THE University of Melbourne Chinese Music Group are taking on Paochang Tsai’s traditional Mandarin musical, Mulan, as their 2011 musical production.
The musical tells the legend of Mulan, a brave young woman who disguises herself as a man in order to secretly take her father’s place in the Chinese army after he is conscripted. The tale is given a twist with the introduction of fresh characters, such as Mulan’s uninhibited sister and cowardly brother. When Mulan finds herself falling in love with the army general, what ensues is a story filled with action, romance and humour.
With the Chinese Music Group being mostly comprised of international students, production manager Kevin Chua says international students have good reason to attend the production.
“Many international students do not have ready access to theatre productions. They are scarce in Asia,” Chua says.
“International students may never have seen such a large amount of energy and time put into the production. Hopefully there will be a lot of support for fellow international students.”
Chua hopes people will appreciate the group’s twist on the traditional story.
“Everybody knows the story of Mulan. Our interpretation focuses on romance and comedy but there’s also emphasis on personal struggles as a theme. We’ve re-imagined the story. We’ve given it a breath of fresh air.”
With a score composed by Owen Wang played by a full live orchestra, and English subtitles provided, Mulan promises to have both Chinese speakers and non-Chinese speakers singing along.
A preview of the production will be held on Wednesday October 5 at 6:30pm, and for those willing to wait, Mulan’s official season begins on Thursday October 6. There will be a question and answer session held after the matinee performance on Saturday October 8.
Mulan will run from October 6 to 8 at Melbourne University’s Union Theatre. Shows begin at 7:30pm, with a matinee performance at 2:00pm on Saturday. Tickets cost $24 for adults, $18 for concession and $16 for Melbourne University Student Union members. All tickets to Thursday’s preview performance cost $10. To book call 0402 709 380. Visit the website or facebook page for more information.