The Hong Kong Young Talent Cantonese Opera Troupe will soon perform a new Cantonese opera titled "A Dream in Fantasia". The new production, which is adapted from Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream", is directed by Lee Lung and written by Lai Yiu-wai, and invites the audience to enter a fantastic dreamland.
Childhood friends Yuwen Piaopiao and Xiahou Jun are betrothed to each other, but Yuwen's father wants her to marry Linghu Feng. She would rather die than obey, and wants to elope with Xiahou. She lets her close friend Murong Xiangxiang in on her plans, but Murong is in love with Linghu. In order to please Linghu, Murong tells him their secret, which sends him in search of Yuwen and Xiahou.
Crown Prince Gongyang and his Princess Consort are on their way to attend the Queen of Xuanyuan's birthday celebrations. He is displeased to see the princess spending most of her time in the company of Yuetong, leaving him frustratingly alone. The forest fairy of Fantasia Land suggests to the prince that he should play a trick on the princess using a special flower potion – one small drop on the eyelids will make the victim fall in love with the first thing that comes into sight upon waking. Now the prince sees how Linghu jilts Murong in the woods. Urged on by a sense of justice, he orders the forest fairy to play a trick on him as well. However, the fairy wrongly administers the potion to Xiahou who, upon waking and seeing Murong, professes his love for her. Later Linghu is also given the potion. So when Yuwen arrives, there is chaos in the air as the four of them fight and quarrel.
Shangguan Chan leads the villagers to go and perform for the queen on her birthday. They have also arrived in Fantasia Land. The forest fairy plays a trick on them and puts a donkey's head on Zhuge Zi's body. When the princess wakes and sees him, she falls madly in love with him, which the prince witnesses with great merriment. When dawn comes, the prince orders all spells to be broken. When everyone wakes up, they wonder whether what happened was a dream or real. But anyway, it's over, and they can laugh it off. Together they go their merry ways to celebrate the queen's birthday.
The cast for the production includes Lam Tin-yau, Cheng Nga-kei, Lai Yiu-wai, Lam Tsz-ching, Yuen Sin-ting, Hong Wah, Doris Kwan, Wong Kit-ching, Wong Po-hyun and guest performers Chan Hung-chun and Wai Chun-long.
"A Dream in Fantasia" is presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department. It will be held at 7.30pm on December 27 (Thursday) at the Theatre, Sai Wan Ho Civic Centre, and 7.30pm on January 12, 2013 (Saturday) at the Auditorium, North District Town Hall. The lyrics and dialogue will be supplemented with Chinese surtitles only. Tickets ranging from $100 to $200 are now available at URBTIX outlets, on the Internet and by telephone credit card booking. Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities and their minders, 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.)
For programme enquiries, please call 2268 7325 or visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/CE/CulturalService/Programme/en/chinese_opera/program_101.html. Ticketing enquiries can be made on 2734 9009 and telephone credit card bookings on 2111 5999. Tickets can also be booked online at www.urbtix.hk.
Ends/Monday, November 19, 2012