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China’s theater industry enters into blockbuster era

Updated: Dec 2,2014 11:34 AM

With the thriving theater scene, the industry is also seeing transformations. It’s becoming increasingly market-oriented and perhaps commercialized. Here’s what the insiders say on where the stage is headed.

It’s getting common to see a sold-out production in today’s theater performance.

With the rapid development of the country’s theater and play industry, however many industry insiders worry that the SCRIPT is still one of the main bottleneck restricting domestic creation.

“There is simply too few good scripts. Because I think IF there were so many good scripts in this market, then there wouldn’t be so many reproductions of the classics,” says Tang Ye, director of Beijing People’s Art Theater.

China’s theater market has showed signs of following suit of the movie industry, striding toward the way of commercialization and market operation.

Experts say letting the market decide a play’s popularity is like having a filter. It screens off people who muddle along and unites those with ambitions and a serious attitude.

“The Chinese drama industry has entered into the blockbuster era. Whether it is a good thing? Well I think it might be because it will urge drama groups to have their own style, define target customers and attract investment. However, once the theater industry starts functioning like the movie blockbuster world, there’ll be problems, like self-exploration coming to a halt,” says professor Tian Huiqun, from School of Art and Media of Beijing Normal University.

Industry experts say producing works that can withstand the test of the market is key to this transformation, through which it’s creating a sound cultural market environment, improving industry structures and honing the competency of artists.