Kokuro (true heart)

by Velina Hasu Houston

I played the unfortunate Yasako in the first production of this heartbreaking and beautiful play produced and directed by Tina Chen at the 28th Street Playhouse, New York City.

"Yasako, a young Japanese mother, struggles to adapt to the very foreign culture of the United States. Feeling hopeless after discovering her husband's infidelity, Yasako feels that oyako shinju, or parent-child suicide, is her only honorable escape from a world that does not accept her. Yasako truly believes that the outcome to such an act is not the finality of death but a chance for herself and her daughter to reunite with their family on a spiritual plane of existence. But Yasako survives the suicide attempt, and she learns that she is being tried for the murder of her daughter. We are challenged to question how much culture and spirituality shape our perception of truth and morality in Velina Hasu Houston's beautiful play."