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Sichuan theatre group to mix modern "Chuanju" with traditional opera

Sichuan Province Sichuan Theater will bring new excitement to Hong Kong audiences with a mixture of modern "chuanju" and traditional stagecraft.

The group's programme includes award-winning productions, "The Scholar from Bashan" and "Changing Face", as well as excerpts from opera.

"Changing Face" is a story set in Sichuan at the turn of the 20th Century. The story evolves around a single character, tracing his emotional experiences in a dramatic presentation that incorporates the best of classical opera and modern Sichuan opera. The production has won for the company the coveted China Arts Festival Grand Award and the Wenhua Award.

"The Scholar from Bashan" is based on the Dongxiang Massacre in Sichuan, which took place in the 19th Century. The story is conveyed with a tragic-comic treatment, which is a characteristic unique to the Sichuan people. The production won the Top Honours Award at the China Theatre Festival and numerous awards in individual categories.

Both productions were written by Wei Minglun, a famous dramatist in China known for his unorthodox screenplays and scripts. He is well known in contemporary Sichuan opera and a winner of many awards for his plays and screenplays. He rose to international fame with "The Four Maidens" and "The Scholar from Bashan". His adaptation of the screenplay that he wrote for the film, "Changing Face" (also known as "The King of Masks") by turning the happy ending into a tragic one for the Sichuan opera production, has won wide critical acclaim.

Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, the programme will be staged next month at the Auditorium, Kwai Tsing Theatre. Details are as follows:

January 28 (Friday) "The Scholar from Bashan"
January 29 (Saturday) "Changing Face"
January 30 (Sunday) Excerpts from the Opera

All performances will start at 7.30pm. Tickets priced at $300, $220 and $100 are now available at all URBTIX outlets. Half-price concessions will be granted to senior citizens, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients. For details of group booking discount schemes, please refer to the programme leaflet.

For programme enquiries, call 2268 7323; for ticketing enquiries and reservations, call 2734 9009; for credit card telephone bookings, call 2111 5999; for internet bookings, visit ; for more information, visit .

Ends/Friday, December 10, 2004
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