Various human dilemmas feature in theater season
Four pieces of theater featuring people in dilemmas will be staged at Shanghai Oriental Art Center from May 18 to October 6, making up Shanghai Oriental Art Center’s 2018 theatrical season.
They include “Who’s Gonna be Daisy’s Groom?” on June 17-18, which explores the mother-daughter relationship; “Saigon” on June 29-30 that focuses on Vietnamese in France who were forced to be separated from their hometown for 40 years; “Same Time, Next Year” on September 21-22 about an affair between a man and a woman who keep dating once every year; and “The New Wilderness” on October 5-6 that brings audiences back to a Chinese rural village where a poor woman struggles in her marriage.
While three of the productions are to be staged in Chinese, “Saigon,” which gained great popularity at the 2017 Festival d’Avignon, will be presented in French and Vietnamese.
“Audiences may not understand all the lines, and that is exactly what I want, because it helps them actually feel for the people struggling between the two nations with different languages and cultures,” says director Caroline Guiela Nguyen.
Saigon, the former name of Ho Chi Minh City, is also the name of a little Vietnamese restaurant that ran in Vietnam before 1956 and in Paris afterward, where the whole story is set.
In 1956, many Vietnamese escaped to France. It was not until 1996 that Vietnamese government allowed the exiles to return. In those 40 years between, the restaurant witnessed a number of tragedies.
With a Vietnamese migrant mother, director Nguyen created the story not only based on her own family history, but also on memories of many Vietnamese migrants that she spent two years collecting.
“I hope it will exhibit a collective memory of Vietnamese in France,” Nguyen says. “The tears of my mother do not belong to the psychologist, but all the Vietnam migrants in that particular history.”
Date: June 29-30, 7:15pm
Tickets: 80-680 yuan
Who’s Gonna be Daisy’s Groom?
Date: June 17-18, 7:15pm
Tickets: 80-580 yuan
Same Time, Next Year
Date: September 21-22, 7:15pm
Tickets: 80-880 yuan
The New Wilderness
Date: October 5-6, 7:15pm
Tickets: 80-680 yuan
Venue: Shanghai Oriental Arts Center
Address: 425 Dingxiang Rd, Pudong New Area