“The musical ‘Let’s Enter the Wine’ premiered in Beijing, featuring an original ‘encounter’ with young Li Bai in Chinese style”
China News Service, Beijing, September 22 (Reporter Ying Ni) “Poetry is invincible and thoughts are unlike any other”, the original musical “The Wine Will Come” performed by the China Oriental Performing Arts Group Musical Theater Group premiered in Beijing on the evening of the 21st. The play uses the spirit of craftsmanship to create a poetic world, leading the audience to dream back to the Tang Dynasty and meet the young Li Bai.
Directed by the Sichuan Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism, the musical “Let’s Enter the Wine” is a joint production by the Propaganda Department of the Mianyang Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China, China Oriental Performing Arts Group Co., Ltd., Mianyang Municipal Culture, Radio, Television and Tourism Bureau, Jiangyou Municipal People’s Government, and CCTV Network. It has been selected for the 2023 performance season of “Watch Beijing in a Big Show”, and the first round of performances will last until September 24. After that, the show will start a nationwide tour to Shanghai, Qingdao, Xi’an, and other cities.
Musical actor Zheng Yunlong serves as the artistic director and starring role in “The Wine”. He admitted that he was very excited to play Li Bai. Such a person with a colorful life and a very representative figure in the history of literature has a lot of creative space. Moreover, it is also full of challenges for him to take into account martial arts while ensuring music and performance.
Musical actor Yu Yueyue, deputy director of the China Oriental Performing Arts Group Musical Troupe, stars as the heroine Mingyue in “The Wine” and serves as executive producer. Director Ma Da has rich experience in drama directing, and “The Wine Will Come in” is an original Chinese-style musical creation that he devoted all his efforts to create. Ma Da believes that the end of musicals is originality, and “national style” is one of the most suitable themes for Chinese original musicals. In his creation, he tried his best to establish the elements of national style and tell this Chinese story in a Chinese way and from the perspective of traditional culture.
In terms of character creation, the play breaks through traditional impressions and portrays a “mortal” Li Bai who walks in the world from all aspects and angles. The plot focuses on the growth process of young Li Bai, highlighting his life in Jiangyou, Sichuan during his youth and restoring Li Bai’s life. The life story of “the more you grind, the more fragrant”, the love with Mingyue’s childhood sweetheart, the sincere friendship with Wu Guanzhi and Du Fu, the blood-thicker-than-water family relationship with Li Ke and Li Yueyuan… The audience got a glimpse of Li Bai’s dazzling life through “Will Enter the Wine” The ups and downs, joys, and sorrows behind it.
In terms of stage design, “Let’s Enter the Wine” brings LED technology to the stage, fully extending the visual presentation of the stage, combining traditional culture with modern technology, and using digital technology to create an artistic spectacle. The stage designer created some scenes through AI means to restore the scenes in the play, including lush bamboo forests, brightly lit Chang’an, bustling streets, steep Sichuan roads with strange peaks, and moonlit mountains and rivers… The pictures on the screen are truly vivid and magnificent. Beautiful, with lighting, scenery, and props, the musical creates a cinematic feel, allowing the audience to experience the “hyper-realistic” visual language.
Martial arts is another design highlight of the play. Poetry, wine, and swords together constitute Li Bai’s spiritual core. In order to show the audience Li Bai as a “swordsman”, many martial arts performance scenes were added to the play. It is worth mentioning that the role of dancing Li Bai is also added to the play. Professional dancers use body language to show Li Bai’s unrestrained personality and “superego” psychological state.
The original musical “Let’s Enter the Wine” is another work of China Oriental Performing Arts Group, following “Only Green”, which carries out innovative transformation and creative development based on traditional culture. It uses musicals as a modern artistic expression to carry the traditional Chinese culture with the theme of “Li Bai” allows the audience to fully appreciate the charm of Li Bai and traditional culture through the modern art means of music and drama.