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Playing with Tales: Spring Lantern Riddles and The Male Queen

Playing with Tales takes two classic Chinese texts and introduces a modern, Scottish slant. Over the course of a week, these exciting creative teams will explore and respond to English translation of the texts culminating in lively scratch performances of their works-in-progress. Expect Chinese culture and stories smashed into today’s Scotland from British adaptors of East Asian heritage who understand deeply the straddling of these worlds.

This will be the first performance of an English translation of Spring Lantern Riddles, a dark, dramatic and romantic tale about mistaken identities dating back to 1633. Translated by Edinburgh-based Alison Hardie, adapted by Julie Tsang and directed by Fiona Mackinnon.

The Male Queen translated by Sophie Volpp, adapted and directed by Pamela Carter, starring Zachary Hing, follows a beautiful penniless boy, Chen Zigao who, upon being captured by soldiers, fast becomes the object of the powerful King’s affection, and quickly ascending to the role of Queen, only to find himself swept up in a romance with the King’s younger sister.


Part of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Chinese Classics Translation Project, funded by Arts Council England


Cast and Credits

Spring Lantern Riddles

Originally written by Ruan Dacheng
Translated by Alison Hardie
Directed by Fiona Mackinnon
Adapted by Julie Tsang
Staring Nicolette Macleod
Staring Jamie Marie-Leary
Staring Louis Mai Newberry
Staring Elizabeth Chan
Staring Molly Harris

The Male Queen

Adapted/Directed by Pamela Carter 
Originally written by Wang Jide
Translated by Sophie Volpp
Assistant Director Melody Fu
Sound Designer Fi Johnston
Video Designer Anna Chaney
Staring Zachary Hing
Staring Ross Mann
Staring Natali McCleary

Dates, Times & Prices

Sunday 15 March 2020, 3pm

Running Time: 3-4pm first text, Interval 4-5pm including events in the foyer, music and food. 5-6pm second text.