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Rhinoceros in Love

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Rhinoceros in Love

Beijing Comedy Arts Festival 2017
MENG Jinhui Theatre Studio Rhinoceros in Love

Venue: National Centre for the Performing Arts - Beijing Comedy Theatre
Dates: January 03-14, 2018

Rhinoceros in Love is an allegory of human sprit, rather than a real love story. It tells a story about a man who is in love with a woman does everything he can for her. The protagonist MA Lu, a monomaniac in others' eyes, over-exaggerates the differences between two women, as his friends point out. He might be considered as a rhinoceros among people, an eccentric man, in today's world where everyone knows how to make a wise choice. Being wise means refraining from doing those impossible, illogical and unthankful things. In this modern society, there are myriads of possibilities, approaches, and choices. Everyone can find his/her best place, and wisely strike a balance between how they feel and what they need so as to rule out the possibility of being hurt and mocked. But that is not how MA Lu thinks, and not what I like as well. The truth is that without monomania, there would be no breakthroughs, no progress and no new beginnings that you may have never expected, a rule that applies to everything, not just love.

To love is for your own good. Though no one actually deserves the love you give at the cost of losing everything, love can help you see through the various false illusions in life, and reach out to the world as well as the part of your inner world that you might have never noticed. It vitalizes all your senses and kills all your languor. It takes off your worldly outfit so as to expose the truest and tenderest part of your heart to others, a process which no doubt entails pain. But what do we live for if we can not feel people and the world in the most direct way?

 Playwright: LIAO Yimei
 Director: MENG Jinghui
 Set Designer: ZHANG Wu
 Sound Designer: YAN Guihe
 Lighting Designer: DENG Wen
 Costume Designer: ZHOU Lang
 Video Projection Designer: XU Dawei

Mingming, a sexy girl full of secrets, thoroughly changed the life of a young man named MA Lu, at the very moment that her presence catches MA's eyes as well as his love. She has a heart of stone and is indifferent to MA's flowers, promises, physical intimacy or whatever. MA Lu has done all he can, but was overwhelmed by deeper desperation by an unexpected big prize which he had hoped to help him win Mingming's heart. To help him, the salesman Toothbrush finds two young girls, Honghong and Lili, to pretend MA's followers, in an attempt to make Mingming jealous. Unfortunately, MA Lu's madness makes his love instructor's theory a complete failure. At a night, MA Lu, as creasy and stubborn as a rhinoceros, kidnaps Mingming in the name of love...

MENG Jinghui Director
MENG Jinghui founded Beijing Youth Theatre Festival in 2008 and has served as artistic director since then. He is the director of National Theatre of China. As the famous Chinese stage director, MENG Jinghui puts his creativity and diversified artistic style into full play.

He has directed many works, including Think of Worldly Pleasure, Accidental Death of an Anarchist, One Hundred Years of Solitude, Rhinoceros in Love, Head without Tail, Amber, In Illusion, Romantic Meeting, The Life Attitude of Two Dogs, Labyrinth and Magic Mountain. MENG also cultivates a large number of drama fans to infuse the energy into new diversification of Chinese drama stage. His film Chicken Poets is awarded with the FIPRESCI Critics Award of Hong Kong International Film Festival and Special Youth Jury Award of Locarno International Film Festival.

LIAO Yimei Playwright
LIAO Yimei is a Chinese scriptwriter and author in recent years. Graduating from the Central Academy of Drama of China, she now serves as a scriptwriter of the National Theatre of China. Her drama Rhinoceros in Love was premiered by the Central Experimental Drama Theatre in 1999, and its second performance was shown by the National Theatre of China in 2003 and 2004. Her drama works Magic Mountain (premiered by Beijing Children's Art Theatre Co. Ltd in 2005) and Aventure (premiered by National Theatre of China in 2007) are very popular. In March 2005, her multi-media musical drama Amber made its debut at the Hong Kong Art Festival, later in Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, etc. Her film work Life and Death Plunder won gold award at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York, U.S.A.; Fly Like a Chicken Feather won Film Critics Award at the Hong Kong International Film Festival and won Special Award of Youth Jury at the Locarno International Film Festival; A Review of Dancing with You won Gold Award at the Women's Film Festival in U.S.A. She also wrote novels Pessimist’s Bouquet, Magic Mountain and script collection Amber & Rhinoceros in Love.

ZHANG Wu Set Designer
ZHANG Wu was admitted to the Central Academy of Drama Stage Design Stage Art Department of Fine Arts in September 1994. In 1999, he graduated and continued to get a master's degree. Since 2002, he has worked as the lecturer of the stage art department of National Academy of Chinese Theatre Arts. His major theatrical stage works include Foregone Conclusion, Rhinoceros in Love, Amber, Too Dogs, Love Must Die colder, Quixote,, Romeo and Juiet, etc. His major film works include Shanghai Dreams (2005 Cannes Film Festival Jury Prize received.), Dreams May Come, in which he serveed as the art director.

Source: National Centre for the Performing Arts
Date: 2017-12-29