colored, deliberately clashing costumes (by Myung Hee Cho) against a backdrop of muted, slate-y blue (sets: Benoit Dugardyn). It’s pretty, verging on the saccharine.”

Stuck Elevator (2013)

 

Robert Hurwitt, San Francisco Chronicle, April 17, 2013

“The other half, which occupies more stage time, takes place within Guang's mind as four versatile actors embody his memories, fears, fantasies and nightmares in the ever-more fanciful costumes of Myung Hee Cho.”

 

Miss Julie (2013)

 

Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times, May 2, 2013

“At the start of the play, "Let's Misbehave" tinkles portentously from a radio in the glamorously spacious kitchen (fetchingly designed by Myung Hee Cho). Kristine (Laura Heisler), the cook who speaks in what might be an old Hollywood version of an Irish American brogue, is busy preparing some specialty dog food for her mistress' bitch.”

Emotional Creature (2012)

Georgia Rowe, San Francisco Examiner, June 28, 2012

“Myung Hee Cho’s set combines three round platforms with a long, curving screen displaying photos, backdrops, slogans and statistics… Her costumes add to the show’s hip vibe.”

 

Robert Hurwitt, San Francisco Chronicle, June 24, 2012

“Bonney makes the different elements flow together nicely on Myung Hee Cho's set of rounded platforms all

feminine curves…”

 

The Other Place (2012)

Robert Hurwitt, San Francisco Chronicle, September 21, 2012

“It's a grippingly told tale as staged by Loretta Greco to open her fifth season as the Magic's producing artistic director. Every element falls perfectly into place, from the transformative shifting realities of Myung Hee Cho's set, Hana Sooyeon Kim's video design and Brandon Wolcott's hauntingly domestic sound effects to the pinpoint precision of the performances within White's fractured-scene format.”

Jean Schiffman, San Francisco Examiner, September 23, 2012

“Myung Hee Cho’s tidy set, which instantaneously turns into “the other place” (a remembered seaside cottage on Cape Cod) in full view of the audience; Brandon Wolcott’s subtle sound score; and Eric Southern’s lighting design boost a production that captures both heart and mind.”

 

The National Broadway Company (2012)

Adeline Chia, The Straits Times, October 15, 2012

“He cleared out the Esplanade Theatre stage, leaving it completely naked for the lighting designer Scott Zielinski and scenic designer Myung Hee Cho to work their magic.”

 

Emotional Creature (2012)

The Washington Post, November 12, 2012

“Bright scenic design and costumes by Myung Hee Cho, and an array of projections by Shawn Sagady, colorfully reflect Ensler’s message of resistance, empowerment and resilience.”

The Magic Flute (2011)

Ken Winters, The Globe and Mail, Published Jan 31, 2011

“The production shows stage director Diane Paulus, conductor Johannes Debus and set and costume designer Myung Hee Cho very much of the same mind. They seem to have agreed to keep the action lively but simple, the design imaginative but consistent with the incorporeality of fairy tale. The piece is not grand opera (all music), but singspiel, the German term for a kind of higher-toned operetta (musical numbers with spoken dialogue).”

“There were . . . many ingenious strokes in Myung Hee Cho’s designs. The most brilliant was placing the whole first act on a small proscenium stage centred in a lavish 18th-century-estate garden, so that it comes across as a play within a play, celebrating the name day of the lovely young Pamina, precious daughter of the wealthy household.”

 

John Terauds, The Toronto Star, Published Jan 30, 2011

"Paulus and American designer Myung Hee Cho have set the story up as a play being put on in an aristocratic backyard, framing the action initially with a small, mock 18th-century stage.”

"In Act II, where our heroes face a series of trials at the hands of high priest Sarastro, the stage becomes a maze of giant, moving boxwood hedges, all simply lit by Scott Zielinski.”

Alison Moritz, Opera Today, Feb 15, 2011

“Paulus’ new context for the opera finally allowed for a female chorus contingent that didn’t seem totally superfluous to the action. The production concept was not as fully realized in the second half, but the significant strengths of Act I and the pure charm throughout (enhanced at every turn by set and costume designer Myung Hee Cho) made the production a joy to behold.”

 

Extraordinary Chambers (2011)

Jonas Schwartz, Theater Mania, June 3, 2011

“Director Pam MacKinnon keeps the audience interested while leaving them unsure of the characters' intentions. The story unfolds at a definite pace, getting to the heart of issues quickly. Using Myung Hee Cho's tourist hotel set, she deftly contrasts the luxuries of a vacation room with the cold business at hand.”

 

Bob Verini, VARIETY, June 5, 2011

“Production values contribute to the emotional impact. With a few paneling and furniture shifts, Myung Hee Cho's set controls our awareness of and reactions to the world outside, in collaboration with delicate variations in Lap Chi Chu's lighting.”

Futura (2010)

Dany Margolies, Backstage.com, October 18, 2010

“Set designer Myung Hee Cho uses rotating backdrops for the lecture hall screen, seedy kitchen, and floor-to-ceiling library—of books...”

 

Harvey Perr, Stage and Cinema, Published October 30, 2010

“… Jessica Kubzansky’s direction is smart and unerring, that the design elements are simple, pithy and perfectly in tune with the demands of the play … above all, the magnificent set by Myung Hee Cho, which goes from a lecture hall to a nasty kitchen in an abandoned house on the outskirts of some urban hell to a bunker this reviewer is loath to describe because, like the play itself, it should take one by surprise...”

 

F. Kathleen Foley, Los Angeles Times, October 14, 2010

“Myung Hee Cho’s set design, beautifully lighted by Jaymi Lee Smith, starts off with a bare stage and ends with a subterranean repository that is magnificent.”

 

 

 

SCENIC | COSTUME DESIGN