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Award-winning musical to hit Shanghai

By ZHANG KUN in Shanghai | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-07-21 00:17

The Producer, a Broadway musical that has won 12 Tony Awards, will celebrate its China premiere at Shanghai Culture Square on Nov 1, followed by a three-month tour comprising 90 shows in 10 Chinese cities.

Produced by Sino-US joint venture SIIC Nederlander Culture Development, the show is based on a film of the same title by Mel Brooks in 1968 that tells of how a theater producer and an accountant who hatch a plot to get rich by overselling interests in a bad show which eventually turns out to be a huge success.

The musical premiered on Broadway in 2001 and won a record-breaking 12 Tony Awards that year. It has since toured the world and spawned a musical film version that was released in 2005.

Bob Nederlander, producer of the show and president of Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment (NWE), one of the world's largest theater owners and musical producers, said that Shanghai has "very sophisticated audiences for musical" and that there has been overwhelming market enthusiasm for Broadway productions across China.

SIIC Nederlander Culture Development is a joint venture between Shanghai Industrial Investment Co (SIIC) and NWE, a family business of three generations spanning more than 100 years. NWE manages theaters and presents Broadway productions in emerging markets.

Nederlander added that the company will introduce one or more Broadway shows to China every year and bring an "authentic Broadway experience to Chinese audiences". The company will also be creating original Chinese productions for global audiences.

There are already a number of projects being worked on, though he declined to elaborate on the content.

The joint venture is also building a new theater in the northern Bund area in Shanghai. The SIIC Center Theater will be part of a new development by the SIIC that includes office buildings and malls. The 2,000-seat theater is scheduled for completion in 2021.

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