Cantonese version of Young Lion musical premieres at Hong Kong Arts Festival

Print Share Updated: 2024-03-19 12:06

On March 8, the Cantonese version of the musical "Young Lion" premiered at the Hong Kong Arts Festival. Based on the popular animated film of the same title, the musical tells the story of an ordinary teenager who overcomes obstacles, seeks apprenticeship, and pursues the dream of learning the lion dance and stilt walking.

Following its premiere, the Cantonese musical is set to be staged in various locations across the Greater Bay Area in May 2024.

Successful Premiere of Cantonese Version of Musical "Young Lion" at Hong Kong Arts Festival

On March 8, the Cantonese version of the musical "Young Lion," jointly created by artists from Guangdong and Hong Kong and adapted from the mainland's popular animated film "Young Lion," premiered at the Grand Theatre of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre. It was part of the 52nd Hong Kong Arts Festival.

This marks the first mainland musical invited to participate in the Hong Kong Arts Festival. Tickets were snapped up by local audiences from the start of ticket sales. Each of the five performances at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre's Grand Theatre accommodated 1,556 audience members. The average ticket price was 440 Hong Kong dollars. Tickets for all five performances were sold out two weeks before the start of the show.

The Cantonese version of the musical was guided by the Publicity Department of the Guangdong Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of China, the Department of Culture and Tourism of Guangdong Province, and produced by China Arts and Entertainment Group Ltd. (CAEG) and the Guangzhou Municipal Bureau of Culture, Radio, Television and Tourism. It was jointly produced by the Guangzhou Opera House Management Co., Ltd., and the Guangdong Song and Dance Theatre Co., Ltd. It was co-produced by Beijing Wonderful Time Cultural Media Co., Ltd. and received support from the Guangdong Provincial Literary and Artistic Excellence (Literary and Artistic Talent) Special Fund and the 2022 Guangzhou Municipal Literary and Artistic Excellence Special Fund.

Synopsis and Audience Feedback for the Cantonese Version of Musical "Young Lion"

The musical "Young Lion" tells the story of a frail and sickly teenager from a small town, Ah Juan, who goes from learning lion dance to seeking apprenticeship, experiencing setbacks, and staying true to his original aspirations, eventually becoming a success and returning home victorious.

The plot unfolds amidst a convergence of dance, music, and lion dance. The storyline is poignant with dialogue that evokes both laughter and tears, inspiring and heartening. The superb performances and the portrayal of the intangible cultural heritage of lion dance, showcased through stage art, resonated strongly with the Hong Kong audience. The audience was captivated, and after the show, many fans lingered at the exit, reluctant to leave.

Continuing the Brilliance of the Mandarin, Cantonese Version of Musical "Young Lion" Embarks on Tour

The Mandarin version of the musical "Young Lion" had its highly anticipated global premiere at the Guangzhou Opera House from Jan 11 to 14, 2024, receiving numerous accolades. The show was a blend of humor and emotion, narrative and lyricism, seamlessly integrating songs and background, and creating a rich atmosphere with lighting and sound effects, providing a vivid presentation of the Lingnan lion dance culture.

Building on the excellence of the Mandarin version, the Cantonese version of the musical "Young Lion" has brought together outstanding artists, creators, performers, and production teams from Guangdong, Hong Kong, and Macau, injecting new vitality into the production. The musical involves 23 actors and 82 staff members, with 32 percent of the staff from Hong Kong and Macau. The entire team is ready to present the best performance, allowing audiences to experience the extraordinary charm of the Greater Bay Area culture up close. The Cantonese version of the musical is scheduled to be presented in various locations across the Greater Bay Area in May 2024.