Ghost sweeps into Beijing

By Zhang Kun in Shanghai ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-06-29 06:43:15

Ghost sweeps into Beijing

The musical Ghost, adapted from the wildly successful 1990 US film, presents classic scenes in a new way. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Ghost, the musical, will be enjoyable for people who loved the 1990 film and those who are new to the story.

Even people who know the story well will enjoy seeing how the stage production handles famous scenes from the film, such as the soul leaving the body, the ghost walking through a concrete door and the fight in a speeding metro train, says executive director Paul Warwick Griffin.

And, of course, the scene in which the two main characters work on pottery with Unchained Melody playing in the background also features in the stage production.

The musical is currently touring China. The tour started in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, before moving to Shanghai. Seven performances will be given at Poly Theater in Beijing from Tuesday to Sunday.

The film, starring Demi Moore, Patrick Swayze and Whoopie Goldberg, enjoyed great success worldwide. Colin Ingram, a veteran producer of musical theater from Britain, adapted the story for the stage. The musical had its global premiere in Manchester in 2011. Since then it has been to the West End of London and Broadway in New York.

All songs except for Unchained Melody were new compositions for the musical, by Dave Stewart and Glen Ballard, Ingram says.

The original story of Ghost was written by Bruce Joel Rubin, about a young banker Sam who is killed, but his spirit lingers in the world to protect his fiancee Molly from his former colleague and friend Carl. Sam manages to communicate with Molly through a psychic named Oda Mae Brown.

For the China tour, Sam is played by Liam Doyle and Molly by Lucy Jones. The dramatic character of Oda Mae, which won Whoopie Goldberg an Oscar, is played by veteran actress Wendy Mae Brown.

The musical theater has seen a growing number of new productions adapted from films. The success of the film will provide some degree of reassurance for investors, as well as brand awareness, Griffin says.

The trend has brought new challenges for theater workers, as they have to come up with new ideas to surprise and satisfy audiences.

Illusion acts designed by professional magicians helped to give the illusion of a ghost is trapped between two worlds.

Fresh Vogur and GWB Entertainment is a new company founded to bring Ghost to China.

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