I apologize up front for calling Design for Living Joe Cheng’s play, but he is probably the draw for a lot of people, and probably the person most people know, at least for those who come to this site. For the famous people in attendance however, the big draw was mostly Sylvia Chang, a veteran director in Taiwan. The director and one of the lead actresses of “Not All Women are Bad” were spotted attending the play Design for Living in Beijing. Taiwanese music mogul Jonathan Lee (Fusion’s management), and Chinese sixth generation director Tian Zhuangzhuang were also in attendance.
Sylvia Chang is friends with both the directors Tsui Hark and Tian Zhuangzhuang, who directed her in his latest film, The Go Master. She was instrumental in the production of this play, including working on its script, and this marks her first time as an actress on stage drawing the more veteran crowd familiar with her work. Jonathan Lee, also a friend, tried to keep a low profile, preferring instead to keep the focus on the play. Director Tsui Hark said that Kitty Zhang Yuqi wanted to see it and so they went together. She explained that she has always wanted to act in a play but never had the opportunity, and that she dragged Tsui Hark into this as well.
Being in a play has always meant a little more credibility for actors…plays are usually one of the highest artforms. TV is aimed at the lowest common denominator, movies can range, but usually plays/musicals are not the mindless drivel that you watch at whim. When you go to a play and dork out 800 yuan, or 100 dollars, you tend to want to see quality. Furthermore they require more from actors as well, and are a different kind of acting that challenges actors so I was really happy to see Joe branching out to this.
As for Zhang Yuqi saying she wanted to be in plays…I’ll believe it when I see it but I applaud her initiative to actually attend plays. The picture below doesn’t really quite capture the excitement of the two as audience members, you should probably watch the clip.
After having been in Shenzhen, and after wrapping up in Beijing in a couple of days, this play will head to Singapore in January.
Still, just because Joe has garnered more credibility with his play doesn’t mean you can’t be shallow. Check out the official Sina site for more pictures of Joe looking sharp in suits. I don’t think I’ve seen a bad picture of him in this yet.