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Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: ‘Miss Saigon’ appearance in Appleton includes community events

Critic At Large

Fox Cities Performing Arts Center

Scene from touring production of “Miss Saigon.” (Matthew Murphy)


Fox Cities Performing Arts Center will host eight performances of the touring production of “Miss Saigon” next week.

The center also has fostered three events as part of its Community Engagement offerings.

Available at is a study guide on the production and background on the Vietnam War.

Performances of the musical are at 8 p.m. Feb. 18; 7:30 p.m. Feb. 19-21; 2 and 7:30 p.m. Feb. 22; and 1 and 6:30 p.m. Feb. 23. Info:

According to the website: This is a new production of the story of young Vietnamese woman named Kim. In a bar run by a notorious character called The Engineer, Kim meets an American G.I. just before the fall of Saigon.

Series logo.

Additionally, three free programs called Community Conversations are offered in association with the run of the show. According to the center, “These conversations are designed to help the community better understand the culture and time period in which the musical takes place.” The schedule:

+ “Asian Refugee & Immigrant Stories with ‘Miss Saigon’,” Feb. 17, Kimberly-Clark Theater of Fox Cities Performing Arts Center. Doors open at 5 p.m., event from 5:30-6:30 p.m.

Two visiting cast members from “Miss Saigon” recount their family experiences as children of Vietnamese refugees and immigrants. Their personal narratives will offer insight into the world and point in history when “Miss Saigon” takes place.

+ “Soldiers’ Perspectives on the Vietnam War,” Feb. 19, Appleton Public Library, 225 N. Oneida St., Appleton. Book presentation, “Fly Until You Die,” 4-5 p.m. Panel discussion with veterans, 5-6:30 p.m.

A discussion led by Dr. Chia Youyee Vang is designed to learn more about soldiers’ perspectives of the Vietnam War. As author of “Fly Until You Die,” an oral history of the Hmong pilots in the Vietnam War, Dr. Vang will discuss the multiple perspectives she has heard through her research and talk with diverse local veterans about their similar and different experiences from this point in history, represented throughout the production of “Miss Saigon.”

+ “Asian Identity, Culture and Gender Dynamics,” Feb. 22, Long Cheng Market, 1800 S. Lawe St., Appleton.

Led by a panel of community members, the discussion is about the Asian community, its struggles, successes and challenging stereotypes throughout Northeastern Wisconsin and beyond. Inspired by “Miss Saigon,” moderator Dr. Pam Her will provide a thoughtful examination comparing and contrasting personal experiences to the show’s themes.

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