Xintiandi Festival's 'link of love'

Song Yiyang
The 2020 Xintiandi Festival runs through June 27, with the theme of "link of love," focusing on "finding the new power of art." 
Song Yiyang

"Life is meaningful because there are always so many people who are precious to us.”

The euphonic song flowed out of the Shanghai Readway Gallery in Xintiandi Plaza, where a new musical “Unshelved” was being performed.

“Since the theater performance was affected by the novel coronavirus pandemic, our musical performers have waited a long time and are anxious to present their best in front of the audience,” said Zhou Xiaowei, the musical’s director and voiceover hostess.

The venue is a tiny, cozy environment, and the audience closely gather around the performers. Sometimes, performers suddenly jump out from behind the audience, which provides a strong sense of interactivity.

The story of this musical mainly follows an unimportant minor character through all kinds of adventures in different books she finds on a magic bookshelf in the library. But she eventually finds the courage to change her life.

 When the musical is performed on the stage, it seems that the story leaves many spaces for the audience to imagine and encourages people to find courage to live their lives.

Besides the fascinating musical, there are many other wonderful indoor and outdoor performing art shows at the festival.

The 2020 Xintiandi Festival runs through June 27, with the theme of “link of love,” focusing on “finding the new power of art.” It concentrates on discovering talents and incubating brilliant works by local budding performers.

One of the highlights is the festival’s outdoor shows. When strolling around the entertainment hub, you might bump into a parade led by dinosaurs.

“Dinoman Performing Arts” by China Dinosaur Land uses more than 10 dinosaur puppets to travel through 100 million years of history, telling stories to the audience along the way.

A further stroll along the street and you’ll discover five secret gardens from five continents, together with music from Mozart’s string quartet, passionate drumbeats, bamboo flutes, Piazzolla’s romantic melodies and rhythmic dance.

In addition, street performers can be seen on every corner, such as a bronze man, an interactive human statue, Treeman and Mopman. They all possess unique skills and are ready to present dazzling performances.

Another stunning show to look out for is the immersive Kunqu Opera adaptation of the novel “Six Records of a Floating Life.”

Visitors can eat Suzhou-style snacks and drink Chinese rice wine while enjoying the performance. With immersive opera-performing participation, the audience will get a glimpse of the tranquility and joy of the life that the characters once lived in the novel.

The 10-day festival features 20 shows with nearly 200 performances for free and half of those performances are shown in the evenings to bring a unique nocturnal experience to the city’s art lovers. Reservations are required for indoor performances with limited entries.

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