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June 12, 2021

Buddhist Temple presents virtual theater production May 22

WATSONVILLE—On May 22 the Watsonville Buddhist Temple will virtually present Hiroshi Kashiwagi’s two-act play “The Betrayed.” 

“The Betrayed” centers around a couple living at the Japanese-American concentration camp near Tule Lake, California in the 1940s. They become at odds when the controversial Loyalty Oath is put forward.

Temple Rev. Jay Shinseki said the timing of the fundraiser is perfect. May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, and is also the anniversary of when the Tule Lake camp opened in 1941.

Shinseki said the play is also important as hate crimes against the AAPI community have spiked during the pandemic.

“Today we find, in the midst of some terrible hate crimes and prejudices… [that it] is causing a divisive world,” he said. “It happened back then, it’s happening now. The play is about healing those wounds… [and] hopefully breaking down those divisions that are still felt today.”

Shinseki, whose own family was at Tule Lake, says he is looking forward to the event to better understand what people went through during that time. He hopes the local community will get the word out about the play.

“I would like people to tell their friends and family about this event,” he said. “I’m sure they’ll enjoy and get a lot out of it. We invite everyone to join us.”

Following “The Betrayed” will be a discussion with Kashiwagi’s son, Soji Kashiwagi and Dr. Satsuki Ina. Donations are $25 per person, or $50 per household. Ticket holders will receive an email with a link to the play 48 hours prior to showing. 

Order tickets online at Eventbrite.

Johanna Miller
Reporter Johanna Miller grew up in Watsonville, attending local public schools and Cabrillo College before transferring to Pacific University Oregon to study Literature. She covers arts and culture, business and agriculture.

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