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July
Grand puppet theatre San Guo Zhi to be staged in August
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The great macho Chinese novel "Romance of the Three Kingdoms", is brought to life in Hong Kong this summer in the production "San Guo Zhi" with life-size puppets.

A collaboration between Japan's Kageboushi Theatre Company and the Chengdu Puppet Arts Theatre Company of China, the grand puppet theatre embodies the achievement of leading artists in puppetry, such as the prize-winning puppet artist Kihachiro Kawamoto, who have lent their talents to make this production a wondrous spectacle.

The puppets tell two famous chapters of "Romance of the Three Kingdoms". With excellent performing abilities and techniques of outstanding puppeteers from the two groups, the show will be an eye-opener for children and families.

"San Guo Zhi", first performed in Tokyo in 1990, has toured many countries with great success and has been seen by more than a million people over Japan and the world. The production has been awarded the Tokyo Municipal Award for Excellence in Children's Theatre, Japan Theatre Arts Award for Excellence and Tokyo People Theatre's Foundation's Award for Excellence. Its debut in Hong Kong, in Cantonese with English subtitles, is surely one of the calendar events not to be missed.

Established in 1978, Kageboushi Theatre Company is now a leading theatre company in shadow puppetry theatre and children's theatre in Japan. Since their establishment, the company has brought new ideas and innovative techniques to the theatre, and has produced energetic performances for audiences all over Japan. The company has also made a concerted effort to foster international cultural exchange, collaborating with artists from different countries.

The Chengdu Puppet Arts Theatre Company was founded in 1951, bringing together talented performers from various companies around the province. Besides carrying on the tradition, the company also seeks to improve itself by employing elements from other art forms and strives to enhance communication between performers and audiences. The company has toured Germany, Denmark, Thailand and other countries, receiving critical acclaims as "performances of first-rate quality" and "world-class puppet theatre".

"San Guo Zhi" is part of the programmes of the large-scale summer arts festival "International Arts Carnival. The show will be held at 7.30pm on August 20 and 21; 3pm on August 22, at the Sha Tin Town Hall Auditorium.

Tickets priced at $100, $140 and $180 are available at URBTIX outlets. Half-price tickets are available for full-time students, senior citizens, people with disabilities and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients. Package discounts of up to 15% are available for performing arts programmes/films.

Programme guides are available at URBTIX outlets or at the website http://www.hkiac.gov.hk

Telephone reservations can be made on 2734 9009 and credit card telephone bookings on 2111 5999. Internet bookings can be made at http://www.urbtix.gov.hk

For programme enquiries, call 2370 1044.

Ends/Thursday, July 22, 2004
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