In 2023, Mathias Woo collaborated for the first time with renowned stage actress Perry Chiu to re-interpret Read Sing Eileen Chang and made its mainland debut at the Aranya Theater Festival. In 2024, Zuni will bring Read Sing Eileen Chang back to the mainland to meet the audience in Shenzhen, showcasing the sensory and spiritual impact brought by the combination of Zhang Ailing and stage art technology. The piece features texts selected from Eileen Chang’s novels and essays in the form of storytelling and singing, which are then integrated with creative stage technology by Zuni Innovation Lab led by Mathias Woo. The writings of Eileen Chang become three-dimensional as a Hong Kong cum cross-strait team of musicians and performers engage in a creative experiment on sound, acting and technology. The show combines technology and live performance, blending a variety of traditional and modern forms of storytelling and singing, which are then juxtaposed with sounds and images from Zuni’s past works on Eileen Chang to create a new piece of work.
“Read Sing Eileen Chang was a multimedia performance across different art forms; the production team straddles China, Hong Kong and Taiwan; different cultures inspired the techniques used. For the audience, it was an experience that transcended time and space.”
– Chow Fan Fu, Renowned Arts Critic
Zuni has reinterpreted various works by Eileen Chang, one of the most influential Chinese female writers in modern history. The year 2020 marked the 100th Anniversary of the birth of Eileen Chang. In a tribute to this legendary writer, Zuni launched the Eileen Chang 100 – Read Sing Eileen Chang. The different versions of the play launched over the past few years have been highly praised, including the live-stream at the Studio Theatre in June 2020, the live performance at the Grand Theatre in November of the same year, the screening in Huayi Chinese Festival of Arts and MOViE MOViE Life is Art Film Festival in 2021.
Texts, photos, illustrations from Eileen Chang’s works
© Roland Soong and Elaine Soong through Crown Culture Corporation