University News
For Immediate Release: 
Feb 25 2007

CONTACT: Nancy Ellison, Director, Multicultural Affairs
1-304-384-6086, nellison@concord.edu
www.concord.edu

“Opera” Like You’ve Never Seen, Thursday, March 1 at CU

Athens, W.Va. – New York based theater company, StrangeCandy, will be performing their bilingual adaptations of Beijing opera Tales from the Beijing Opera in the Main Theater of the Alexander Fine Arts Center on Thursday, March 1, 2007, at 8 p.m. and Friday, March 2, 2007, at 9:30 a.m.

Tales from the Beijing Opera is an opportunity to see one of the world’s most visually spectacular theater forms presented in English and Chinese by veteran Chinese actors. The breathtaking and sometimes humorous choreography is a mixture of mime, dance, acrobatics and singing. The stunningly elaborate costumes and colorful makeup make it fun for the whole family.

Plays are drawn from Chinese mythology and history and provide a fascinating window into another country’s cultural life and humor. The combination of English and Chinese dialogue allows viewers to hear the cadence of the text in its original while also making the plays easily understandable to non-Chinese speakers.

StrangeCandy was founded in 1999 by Merrianne Moore, a graduate of University of California, Los Angeles, and New York University. Merrianne spent seven years in China studying Beijing opera before founding StrangeCandy with a gifted group of Chinese performers living in the United States.

Actor Dong Xie began performing professionally at the age of nine. Although trained to play the warrior characters, Dong Xie is equally at home in the role of the clown, as you will see in his performance of the old boatman in Autumn River. Before joining StrangeCandy, Dong Xie came to the U.S. to perform with the Lincoln Center’s production of Peony Pavilion.

Hui Zhang, a graduate of the Suzhou Beijing Opera School, performs the naughty Monkey King with the kung fu skills of a banished god to the delight of college audiences all over the country.

Musician Jirong Tang, former lead drummer for the Chinese National Beijing Opera Company, has performed all over the world and arranged music for Peony Pavilion, the acclaimed Zhang Yimou film, Farewell My Concubine, and numerous international touring productions for the Chinese National Company, among others.

StrangeCandy is dedicated to bringing Chinese and American theater artists together to produce theater and conduct workshops that promote cultural exchange and artistic exploration.

Both performances are free to the public.

-CU-

CONCORD UNIVERSITY NOTES: Persons with disabilities should contact Nancy Ellison, 1-304-384-6086 or 1-800-344-6679, extension 6086 if special assistance or help is required for access to an event scheduled by the University on campus.

PO BOX 1000, VERMILLION ST., ATHENS, WV 24712.