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Production is child's play

By Cheng Yuezhu | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2023-03-08 08:10

Zhao Cong [Photo provided to China Daily]

It marks the first collaboration of QFun Theater and the youth folk music ensemble affiliated with the China National Traditional Orchestra.

Young instrumentalists from the folk ensemble performed live during the play with erhu (a two-stringed bowed musical instrument), pipa (a four-string plucked lute) and drums that reenact the ambiance of ancient China.

Following this collaboration, the orchestra and QFun Theater created a youth theater troupe affiliated with the orchestra, aiming to integrate traditional music with theater, and tell Chinese stories from the perspective of children and teenagers.

Zhao Cong, head of the orchestra, says members of the folk ensemble beamed with joy when they dressed in futurist outfits and performed onstage.

"It's extraordinary that children are inspired to transform our ancient classics into contemporary narratives, and promote the stories," Zhao says.

At the youth theater troupe's launch ceremony in Beijing on Feb 19, themed "bringing Chinese stories to the world", the troupe's new productions and tour plans for the year were announced.

The young members of the newly established theater troupe performed excerpts from Compendium of Materia Medica at the event, as well as poetry recital of A Spring Morning and choir song Looking for the Moon.

"Art can help children open up their imagination, and I hope there will be a place where children's creativity can be inspired and exercised. Therefore, we jointly established this youth theater troupe," says Zhao.

"In the past, our orchestra played folk songs and Chinese classical music. Now, we want to tell Chinese stories to the world."

The new troupe plans to take the play Compendium of Materia Medica on a tour to Turkmenistan, France and the United Kingdom, as well as major cities in China this year. The troupe's new original play The Book of Odes, incorporating traditional music, acrobatics and magic tricks, will also be produced this year.



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