Nothing is the Same
© 2004

Nothing Is The Same is the best kind of Theater For Young Audience; i.e., theater for audiences of all ages, not to mention races, religions, nationalities, ethnicities, and more. -- Steven Stanley StageScene LA

NITS planesNITS George & Bobi
photos by Brad Goda from the Honolulu Theatre for Youth production

December 7, 1941. Four 11-year-olds, George, Mits, Daniel and Bobi, live on the island of O`ahu. They play marbles and peewee, go to school and church, swim in the river and at the beach. Japanese planes, on their way to Pearl Harbor, bomb their small town. Hawaii, like the rest of America, is at war. Their games are interrupted, school is stopped, they must help their parents work, and they learn to wear gas masks and recognize a Japanese enemy. What does it mean that some of their neighbors, including Mits, are of Japanese descent? Are they the enemy? This comic drama traces what happens to friendship when it is challenged.

A script brimming with moments of knowing humor, unexpected terror and deep sadness. -- Derek Paiva, Honolulu Advertiser

NITS tiresNITS gasmasks

Developed through a two-year oral history project supported by TCG/Pew Charitable Trusts, this play was developed by Honolulu Theatre for Youth at the Kennedy Center New Visions/New Voices Festival and premiered with the assistance of the Arizona Memorial Museum Association. The production played for two seasons in Hawai`i before traveling to Seattle Children's Theatre for an additional three months.

Unbridled joy, laughter, tears, hope, tolerance and friendship make Nothing is the Same a perfect night out to the theatre for everyone in the family. -- Monique A. LeBleu

Click to see scene 1 of Nothing is the Same

This production's sound design by Babatunji Heath
featured a song by

Sierra Madre Playhouse production. Photo credit: John Dlugolecki

3 male, 1 female
full-length one-act
flexible set

Almost Shakespearean in nature, the young characters challenge the audience to keep us with their unfamiliar vocabulary as they chat in the church yard. By the second scene however, you find yourself picking up the broken fragments of sentences, drawing you in more emotionally to the lives of these children. Like a secret language that only you and them know. It elevates the performance in a surprising and beautifully simple way. While the use of the language is riveting, it is the theme of racism that underlines the script and drives the motion of the show. Portrayed with such simplicity and necessity for the survival for these characters, and to see it realized through these children as spectators is interesting and provoking. A device that makes each family choose friendship over the fear of being taken away. This grounded choice of self preservation rather than hatred is what makes their actions ring true in a modern society. There is an innocence that resonates at the heart of the children's actions throughout the piece. -- Angela Sonner, Estisarts

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