A “play within a play” directed by Tang Shu-wing
Yuen Siu-fai’s life-long dream of adapting Hemingway’s classic into Cantonese opera
A young woman receives a gift from her estranged grandfather after his passing. She discovers that he had always wanted to adapt Ernest Hemingway's masterpiece, The Old Man and the Sea, into a Cantonese opera but never had the chance. In her reverie, she fulfils his lifelong dream. As she gets to know more about him, her journey of self-discovery begins…
In collaboration with theatre master Tang Shu-wing, Cantonese opera virtuoso Yuen Siu-fai realises his dream to adapt Hemingway’s novel, thus marking the pinnacle of Yuen’s seven-decade career. Utilising the minimalist aesthetics that define the Chinese opera tradition, Yuen pens a new libretto and commands a stripped-down stage setting with his artistic finesse and prowess. Apart from playing the title role in the centrepiece—a mini-monodrama—Yuen will be joined by young actress Cassandra Tang in a contemporary theatre setting that envelops a play within a play.
In an attempt to identify theatre’s universal roots, Tang audaciously combines physical theatre, Chinese classical art, abstract expressionism, stream-of-consciousness monologues, installation art and stage technology into an amalgamated whole. The production offers authenticity and humanity as a cure for superficiality and deceitfulness that plague the stage and the real world, striving to rekindle the beauty of Eastern and Western art.