Dream Of The Red Chamber
March 17-18，2017 at Grand Theatre, HK Cultural Centre
September 10 – 29, 2016 at San Francisco Opera
Composed by Bright Sheng
Libretto by David Henry Hwang
Conducted by George Manahan
Directed by Stan Lai
Costume and Set Design by Tim Yip
Adapted from the Novel by Cao Xuequin
This stunning co-production with the San Francisco Opera marks another milestone, which is bound to be a highlight of the Festival’s 45th anniversary.
Hong Kong is the ﬁrst Asian city to see this new opera after its premiere in San Francisco in September 2016.
Following his 2009 television adaptation of the same name, Tim Yip returns to the Chinese classic Dream of the Red Chamber in a new opera by renowned Chinese-American composer Bright Sheng (Madame Mao, The Silver River), conducted by American maestro George Manahan and staged by Taiwanese director Stan Lai for San Francisco Opera. Dream of the Red Chamber will feature an English-language libretto by the composer and Tony Award–winning Chinese-American playwright David Henry Hwang (M. Butterfly and Chinglish). The new work is based on the novel Dream of the Red Chamber by 18th-century Qing Dynasty writer Cao Xuequin.
Cao Xuequin’s novel, considered one of the four classics of Chinese fiction, is a detailed, episodic record of the lives of the members of the Jia Clan, whose good fortune is assured when one of its daughters becomes an imperial concubine, and then declines after her downfall. The story centers on a love triangle consisting of the main character, Bao Yu, his beautiful cousin Dai Yu, and his future wife, another beautiful cousin named Bao Chai.
©Cory Weaver/San Francisco Opera
Yip, the Oscar-winning designer of “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” seeks to infuse his visuals with emotion, spirituality and philosophy, and to find a new way to express tradition.
His notion of ‘new orientalism’ in films, dance, theatre and opera is about communicating eastern ideas and aesthetics to an international audience
Mr. Yip, the designer, has sought to create a dreamlike effect with the sets.
Those who already know “Dream of the Red Chamber” will be able to pick up on the subtle messages contained within its staging.
Although many of the people in the audience knew practi- cally nothing about this classic Chinese story before lining up to see the English-language opera Dream of the Red Chamber at the War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco, by the time the curtains were drawn, some were teary-eyed, while others just couldn’t stop talking about what they had just experienced.