(Yicai Global) May 15 -- Peony Pavilion, perhaps the most famous Kunqu opera in China, is set to debut as the opening repertoire at the 14th Chekhov International Theater Festival, with China being the main guest of the event this year. 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the China Russia diplomatic relations.
Peony Pavilion, a treasure in the history of Kunqu Opera in the official brochure of the 2019 Chekhov International Theatre Festival
At this year's theatre festival, Garden Kunqu Peony Pavilion, starring "Prince of Kunqu" Zhang Jun, sets the scene in the Botanic Garden (Apothecary's Garden) of the State University of Moscow. Making the garden a live stage brings the play to life and allows audience to relive a timeless Chinese love story created around the same time as Romeo and Juliet.
Falling asleep in her family garden, Du Liniang, the heroine dreams of meeting a handsome young scholar, Liu Mengmei and falls in love with him under a plum tree by the side of a Peony Pavilion.
It is the first time that Zhang Jun brings Garden Kunqu Peony Pavilion to Moscow, as the fourth stop of its world tour following performances in Château de Saint-Cloud in Paris, the Saxony State Museum in Dresden, Germany, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Zhang Jun said: "This time we gather in Moscow, bringing greetings from Shanghai. Garden Kunqu opera has become a face of Shanghai's rich culture and urban lifestyle. It has been a honour for me to be able to contribute to the cultural exchanges between Shanghai and Moscow, China and Russia, and to bring the art of Kunqu to the world."
Garden Kunqu Peony Pavilion, starring "Prince of Kunqu" Zhang Jun, sets the scene in the Botanic Garden (Apothecary's Garden) of the State University of Moscow.
Originally written by playwriter Tang Xianzu in the 16th century, Peony Pavilion has touched the hearts of many generations through the love story that takes place in a garden. In 2010, Zhang Jun and the internationally renowned composer Tan Dun jointly created the Garden Kunqu Peony Pavilion, staging the drama in a real-life garden named Zhu Jiajiao on the outskirts of Shanghai. The production played to sold-out crowds for 230 shows in the past 10 years. Zhang likens Kunqu opera to a tree: "The garden Kunqu Peony Pavilion puts down its roots in the rich soil of traditional Chinese culture and it stretches above, flourishing with its wonders reaching around the world."
Peony Pavilion, a classic love story of China in twists and turns takes the audience out of the depression with a happy ending.
The performance of Garden Kunqu Peony Pavilion at the 14th Chekhov International Theatre Festival has opened a new window to the world for China, in particular for Shanghai. The opera is the main elements of Shanghai's city image promotional campaign -- "Amazing Shanghai", which displays the city as a global hub for culture, trade and finance.