Love, Love, Love, Love

(shanghai daily)
Updated: 2007-01-04 09:05

Love makes the world go round, or so they say, and during the New Year's period, four plays about love are being or will be staged in small, cozy theaters to warm the hearts of lovers and those who seek love, writes Michelle Zhang.


The New Year's period is always the peak season for the theater, especially the small ones. On a chilly winter night, there's no place more romantic than a 200-seat theater packed with lovers and lovers-to-be.

Four small-theater productions will be staged at the Shanghai Drama Arts Center in January, under the common theme "love" to attract more audiences, especially young people.

Translated and adapted from American playwright James Sherman's play of the same name, local director Yang Xinwei's latest work "Romance in D" has proved to be another box-office hit since it premiered on December 23, right before Christmas.

The play tells the sweet love story between two neighbors and their parents, with a happy ending for both the young couple and the older one. The audiences left the theater touched and satisfied because they saw what they wanted to see.

"The best shows are those with happy endings as they give me hope of finding true love in the year to come," said Liu Xiao, 28, an office worker, after the show. "The play didn't surprise me, but it is enjoyable because it is simple and authentic."

This is not the first year the Shanghai Drama Arts Center has staged plays about love during the New Year. At about the same time last year, the drama center adapted a popular Internet novel, "The Lover," a bitter-sweet story of a doomed love affair.

It was so popular that crowds were waiting outside the theater on cold nights just to get better seats. The tickets for the three rounds of the play were sold out. This year, five performances of "The Lover" will be staged from January 24 to 28.

"'Love," the eternal theme, never fails to attract theatergoers, especially during the holiday season," says Huang Yiping from the marketing department of the center. "Compared with others, love plays, especially those small productions, usually win more favor from the audience - we don't need to worry about the box office."

The center will also re-stage its 2006 summertime hit "Love with My Former Wife" in the middle of the month. A complicated foursome relationship, the play touches on different levels of the relationship from dating to marriage, from divorce to re-marriage.

Also running in the center is "How Much Love Can Be Messed Up" by a group of amateur dramatists. Definitely not set in a merry mood, the play is about the quest to find "the one," and it records the long journey before a young woman finally finds "the one" for her.

After the first round, "Romance in D" will be staged at the studio theater of Shanghai Grand Theater for the second round beginning January 27.

"Romance in D"

Date: through January 14, 7:30pm
Tickets: 100 yuan
Address: Shanghai Drama Arts Theater, 288 Anfu Rd
Date: January 27-28, January 31-February 4, 7:30pm
Address: Studio Theater, Shanghai Grand Theater, 300 People's Ave

"Love With My Former Wife"

Date: January 17-February 3 (closed on Mondays and Tuesdays), 7:15pm
Tickets: 100-120 yuan

"The Lover"

Date: January 24-28, 7:15pm
Tickets: 100 yuan

"How Much Love Can Be Messed Up"

Date: through January 20, 7:15pm
Tickets: 100-280 yuan
Address: Shanghai Drama Arts Theater, 288 Anfu Rd
Tel: 6473-01234, 6473-4567