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Classical play 'Art' to be staged in Beijing

By Li Ping | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-05-09 14:03

In the play of Art, French middle class man Serge spent 100,000 euros ($110,000) on a painting with nothing more than a blank white canvas and caused a stir among his friends. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

French playwright Yasmina Reza's Tony award-winning comedy Art has been a worldwide hit for the past 20 years. As one of the most successful theatrical productions of the 21st century, it has taken over $250 million at the global box office. Now, Beijing stage lovers will have the opportunity to watch the classical hit - played in English, with Chinese subtitles - at the Penghao Theater, in Beijing's hutong area, from May 11 to 14.

The storyline of the play follows the friendship of three middle-aged, middle class French men, Serge, Marc and Yvan, whose friendship deteriorates due to Serge's exorbitant spending, after buying a 100,000 euros ($110,000) painting, which was nothing more than a blank white canvas.

The painting prompted quarrels among the trio and challenged their friendship, which turned out to be quite fragile.

Art is originally a French-language play, premiered in 1994. It opened in London in 1996 in Christopher Hampton's translation and gained international fame afterwards.

The Yasmina Reza play resonated with a large amount of audience members across the globe, as a result of a series of unresolved questions about the value of modern art. The play also explored the connection between taste and friendship, and the complicated and ever-changing nature of friendship.

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