In The World of Extreme Happiness Joe Mei plays Ming-Ming, a young factory worker determined to get ahead in life. Ming-Ming is a devoted follower of an energetic self-help guru who teaches his students to build their confidence with a “personal power position.” Below, Mei reveals how her character’s enthusiasm is rubbing off on her, and how she loves everything from cupcakes to superheroes. Check out her answers to our backstage questionnaire below!
|(L to R) Jo Mei (Ming-Ming) and Jennifer Lim (Sunny) in the world-premiere production of The World of Extreme Happiness by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig.
1. Place of birth and/or hometown:
I was born in Beijing, China and grew up in Providence, RI.
2. Current obsession (music, TV show, book etc.):
Do red velvet cupcakes count? I also have a deep love of the superhero genre.
3. Favorite Chicago spot (newly discovered or old favorite):
This is my first extended stay in Chicago, and I've definitely had more than my share of Do-Rite Donuts.
4. What drew you to The World of Extreme Happiness?
I love how ambitious this play is. It challenges the audience to step outside of their comfort zone and step into an entirely different way of life. Theater has the power to transport it's audiences and this play certainly does that. Plus I get to create 3 totally original characters. How could I pass that up?!
5. What would/does your power pose look like?
My character Ming Ming's power position is pretty awesome. I'm totally adapting it as my own. I shall call it The Anime Superhero Girlpower Pose.
6. If you could tell an audience member one thing before seeing The World of Extreme Happiness, what would it be?
Feel free to laugh. This play is as funny as it is tragic. Strap in for a roller-coaster ride through China.
Now through Oct 12, 2014
Written by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig
Directed by Eric Ting