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First Performance in Guangzhou – 17 January

Published on Friday 17 January, 2014

Despite the delays in starting the fit up yesterday, the Technicians did an excellent job and finished work last night ahead of schedule.

The Guangzhou Opera House is rated as one of China’s top three theatres (The NCPA in Beijing is number one) and is regarded as the most high-tech and well facilitated performing arts centre in the South of China. The design by Architect, Zaha Hadid, is very modern and resembles a space ship or some such futuristic object.

Guangzhou Opera House

 The Auditorium is pretty impressive too.

Auditorium fom the stage

The theatre is just over 3 miles from the Ocean Hotel and with a late performance start time of 8pm, it was a relatively leisurely late start of 11.30 when we set off.

Prior to that I was taken to the office of the local promoter, The Guandong Performing Arts Company, located across town to pay for the tickets for our sponsors’ event this evening. Tickets are extremely expensive by our standards with top priced tickets at 1,280 Yuan (equivalent to £133). It makes access to performances such as ours limited in terms of how much of the population can experience them. In the end none of my British credit cards would work although they have been fine in hotels and restaurants. Not a lot of publicity around the venue but a promotional video was playing outside the Promoter's office.

Promo Video outside Promoter's Office

 Class got underway at 12.30, taught today by Yoko Ichino and before that Lily Amy, Company Manager gave notes to the company.

Pre Class

 The venue is in the modern part of the city of Guangzhou and a huge contrast from the area where the Ocean Hotel is located.

Modern Guangzhou

 Followed by the customary Technical rehearsal.

Al and Andy at work

All went well with the Technical Rehearsal.

Act 1 Reh

End of Act 1

Act 2 Rehearsal

Once again the stage in this venue is vast and plenty of space to store the props for the Mechanicals for Act 2.

Mechanicals Props

The whole backstage area is a maze and easy to get lost.

Backstage Maze

A different cast this evening.

Cast for 17 January

Prior to the performance we had another event with Leeds and Partners which went well despite some slightly tricky negotiations during the afternoon. David Nixon shared an insight into the production with the business guests.

Sponsors Reception

Another excellent performance from the Company which was very well received by the audience who understood the humour of the performance perhaps a little better than the audience in Xiamen. There was lots of cheering.

A later day tomorrow with class at 2.30pm so time for the Company to do some more sightseeing.

Mark Skipper DL, Northern Ballet's Chief Executive. Photo Simon Lawson.
Chief Executive

The views expressed in blogs are those of the author and not necessarily of Northern Ballet.