Grow­ing mar­ket is bol­stered by of­fi­cial sup­port

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - CHINA - By ZHANG XIAOMIN

In re­cent years, Dalian’s cul­tural mar­ket has grown steadily, ac­cord­ing to Zhang Ron­grong, man­ager of the Peo­ple’s Cul­ture Club of Dalian, in the north­east­ern prov­ince of Liaon­ing.

Ev­ery year, the theater hosts more than 300 per­for­mances, in­clud­ing clas­si­cal mu­sic, bal­let, opera, crosstalk (a type of comedic di­a­logue) and con­tem­po­rary drama, reg­u­larly sell­ing about 70 per­cent of the avail­able seats.

Mod­ern dra­mas per­formed by well-known ac­tors and writ­ten by award-win­ning play­wrights are the most pop­u­lar of­fer­ings, along with come­dies. How­ever, when big stars are in­volved it’s dif­fi­cult to ob­tain tick­ets, Zhang said.

The theater also co­op­er­ates with other venues in Dalian and in cities such as Bei­jing, Harbin, and Shenyang, Liaon­ing’s cap­i­tal city, to in­vite well-known com­pa­nies from both home and abroad to per­form.

“This way, we share re­sources and re­duce costs, and that means we can pro­vide more high-end per­for­mances for our au­di­ences,” Zhang said.

The mar­ket for mod­ern drama is in­flu­enced by a range of fac­tors, such as lo­cal pref­er­ences, in­comes and the con­di­tions of the­aters and other venues.

In March, the city’s Zhong­shan Dis­trict pro­vided a sub­sidy to peo­ple who bought tick­ets for three venues — Dalian Peo­ple’s Cul­ture Club, Hongji Grand Stage and Dalian Poly Theater.

Ten thou­sand pre­mium cards were is­sued, cost­ing 300 yuan ($43.50) and the lo­cal gov­ern­ment pro­vided a sub­sidy of 100 yuan. Each card pro­vides en­try to five dif­fer­ent events at lo­cal the­aters.

In Novem­ber, the lo­cal cul­tural ad­min­is­tra­tion is­sued a fur­ther 10,000 cards for the three the­aters, while a fourth, the Dalian De­vel­op­ment Area Grand Theater, was added to the list. The sub­sidy has been in­creased to 300 yuan per card, which are valid for six per­for­mances.

“Lo­cal peo­ple need guid­ance about art, so we hope more lo­cals will be en­cour­aged to visit the theater,” Zhang said.

Lo­cal peo­ple need guid­ance about art, so we hope more lo­cals will be en­cour­aged to visit the theater.”

Zhang Ron­grong, man­ager of the Peo­ple’s Cul­ture Club of Dalian, a theater in Liaon­ing

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