We celebrate the first two years of our Chinese cultural exchange and announce new Chinese-language productions of The Tempest, Twelfth Night and Hamlet.

We marked two years of our Chinese Cultural Exchange programme with an event at London’s Hackney Empire on Wednesday (7 March). We also announced that translations of three Shakespeare plays will be performed in China this year:

  • The Tempest, opening in Beijing in August 2018, directed by Tim Supple, translated by So Kwok Wan, and produced by the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA).
  • Twelfth Night, opening in Guangzhou, in October 2018, directed by Cressida Brown and produced by Guangzhou Dramatic Arts Centre.
  • Hamlet, opening in Beijing in December 2018, directed by Li Liuyi and produced by Li Liuyi Theatre Studio in Beijing, using the first translation in the series by a female translator, Li Jianming.

These follow on from the successful Chinese productions of Henry V in 2016 and Li Liuyi's King Lear last year.

group of people, 2 men in the centre shake hands
Paapa Essiedu, playing Hamlet our UK production meets Hu Jun, playing Hamlet in the Chinese production.
Photo by David Tett © RSC Browse and license our images

There will also be a translation workshop later this month in Stratford-upon-Avon, and our Live from Stratford-upon-Avon cinema broadcasts will continue in China. There have already been over 200 screenings of our shows in the country during the past 18 months.

Talking about our links with China, Artistic Director Gregory Doran said: “We learn more about one another by telling and sharing our stories and, as we progress our two translation projects, we are discovering for ourselves the depth and artistic quality of China’s own classical drama. It is great that Chinese companies have taken the cultural exchange programme to their hearts and we look forward to the three new Chinese Shakespeare productions taking place this year, using our new actor and audience friendly translations.”

group photo of 10 people standing together, smartly dressed, next to an RSC logo
Left to right, front row: Li Jianming, Madame Hu Pinghua, RSC Artistic Director Gregory Doran, His Excellency Ambassador Liu Xiaoming, Li Liuyi, Hu Jun. Back row: Lu Fang and Jin Hao, Pu Cunxin
Photo by David Tett © RSC Browse and license our images