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SIDDHARTHA - THE MUSICAL (article first published : 2002-06-28)

Siddhartha - The Musical is a poignant life journey of one of the world's greatest men to be performed in Mandarin with English subtitles. A spectacular authentic full-length musical created and produced by some of the best music, television and theatre talents from Malaysia, it comes to South Africa in July on a rare trip outside Asia.

The critically acclaimed musical received overwhelming response when it premiered in Kuala Lumpur in October, 1999, and in Singapore in July, 2001. It is essentially an eastern story retold in an accessible international style. Presented by a cast of mostly award-winning performers, the show boasts a captivating music score which marries modern rhythms with classical elements.

Audiences will be treated to 22 scene changes, a majestic set, breathtaking lighting effects, lavish costumes and computer animation effects. There are more than 200 garments as well as elaborate headgear and accessories, which are designed and made according to the ethnic styles and flavour of ancient Indian period. Lead actor Yang Wei Han is one of the top ten singers in Malaysia.

Siddhartha - The Musical has achieved high artistic and entertainment merits around the world. Audiences internationally have been greatly moved and inspired by the poetic depiction of the life of Prince Siddhartha in ancient India. He gave up prestige and wealth to go in search of the truth in life and became one of the greatest teachers of all time.

The musical took one and a half-years to create - from scriptwriting, composing the music, to auditioning for cast and dancers, and gruelling rehearsals. The production features more than 40 original compositions, with a blend of classical and popular music. A production team of 60, including 40 actors and dancers will be coming from Malaysia.

There will be performances in Durban in the Playhouse Opera on July 12 and 13. Book at Computicket or phone 011 340-8000 or visit www.siddharthathemusical.com




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