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Dance Drama DRAGON BOAT RACING to Play Lincoln Center This Winter

Following their recent sold-out run featuring the U.S. premiere of the Peking Opera star Zhang Huoding, the China Arts and Entertainment Group (CAEG) returns to the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center with DRAGON BOAT RACING, a production of the Guangdong Song & Dance Ensemble that blends traditional Cantonese music and history with state-of-the-art theatrical artistry, from January 7-10, 2016. DRAGON BOAT RACING is written by Tang Dong with music by Du Ming, and is directed and choreographed by Zhou Liya and Han Zhen.

The production of DRAGON BOAT RACING is a part of CAEG's Image China cultural exchange initiative, which aims to introduce traditional and contemporary Chinese performing arts to audiences around the world. Since its inception in 2009, Image China has presented works at venues across the globe, including Lincoln Center in New York, The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and performance venues in Australia and throughout Europe.

DRAGON BOAT RACING, the American debut of the Guangdong Song & Dance Ensemble, tells the story of the creation of one of the most iconic and enduring pieces of Cantonese music. Set in 1930s China against the backdrop of the Japanese occupation, DRAGON BOAT RACING follows two lovers whose passion for each other is equaled only by their passion for music, and tells the story of how one of the finest and most famous Cantonese compositions comes to be...and how it becomes a musical theme that inspires the entire nation. The 2014 Chinese premiere of DRAGON BOAT RACINGachieved such vast popularity among audiences that it was considered to be a cultural phenomenon throughout the nation.

Said Wang Xiuqin, Executive Director of CAEG, "We are thrilled to present this production, which showcases so beautifully the Guangdong Song & Dance Ensemble's theatrical artistry, as well as a vital facet of Chinese artistic culture. We hope DRAGON BOAT RACING will both enlighten and enchant American audiences."

The cast of DRAGON BOAT RACING includes Li Xing (He Liunian), Li Yanchao (Xu Chunling), Sun Ran (He Shaoyan), Wang Minrui (Pan Hongying), Qi Qi (Xu Chunling's father), Li Chaoyi (Japanese General), and an ensemble of 38 dancers. The production features scenic design by Qin Liyun and Ma Jun, lighting design by Liu Fengshu and Qin Nianfeng, and costume design by Yang Donglin.

LISTINGS INFORMATION: DRAGON BOAT RACING plays a strictly limited run the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center (20 Lincoln Center Plaza) January 7-10, 2016. Performance schedule is January 7-9 at 8:00PM, and January 10 at 1:00PM. Running time is 100 minutes with one intermission. Tickets are $22-167 (plus a $3 facility fee) and are available now for purchase at EARLYBIRD Special - Buy before December 5 and enjoy a 30% discount for all tickets priced at $37, $57, $77 and $107.

Guangdong Song & Dance Ensemble, the successor of the former South China Art Troupe formed in July 1949, is a state-owned unit directly under the Department of Culture of GuangdongProvince. The ensemble is comprised of 9 sections including the dance drama company, operacompany, stage production center, creation department, performance department and business department. The ensemble takes residence in the Guangdong Center of Performing Arts.

With a history of over six decades, Guangdong Song & Dance Ensemble has nurtured and witnessed the success of many Chinese artistic virtuosos. As the top arts company in Guangdong Province, the ensemble has visited many countries and regions across the five continents and thus promoted cultural exchange between China and other countries around the world. It is dedicated to the creation and performance of high-quality theatrical productions, such as the dance drama Liao-Yuan-Huo-Ju (The Burning Torch), Nan-Yue-Wang (The Nanyue King), Zhen-Zhu (The Pearl),Feng-Yu-Hong-Mian (Wedding on the Execution Ground), Yuan-Yue (Full Moon), Qi-Lou-Wan-Feng (Love Story of Grandma Wang and Grandpa Xu); dance workYu-Da-Ba-Jiao (Rain Pattering on Plantain Leaves), Gui-Fei-Zui-Jiu (The Drunken Beauty), Qi-Qi-Chang-Ting (Forbidden Love); traditional Chinese music concertLing-Nan-Bian-Zou (The Ling-Nan Variation), and Feng-Hua-Yue-Yun (Greatest Features of Cantonese Music). The ensemble has won many national and international awards, including the Wenhua Prize awarded by the China Ministry of Culture, the Lotus Award of National Dance Competition, and the Special Prize of the Delphi Art Contest.

The China Arts and Entertainment Group (CAEG) is the first large state-owned cultural enterprise in China. It was founded in 2004 based on the merger of the China Performing Arts Agency (CPAA) and the China International Exhibition Agency (CIEA). With a history of more than 50 years, CPAA and CIEA have gained international acclaim by undertaking thousands of governmental cultural exchange projects and commercial stage performances and arts exhibitions both at home and abroad. Such productions as the opera Turandot on its original site in the Forbidden City of Beijing, Shaolin Warriors, ERA-Intersection with Time, and the Chinese language version of classic musicals Mamma Mia and Cats, win great success in market benefits as well as brand establishment. Serving as a bridge of cultural exchanges between China and other countries, CAEG has established and maintained a wide and solid cooperation with world-renowned cultural institutions, galleries, museums as well as famed cultural companies, performing arts troupes and individual artists. Each year, thousands of shows, exhibitions and other cultural activities are presented in hundreds of cities in dozens of countries and regions attracting audiences of over 10 million annually.

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