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Acclaimed theatre group to perform "The Message"

     Theatre Space will perform the tense cliffhanger "The Message" in January. Full of mystery, intrigue and suspense, this production offers an unforgettable theatre experience.

     The play is adapted from Mai Jia's novel of the same name. Dubbed the "Dan Brown of China", Mai's story involves internal strife and foreign aggression, psychological warfare and an undercover operation.

     The year is 1941. China is under a tripartite division of power between Wang Jingwei's Nationalist Government in Nanjing, Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalist Government in Chongqing, and Mao Zedong's base in the area bordering the three provinces of Shaanxi, Gansu and Ningxia. All three operate independently from one another in a precarious quest for power. In Hangzhou, which is under Japanese rule, the puppet regime's intelligence unit detects a communist spy codenamed "Old Chap" among their ranks. So they create fake intelligence to lure the spy out. One night, four people from the intelligence unit are taken secretly to a villa named "Qiu Zhuang". One of them is "Old Chap". Over a period of four days a mental tug-of-war is played out, with all four having to contend with doubt and anxiety.

     Among the web of intertwined clues, there are cryptic codes to be broken and life-and-death choices to make. Who will come out as the final winner in this contest of willpower and cunning?

     The play is directed by Dominic Cheung and Jacob Yu, and written by Li Rong and Zhao Lian. Main castings include Annie Ling, Anna Ieong, Luther Fung, Ben So, Anson Lam and Andy Tang.

     Regarded as the leading writer of spy thrillers in Chinese, Mai Jia has written works including "Decoded", "Covert Operations" and "The Message", which won him numerous awards. "The Message" was also adapted for film, TV series and drama, each of which received an enthusiastic response.

     "The Message" by Theatre Space (performed in Cantonese), presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, will be staged at 8pm, January 12 to 14, 2012 (Thursday to Saturday); and at 3pm, January 14 and 15, 2012 (Saturday and Sunday) at the Theatre, Sai Wan Ho Civic Centre. Tickets priced at $180 and $120 are now available at all URBTIX outlets, on Internet and by credit card telephone booking. Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities and the minder, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) recipients. (Limited tickets for full-time students and CSSA recipients are available on a first-come, first-served basis.) Please refer to programme leaflet for detail of group booking discount.

     For programme enquiries, please call 2268 7325, or visit For ticketing enquiries, please call 2734 9009. For credit card telephone bookings, please call 2111 5999. Internet bookings are available at

Ends/Thursday, December 1, 2011


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